Larva Mortus

On August 26, 2010, in playable games, by Necron99

STATUS: playable Steam Store Page: click here
Wine Version: 1.3.11
Windowed: yes Fullscreen: no

Larva Mortus is a fun 2d top down horror themed arcade shooter I like to play to waste a few minutes in between uploading files to our web server.

Set WINE to run in a virtual desktop before launching. No overrides were required.

The game runs well under Wine 1.3.11 though for some reason could not run it without a virtual desktop anymore.


  • can not run without virtual desktop
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The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind

On August 26, 2010, in playable games, by Necron99

STATUS: playable Steam Store Page: click here
Wine Version: 1.3.28  
Windowed: yes Full-screen:yes

Re-tested Morrowind on Wine 1.3.28

d3dx9 + vcrun6sp6 

In winecfg: sound is set to emulation,  Morrowind.exe and Morrowind Launcher.exe set to use Windows 98 

All looked good with the pre-game splash screen opening up. I checked the options and (Morrowind being an older game and not supporting high resolutions) I set the game up to run in 1280×960 windowed mode – with pixel shading off.  Launching the game went well with the intro sequence playing with full sound. At the main menu in game I checked the options again and set Video view distance to FAR as well as real time shadows to OFF.

Creating a new game seemed to go ok – though when I went into Options again and tried to change the default key settings, the game froze…

After relaunching, I tried the game in Fullscreen mode which worked better (though left the gnome panels at top and bottom of the page for me) and also improved video framerates.  Amazingly for such an old game it still has very low framerates, and struggles with multiple NPC’s on the screen at one time – similar to it’s successor Oblivion, when running on Linux and compared to Windows framerates…

Overall the game is very playable. I look forward to returning to Morrowind for a longer stay next time I have a holiday!

1400 x 1050 – Fullscreen – Pixel Shading On – View Distance Far – Real Time Shadows Off

1) Changing default key options crashes the game

(thanks to – the below info is duplicated here just in case the original page disappears)


Multiple Users

If you plan on running Morrowind as a different user than the one that originally installed it, change the permissions of Morrowind.ini to be writable by other users. Invoking the chmod command can enable group write permissions, while the chgrp command can ensure the file belongs to a shared group.

chmod g+w Morrowind.ini chgrp users Morrowind.ini

Suggested Changes

  • Reduce the load on the CPU by capping the FPS. Set it to your monitor’s refresh rate or a little lower.

;; Reduce CPU load

  • Increase stability in the game by not preloading the next cell. You will see the ‘loading exterior screen’ dialog a lot more.

;; Reduce crashes

  • Increase performance in the game by using less RAM and by extension swap. You will see the ‘loading exterior screen’ dialog a lot more.

Never set these values to 0 or you’ll lose your companions, creatures, followers at each zone change !

;; Improve Performace ;; The Buffers are measured in game Cells. Settings these too high will cause slow downs ;; after a bit of traveling. The defaults are 10 and 32, but for better preformance try:
Interior Cell Buffer=1
Exterior Cell Buffer=9


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ERROR: Steam Servers too Busy

On August 26, 2010, in technical stuff, by Necron99

I tried to install a couple games this morning – Flatout + Morrowind, thinking older games would have a better chance of running on Wine… and no matter what I did the “Steam Servers are Busy” error kept coming up…  I’ve had this error before in Windows and thought I’d post a bit on how to fix it.

1) Usually a reboot will fix it.

2) If not try, deleting the “ClientRegistry.blob” file in /Program Files/Steam   and then restart Steam

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Far Cry

On August 25, 2010, in playable games, by Necron99

STATUS: playable Steam Store Page: click here
Wine Versions: 1.3.20 Winetricks .verb: download installer
Virtual-Desktop: yes Full-screen: yes

Far Cry is a classic FPS that, in it’s time, was well known for pushing many high end graphics cards to their limits.

No special overrides or workarounds were required to play Far Cry.

I set shadows to medium and the rest of the game’s graphics settings to ultra high. Antistopic filtering works.

