MARCH 13, 2014 • At this month’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco Crytek GmbH will be demonstrating the most recent generation of its CryEngine (the developer ceased numbering its engine after CryEngine 3) which includes fully native support for Linux. Although Crytek ported CryEngine 3 to Linux, and Kingdom Come: Deliverance from Prague-based Warhorse Studios uses that engine with a version of the title slated to release on Linux, adding native support to CryEngine is a much fuller declaration of support for the open source OS.
Impact: Ever since all of the recent commotion over Valve’s Steam Machines broke we have been waiting to see if there would be a major game engine embracing Linux. With only about a third of the Steam library playable on Linux, the digital distribution service will not become a serious contender on Linux until more games can be played there. CryEngine technology may not be as widely used for AAA action titles as the Unreal Engine, but more than 30 titles have used CryEngine 3, which makes it one of the primary development tools for game studios. Native support for Linux inside the fourth generation CryEngine will make it much easier for creative teams to create a version of their game for Steam to distribute on that OS. We still believe that it is way too early for many consumers to be interested in purchasing Steam Machine units for the home. Neither do we see Linux becoming a major game platform anytime soon. We recognize, however, that Valve has a very long-term outlook on making Steam viable on Linux. That investment comes from the view that Microsoft has mismanaged Windows as a game platform, and Valve desires an alternative for Steam in addition to OS X. After 20 years of success, counting Valve out is not a good bet, so we can see why Crytek has jumped on board the Linux bandwagon. With CryEngine joining the Unreal Engine id Tech, and Valve’s own Source as Linux-friendly, all of the major FPS engines are accounted for. That’s a major boost to Valve’s plans.