Ever since I first learned about the many forms of linux, back when I was a teenager, I always believed in the idea that an open platform for software and learning was the best approach. Even today I find that the more I use it, the better it feels. The various flavors are getting to the point where they can easily replace casual used desktop software. There are only two reasons why Linux can’t take off and be used in the mainstream. The first is business. I have to hand it to Microsoft. They got an early stranglehold on business software and even today the majority of businesses use Windows in all it’s forms over any other type of Operating System. Because of that early rise in Windows use, the companies that developed software coded for what is common. It only makes sense to write software for the operating system that the majority of people use.
That being said, the idea of gaming on a free OS (Linux) seems like a pipe dream. Enter the other reason. Gaming. The companies that delve into the entertainment world obviously started coding for the majority just like the set precedent. I’ve long had an idea that once a single big gaming company starts coding for linux, other gaming companies would see the benefits and start as well. If a few begin the chain reaction, eventually we could move to a better, more open operating system as a whole.
Earlier this year, Valve Software announced the creation of a linux based PC/Console hybrid that’s designed for the living room and comes coupled with a controller that turns all previous game controller design on it’s ear. In my opinion, this could be the catalyst that begins the revolution. For more details on the hardware, take a look at their announcement page: LINK
Valve has publicly stated that the hardware and operating system will be completely open to modification and changes. This is a full turnaround from every other console out there. Unlike a Playstation or Xbox you are free to customize, tweak, tinker with, and upgrade your machines to your heart’s desire.
Some high profile sites are giving this hardware a good review and it’s not even out for testing yet. LINK
Some game developers have gotten a preview look at the controller and they have reported that it’s quite good and I for one am looking forward to that more than the hardware.
Lastly, it was just announced that three hundred lucky beta testers are getting their free console, controller and some free games shipped out to them the 13th of this year. That’s just a couple days away. LINK
If you’re one of the lucky beta testers, congrats. If you’re an eager hopeful future user, that’s awesome. Keep your ears turned on and your eyes open. We might just see some high profile linux gaming in the near future.