Optional OpenGL Renderer:­ (from Wine AppDB)
There is an OpenGL renderer that has most of the visual effects present in the Direct3D one, but should run faster. To enable it, change “r_Driver” from “Direct3D9” to “OpenGL” in the ‘system.cfg’ file.  I didn’t use this…

Far Cry appears to run fine and without any problems.


  • multiplayer
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Penguins Arena: Sedna’s World

On August 25, 2010, in playable games, by Necron99

STATUS: Playable

This game is now playable with Wine 1.3.9+

I figured, since now I’m on Linux and playing games, Penguins Arena: Sedna’s World would be a fitting game to test out next.  The game came along with an Indi Pack I picked up on Steam for a song…

In this game teams of multi-coloured penguins run around throwing snowballs at each other, trying to knock each other off an ice island.  I just wish each team could put a custom logo on their fronts… I see Debians, Red-hats, Ubuntus, Suses all running around… though I digress!

Download and install via steam all goes well as usual…

First Run:
Launching the game for the first time popped up main game in windowed mode straight away, accompanied by the game’s theme muzak.

I only played on local server as there were no servers available when I tested the game.

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The Elder Scrolls IV : Oblivion GOTYE

On August 25, 2010, in playable games, by Necron99

STATUS: playable Steam Store Page: click here
Wine Versions: 1.3.9, 1.3.17, 1.3.18 Winetricks .verb: click to download
Windowed: no Full-screen: yes

The Elder Scroll series has consistently provided awesome RPG experiences. While this game title is a few years old now, I still play TES Oblivion regularly. This was the first Steam game I tried installing and playing on my Ubuntu Linux box.


  • No library overrides required.
  • Set Audio > Direct Sound to “emulation” if you lose sound in game.

If you experience audio lagging in Oblivion when the music changes you may need to go into your Wine C:/Program Files/Steam/steamapps/common/oblivion/Data folder and make a backup copy of the Music folder. Then go into the original Music folder and delete everything in there. You won’t have any in-game music, but for me that was actually ok as playing without the music makes the game that much more immersive…

Oblivion launches and runs ok with all settings on high – but with noticeably lower frame rates than when running on Windows… Frame-rates really take a big hit when multiple NPC’s are on screen at the same time. Even turning off shadows or grass doesn’t make much difference.

WINETRICKS .verb INSTALLER NOTES: [general installer help here]
The oblivion_gotye.verb installer will install Steam + Oblivion in it’s own wineprefix. You may still need to set Direct Sound to Emulation if you have problems…

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Re-installing Linux Sound System

On August 25, 2010, in technical stuff, by Necron99

No Sound on Your Ubuntu Desktop?

First check if you’re sound has mute on… if not, here’s a quick and easy fix that works for me almost every time on my Ubuntu Linux 10.4 (Lucid) box…

Open a terminal window.

Remove and re-install ALSA

# sudo apt-get purge linux-sound-base alsa-base alsa-utils

Reinstall the same

# sudo apt-get install linux-sound-base alsa-base alsa-utils

If you have OSS ticked in your Wine configuration you will may need to install the ALSA-OSS compatibility layer.

# sudo apt-get install alsa-oss


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Playing my Steam games on Linux

On August 25, 2010, in news, by Necron99

I finally switched my primary OS to Linux – and boot into Windows only to play games that won’t run with WINE

This site is a resource to track what Steam games worked for me on Linux + WINE and what problems I ran into with others. Because WINE versions update often and sometimes OS patches can result in previously working games failing, I will try to update games as often as possible… which is great, because that means more game playing for me!

[my Steam games list] [view my setup]

Though I probably should be getting back to my “real job” …

Please feel free to sign up for an account and post comments / questions / help.

IMPORTANT: since replacing ATI with NVIDIA I have had way fewer problems running games fullscreen or in a virtual desktop. If you are serious about gaming on Linux – get an NVIDIA card…



Auto Mount Drives on Boot – Ubuntu Linux

On May 1, 2010, in news, by Necron99

To set Linux to auto-mount drive on boot you will need to install the “pysdm” app – also known as the “Storage Device Manager” in the Ubuntu Software Center.

Once installed it should be available from the System > Administration menu.