Maybe it's time to move to Linux

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 Original post by miminawewe1. It's cheaper to develop games under linux because alot of the needed software is cheaper than windows. Maya may be expensive but there's a linux version which is good enough for me.

Apparently yes, but not on the long run. The best IDEs are in Windows. But even those are really cheap now ($100 for a license). You can even get free and very good ones. About a 3D app, you can use Milkshape or Blender. I didn't know there is a FREE version of Maya for Linux. Anyway there are good tools like Softimage XSI for$500.

But game development is not only that. There are lot of small programs and resources only available for windows. File converters, viewers, exporters, SDKs (nVidias or ATIs libraries and demos), font generators. That means that in the long run you will waste more time programming all those little tools on Linux and that is a cost too.

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 2. Linux's drivers are available(graphics cards, sound cards, etc).

Must agree with others, not the best ones.

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 3. More people are moving to Linux and other OSs.

Not really... even hardcore Linux fans keep a Windows hidden in a partition in order to play some games. I must agree with SuperDre that programmers tend to think that everyone is a programmer. Linux is a nice platform, but it is not user friendly. Peaople don't like to drive tanks, they like to drive a car, even when it's a simple car.

Luck!
Guimo

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Dual partition computers are best. When one OS would go down, the other works as backup. The problem with Linux is it could just read from NTFS in administrator mode, so you need to plan ahead, and create one small 10 GB partition as shared formated under FAT32.

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I agree, dual-booting is the way to go. I only installed Linux, because I wanted to do some Dreamcast programming, and I thought I could learn more about the Linux tools used in Dreamcast development by installing Linux, than by installing Cygwin.

If you like programming, then Linux is a lot of fun. There are a lot of free libraries for it, which makes it a very inspiring environment for programming, in my opinion.

I really should get around to learning some Linux programming in future.

Also, please don't call Microsoft Micro$oft, it's very very lame. It's not witty, and you're not sticking it to Microsoft by doing it, just stop, please. If it ever was funny, then it's sure as hell not funny now, the 1 billionth time someone has said it. When you write Micro$oft, this is how it looks to me

Quote:
 Micro\$oft!! --- Did you see what I did there!?? Did you see??? Because Microsoft are and evil money grabbing corporation and THE S in MICROSOFT LOOKS LIKE A DOLLAR SIGN AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA SO I REPLACED THE S WITH THE DOLLAR SIGN IN ORDER TO IMPLY THAT MICROSOFT IS A MONEY GRABBING CORPORATION!!THAT IS THE JOKE!!!! HAHAHAHA DO YOU GET IT!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAI sure showed them!!(poster then continues to laugh just a little bit too long)

Anyway, back to the point, I'd advise you not to move to Linux entirely, unless you don't care about playing the latest computer games on your PC. Also, if for example you've got an Soundblaster Audigy sound-card, prepare to wave bye bye to all those nice features it has, such as environmental audio.

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To Raghar:
If either Linux or Windows NT/2000/XP goes down, something must be really wrong. A good solution for such problems might be a disk imager.

To Guimo:
Which IDEs were you talking about ? I'm using Eclipse with CDT, which runs fine under Windows and Linux on the same project.
The Problem with SDKs is correct. As long as vendors like nvidia or ati don't see a market for games on the linux platform, they will not create an SDK for this platform. However there are libraries like SDL or fmod and compilers like gcc(mingw under windows), which are cross-platform.

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more ppl moving to linux? yes but very slowly
how long has it taken to go from 3% to 4% marketshare (3 years or something)
at the currentrate of growth itll be a threat to ms in the year 2100.

for the situation to change what is needed is a large spanner in the works
ps3 is coming out next year (with mouse + keyboard)
a ps3 media station in every house? i believe we've found our spanner

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I think you may be able to get more people to play your games for Linux than Windows because there is not as much competition.

Also Linux people are quite used to the idea of downloading programs (you may laugh, but my mother has trouble with this).

If your'e trying to sell software however, you may have trouble.

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Quote:
 Original post by zedzeekmore ppl moving to linux? yes but very slowlyhow long has it taken to go from 3% to 4% marketshare (3 years or something)at the currentrate of growth itll be a threat to ms in the year 2100.

