Monday, March 8, 2010

Steam Client and Source Games Porting to OSX

So the devil called me this afternoon and said they where having a snowstorm in hell.

In other news Valve announced that their revolutionary "content delivery service" known as "Steam" is being ported to OSX and will be available as early as April 2010. No really its true, straight from the horse's mouth. In addition the actual client and "Steam-works" being brought to Apple's operating system Valve also plans to port all of the Source Engine games, these include:
  • Half Life 2 Series
  • Counter Strike: Source
  • Team Fortress 2
  • Left 4 Dead Series
  • Day of Defeat: Source
All I have to say is: Microsoft has to quaking in their boots. For some time Microsoft's Windows operating system has been the standard for gaming on the PC. With Valve making the push into OSX this means more than just trouble for Microsoft's operating system. It also means their famed DirectX API that is Windows only may be in jeopardy. I say this because as stated in Valve's official announcement in order to port their engine/games to OSX they will be reimplementing them in OpenGL. After the porting of these past released source games Valve plans to treat OSX as a "first tier" operating system. Meaning that all future releases of source games will occur simultaneously for OSX, Windows, and Xbox 360.

Not a fan of Valve's flag-ship gaming engine? Not a problem, take a peak at these other titles already for sale on Steam that have a native OSX client:
  • Aliens versus Predator (original)
  • Altitude
  • And Yet It Moves
  • Ankh: Battle of the Gods
  • Ankh: Heart of Osiris
  • Aquaria
  • BioShock
  • Braid
  • Brainpipe
  • Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars
  • Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror
  • Call of Duty
  • Call of Duty: United Offensive
  • Call of Duty 2
  • Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  • Championship Manager 2007
  • Championship Manager 2008
  • Championship Manager 2010
  • Civilization IV
  • Civilization IV: Beyond the Sword
  • Civilization IV: Colonization
  • Civilization IV: Warlords
  • Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3
  • Darwinia
  • Delta Force: Black Hawk Down
  • Deus Ex
  • Doom
  • Doom 3
  • Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil
  • Doom II: Hell on Earth
  • Dragon Age: Origins
  • Elven Legacy
  • Enemy Territory: Quake Wars
  • Eschalon: Book I
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • FlatOut 2
  • Final Doom
  • Football Manager 2009
  • Football Manager 2010
  • Football Manager Live
  • Freedom Force
  • Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
  • Harvest: Massive Encounter
  • Hearts of Iron II
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Heretic
  • Heroes of Might and Magic V
  • Hexen
  • Hexen II
  • Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
  • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  • Jade Empire
  • LEGO Batman: The Videogame
  • LEGO Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures
  • LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues
  • LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga
  • Loom
  • Luxor
  • Luxor 2
  • Luxor 3
  • Machinarium
  • Multiwinia
  • Osmos
  • Peggle
  • Peggle Nights
  • Penguins Arena
  • Penumbra: Black Plague
  • Penumbra: Overture
  • Penumbra: Requiem
  • Plants vs. Zombies
  • Prey
  • Prince of Persia (2008)
  • Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords
  • Quake
  • Quake II
  • Quake III Arena
  • Return to Castle Wolfenstein
  • Rome: Total War
  • Samorost 2
  • Shaun White Snowboarding
  • Sid Meier’s Pirates
  • SiN
  • Spore
  • Star Wars: Force Unleashed
  • Star Wars Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast
  • Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy
  • Star Wars: Dark Forces
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
  • Tales of Monkey Island
  • The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena
  • The Dig
  • The Graveyard
  • The Path
  • TOCA Race Driver 3
  • Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six 3: Raven Shield
  • Tomb Raider: Anniversary
  • Torchlight
  • Unreal
  • Unreal Tournament
  • Unreal Tournament 2004
  • Uplink
  • Virtual Families
  • Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning
  • World of Goo
  • X²: The Threat
  • X³: Reunion
  • X³: Terran Conflict
Phew! Who was it that said you couldn't game on a non-Windows operating system? Well truth be told thanks to wonderful software like CXGames some of us have been enjoying source games on the operating system of our choice for some time now. (Food for thought and maybe a future topic: What do you think this announcement is going to do to Codeweaver's bottom line?)

What brought this seemingly sudden announcement from Valve? Well a few months back a rumor had surfaced that a lead Steam developer had posted looking for people with experience porting Windows software to OSX and Linux.

Yep, that is right and Linux.

While there is still nothing official about the latter of these two operating systems from Valve, all I have to say is that the porting of Source Engine to use OpenGL only makes the eventuality of them running without emulation on Linux much more likely (not to mention in the mean time Windows games that run under OpenGL tend to perform better under Wine).

~Jeff Hoogland


  1. I'm all for open standards. OpenGL may sacrifice a frame per sec or 2, but its well worth the compatibility with everything

  2. This has to be good news, as long as OpenGL can be selected in the Windows games. As for Codeweavers, they could also do well out of this, as they support many non-Steam/Source engine games on Mac - as people start playing more Source games on Mac, they may well discover CXGames and use that for other games. It seems that CXGames is already doing well on the Mac, judging by the number of support forum comments.

  3. With the new OpenGL 3.3 and 4.0 standards about to materialize, this can only be good news that Valve is supporting the API. I am really hoping to see some native Linux gaming! I know that Microsoft challenged steams dominance in digital distribution, and it almost seems that this is a software Coup d'├ętat against Microsoft on Valves part.

  4. I don't think Microsoft are too worried, the customers they lose to Apple they were probably fighting a losing battle to keep.

    Apple have half shot themselves in the foot over this issue - if you could buy OS X for the same price from Apple to run on your whitebox, *then* Microsoft might be worried. The truth is, most gamers want to sink the last of their $$$ into a faster video card, not the generally more expensive Apple brand.

    I priced up my system on the Apple store, and it was over $6k. Seems a little irrelevant that Windows 7 is a few hundred bucks more expensive than OS X.

    If Apple released OS X for non-Mac systems, even if with a very specific and short supported hardware list, I'm sure Microsoft would take a good hard look at the situation.

  5. This will be triumph.
    I'm making note here, HUGE SUCCESS.
    It's hard to overestimate my satisfaction.
    It's Linux Gamer
    I play HIB games
    because I must
    If there would be commercial ones
    I would play them instead

    But there's no sense in crying over this thing
    Steam for Linux is coming to ring.
    And the players are happy
    And you make neat game
    For the people who play on Linux

    I'm not even angry
    I'm being so sincere right now
    Even though you ignored me now
    And didn't make games
    And force me to use WINE

    Since I knew you will change your mind!
    Now Steam for Linux is coming soon enough.
    Soon it's out of beta
    Will release on time!
    So I'm GLaD it's over
    Think of all the things we learned
    About people who play on Linux

    Go ahead download it.
    I think I'll see how it works
    Maybe you'll find some new games?
    Maybe HL Ep. 3?
    Anyway Steam is great.
    It has neat games son for you
    when Steam is released
    When I use Linux, it makes me GLaD it won't get ill
    Because of some virus
    Or another trojan horse
    That don't happen on Linux
    And believe me I play on Linux
    I am porting Portal for Linux
    I work FANTASTIC and play on Linux
    While you're waiting I'll play on Linux
    And when it's done I will play on Linux
    On Linux
    On Linux