LinuxGamecast Weekly EP183 – Vulkan Button

Qo’noS releases Vulkan! NVIDIA opens the sauce, Street Fighter V launches this Spring, and KOTOR in my UE4? Then Layers of Fear faces the CHAIRQUISITION! All this, plus your hate mail.

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Hate Mail

Steam News:

Colour key: Venn Jordan Pedro


  • Woooot!
  • Your standard apt-get update && apt-get upgrade fare, plus some fancy new drivers we’re not talking about in this section of the show
    • I will just say that instead of the 355.00.27 that you need to test Vulkan with The Talos Principle, they used 355.00.26 instead.
    • So you’ll still have to wait if you don’t want to upgrade to that manually.

Firaxis “Working Furiously”

  • Oh please, you lot knew this game was jacked when you launched it.
  • Why you gotta say stupid things, Brad?
  • It’s 2016 and this does nothing but insult the people who buy your product.
  • Hey man, you gotta release bruh.   You can fix your bugs later man.   Patching!
  • I’m curious what the delay between the windows and linux patches will be


  • “working closely with Valve engineers”
    • Anyone want to take a bet that it gets released this year?
    • Are these the same engineers that were working on rocket league?
  • “This spring”.   Maybe if we want to spool up the rumour drive, SFV is going to be using Vulkan, hence the delays for steamOS

Brushwood buddies

  • Steven Colling, the developer, sent us some keys.
  • This is a one man project. Development and publishing.
  • The game’s title sounds like a happy tree friends spin off.   The game is not that.
    • I was disappointed I didn’t even get to see a Brian Brushwood rendition in it.
  • This is a kid’s “puzzle”-crafting game.
    • And by kids I mean too young to play Minecraft.
  • It also only uses a third of the screen, right down the middle.
  • It screams “I want to be on the Play Store! But I also like money.”


  • Croteam continues to show they know what’s up.
  • Automated regression testing only gets you so far, and users do all sorts of crazy shit on various hardware configurations.  It really is the best way to get your functional testing done
  • Plus, we’ll be covering all your Vulkan driver options in the next segment.   Stay tuned
  • Originally only available for the Windows version. They say the Linuxy bits will show up later.
    • Well, they tried but the 64-bit build was borked. Later =’s “a day or two”
  • Well, I had a go /w it today and my results were… interesting.
    • Oh. I can just disable it. Scotty, get us out of here!

Wipeout, maybe?

  • Kudos to the fine folks at Digital Lion for sending us keys.
  • Their repertoire also includes such hits as:
  • Oh, wow! This thing is BUSTED!
    • Did the screen of NOPE give it away?

Windows Store

  • Looks like old man MS wants to take another stab at the store thingy.
  • But all the Windows fanboys told me that Microsoft wasn’t doing that anymore and that’s why SteamOS is irrelevant…
    • Bet you all feel like a bunch of proper idiots.
  • It’s going to take more than a couple of exclusive games to make the windows store a thing Microsoft. Especially when they were mostly xbox exclusives anyways.
    • You can just stream it from your xbone bruh
  • A thought occurs. There’s a lot of platform similarity between xbone and windows 10 PCs (API, Dx12, 3 year old laptop hardware, etc).  maybe this is a way to fast track ports from one platform to the other?
  • I for one hope this takes the hell off.
  • VALVe could really use a kick in the teeth-organs.



  • Ah, they must be getting ready to release a new chipset.
    • That and it’s 2016 and they hit the end of their current numbering convention.
  • It’s nice that nvidia is at least trying to not completely shaft the mesa dudes, ever since implementing signed firmware
    • Agreed but I wish they didn’t wait until a chipset reached EOL before helping out.
  • This is also a step on the roadmap to having open firmware on these cards.  Hopefully now that the work is done, we’ll start seeing more timely releases.
  • And assuming Pascal won’t be as different from Maxwell (except for the HBM bits) as Maxwell was from Kepler, this may make the new architecture easier to work with as well.


  • Docs and samples are now available on github.
  • Now all ya gotta do is hit the Vulkan button!
      • You read my goddamn mind
  • There’s still a lot of misunderstanding and misinformation floating around about what Vulkan is and isn’t. We should probably take a moment to clarify this for you lot in case you don’t know
    • Moon-magic!
    • Here’s an info chart:
      • Short answer: Do you know low level programming? No? DON'T DO IT!

