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John Carmack: Porting games to Linux not worth it

DVDBack23 @ Feb 10, 2013 16:53 | 5 comments

John Carmack, the lead developer behind legendary games like Wolfenstein 3D, Doom and Quake, has raised questions on whether it is worth it for studios to port their games to the Linux operating system.

Carmack, during his time at Id Software and later, has always supported Linux but says that porting most games is "not commercially viable."

"The conventional wisdom is that native Linux games are not a good market. Id Software tested the conventional wisdom twice, with Quake Arena and Quake Live. The conventional wisdom proved correct. Arguments can be made that neither one was an optimal test case, but they were honest tries," added the developer.

Instead of full ports, Carmack says Windows emulation would be a better choice. More specifically, the developer suggests that WINE be better developed. "I truly do feel that emulation of some sort is a proper technical direction for gaming on Linux. It is obviously pragmatic in the range of possible support, but it shouldn't have the technical stigma that it does."

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Comment by: hikaricor (Feb 10, 2013 20:23)

Sorry, we don't really care what he thinks anymore.


Comment by: xnonsuchx (Feb 10, 2013 22:35)

Die-hard linux users tend to want everything for free anyway, from the ones I've run across. Not all, but a pretty large proportion of them!

Comment by: A5J4DX (Feb 11, 2013 04:31)

interesting...wonder how the users feel about that

Comment by: ZippyDSM (Feb 11, 2013 05:14)

Programers are inherently lazy, he also made doom SUCK, that aside I think he is bitching about emulating DX/windows via open source or cheaper means than trying to do full ports. Also all this would be fixed if M$ would just let go of DX 9.X.

Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

Check out my crappy creations

Comment by: Jemborg (Feb 12, 2013 03:35)

Doesn't this guy know what Steam are up to with their Piston Engine?

...Especially since they are busy porting games to the Mac (read OpenGL Zip).

He does have a point tho in regards to the Linux desktop environment. Even Linus says it's absolute s***. Idiots won't standardise for the life of them... or accept that great programmers aren't gonna do it all for free when they need to provide for their families. There is also a need for close-source applications. They know it... YouTube the last "What's wrong with Linux" talks. Frankly I would not be surprised if Android came up with it's own formal desktop sometime... for a price (cheap).

Its a lot easier being righteous than right.


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