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PlayOnLinux and Linux gaming: Where do we stand in 2014?

Wednesday 13 August 2014 at 13:15 (8 comments)

Hi everybody,

After about 8 years of existence, I would like to devote a special article to give my feelings about PlayOnLinux situation, what is its place in Linux Gaming, to explain where we are going and to answer few questions I was asked about PortMyApps.

To put this into context, in 2007, 7th May, we decided with a friend to create PlayOnLinux. The name we had chosen was meaningful: we were hoping to bring a new way to play on Linux. By the time, there were very few native games. The best way we could allow you to play your game on Linux was to use wine. The idea was encouragingly successful because in less than a week, we had more than one hundred members.[1]

At the time, we did not have sufficient resources to provide complete software allowing to use all existing platforms (including native games, which were far fewer in 2007 than today). Therefore, we mainly focused on Windows games (using Wine, DOSBox and ScummVM), and we developed a set of tools allowing to easily install and use these programs.

netappwm.jpgIn 2012, December, Valve announced the release of a Linux version of Steam client[2]. One year later, SteamOS is released[3].  Last month, GOG.Com (Good Old Games) also announce the official support of Linux platform[4]. Such news is encouraging, and show that game publishers have more and more interest in free operating systems, despite the fact that their market share stay low for the moment.[5].

For our part, we obviously want this new trend to continue and we highly encourage game publishers to release their products for Linux. However, our (historical) name PlayOnLinux can now be a little confusing: While you might think we want to bring the way to play on linux, what we are proposing in fact is a tool allowing you to use wine easily. If you are looking for something to manage your game library on Linux, plenty of them exist, such as Lutris[6] which is also a French product.

We are now are facing a new tricky problem: Should we stop encouraging publishers to use wine now that they are showing interest in Linux systems? This problem has been raised in comments from a GamingOnLinux[7] article when I decided to run PortMyApps. (It is important to note that PortMyApps will stay independant of PlayOnLinux, the developers are not the same). We had the idea of getting closer from publishers noticing that PlayOnLinux is becoming harder and harder to maintain, mainly because of its large amount of scripts growing exponentially. Of course, it would not be profitable to see wine being used by game publisher as an easy and low-cost porting solution, to the detriment of a real native developement process. Let me reassure you about this respect, PortMyApps certainly does not want to port the next Elder Scroll, neither to capture Linux video game market. We would not be that pretentious. Furthermore, it is really unlikely to see a publisher at the same time being seriously interested in Linux gaming, and wanting to propose a wine-based solution. It is even more unlikely to see a big game publisher giving such important responsibility to a small project like ours.

However, we figured out that in some cases (two, to be accurate), this idea would be going to be good for everyone.

  • There are some programs whose core business is neither computing, nor video games. I'm thinking about very specific programs, generally used by small amount of people. (Medicine, specialized drawing materials, ...). This software is often used inside a company, or developed in B2B. Publisher and user of this software might want to use Linux without having sufficient resources to port their program. (technological aspects, few developers, ...).
  • There are some very old games whose source code is lost, or whose interest and notability are not sufficient enough regarding the amount of work needed to make a Linux version.

We typically want to work in both of those cases. We have used and followed wine for eight years, and we propose to help, in those cases, to integrate it the best way we can so that the user experience won't be degraded. For information, PortMyApps.com upload is limited 50Mo.

To come back to PlayOnLinux, we are obvisouly aware that one day, it will become pointless and will have no longer reasons to exists. We strongly believe that it would represent a victory for the values we are defending. However, we also think that everybody should be able to run software he wants regardless the choice of the operating system. It is in this mind that we will continue to do what we have been doing for nearly eight years, until each publisher decides to release a native (and not wine based) version of each game. We still have a long way to go and a lot of ideas to present you. I also would like to thank each of those that has been involved in this project for the last seven years.

Feel free to post questions in comments, I will be glade to answer the best I can.

Sources

  1. http://museum.playonlinux.com
  2. http://korben.info/steam-pour-linux-enfin-ouvert-a-tous.html
  3. http://store.steampowered.com/livingroom/SteamOS/
  4. http://www.gog.com/news/gogcom_now_supports_linux
  5. http://www.developpez.com/actu/70849/Part-de-marche-des-OS-Windows-XP-baisse-mais-legerement/
  6. http://www.lutris.net
  7. http://www.gamingonlinux.com/articles/the-team-behind-playonlinux-playonmac-reveals-portmyapps-updated.4117

 

 

Quentin PÂRIS

Wine 1.7.24 is available!

Sunday 10 August 2014 at 10:42 (0 comments)

Wine 1.7.24 is now available for PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac!

You can read the release notes here: https://www.playonlinux.com/w/wine-1.7.24

Wine builds are synchronised with PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac wine versions manager every half hour.
You can read the build log and download the packages here: https://www.playonlinux.com/wine/

Quentin PÂRIS

Wine 1.7.23 is available!

Sunday 27 July 2014 at 1:27 (0 comments)

Wine 1.7.23 is now available into PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac!

