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    NVIDIA 510.39.01 Beta driver out for Linux

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 15:29 · 2 minutes

After silently launching the RTX 3080 12GB , NVIDIA has also today put out a brand new Beta driver for Linux with version 510.39.01 now available.

The interesting part is, the changelog mentions quite a number of things that were added in previous driver releases like support for the GBM API. There's also mentions of extensions that were added in previous stable releases too. It's likely that this will be their new "Production Branch" driver that has pulled over lots of changes from their "New Feature Branch". Confused? NVIDIA explain it like so:

Production Branch Production Branch drivers provide ISV certification and optimal stability and performance for Unix customers. This driver is most commonly deployed at enterprises, providing support for the sustained bug fix and security updates commonly required.

New Feature Branch New Feature Branch drivers provide early adopters and bleeding edge developers access to the latest driver features before they are integrated into the Production Branches

Some extensions have jumped over in 510.39.01 from their other standalone Vulkan Beta Drivers though, and some are newly supported like these:

  • VK_EXT_depth_clip_control
  • VK_EXT_border_color_swizzle
  • VK_EXT_image_view_min_lod
  • VK_KHR_shader_integer_dot_product
  • VK_EXT_primitive_topology_list_restart
  • VK_EXT_load_store_op_none
  • VK_KHR_maintenance4
  • VK_KHR_format_feature_flags2
  • VK_KHR_dynamic_rendering

With Dynamic Rendering (VK_KHR_dynamic_rendering) being one of the major additions, something that The Khronos Group announced in late 2021 that many developers seemed excited about. This release newly brings AV1 decode support to the NVIDIA VDPAU driver, and brings on an optimization for the Vulkan fullscreen presentation path for X11 and direct-to-display swapchains.

Some of the bug fixes include:

  • Fixed several issues which caused the supported-gpus.json file to contain incorrect product information.
  • Fixed a bug that caused the nvidia-settings control panel to report inaccurate ECC error counts, and completely prevented the reporting of aggregate ECC error counts. ECC error counts reported by nvidia-smi were not affected.
  • Fixed a bug which caused Vulkan applications to hang when the __GL_THREADED_OPTIMIZATIONS environment variable was set to enable threaded optimizations in the NVIDIA driver.
  • Fixed a bug where calls to vkWaitForPresentKHR would fail with VK_TIMEOUT on Maxwell and Pascal GPUs.
  • Fixed a bug in the Vulkan compiler where 64-bit atomics were partially broken.
  • Fixed a bug in the Vulkan driver where VK_NULL_HANDLE was not properly handled as input to VkRenderingFragmentShadingRateAttachmentInfoKHR.imageView.
  • Fixed a bug in the Vulkan driver where the SPIR-V Centroid interpolation decoration was not ignored when used in conjunction with FragCoord.
  • Fixed a bug in the Vulkan driver where unreferenced descriptor bindings were sometimes not ignored properly.
  • Fixed a bug in the Vulkan driver where vkCmdBindDescriptorSets would not properly handle pDynamicOffsets for compute pipelines.
  • Fixed a bug which caused OpenGL and Vulkan applications to generate excessive traffic over dbus while attempting to communicate with nvidia-powerd, even though nvidia-powerd was not running.
  • Fixed a bug in the Vulkan driver where some Ray Tracing shaders would timeout, resulting in device loss.
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    NVIDIA releases a 12GB GeForce RTX 3080

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 14:37 · 1 minute

For those of you with money to burn who want a new GPU, perhaps the latest from NVIDIA will catch your eye? They've introduced a new model of the GeForce RTX 3080 . It's a small but noticeable upgrade to the original, and only available to a select few partners right now

The bump not only ups the memory from 10GB to 12GB but also goes from 8704 to 8960 CUDA Cores, and you're also getting a memory bus jump from 320-bit to 384-bit. You're going to need just a little bit more power for it too, as NVIDIA say it needs 350 watts compared with the 320 on the 10GB model.

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While it's nice to see new models - is anyone even going to be able to buy one? Even if you can, will it be a reasonable price? Probably a big no to both. You also wouldn't really know it exists, since NVIDIA for some reason decided to keep this release on the quiet side. It's sad to see yet another ridiculously expensive high-end model being made, when there's such a shortage everywhere on all models.

I'm still rocking a RTX 2080 Ti which is thankfully rather powerful so I don't need to upgrade the main GamingOnLinux machine GPU for some time to come.

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    DXVK 1.9.3 is out supporting DLSS, D3D9 improvements and more

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 13:08 · 1 minute

DXVK, the Vulkan-based implementation of D3D9, D3D10 and D3D11 for Wine / Proton has version 1.9.3 out now . This is what's used in Steam Play Proton , to help get Windows games running nicely on Linux. It's a bit of an uphill battle to get so many tens of thousands of games to work nicely, but DXVK shows just how powerful and flexible Vulkan is as an API.