LLAP – The driver

  • ronpaul.gif
  • GG NVIDIA releasing day-1 Linux beta drivers.
  • NVIDIA is only supporting GeForce 600+
  • Now who wants to give DOTA2 a test drive.
    • You can add the -vulkan flag to Dota 2’s launcher to activate it, supposedly.
  • I’m looking forward to this driver breaking my system in new and exciting ways
  • It’s based off of the 355 branch, from awhile back.
    • Considering how long Vulkan took to come out, that was probably the “current” driver of the time.
      • I was going to agree /w you until I ran the non-VDPAU bench.
      • Up until now GL performance between the 970 and 980 has been negligible at best.
      • This driver smells like a custom jerb made to extract all the performance on the Serious engine be it Vulkan or GL.
    • At least, that was before the Steam spite-crashy-ness came along

LLAP – Finding Nimoy

  • Currently there’s only full support for broadwell and skylake.  Older gen stuff will follow.
    • Apparently some 32 bit compatibility issues
  • There’s a COPR for fedora and a PPA for Ubuntu.   Sorry Arch users
  • I’m genuinely curious how big a performance boost intel IGPs are going to get with future Vulkan games.   Maybe they might even be able to run at medium settings!
    • The irony of it is, CPU-Bound games will work better with an Intel IGP than an 8150 with a 980.
    • Hyperbole aside, it would make the cheapo laptops more of a viable thing.
  • In the meantime, AMD is too busy blowing bubbles while having their head up their ass.

GG Epic

  • Good on Epic for realizing that when you have an open source engine, you should be supporting the people in your community who promote and improve it
  • I was going to take another pot-shot at AMD here but I decided against it.
  • MonsterCameron can only argue so much in a week.

Make is so

  • A reimplementation of KOTOR in the Unreal Engine?
  • Uses the original game’s voice and music, but with redesigned graphics assets
  • Seems like a cool project.   What’s the under/over of it being fed a big ol’ Cease and Desist from Herr Maus?
    • Something something Vampire, something something Masquerade

– Nooope

CHAIRCHAIR– Not sure if want


CHAIRCHAIRCHAIRCHAIR– Shutupandtakemymonies

Game: Layers of Fear
Devel: Bloober Team (Published by AssPyre)
Engine: Unity
Price: 19.99 / CDN 21.99

Wazzat: Layers of Fear is a first-person psychedelic horror game with a heavy focus on story and exploration. Players take control of a painter whose sole purpose is to finish his Magnum Opus.

Mandatory US Disclosure: They made with the keys

Makes with the working


  • Performance is better than the EA version.
  • That said the studio where your savegames start from sets the performance pace.
  • In there you can go from 112 FERPS to 12 in less than a quarter turn.
  • Get use to that shite since it never stops *booga booga*


  • Had to bust out the PULSE_LATENCY_MSEC=60 to get sound working
  • Chugs at 4K
  • Struggles to maintain above 30@1080
  • You can predict the room change if there is a window, because the game renders the entire room at once


  • It did that stupid Unity thing of trying to fullscreen into both monitors and fail, during early access.
  • They fixed it for the final version, so that’s good.
  • The scariest thing about this game, besides all the wasted liquor, is how low the FerPS will dip when you’re looking at a static corner of an otherwise mundane room.
  • That should set the tone for the rest of my bits in this review.


Shiny / Sounds


  • It looks fantastic for a Unity title.
  • Unfortunately the imaginary light sources make everything shimmer unnaturally.
  • The textures and models are well done but hella overused.
  • I straight up collect pipes and don’t own that many holders… containing the same, damn, pipes.
  • This game is all about the audio. Atmosphere, it has it. Squeaks, groans, and creaks all sound legit.
  • It does a proper job of emulating something that Frictional Games does 1000X better.


  • Everything looks good until you look at a mirror.
  • The voice acting is competently done.   A rare sight…er…sound in a unity game
  • The ooky spoopy atmosphere is there.   For the most part the game draws your attention to where it should be in order to set up the jump scare
  • The baby dolls were hilarious though
  • Someone managed to discover the secret to unity games not looking like crap.   Not using any of the stock assets.


