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A guide for beginners looking to play on Linux


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Dec 8, 2020
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A wrote a piece for beginners talking about the hardware, technologies, and distros for gaming on Linux. It's something that a lot of people need to know. Let me know if anything is missing/incorrect.

Gaming on Linux.

Nice! Keep up the good work and don't forget to update the piece of yours. I'd suggest considering adding one thing: Intel/AMD integrated GPUs.

First impression to many people is no way, they suck badly. But hey, take a step backwards and see the growing crowd of Linux users, have a peek at some indie game devs, check out some Reddit like r/lowendgaming or r/linux_gaming and reconsider. Many of the people ascended (heh) to Linux because of a simple reason: their hardware could not keep on offering enough to the ever more and more greedier growing windows gods. And what do those people have? An aging laptop or desktop with something like i5-5300u paired with maybe 4 or 6 GB of DDR3.. or even less.

If you (well, not you, but the semi passive form, you know?) haven't paid attention you'd think its gaming abilities are close to nil. But check out some Linux native stuff and you'll be surprised what that little chip can do. Install nexuiz or Battle for Wesnoth or freeciv or something else more modern (I'm old). It doesn't always have to be all AAA from Steam or Epic.

Oh, by the way, there is Vulkan support for Intel integrated ones starting from Gen 7. That's not the gen7 CPUs whose codes start with a 7, but Gen 7 GPUs meaning Ivy Bridge and Haswell, i.e. whose numbers start with a 3 and 4 :) Lots of those out there happily running different distros, so lots of potential Linux game players, too. And I don't even know where and when AMD started Vulkan, after all its origins are in Mantle. On the other hand, at least the newer AMD integrated ones could be seen as a part of the same continuation as their dedicated ones.

Phew, got it out of my system. There might be some vague points in it, maybe even errors, but you got the idea..? My personal next step is to find a nice distro for my aging Clevo laptop from.. hmm, when was an i7 QM860 paired with a GTX 460M a thing? Then there is also this Lenovo with a Haswell i7 and a GTX 860M..