Community project: Ubuntu Budgie Gaming

I am going to kick things off by bringing some update on what was previously discussed, and also adding some thoughts from the Ubuntu Budgie team.

#General idea
We believe that a gaming app within the Ubuntu Budgie Welcome is a great idea. It makes the distribution easy and pleasant to use, especially for new Linux users.

Things to avoid

I would like to avoid adding automated tools or instructions to have the users easily get kernel, mesa, and drivers that are not officially supported in current release. I know that hardware enablement on Ubuntu can be a bit of a pain nowadays, given the super fast hardware release cadence.
However, users that go outside of the standard stack are likely to encounter issues, and then our team would be forced to tell them we cannot help because they are using non-standard components. That sounds like a less than ideal situation.
Having said that, if many vote for this feature and against me, maybe we can consider with @HellBringer419 and our Ubuntu Budgie team, if it makes sense to either add some instructions on how to jump to development branch, or to provide those kernel/mesa/drivers updates, behind some disclaimers or hidden in some kind of “advanced mode”.
As you can see, it is a lot of work only to talk about this, so I’d leave it for future discussion, after everything else about this app is working fine.

Things we can add

I have 3 main categories of gaming related applications we can add to Ubuntu Budgie Welcome - Gaming.

Game clients and stores

Game clients: Steam, Lutris, come to mind. Is there any other popular one that is Linux native and widely used?
Game web stores: GoG and Humble Bundle don’t have a linux client but some of the games they sell are available for linux. Would it make sense to have links to those stores?

Gaming tools

This category would include those gaming-related tools that are widely supported, available for Ubuntu, and good quality. For now only 2 come to mind, but I am sure there are many more:

  1. OpenRGB (Generic RGB management tool for linux, updated and well respected afaik)
  2. OpenRazer and Polychromatic Awesome projects that bring linux support to Razer devices. I purchased a few just to test it out, and I can personally confirm it is up-to-date, works great, GUI is most likely the best I have seen for gaming hardware on linux in a long time
  3. CPU frequency scaler app is already bundled with Ubuntu Budgie, but maybe a link here could help gamers learn about it.

Games!

This would be super fun for a future release, after most important core aspects are handled. Have the community vote for some game recommendations. Say a top 10 we can use polls to vote and review once every release or so. Those games should be only from Ubuntu Repositories and Snaps, so that developers won’t need to work too much and our distros won’t end up with hundreds of PPAs.

@ilvipero This is great idea, looking forward to seeing this flesh out.

One idea I thought might be helpful is a link from the welcome app to a web page for ‘more information’ on gaming on linux? Like tips and tricks that can make the gaming experience better. You could also have links to gaming news sites like Gaming on Linux and Boiling Steam.

Maybe add the CrossOver client to the list from the Welcome app?

Doug

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I did suggest adding similar articles. The design principle is to not overwhelm the user.
Adding on to this … too many game clients could give Analysis Paralysis to the user too.

Also, Proton seems to be doing quite well especially with steam deck around the corner.
I think those two options cover most games.

But yeah, feedback on “not overwhelming” the user are welcome.

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Agree on this. Steam is the easiest one to get a lot of games working on linux, and last I had a look, Lutris can manage also GOG and Humble Bundle games.

Please check my recommendations above, I think if you can manage to split into 3 categories, users won’t have sensor overload when they load the app, and can go to the category they want, only see relevant entries. Makes sense?

  • Game Clients (Lutris, Steam)
  • Gaming Tools (openrazer+polychromatic, openrgb, others?)
  • Suggested Games (community voted short list of 5 or 10 games we can fetch from Ubuntu repos)

Hey @ilvipero I like that idea … three section one.
Let’s present this to core team too.

Also, maybe a poll on the Suggested games would be great.

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I am fine with whatever yourself and @ilvipero agree with. As usual … KISS principles apply

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@HellBringer419 @fossfreedom I am super happy you guys agree. This is going to be super fun.
And yes absolutely community polls on which games to add to the list sounds super fun.

Once there is a first release making it into either dev.branch or current release, please do let me know, so I will write a blog post and promote it on social media.

Thank you guys, Ubuntu Budgie community is awesome! :heart_eyes: :star_struck: :partying_face:

I agree, Proton should most likely be pushed the hardest. The recent announcement of EAC and Battle Eye supporting linux via Proton is pretty huge.

https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=Easy-Anti-Cheat-Linux

https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=BattlEye-Proton-Steam-Deck

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0.16.2 of budgie-welcome is now out - it should be refreshing on your installs over the next few days.

(force refresh via snap refresh)

The new gaming page is available.

Looking forward to seeing this develop.

Quick update. @HellBringer419 created a first version of Ubuntu Budgie Gaming. It is looking great already, and I am sure it will keep improving over time. Thanks @HellBringer419 for the great work and @fossfreedom for helping out.

Please keep the comments coming, constructive criticism is always welcome.

( off-topic a bit )

Sorry am not a gamer - but I love that idea of « pre-tested » offers on a specific topic.

Wish there had a kind of « Ubuntu Budgie get-your-job-done » section including tips an tricks and app’s for :
⋅ management of plannings, calendars, tasks, contacts, mails, messaging services accross all app’s and whole system,
⋅ sharing of data through devices with the help of samba, nfs, syncthing or else, with clear self teaching UI,
⋅ easier app’ configuration. Here read : snap + flatpak + appimage do not solve any problem, they just add more things to watch out while you are in a production / business context ; they are the opposite of helpers, they are time eater and nothing else.

