LinuxGameCast Weekly EP206 – A Pair Of Pants

Tim Sweeney bashes Microsoft! SteamOS receives an update, AMD releases a $99 GPU, and Vulkan comes to Quake. Then Life Is Strange faces the CHAIRQUISITION!


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  • David P
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Colour key: Venn Jordan Pedro

Steam News:


  • The only carrot they have to get Windows gamers on 10 is DX12.
  • And there will be zero chance of DX12 being able to keep up with Vulkan development.
  • Did I mention Vulkan works on 7?
    • Thing is, Microsoft is trying very hard to keep people from being aware of that.
    • Of course, with DOOM using Vulkan and people seeing the performance gain to be had from that, their efforts may be for naught.
  • And there’s a reason VALVe – you know VALVe, right? “Not doing jack shit until said shit hits the fan” VALVe. They went out of their way to make SteamOS.
  • They haven’t done a very good job of marketing it, but they got off their asses and made it.
  • Because they envisioned a future where Microsoft would start pushing people to publish their games on the Windows Store.
  • They failed with Windows 8 but the UWP on Windows 10 and XBone, giving people access to their games on both platforms for the price of one, they’re succeeding.
    • Sorta kinda with a bunch of backend work from devs
  • I don’t think win32 is going anywhere for a while. They dropped 16 bit compatibility over a decade after there weren’t any 16 bit CPUs out there
  • Say what you will about microsoft, they like their legacy support. Sometimes
  • Plus there is another project that will hoist Win32 up even if microsoft kills it: WINE

Steamos apt upgrade

  • Now with AMDGPU-Pro for people with Bonaire AMD GPUs.
  • Nvidia driver 367.27, because long lived branch.
  • If you’ve had SteamOS installed for a while, the update will take an absurdly long time.
  • It has to build fglrx, AMDGPU-Pro and the Nvidia drivers for ALL KERNELS.
  • And, for some reason DKMS was running single-threaded through the whole damn thing.
  • After borking my install and restoring it by reinstalling SteamOS and leaving the /home partition alone I decided to run the update through the desktop, just so I’d see when it cocked up.
  • Even with just the original kernel and the one from the update, it took nearly 15 minutes to run the update.
  • A bit of a PSA: Be more patient than I.

About tree seventy

  • Pretty dramatic price decrease for something nobody really wanted in the first place
  • Still, if you need a decently capable TVbox, now’s the time to grab this for relatively cheap
  • At this point, it’s almost in range of a current gen console, but considering dell has to ship this fucker at a heavy loss in an attempt to make some money back,doesn’t really show a good future for the remaining first gen steam machines

Storm no more

  • I am both shocked and surprised not really.
  • So they’re changing the name, AI, environments and a bunch of other stuff if that first post is to be believed.
  • Which means, they scrapped the current game and decided to make a whole new one.
  • What happens to people who already bought the first game? You know, the one which costed $20 and was supposedly going to be F2P afterwards?
    • Step 2 is changing the company name.
    • Oh Pedro, did you think they had any idea what they were doing with the management of this project?
  • It’s the standard corporate love story these days. Middle around until someone buys you out.


  • Something something Trackmania
  • At least give me the fkn ding sound.
  • Listen, they just want to keep the funding up for their neat little project


  • Dex was a decent cyberpunk game, and it’s good that their devs have kept on it
  • Comes with free DLC for fancy new duds


  • Big thanks to the devs for sending us keys.
  • Gratuitous spaceship nonsense. You have my curiosity
  • Yo dawg, I heard you like buildings ships so they can be taken over so you can build another one to destroy the first ship only having the one you just built destoyed

Totally not ripping off Doom with that logo

  • Kudos to Boris from Pine Studios for sending us keys.\
  • It looks like something made with ioquake2
    • ^



  • Well they just locked up the low end on Winderps.
  • Granted the 460 will probably get trounced by Iris™ on Linux.
  • I still have blind hope for Zen so I must maintain my blind hope that AMD will pull a Summer with their Linux drivers.
  • But for $99 you can at least join the club, however, you have to sit at the kids table.
  • Apparently the Vulkan drivers aren’t awful, and now with Mesa/radeonsi/amdgpu being almost fully 4.5 compliant, AMD cards are finally starting to become usable under linux
  • And I’m all about lowering the barrier for entry to linux gaming

That settles it (Thanks Orn)

OpenGL 2016

  • All you CAD software developers listen up!
  • You can now use SPIRV shaders instead of GLSL on 600 cards or newer
  • The driver brings full OpenGL 4.5 compliance with the July 7th revision.
  • There are three new extensions, ARB_gl_spirv for the 600+ series, EXT_window_rectagles for the 400+ series and NVX_blend_equation_advanced_multi_draw_buffers for Pascal.

