So from time to time I head over to LinuxGames.com to see the latest news and keep track of how linux as a gaming platform is evolving. Gamers have been one of those early adopter segments I have been hoping we would be able to lure to the linux platform at some point, but of course currently its mostly about wondering if the egg or the chicken will be the start of Linux as a competitive gaming platform.
Last week I found the game
Tribal Trouble from Oddlabs.com. A small danish gaming company. Its a 3d real time strategy game available for Windows, Mac and Linux. The multiplatform support enabled due to the game being written in Java. It was an enlightening experience for me for a variety of reasons, one being that it is possible to write a 3D game like this in Java and get good performance out of it. It is not the first game I recently seen in Java and I do get the impression that there are quite a few of these Java based games out there which thus have a very low threshold for supporting Linux. Puzzle Pirates is another one of these new generation of games written in Java. With Sun’s recent decision to GPL their implementation of Java I think we have a great opportunity to integrate Java closely in the desktop to enable easy playing of games like these. Sun’s great work on integrating look and feel wise with GTK+ is of course another great boon. One thing I did find in the Oddlabs development blog was a mention that their paying customers was 47% Mac, 9% Linux and 44% Windows. Come on everyone, there has to be more people out there using linux interested enough in getting fun little games onto our favourite platform. Lets at least try to match the market for Mac software. Personally I have already bought the game and spent quite a few hours playing it