Don’t misread, I am a very happy user of UBudgie at home and at work but there is no distro out there that target « workers » who are not dev’ - just « workers » in any random place where a computer is needed to do things fast, easy and reliably.

I totally understand the interest in gaming, both for fun and technological improvements.
I wish the same kind of commitment towards non-dev’ / non-gamer / but-still-worker users.

( end of half off-topic )

More than happy for such things you have highlighted to be pursued and acted upon.

Just need someone with the vision to lead on this. I will support such a person with the relevant technical background so that person can successfully implement.

And I’d happily share my years long experience as a ×buntu user at home AND work :wink:

Else I wouldn’t have dared such a suggestion.

Pick something smallish - raise a topic (here or github) and outline the proposal. Then we can discuss possible implementation strategies.

e.g. this sort of detail and discussion add a gaming section to budgie-welcome · Issue #151 · UbuntuBudgie/budgie-welcome · GitHub

All - test snap now available - please do try

snap refresh --edge  ubuntu-budgie-welcome 

Then look at the gaming page

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Hey EVERYONE,
The designs are finalised and merged.

Please use the above snap command and test it out.

To access the gaming page, open Ubuntu budgie welcome and click on “Install Software”.
Next, select gaming and install your game clients.
Don’t forget to check out the tools section to see cool stuff.

Ofc, this will be expanded on by community feedback.

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@HellBringer419 this is super exciting. I can already see polychromatic and openrazer are marked to remove in the applet, because I already had those installed. I think it is a great start.
I will try to add, remove, and break stuff and send you my feedback. For now I am sharing your great work on Social Media. you can link as well to your friends to spread the good word.

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Exciting update from my side. It seems this community project has been quite successful so far. After checking with Ubuntu Budgie team members and friends, I had some very nice input on how to really make Ubuntu Budgie a gamer friendly distribution, with even more gaming related tools and clients. Many thanks to @GrindamN and Matt from Destination Linux Network.

@HellBringer419 @fossfreedom @bashfulrobot @GrindamN Please share your thoughts on the items below. I have been doing some digging around and see which ones are available for Ubuntu. Sharing my findings below here.

Game Clients:

-Heroic Game Launcher (Native Linux Epic Games Store Launcher)
https://github.com/Heroic-Games-Launcher/HeroicGamesLauncher
There is a .deb available for download, a debian apt repository, and a ppa. many options to choose here: https://github.com/Heroic-Games-Launcher/HeroicGamesLauncher#installation

-MiniGalaxy (Native GOG game Launcher)
https://sharkwouter.github.io/minigalaxy/
Available on ubuntu repositories: sudo apt install minigalaxy
Current version from ubuntu repositories is version 1.0.2-1 . There is also a debian package on github releases, which seems to be more up-to-date, version 1.1.0 . https://github.com/sharkwouter/minigalaxy/releases

Gaming Tools:

-GOverlay/Mangohud (think Linux version of FRAPS)
https://github.com/benjamimgois/goverlay
available on ubuntu repos sudo apt install goverlay
There is also a ppa created by Martin Wimpress that has up-to-date versions:
https://launchpad.net/~flexiondotorg/+archive/ubuntu/mangohud

-CoreCTL (harware Controller via Profiles)
https://gitlab.com/corectrl/corectrl
Available on this ppa https://launchpad.net/~ernstp/+archive/ubuntu/mesarcand then sudo apt install corectl
NOTE: This ppa also has updated mesa and other software that might be great for gaming but introduce instability. can we add extra warning?

-GreenwithEnvy (Tweak your Nvidia GPU)
Available via flathub. More info here. Better investigate if works well on laptops with nvidia-prime or only good for desktops with single disgrete GPU.https://gitlab.com/leinardi/gwe

-Piper (configure controller and mice)
available on ubuntu repos: sudo apt install ratbagd piper
There is also a ppa with daily builds for up-to-date features and devices: https://launchpad.net/~libratbag-piper/+archive/ubuntu/piper-libratbag-git

-Discord
Available via snap. recommend edge channel because when discord detects an update, it forces the client to update, and if cannot update. Discord won’t even launch. stable release of the snap might be a few days behind, which can make for a poor experience.

-Oversteer (configure gaming steering wheels)
https://github.com/berarma/oversteer It appears this one is packaged only for arch and gentoo. I could not find a debian/ubuntu repo with this software.

-OBS Studio (Streaming and screenrecording)
available both as snap, packaged with many plugins, or in ubuntu repositories. Either snap install obs-studio or sudo apt install obs-studio obs-plugins

Where possible I would prefer to add options to software that is available in the repos. I have no issue with adding more info/links where more up-to-date stuff possibly exists if this is PPAs. The reason for not wanting to depend on PPAs is that the maintainer of the PPAs may disappear / not produce a package for current and future versions of ubuntu.

Flathub - we dont currently support the means to install directly from flathub - so initially just a link to the flathub should be done. Its not beyond the wit of man to add flathub install support - it would be identical to how the snap install stuff was done (look through old git commits).