You can read release note here: https://www.playonlinux.com/w/wine-1.7.23

Wine builds are synchronised with PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac wine versions manager every half hour.
You can read the building log here and download the packages here: https://www.playonlinux.com/wine/

Quentin PÂRIS

Skyrim is now supported by PlayOnMac

Tuesday 22 July 2014 at 16:01 (0 comments)

Quentin PÂRIS

PlayOnLinux 4.2.3 is out, experimental FreeBSD support!

Friday 11 July 2014 at 16:10 (0 comments)

 

Hi everybody,

The version 4.2.3 of PlayOnLinux is now available! Here are the main new features:

  • Experimental FreeBSD support.
  • A lot of bug fixed; stability is greatly improved
  • Mac OS users are no longer forced to reboot before using PlayOnMac.
  • To encourage people to use the website to get support, we removed the integrated IRC client. This decision has been made in order to keep record of the support we bring to people.

 

There's few other feature we want to release soon, so expect the version 4.2.4 quite quickly !

Have a nice day!

 

Quentin PÂRIS

Counter Strike : Global Offensive is now supported by PlayOnLinux!

Wednesday 9 July 2014 at 13:36 (1 comments)

Counter Strike : Global Offensive is now supported by PlayOnLinux!

MiniatureMiniature

logo Run Counter Strike: Global Offensive PlayOnLinux Script

Checkout: https://www.playonlinux.com/en/app-2147.html

Enjoy!

Quentin PÂRIS

Star wars: The Old Republic on Linux and Mac OS X!

Monday 7 July 2014 at 18:33 (1 comments)

Hi everybody,

We are happy to announce you that Star wars: The Old Republic now runs on Mac OS and Linux !

To install it, it is really simple.

  • Download PlayOnLinux or PlayOnMac if not already done
  • Click on install button
  • Select Games
  • Chose Star Wars: The Old Republic

At the end of the process, you'll be able to run the game on your Linux computer or on your Mac!

Enjoy!

Quentin PÂRIS

New interface!

Sunday 8 June 2014 at 17:29 (0 comments)

Hi everybody,

We are happy to annouce you a new interface for supported software.

How does it work?

That's simple! You just need to go the Supported software. page

You'll have access to all PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac supported software. By clicking on the name of a program, you'll be able to see informations, and feedback of other members.

 

You'll also be able to install any program directly from the website :

 

Contribute improving PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac

If you want to help us to improve our program, it is even more simple than before! Just look for the following button:

You'll be able to contribute in different ways:

With a simple feedback

The interface asks you if yes or no the program runs smoothly for you. If you want to give more details, you can always write a comment:

 

 

By improving the code of the installer

If you want to help us to improve the compatibility, feel free to read the documentation and to propose a new version of the installer. The other members will be able to test your version and to give you feedbacks.

Quentin PÂRIS

Wine 1.7.19 is available!

Friday 16 May 2014 at 23:17 (1 comments)

Wine 1.7.19 is now available into PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac!

You can read release note here: https://www.playonlinux.com/w/wine-1.7.19

Here are some information about the build :

- linux-x86 building started at Fri, 16 May 2014 21:45:21 0200
- linux-x86 building finished at Fri, 16 May 2014 22:06:05 0200
- darwin-x86 building started at Fri, 16 May 2014 22:06:29 0200
- darwin-x86 building finished at Fri, 16 May 2014 22:37:14 0200
- linux-amd64 building started at Fri, 16 May 2014 22:37:28 0200
- linux-amd64 building finished at Fri, 16 May 2014 23:17:01 0200
     
Wine builds are synchronised with PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac wine versions manager every half hour.
You can read the building log here and download the packages here: https://www.playonlinux.com/wine/

Wine building service

Wine 1.7.18 is available!

Saturday 3 May 2014 at 0:52 (0 comments)

Wine 1.7.18 is now available into PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac!

You can read release note here: https://www.playonlinux.com/w/wine-1.7.18

Here are some information about the build :

- linux-x86 building started at Fri, 02 May 2014 21:45:17 0200
- linux-x86 building finished at Fri, 02 May 2014 22:06:23 0200
- linux-x86 building started at Fri, 02 May 2014 22:06:36 0200
- linux-x86 building finished at Fri, 02 May 2014 22:26:39 0200
- darwin-x86 building started at Fri, 02 May 2014 22:27:00 0200
- darwin-x86 building finished at Fri, 02 May 2014 22:58:10 0200
- darwin-x86 building started at Fri, 02 May 2014 22:58:19 0200
- darwin-x86 building started at Fri, 02 May 2014 23:04:11 0200
- darwin-x86 building finished at Fri, 02 May 2014 23:35:02 0200
- linux-amd64 building started at Fri, 02 May 2014 23:35:29 0200
- linux-amd64 building finished at Sat, 03 May 2014 00:14:55 0200
- linux-amd64 building started at Sat, 03 May 2014 00:15:11 0200
- linux-amd64 building finished at Sat, 03 May 2014 00:52:04 0200
     
Wine builds are synchronised with PlayOnLinux and PlayOnMac wine versions manager every half hour.
You can read the building log here and download the packages here: https://www.playonlinux.com/wine/

Wine building service

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