It used to be laughable to think of Linux
as a preferred gaming platform. Sure, emulators like Wine made a gamer's life a little easier on Linus, but things like driver issues and lack of native titles have always prevented Linux from stepping into the gaming limelight, at least until now. We're not sure if a tectonic shift is occurring right before our very eyes, but there's no denying there's a major push towards getting gamers to embrace the open source operating system over Windows.
We're seeing it primarily from Valve
with its upcoming SteamOS
and Steam Machine
boxes, though also from developers. Lars Gustavsson, the Creative Director of DICE who has worked on nearly every Battlefield game since the first prototype, believes Linux is just a single "killer" game away from blasting into the mainstream market.
"We strongly want to get into Linux for a reason," Gustavsson told Polygon
. "It took halo for the first Xbox to kick off and go crazy. Usually, it takes one killer app or game and then people are more than willing. It is not hard to get your hands on Linux, for example, it only takes one game that motivates you to go there."
Suffice to say, Gustavsson is super excited about what Valve is doing with Linux. Whether or not Steam Machines will turn the tide remains to be seen, but if nothing else, a little competition doesn't hurt. Gustavsson likens the situation now to the VHS era.
"You know, was the VHS tape better than BetaMax? VHS won," Gustavvson says. "So it does not always go in the right direction but overall I think it is healthy with competition."