That assumes fixed/steady linear growth, which is never the case. Growth is near-exponential, until it reaches a certain point and levels off, and then begins to decline due to attrition. So the jump from 4% to 8% is likely to take half as long, and from 8% to 16% half as long again, etc. You can rework your figures to accomodate that. [smile]

That said, there is no guarantee that Linux will grow to double-digit desktop marketshare, simply because the system is designed around principles that range from opaque to incomprehensible to most users. In the time it has taken desktop Linux to become viable and come to compete with Windows, Windows has gone through two desktop iterations (Windows 9x, Windows NT 5) and is on the cusp of the third (Windows NT 6 - Vista). There isn't enough of an emphasis on the creation of a consistent, compatible, interoperable Linux Desktop (LDP was started what, five years ago? no real progress there), resulting in mere emulation of Windows and Mac user experience. The userbase for desktop Linux is so fragmented that it lacks the cohesion necessary to give any innovative user experience initiative some propulsion.

But I digress.

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 for the situation to change what is needed is a large spanner in the works. ps3 is coming out next year (with mouse + keyboard). a ps3 media station in every house? i believe we've found our spanner

I doubt it. The PS3 is designed for the living room, not for the den; it is designed as a consumer entertainment device, not as a general-purpose workstation.

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I liked my time in Linux, a few little things that really bugged me with it for example configuring hardware and such. Although for the extra time you spend configuring it, it is far more flexible. Windows is pretty much as it is, you can't change the interface, or how it boots up very much, but it just works, no hastle, it just works full stop. Linux gives you pretty much all the control you'd ever need, and if you feel its missing something - program it in. Since i'm back in Windows XP for the time being (until I get around to getting Arch Linux humming away nicely) I miss my old crontab, "make menuconfig", Ctrl-Alt-F*, Ctrl-Alt-Backspace, top, nano, /dev/*, /proc/* and the list goes on.

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IMHO you should think in terms of what customers want, not you.

Linux users just aren't willing to pay: they generally think that every software should be free and open source.

I would rather consider cross platform development, targeting windows and mac first of all. Mac users are especially interesting in this regard... Just think about it: they purchase extremely expensive hardware, while they could buy a pc and get twice the power for half the price (that's not true anymore with G5: now it's just the same power for half the price). ...In a nutshell, the average mac user likes to spend money and does it more easily than a windows user. I've been developing mac/windows applications for the last three years, and despite the fact that mac are a 2% of the desktop computers in the world, while windows is >90%, our customers are 50% mac and 50% windows.

Speaking about games, mac seems to be a great opportunity for indie games. Just have a look at forums.indiegamer.com to have an idea.
This thread, http://forums.indiegamer.com/showthread.php?t=4469, should enlighten you. Mac is almost inexistent in the retail game market, but seems like in the indie/casual games market it can easily beat windows + linux sales.

If you're comfortable with the conventional linux toolchain (gcc, etc...), you shouldn't have any problem with windows and mac, since gcc is supported on all these platforms. On windows you can use cygnus or mingw/msys to get the same compiler and bash interface. On mac gcc is the standard compiler. Also both on windows and mac you can have a free ide (dev-c++ and code::blocks on win, xcode on mac), although I think none of them can beat visual studio (but probably I'm biased in this regard, since it's the one I use the most).
Blender, Wings3D and Gimp are available on all platforms. If you have the money, the same goes for Photoshop (with Wine on Linux) and Maya.

My suggestion is to do cross platform development, since with the proper tools (such as sdl + opengl + openal) it isn't much more painful than targeting a single platform. Develop on the os you like the most, sell your product supporting all the three major os (win, mac osx, linux) and just see what happens.

Btw... Don't expect to sell anything in the 1,000 - 10,000 range with your first game: it takes time to learn how to develop good products and even when you're good at it, marketing makes the difference. Again refer to the indiegamer forum to find more informations about this. Developers are reluctant to show their sales figures, but if you lurk enough you'll find some useful informations.

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Quote:
 Original post by Richy2kWindows is pretty much as it is, you can't change the interface, or how it boots up very much, but it just works, no hastle, it just works full stop.

Untrue. Windows is not naturally intended to allow users configure all these things, but they can be done. This is the basis of companies like Stardock Corporation. I remember the first time the tips went out about how to change the Windows 95 boot-up image. I remember seeing people with modified Windows XP loading screens. I remember coming across a huge list of Windows shell replacements (say bye bye to Explorer, say hello to Aston).

Best of all, because the heavy lifting of configuration is done by technical entities aiming to sell to non-technical consumers, it's a lot easier to customize Windows - if a bit more expensive in cash terms.

As for the utilities you mentioned missing, there are Windows equivalents to the useful/meaningful ones.

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