Did we cover this?

  • Possibly. I couldn’t find anything
  • It’s an NVIDIA gpu overclocking utility with little slidey bars.
    • Slightly less cryptic than the one provided by NVIDIA.
  • For some reason, it never worked for me on the 970.
  • The 1080 G1 comes with a 1860MHz Boost GPU clock (but it usually levels out at around 1900 when it hits 75ºC), which when compared to the default 1733MHz on the Founder’s Edition, I don’t think it needs much in the way of OC.
  • Especially when we’re talking about OpenGL games bottlenecking on 2 or 3 cores of my FX 8370E.

Imprisoning me

  • After almost a year since the previous release and with a lot stuff having been provided by the community, the devs felt like they needed to solidify the code base before adding the new assets in.
  • Fixing your backend is super important, especially with games. Good on them for realizing what actually drives the game matters
  • Fixed AI stuff, better breakables, addressing quicksave corruption issues and improved loading times

Live long and Quack (thanks eMpTy)

  • No sir, not compiling.
    • Upgraded to compiling but not launching.
  • I managed to get it running with the Demo files.
    • Vsync is always on and disabling it ingame causes a segfault.
    • Disabling it in the .cfg just sees the file reset to vsync 1
    • And neither of the environment variables to disable Vsync do anything.
  • It builds and it runs. Kinda neat.
  • This is probably a good lesson for people who want to tinker around in vulkan. Need to get that skillset out there

Feature Complete

  • Speaking of skillz, they now have a “complete” vulkan backend
  • Doesn’t mean it’s working 100% just yet, but that was pretty quick
  • You can probably play games now.
  • Supposedly 25% performance increase on AMD cards


CHAIRCHAIR– Not sure if want


CHAIRCHAIRCHAIRCHAIR– Shutupandtakemymonies

Game: Life is Strange
Devel: DONTNOD Entertainment / Feral Interactive
Engine: Unreal Engine 3
Price: First Episode Free + 19.99 / CDN 21.99 for the full game.

Wazzat: Follow the story of Max Caulfield, a photography senior who discovers she can rewind time while saving her best friend Chloe Price.

Mandatory Disclosure: Feral sent us keys.

Makes with the working


  • Getting a solid 60/100 average @1080.
  • And I should since each area is about 6X6 meters.
  • 20sec of unskippable bullshit credits *ding*


  • Runs at +120FPS on the desktop, 60+ on the laptop @1080
  • Thought why can’t it autodetect your resolution instead of starting at 720P


  • I had read in several places that Life is Strange on Linux had issues with Pascal GPUs
  • Admittedly, I did find it odd the game was capping at 43 FPS if I had a browser window open.
  • So I installed the game on the Steambox and even though I didn’t have the overlay FerPS counter to prove it, the game played much more smoothly.
  • Feral, you done goofed on me again!


Shiny / Sounds


  • It looks a bit meh for something released in 2015 but considering they are using UE3 (originally released in 2004) it could look worse.
  • Immortal jaggies.
  • Non ironic use of “hella” twice three FKN FOUR times in the first 30min of gameplay #smileyface
  • The “music” makes me want to watch Felicity and build a log cabin.


  • The voice acting is spot on, which is not saying much considering it’s Squenix, who is well known for their good animation and voice direction (minus Tidus)
  • The one thing that bugs me is the textureless tornado. It looks bad and they keep coming back to it.
    • Also the water effects from a certain pool scene. Man, unreal 3 particle effects really do not hold up
  • Indie rock. My eternal nemesis


  • They minimized the feeling of uncanny valley you get from looking at all of those heavily stereotyped people around the pair of pants you would call a main character.
  • It was definitely a good idea to make everything heavily stylized.
  • The background music, country… there’s a lot of country music, fits the small Oregon town All American atmosphere.
  • When it comes to aesthetics, I can’t really complain.





  • Sometimes you have to be in the exact right spot for the context sensitive menu to pop up. Other than that, no issue


  • Well, when the Mistress wasn’t timing out on me during the cutscenes without me realizing it, the controls worked well.
  • For the limited use they get…
  • But I’m getting ahead of myself.