This release brings support for NVIDIA DLSS (Deep Learning Super Sampling) for supported games, when used along with dxvk-nvapi . There's also a bunch of optimizations and accuracy improvements for D3D9 that should help fix games like Red Orchestra 2, Dark Souls 2 (original version), Dog Fight 1942, Bayonetta, Rayman Origins, Guilty Gear Xrd and Richard Burns Rally.

17666662851641906102gol1.jpg Pictured - Deep Rock Galactic on Linux with DXVK (Proton)

Other improvements include a fix for a "DXGI issue which would sometimes cause games to fail to enter fullscreen mode on some displays that do not support low rates across all resolutions" and improvements for Black Mesa, Crysis 3 Remastered, Euro Truck Simulator, Injustice Gods Among Us, Rocksmith 2014, Spliter Cell: Chaos Theory, Sim City 2013 and The Guild 3.


As a reminder: you can upgrade the version of DXVK used in Proton, without waiting on a new release. To do so you can just overwrite the existing DXVK files with the release download of DXVK 1.9.3. You can find your Proton install somewhere like this (depending on your Steam Library drives):

path-to-your/SteamLibrary/steamapps/common/Proton x.x/dist

Where x.x is whatever Proton version installed you wish to give a new DXVK.

Inside there you will see "lib" and "lib64", for 32bit and 64bit. Inside each of those, there's a "wine" folder and inside there is a "dxvk" folder and that's where you replace the files with new versions. Do so at your own risk but it's usually harmless. If you mess anything up, one way to ensure it gets reinstalled cleanly is just to remove the "/dist" folder.

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    Buck Up And Drive! is a retro-racing delight now on Steam

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 12:57 · 1 minute

Buck Up And Drive! is a fusion of classic retro endless racing with a few fun twists, like 1v1 car fighting mode. Previously only available via itch.io, it's screeched over to Steam now too.

Since we last wrote about it in the Summer of 2021, it's added a bunch of new content for the full release too and it's looking like it's quite amusing. I grew up with racers like this on the Amiga, so it speaks to me quite personally. The developer is quite funny about it too, saying "There is time to explain, I just don't wanna.". Not really selling us on it but the trailer below speaks enough for itself I think.

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Game Features:

  • Endless driving game inspired by arcade classics, with simple yet intense gameplay featuring a total slap in the face of realism. And a kick in the spleen, too!
  • Procedurally generated track with multiple environments to visit, ranging from the somewhat realistic to the completely absurd. GO TO HELL!... literally!
  • PINK. BACKFLIPPING. TRUCKS. ON THE FUCKING MOON.
  • Go 1v1 against another player (or a CPU) in a fighting mode. With cars. I dunno either, I came up with it while in the shower.
  • Customizable car decals through external image files. Put "eggplants" all over the cars, for all I care!
  • Controls for both game modes are 8 directions and one button. Play one-handed, if you want! Keep your other hand for... holding orange juice! Yes!

Available on itch.io and Steam .

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    DOOMED: Demons of the Nether turns Minecraft into modern DOOM

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 11:19

What do Minecraft and modern DOOM have in common? Not a lot but a modder decided to merge them together to create DOOMED: Demons of the Nether and it's pretty darn good.

Giving you a single-player campaign, this free to download mod is inspired by the modern DOOM games borrowing plenty of design elements. Technically, in Minecraft land, it's an adventure map pack but it really does change the game. Take a look at just how impressive it is:

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Installation is easy enough too and I've tested it working nicely on Linux.

Make sure you have a fresh install of Minecraft 1.16.13, download the pack and then simply extract the contents into your Minecraft saves folder usually found in ~/.minecraft/saves/ . That's it, as it comes with everything needed.

Once done, load Minecraft up and select it from the Singleplayer menu and it will guide you through a few settings you might need to tweak to make it look as intended. Absolutely brilliant.

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    Survival game Vintage Story gets another huge upgrade with improved combat

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 11:00 · 1 minute

Vintage Story continues to impress with not just the rate they can churn out updates, but also how much they manage to stuff into each of them. The "Homesteading part 2 & Combat update" is out now, bringing some pretty fancy new features and so if you've been on the fence about it, perhaps it's time to try it out if you're after a different open-world survival experience. The price will also slightly increase soon.

For this update you can expect to see a server-wide auction house (multiplayer only), new storage options, fruit trees, 34 new types of mushrooms, rifts that appear in the world, an update to the combat to include shields, a rework of the wind shader, a rework of the liquid system, a new optional permadeath mode and the list just keeps going. Check out the new update trailer below:

youtube video thumbnail
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Not just big additions though, there's plenty of smaller bits to make playing it easier like WASD scrolling on the world map, lots of gameplay balancing, bug fixes and more.

The release announcement has all the specifics.

You can buy it from Humble Store , itch.io and the official site .

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    Project Zomboid has big plans for 2022 and beyond, with NPCs on the way

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Tuesday, 11 January - 10:49 · 1 minute

After a great many years in Early Access, Project Zomboid has finally hit the big time with it regularly seeing multiple tens of thousands of players and they have some big plans . The latest release (Build 41) took a long time, as it reworked so much of the game but it's done and they're moving onto the next big chunk of features and it all sounds rather exciting.

