Originally Posted by PC Gamer
GOG on Windows 8, Mac gaming, and Linux support
PCG: You’ve just released a new catalog of Mac games on GOG. You and Valve are sort of moving into that space together, and Valve with Linux, too. Is any of that a response to the reception of Windows 8?
Trevor Longino: [Laughs] Well, there are things I can’t say about Windows 8 or else someone will drag me out back behind the Microsoft building and shoot me. But I will say, based on what I know, I know what people’s concerns are about Windows 8. And there are some very serious ones as far as releasing new games.
But from GOG’s point of view, Windows 8 gaming isn’t quite as scary as it is for other game outlets. But we mentioned at our conference that we’re working on Windows 8 support. The majority of games that work on Windows 7—I’m saying like 90% here—work on Windows 8. But we’re based on the release candidate build that was publicly available. And one, we don’t know what’s going to change in the final build—hopefully not much—and two, we don’t know what they might change in say, Service Pack 1. It may be they get really big pushback from the community. Not just developers that are concerned, but users who are saying, “I’m not gonna upgrade, this looks like rubbish.” So they may walk back some changes, in which case what we’ve been testing on might not be what ends up being the OS that you have available.
So, we have a plan in place for Windows 8. We will support it with the majority of our titles, I don’t doubt. But I will say that moving over to Mac gaming isn’t because we anticipate seeing more gamers thinking, “Hey, you know, this Windows 8 isn’t worth it, let me go see about Mac gaming.”
PCG: And Linux?
TL: Linux gaming is also something we’d love to do, but we haven’t made any announcements about it yet. We’ve been looking at it.
I’ve been making public statements for a while that there are technical hurdles. Steam’s approach is to say, “Here’s our distro, we support this distro. Have another distro? Sorry.” That’s not how GOG does things, we’re more free-range gaming. So we’re looking at how to deliver the GOG experience on— we can’t say every computer, because you can of course hook up an E Ink display with 2-color CGA as your monitor, use Lynx as your web browser, and run some weird Debian distro that you’ve custom modded to do just what you want and then say, “How come I can’t play your games?”
PCG: I’d love to play Fallout 2 on an E Ink display.
TL: Yeah, something like that? No, we won’t support it, obviously. But we want to try to get it where the majority of gamers, if they’re on Linux, will be able to get a game and expect it works. We haven’t found a solution, yet. We know there’s a big demand for it, just like we know everyone wants System Shock with 25 thousand votes. It’s tough, because the rights with System Shock are just a mess. Likewise, we know people want Linux games. And people are saying “You could just distribute the TAR and we’ll figure it out.” Sure, we could just distribute the DOS executables and just let the Windows users figure it out, but that’s not how we do business. So making that experience on Linux is a challenge and one that we’re trying to address.