  • This was not a better love story than Gone Home: You’re Drunk
  • At least that had a believable story.
  • I’ve always wanted to experience American high school through the lense of game developers trying to be with “it” #cringy
  • Why am I forced to play as a cisgendered female? #airwolfkin
  • I was finishing my first year of uni at the tender age of 18.
  • And I was responsible enough to use my time traveling powers to overthrow 3rd world dictators for fun-and-profit not mope around solving teenager drama problems.
  • Yeah, I’m unable to relate to anyone / thing in this entire game… with the possible exception of the tornado.
  • Not something you gift to your tween nieces.
  • Needs a X Tiny Venn, bitches! Button.


  • Ugh, high school drama. HIpster high school drama
  • No beans about it, this is an interactive movie, the precotious stepchild of the point and click adventure genre, a genre which I’m not partial to
  • I didn’t really get into Fahrenheit and Heavy Rain never appealed to me
  • Still, since the gameplay is literally just trial and error, I gotta judge it on the story it’s presenting
  • Which isn’t actually that bad. It does have a few problems though
  • A lot of the characters are cardboard cutouts, straight from TVTropes. They do attempt to mitigate that if you spend the time to talk to them, but the in the next scene they’re all back to being propped up by tropes
  • Still, having come off binge watching the first season of stranger things (which suffers a bit from the same characterization issues sometimes), I was in the mood for urban fantasy/sci-fi in a small town with a secret
  • Although I keep expecting Special Agent Dale Cooper to show up
  • Most of the critique I have for the game is critique I would levy on a movie, not a game, and that’s where it sort of falls apart
  • It’s a movie, not a game. I get what they were going for in terms of gameplay mechanics interacting with the narrative, but this is literally dragon’s lair with high school girls
  • I didn’t hate playing it, but I’d much rather just sit back and watch the cutscenes


  • Max is not a character, she’s a pair of pants for a certain segment of the market to project into.
  • I’m not dissing the Tabula Rasa syndrome, that’s how many videogames give the sense of immersion. By having the player project into their character.
  • Max isn’t exactly a Tabula Rasa, though. She has a past, a history with many of the characters around her.
  • It’s just enough to stop her from being a blank slate but nowhere near enough for her to be an actual character.
  • Now that that is out of the way, let’s talk about the rest of the game.
  • The thing that separates videogames from other forms of entertainment and art is the interactivity.
  • After more than three hours of “game time”, the Mistress timed out (it’s on a 5 minute inactivity timeout) on several of the cutscenes.
  • This is a very finely crafted narrative, yes.
  • But books, TV shows and Movies also give you that.
  • This is just my opinion, there’s a reason we call this the subjective part of the Chairquisition.
  • But in my opinion, a video game lives or dies on its mechanics.
  • And there’s only one mechanic at play here.
  • After resurrecting a bird which came flying head first into a window in the first episode, it’s pretty clear Max is Chronos. Goddess of Time.
  • Or Chronos’ pet project judging by how the game ends.
  • But Pedro you didn’t finish the game!”
  • Tell me again how my experience would have been different playing all the way through it or just watching a well done Lets Play on YouTube.
  • It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey”
  • Fair point! In a video game, that schpiel is often the best way to describe an experience.
  • It’s what creates those “watercooler moments”.
  • But of what use is the journey if the Endingtron 2000 gives you 2 choices which completely invalidate everything you did up to that point?
  • Like I’ve mentioned before, I can enjoy my time with a game which has the single most inconsequential or incoherent story. I spent near 30 hours playing Bound by Flame, didn’t I?
  • I can do it, so long as the game has something else going for it.
  • But story is all this game… and I hesitate to call it that. I guess the correct term would be “barely interactive movie”. But story is all it has.
  • And it’s not just inconsequential, it’s a slap to the face of anyone who spends the full 8 hours playing it.



Hate Mail:


  • I did actually try the -clearbeta switch. And it didn’t work TIL about the file though
  • And so can you

Drip drip

  • Well then, call me the fuck out on it!
  • I enjoy a good discussion on the internet.
  • As for the last bit, if there are enough people out there willing to make this happen, I could be persuaded to take some Saturdays off.
  • All we need is for all of you listening/watching to voice your pinions.
  • One of the good things about LGC is the ability to pick you favourite character.
    • Mine is Xanthor the Knight

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