One big addition that has been talked about for years is the addition of NPCs, and they're finally coming - for reals this time. They've split into different teams to work on different things, one team being focused on getting NPCs all hooked up and working.

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NPCs being the most requested feature of the game, they decided to do them before pets and hunting because "a big reason for not being comfortable with hunting and pets being first, is they are still NPCs and would necessarily leverage all the technology we’ve being working on for years at this point". To get there, another team will be working alongside them on normal content patches for Build 42 but they're trying to get NPCs actually release as soon as they can.

Until NPCs arrive, Build 42 sounds like it's going to be pretty impressive too, greatly expanding the "tech tree" for crafting as they say: "our ultimate goal is to provide significantly extra crafting potential to allow players to effectively create a post-apocalypse nu medieval community, to provide plausable alternatives to any of the lootable items in the game that would logically be plausable with the correct skills and resources so players don’t feel pressured to restart the early game repeatedly to get long term fun out of the game".

Sounds fancy. We're going to need to take a properly look at the modern Project Zomboid soon.

Project Zomboid is available on GOG and Steam .


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    Building a Retro Linux Gaming Computer - Part 8: Shovelware with a Penguin

    news.movim.eu / GamingOnLinux · Monday, 10 January - 19:30 · 4 minutes

Continued from Part 7: The Arena Eternal

After completing all of the boxed Quake games for Linux, I was left with indecision. So if I could not settle on a single game to play, why not try one hundred? 100 Great Linux Games is a software compilation put out by Canadian publisher Global Star Software. Made for a time of slow internet speeds and limited storage, these kinds of retail collections allowed users to explore hundreds of freeware and shareware titles from the comfort of a single CD-ROM.

Even at their height at around the turn of the millennium the true value of these sets was disputed, with the moniker "shovelware" often being used to mock the tendency of these compilations to value quantity over quality. It also feels an especially odd fit for Linux, where having a wide variety of free software packaged alongside the operating system was already the norm dating back to the earliest Linux distributions.

Indeed, the vast majority of the games included here are free and open source software that were already available in most Linux software repositories. With the exception of the commercial game demos, all this compilation brings to the table is the inclusion of an interactive menu. Written in Python it allows you to select a game, visit its website, display the game's manual page, and then either install the game to the hard drive or, when applicable, run it off the CD-ROM.

This second option is more useful than it sounds if you consider the fact I am only running a six gigabyte hard drive. Being able to play the games without installing them first is a blessing, and almost justifies not just utilizing the system package manager. The compilation itself is RPM based with official support being offered for both Red Hat Linux 6.0 and Caldera OpenLinux 2.3, the latter of which is included in the set as a bonus alongside a variation of the Loki Demo Disc .

The box touts that support for other distributions is possible by compiling the included game source code, an interesting way of trying to make a sales pitch out of a licensing requirement. Thankfully my install of Red Hat Linux 7.3 is close enough to not offer up too many issues as long as you bypass the distribution version check by launching the setup script on the disc with "./setup rh" as root and then the menu system itself with the "./gss-install rh" command.

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Even then I found that the install buttons would do nothing, although it would recognize if I installed the RPM packages off the disc myself. Most of the games included are straight X11 or even console based, often featuring basic graphics, unusual keybindings, and no sound effects apart from the PC speaker, typically being variations on old Atari or Commodore classics. Given that I will not be going through them all here, but I will highlight a few standouts.

The Ace of Penguins is a lovely hand crafted suite of card and tile games; I have fond memories of playing Taipei as a kid from Knoppix back in the day. Rocks & Diamonds and Mirror Magic by Holger Schemel are notable for their quality graphics and sound effects. XScavenger is a solid take on the game Lode Runner , while Lincity and Freeciv are ambitious remakes of SimCity and Civilization , albeit now heavily outdated. XEvil is a fun fighting game with a history all its own.

By far the game with the most flair however is the demo for the graphic adventure Hopkins FBI , one of the earliest sold Linux titles created by French developer MP Entertainment. I actually managed to get this to work on a more recent release of Fedora some years ago, but the game speed was off making the cat shoot around like a rocket among other things. The full version for Linux has become hard to find, so it is a shame that only the shareware is included here.

This was one of the many disappointments common to these shovelware sets, with them also being notorious for being cheaply produced. That rule also applies here, with the menus often featuring inconsistent text descriptions, mismatched screenshots, and a number of the games refusing to load even after running the setup script. It also appears to be coded to launch websites in Netscape, although this can be overruled with the BROWSER environment variable.

Although 100 Great Linux Games was the only official product from the company to support Linux, Global Star Software also published a wide variety of budget video game releases, some of which happened to come from developers that were also Linux friendly. This would place them in the curious position of releasing a game which, completely inadvertent to them, was for the longest time the only retail version available that could successfully be completed on Linux.

Carrying on in Part 9: Ancient Archealogy

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