Metro Sees The Linux Light

calm down, Linus

I suddenly find myself paying that much more attention to which games are seeing Linux conversions, as a sudden rush would imply big things for Valve’s SteamOS project. Could Metro: Last Light’s belated Penguin edition be a herald of Things To Come?

Might as read exciting things about my love life into these tea leaves, really. All it means for certain is that, well, Metro Last Light can now be played on Linux, via Steam. So that’s nice. If you own any one Steam version of the game, that means you can now play it on Windows, Mac or Linux, so people with triple-boot Hackintoshes will be extremely pleased about this.

The Linux section of Steam is looking pretty healthy these days, it must be said. Alright, big flabby mainstream games from big flabby mainstream publishers are in relatively short supply, but recent fare like Foot-to-ball Commander 2014, Democracy 3, Crusader Kings 2 and A Machine For Pigs are sat there happily, like it ain’t no thing.

Sooner or later I’ll get around to installing Linux on a spare hard drive again, and then NO-ONE WILL BE ABLE TO STOP ME from turning all my taskbars a funny colour and experiencing mild irritation with graphics drivers.


  1. Infinitron says:

    Crusader Kings 3


  2. Geebs says:

    4A did a really surprisingly good job on the Mac version of this (at least until Mavericks came out and ruined everybody’s graphics performance), so I’d be hopeful that it should run pretty well.

    Come to think of it, I reckon RPS would appreciate the way they did the graphics quality options in the Mac version of Last Light – absolutely all options, up to and including AA and resolution, are controlled by a single slider which is literally labelled “graphics”!

    • Ninja Foodstuff says:

      Not my experience at all. The Mac version is awful (especially compared to Windows). With the unfathomable slider all the way up, it still looks like a Half-Life 2 mod.

      There’s a scene with a shadow puppet without any shadows.

      Oh, and the sound levels don’t adjust to player position, and the speech is out of sync with the animation.

      • Geebs says:

        Note that I said “surprisingly good”, not “good” ;-)

        Pre-Mavericks, the performance was definitely playable while looking not-too-shabby even at 2560 x 1440 on my rig (Mac Pro with a GTX680). Post Mavericks, I stopped playing it in OSX and started playing in Windows instead.

        • Ninja Foodstuff says:

          I originally reviewed it for 10.8.5 which had all those problems.

          • Geebs says:

            A whole bunch of OpenGL stuff went wonky for me with the transition; which is a shame because in all other respects Mavericks is the best OSX since Snow Leopard. Now, admittedly I’m not making any claims as to code quality here, but my own OpenGL stuff quartered its’ framerate the minute I upgraded to 10.9. A bit of renegotiating with the glsl compiler got me back up to half the previous speed but there’s still been a definite drop in performance.

            I definitely didn’t have as wonky an experience in 10.8.5 as you did; and I guess I don’t have that much right to complain about the drivers given that my 680 isn’t actually supported on the Mac.

          • Ninja Foodstuff says:

            I use a 670 in my Mac Pro.

    • PoulWrist says:

      Wow, if a slider labelled graphics was all there was, I’d be pissed.

    • Christian Dannie Storgaard says:

      Sadly, the Linux version is so far the same; the sound also seems to have the same issues Ninja Foodstuff described. It’s great to see it on Linux, but I might just wait for a few patches before actually playing it.

  3. SuicideKing says:

    Aw come on I want to read a BF4 review…and a CoD:BOO review…come on RPS, lets get that snarkometer moving!

    (No, this is not sarcastic, i have huge expectations of entertaining reviews for both. The BF3 review was classic.).

    • Ross Angus says:

      I agree. I like it when John is grumpy about following a shooty-man’s bottom.

  4. rustybroomhandle says:

    I’m a long-time Linux user and for the past few years have mostly been running Ubuntu-derived distributions like Mint. Last week I decided to take a turn for the weird and install Manjaro – which I like to think is pronounced “Man-hairy”… and I have to say, so far it’s great!

    It’s a rolling-release distro, so in theory as long as you keep it up to date you don’t have to reinstall/upgrade every 6 months a-la Ubuntu. Aside from a minor gripe with audio which I fixed, it all seems to run quite smoothly. Even has Steam in the software manager.

    The installer was a bit poo though, but I guess ymmv etc.

    • Geebs says:

      Purely out of curiosity, doesn’t a constantly-updating OS (with a small user-base) put you at even bigger risk from “having a comma in your volume’s name causes the OS to format all your hard discs and then set fire to your motherboard”-type bugs?

      Edit: size reference

      • lizzardborn says:

        As much as it does on Windows. There is a lot of testing going into the packages and destructive builds are filtered. And the stuff that runs in kernel-land does not update all that often.

        Chances are a package won’t blow your rig up, but unlike Debian stable you don’t have the guarantee that the freshly minted package will play ball with all the others. But you are on the bleeding edge which is cool.

        • aergistal says:

          I thought the bleeding edge was more on the Red Hat/Fedora side : P

      • LionsPhil says:

        I would expect a bigger risk of everything breaking when there’s a bit of a sea change in technology. For example, I don’t think any of the usual suspects (Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, RHEL, etc.) within a same release moved from X11 to X.Org, or from plain ALSA to PulseAudio, or from distro-specific network configuration to NetworkManager, or such things. It’s hard enough to deal with all the fallout from these kinds of upheavals with a clean dividing point to test either side of.

        The acid test for Manjaro will be when it has to live through some of these, e.g. the upcoming X.Org to Wayland transition.

      • aergistal says:

        By small-user base you actually mean desktop user base. Because the mobile/server/mainframe world is made in it’s grand part of, you guessed, non-windows stuff.

