Article by Goblin[RFD]

Braid, a game made by Johnathan Blow which is doing very nicely on Xbox Live Arcade is not going to get the Linux treatment.

According to the author of the successfull puzzle platformer on his blog “For now I have tabled the Linux port, I am not actively working on it.  Sometime in the future I might pick it up again, but man, I dunno”  It also appears from previous entries that he is having a turbulent relationship with Ubuntu.

Braid was initially released on the Xbox Live Arcade for the Xbox 360 and received very good reviews from customers and press alike.  A PC version is due to be released shortly.

I have mixed feelings about this.  Whilst I support the small developer, and this type of work always puts me in mind of the days where “the bedroom coder” could make money, I dont really believe Linux would be the OS for this commercial software, and as much as I hate to admit it, Braid is probably best staying off Linux, only due to the fact that with a limited userbase, and the ethos most users have of open source, I dont think the effort would have made a return worthy of his time.

I am quite sure that Wine will be able to run the Windows version at some point, if not immediately, and any users interested in purchasing the product should visit the Braid Website.

Whilst Open Bytes is a supporter of open source, free software, we do wish the author the best of luck with his product.  In my opinion this highlights a valid point about Linux, there are not many options for easy accessable high level development for Linux.  Whilst I take coding for granted, things like Gamemaker, Blitz Basic, Dark Basic et al dont really have an alternative for Linux users and whilst Linux seeks to promote free software and choices for users who want an alternative, it fails to tackle the issue of development.

I am a supporter of Python as an excellent high level language for easilly tackling problems, even PYgame cant compete with the ease of Windows packages like Gamemaker in terms of being able to “dive right in”. It could be argued that Gamemaker applications encourage the development of cloned, basic games, but you have to remember that these Gamemaking packages these days are far more advanced than the limited ones of years gone by.  They also encourage advancement onto other languages, and I think if Linux is to progress over Windows, it needs to encourage the creative user aswell as the one who just wants a functional PC.

In terms of offering alternatives to the mainstream utilities we all use, Linux does a great job.  Encouraging the creativity of a wouldbe game maker? No not yet.