Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

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Snoopremacy
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Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by Snoopremacy » Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:54 am

I've used Mint, a tiny bit before (more to learn about what Linux really was, but now I'm considering fully switching to Mint or LMDE as a main OS. However, how hard would it be "transferring" games over to Mint, even if I used programs like Lutris or Crossover for Windows based games that have no Linux version? And how hard would it be to find all of the Linux versions of all of my drivers? Graphics card I see wouldn't be an issue, but I can't find any drivers for my Sound Blaster Z card anywhere. Also, would I still have no issues using programs like Unreal Engine and Visual Studios as I am also to classes for games design and what not. I'm still very new to Linux in general, and was originally recommended Manjaro distro and absolutely hate it. And since Ive briefly worked with Mint, I'm hoping that this will be a much better experience.
Last edited by karlchen on Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Moved thread from "Newbie Questions" to "Gaming on Linux Mint", hoping more Linux Mint gamers will chime in this way

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Sereiya
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Re: Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by Sereiya » Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:30 pm

Hey Snoop,
Your Sound Blaster Z should technically work out of the box, since the Linux kernel mostly provides all the drivers (even though sometimes propritary drivers are the way to go, like with graphic cards). If not you can try to upgrade your kernel to 5.0 using this how-to.
As far as I know Unreal Engine got a native port for linux. Maybe this is helpful.

If it comes to Visual Studios I don't think there's much hope quite yet. In case you're talking about this, it doesn't really work in Wine at all, so I guess the only way to go is with a virtual windows machine right now. I'd recommend downloading virtualbox from the app center to try that out.
I'm actually in close contact to a very ambitious developer who's working on integrating the windows kernel into the linux kernel as a subsystem to deliver almost native support for windows applications (which is why I'm taking a deeper look into Linux as well right now :wink:), and according to him Visual Studios is working as well as most games we tested incl. anti-cheat (f.e. PUBG, Hitman 2, FAF, Rocket League). But as long as this is just a prototype the general answer to Visual Studios is: no, not working so far. :?

To check if the games you're playing are working you should look into the Wine AppDB and, even more promising, the ProtonDB. If you can't find your game there, try installing Steam, unlock Proton for all games in settings (I think it's called "SteamPlay" or sth. like that) and just give it a shot! :)

Good luck! - Luna

Snoopremacy
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Re: Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by Snoopremacy » Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:25 am

Hey Luna,

Much appreciated on the response. Kind of a shame about Visual Sudios, :( but that's alright. I'm sure with enough research, maybe I will find a work around, or maybe I will keep the dreaded win/linux dual boot. I need to just figure out how to change it from manjaro to LMDE without screwing up my current windows install. As for proton, that definitely sounds like a way to go, however what about non steam games? I assume that is just standard Wine app then?

As for the prototype of windows integration, that sounds amazing, and will definitely be keeping an eye out for updates on that.

You have been most helpful. :)

Snoops

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Re: Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by gm10 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:38 am

Snoopremacy wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:54 am
Also, would I still have no issues using programs like Unreal Engine and Visual Studios as I am also to classes for games design and what not.
Since you'll be designing Windows games it makes all the sense in the world to do this on Windows. Even with Unreal Engine working natively on Linux and Visual Studio having a native Linux version of their code editor at least (Visual Studio Code) and all the compilers being available on Linux as well, it's just simpler doing it on Windows directly, at least for your classes, so you can concentrate on what's being taught there. Also down the line you may be using middle-ware for a project that isn't compatible with Linux.

But if those drawbacks do not scare you, then sure, you can do it.

Snoopremacy
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Re: Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by Snoopremacy » Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:47 am

Well I would be designing both Windows and Linux games, but at least there is a Visual Studios program that will work with Linux. Even if it is a small version compared to the windows version. As long as it works, that would be good enough for me. :)

gm10
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Re: Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by gm10 » Wed Apr 17, 2019 12:08 pm

Well, if your coursework affords you that flexibility then by all means, try it out, it's free after all. Personally I actually like it better than the full Visual Studio IDE for many (non-pure Windows) tasks. With the available extensions (that you can easily modify to suit your needs where necessary) you have an extremely versatile tool at your hands.

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Re: Mint as Gaming platform?? Looking to change to Linux OS.

Post by Fuzzy Penquin » Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:38 pm

Regarding the gaming aspect of Linux, as mentioned above, do check out both the Wine and Proton databases for compatibility with your favorite games. Also check out Lutris (runs over Wine), Humble Bundle (has both Windows & Linux games), and GOG (older games, has Linux section). I use Steam for my gaming needs, which aren't very numerous, and so far the games I've installed have worked flawlessly for me and were literally plug 'n play (there is a whole Linux section in Steam's store). I have one modding toolset for one of my games that is a special flower, that I can't get to run on Linux via any method. So for that part I need Windows. But the game itself, that the modding toolset came with, is 100% Linux compatible. I've been very happy with my Linux gaming experience so far.

When looking at various games stores, you will see icons for both Linux (a penguin) and/or Steam (round mechanical...arm? thingy). They are both Linux-compatible. SteamOS is Valve's Linux-based OS for gaming on (like a console). So anything that is Steam-compatible, is also general-Linux compatible. When looking at the required specs of a specific game, if it says that the required OS is Ubuntu version xx.xx, that is also Mint compatible. Mint is based on Ubuntu. Mint 19.x is based on Ubuntu 18.04, so you will meet the required OS specs if you see that. This also goes for installing Wine: follow the directions for installing onto Ubuntu 18.04. I'm sure you know this, but also remember to make sure that your actual hardware meets the minimum requirements of that specific game too.

A little research ahead of time will give you an idea of how well you can expect Linux gaming to work for you. If you absolutely must have the latest AAA game on Day One, you might want to reconsider. If you are patient enough to wait for it to come to Linux, then you might be fine. Sometimes the Linux version comes sooner, sometimes later, and sometimes not at all. So there's that. Steam's Proton is aiming to fix this problem, however. As I understand it, they are fighting against DRM, which makes it hard/impossible to port a Windows game to Linux, because some tinkering is required (and DRM prevents tinkering). So it's taking some effort for them to make all Windows-only games run in Proton, but they are making progress. A lot of older games have been ported and work great (they had little or no DRM at all back in the day), so the biggest problem is with the newer games from the big studios (lots of Indie games are Linux native right off the bat). So do some research. If you can, try it out on a spare experimental drive or spare computer with your current library and see how it goes.

My (uneducated and conservative) two cents on work/school computers: don't mess with it. The programs you need for your work/class, are the programs you need. You need maximum compatibility with your school classes and expected work environment. Especially if you are developing for a Windows environment, since you also need to be able to test your game for playability and bugs. The bugs won't necessarily be the same between Windows and Linux: one environment could be flawless and the other a buggy mess. I would keep the dual boot. You can use the Windows side for work and class, and the Linux side for everything else. There's nothing wrong with dual booting.
Intel i7-3770k 3.5GHz, 16GB 1600MHz RAM, 2x 1TB HDD, MSI Z77A-G45 Thunderbolt motherboard, Nvidia GTX1080, Mint 19.1 64-bit w/Cinnamon.

I am a n00b! Please assume zero knowledge on my part. Sorry for any dumb questions, I am still learning.

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