  • Visually and audibly, this game nailed it!
  • It’s too bad that doesn’t translate into the mechanics. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
  • The music has taken some heavy inspiration from Silent Hill.
    • Ripping off Akira Yamaoka is probably the best thing you can do to your horror game’s soundtrack!
  • It’s a very good looking Unity game. This is what Unity games might actually look like if people didn’t just buy shitty assets piecemeal, held them together like cardboard and spit, and put it up on Steam as though it were a game.




  • Here’s the thing, Brad. If you have the balls to show me a Frictional Games hand I best be able to FK around with ALLTHETHINGS!
  • At least Gone Home got that right.
  • Outside of that everything works and it should since you are effectively playing a 3D hidden object game.


  • You get your amnesia hand of clicking and dragging, and that’s about it
  • It gets dinged a chair though because it’s not 100% reliable.   Sometimes you have to find the magic angle to make things work


  • They’ve streamlined the controls to just the basics.
  • Movement, interaction and canceling out of an interaction.
  • There’s rebindable controls and contrary to most other Unity games, the mouse sensitivity is actually sane.
  • I wouldn’t call what your character does when you hold the shift key as sprinting.
  • Hell, calling it a brisk pace would be literal hyperbole. All it seems to do is lower the mouse sensitivity.
  • But that’s just me picking at the nits.




  • Again, this is a 3D hidden object game with a few jump scares mixed /w the most generic story …in the world.
  • It’s on rails.
  • and I’m sooooooooooooooooooooo sick of opening doors and one of th…. you know what? Let’s cut to the chase.
  • I’m not going to spoil the ending but I’m going to spoil a plot device so skip ahead until the Canadian shows up if you want to preserve your innocence.
  • ….nothing can hurt/kill you.
  • After you realize that you’re invulnerable it’s just a poorly done find object X and use it to interact /w object Y simulator.
  • If you want to drop $19.99 on a semi-interactive story have at.


  • Very much on rails.
  • Pedro will go into this further, but it’s walk into rooms and key finder simulator
  • Motherfucker, I can’t even find my keys in real life and you expect me to play a game about it
  • The atmosphere is sorta kinda there, but the payoffs aren’t really that great.   Jump scares are pretty well telegraphed
    • It’s sorta spoopy when I’m high, but that’s because I’m already paranoid from the drugs
    • Also, how come all the baby heads are white?
  • I struggle to maintain my interest
  • It’s kind of like the stanley parable.   Only without the humour, or the choices, or anything that made that game enjoyable


  • Find whatever the developer coded as a key to use on whatever the developer coded as a door, the game.
  • It seems to suffer from many of the problems that the current generation of horror games seem to.
    • The over use of a given trope without rhyme or reason.
    • Zero branching or decision making
    • Random, supposedly scary events that just had me laughing my ass off.
    • Doesn’t have a flashlight so I can’t really fault it for being shitty on that regard.
  • Of all the Silent Hill games it could rip off, it went for The Room.
  • Silent Hill 4: The Room was riddled with missteps and good ideas done poorly.
  • I like its premise, just like the premise in Layers of Fear is very appealing.
  • Did you kill your wife? Did she just die from her affliction? Where’s your kid?
  • These are all questions I would have loved to see answered organically.
    • Storytelling through gameplay.
  • No, you get all the plot dumps by picking notes or pictures or staring at a goddamn painting while standing still and not being able to do a damn thing about it.
  • Cue the watching paint dry-jokes!
    • Seriously…
    • Did NO ONE on the development team ever stop to consider if their HORROR game could be used as the butt of a “… than watching paint dry” joke.
    • But I’m getting side tracked.
  • The atmosphere works… right up until the music starts looping for the 3rd time in a row because you’re taking too long to figure out what the developer was thinking in any giving puzzle.
    • That and when the FerPS take a dive because there’s about to be a more complex thing happening. That’s an immersion killer, right there!
  • Ludonarrative dissonance; When the gameplay clashes with the premise/plot.
  • You’re a painter trying to finish your Magnum Opus, yet you go around in circles in your house doing anything but pick up a goddamn paint brush.
    • One might make the argument that’s because he’s using “something else” for his Magnum Opus…
  • But literally all you’re doing in the game is finding keys to open doors and combinations to padlocks and safes.
  • Wooo! Look at tall the dark imagery!
  • Bitch, I played through Amnesia: The Dark Descent twice over!
  • What really kills it for me is the over reliance on jump-scares.
    • Remember Outlast? Yeah, I hated that one too.



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