        All Linux versions are built on top of a stable kernel. Don’t forget Steam is entering the game and they go with Linux. They chose Ubuntu mainly for its 3rd party, proprietary stuff support and because it’s easy to use even by complete Linux beginners.

    • Keyrock says:

      I’m running Linux Mint myself. I was a long time Fedora user but things got a little messed up around Fedora 19 so I made the switch to Mint and haven’t looked back since.

    • phobic says:

      Why not just use Arch? Go directly to the source.

      – Arch user of 5 years.

      • Premium User Badge

        Arnvidr says:

        Why not go directly to the source? Use Gentoo XD

        – Gentoo user of 10 years, although not quite serious about this opinion, this distro not being for everyone.

        • Beelzebud says:

          Manjuro is based on Arch, that’s what he meant by go back to the source. Arch is not based on Gentoo.

  5. uh20 says:

    so few comments.
    i just broked myself, so on behalf of the entire linux population (me). we sadly can not throw the monies.

  6. Felix_Bisto says:

    You learnt how to change the colour of your tool bars?! I’m still working out where calc is……….

  7. InternetBatman says:

    This is exciting. One of the three AAA games I haven’t played and care about (Xcom, Metro LL, Dishonored) is now on Linux. I’m looking to update my pc in about two years, and I will probably go to Linux as my primary partition.

  8. Keyrock says:

    Awesome! This is the closest a non-S.T.A.L.K.E.R. game has come to achieving that level of greatness. SteamOS looks like it will have a rather healthy library of native games once it launches. If uncle GabeN sees fit to offer up a big ol’ discount on this in a month or so, I may well scoop this up. If things keep going in this direction I may finally be able to kill my Windows partition and let Linux take over the entirety of my currently dual boot setup.

  9. Bugamn says:

    Did anyone else notice he changed the article picture?

  10. TechnicalBen says:

    Wait, this is a game on Linux and it’s not an ascii screenshot?

    (Ducks under his Raspberry Pi, cos’ it’s not REAL Linux unless it’s installed on a badger)

  11. Premium User Badge

    phuzz says:

    I use tea bags. The remnants at the bottom of my tea cup exactly mirror my love life :(

  12. Buffer117 says:

    I thought this was pretty big news, surely Valve and the SteamOS has to be the only reason this has happened otherwise why have similarly big games not done it in the past? If it heralds a swathe of current and upcoming games being SteamOS compatible from launch my interest in a Steambox is going to increase exponentially.

    Rome 2 has been confirmed as coming to Linux (hopefully less buggy!) by sources and I saw a discussion on Steam community where Amazon had accidentally listed 2K games XCOM and Civ 5 as Linux compatible before removing it. Maybe it was just a genuine mistake, maybe it was an accidental reveal of things to come? I’m hoping the latter as I have all three, I’d be much more interested in a Steambox if I dont have to always stream my best games.

    • slerbal says:

      It is certainly a very good sign of which direction the wind is blowing. That developers have enough confidence in Valve/SteamOS to make the leap is really great as (much like currency) what matters most is the perceived value of SteamOS so it sounds like SteamOS’s market value is on the increase.

      Of course all I care about is whether it will be good and can I play my games on it, but happily my desires and the above stuff are compatible :)

    • dogsolitude_uk says:

      I think you’re right: with Steam OS and Valve’s support, and also Steam’s support for Ubuntu and the growing popularity of Mint, I think perhaps that’s reassuring to devs.

  13. strangeloup says:

    I still haven’t got Metro LL for any OS (or, indeed, format — vaguely hoping it might turn up on PS Plus sometime), though I came close to doing so a few days back — GamersGate had it on offer for a remarkably cheap £8 or so, but despite saying the offer was on for another day or two, when I came back having made up my mind to get it all of a couple of hours later, it had gone back up to £12.50.

  14. Solidstate89 says:

    Until X11 is killed, this is all folly. Wayland/MIR really needs to be available to the mainstream Linux Distros, because X11 is just a prehistoric, botched together code of a display driver.

  15. dogsolitude_uk says:

    As a regular Mint user, that makes me happy :)

    In fact, Linux makes me happy. It has a penguin for a mascot, and it’s free so if I bugger anything up I can just reinstall without re-activation worries. You can move things around and customise them to your heart’s content, and the Command Line reminds me of happy days with DOS, only it’s more powerful. You can also use it for resurrecting old hardware (it’s ideal for old netbooks I’ve found).

    More fundamentally, the computer somehow feels more ‘mine’ when I use Linux. There’s no DRM or phoning back to Microsoft to check for updates. I always feel that I’m just borrowing my PC off Microsoft.

    In short, I bloody love Linux, and the fact that Valve and more games companies are supporting it is really cheering. If Valve were to say ‘Steam never needs to phone home again, ever…’ I’d be even happier, but tbh I’m pretty chuffed with the above news.

    We should all email this to Bethesda. Get Skyrim on Linux. That’s be cool.

    Anyway, I wasn’t planning on buying Metro LL, but I will now just to chip in a bit and help things along.

  16. kazriko says:

    I recently installed Debian on my spare hard drive to get back into Linux. The only real trouble I had was getting xfce to work on it because I hate Gnome 3. (I had to uninstall gnome-session so that it would actually start up to xfce instead of gnome.) The display drivers were trivial to get working with my AMD HD5870.

    Steam installed right from the repository of Debian Jessie, and worked with no issues. I had a lot more trouble getting Steam going on Mint… All 3 of the games I tried off steam worked perfectly on this.

  17. frymaster says:

    “turning all my taskbars a funny colour and experiencing mild irritation with graphics drivers.”

    You can change your taskbar colour in windows too. You can certainly experience driver irritation in windows too ;)