Monday, January 03, 2011

3D games on Haiku

I was very excited when I saw this post to the Haiku Forum a few weeks ago.
Not that I'm a gamer as I've never played anything in my many years fooling around in many different OSes on a lot of different computers.
However, I am very interested in the way Haiku is blossoming into an amazingly fast, simple to use, and fun desktop OS and just wanted to see how good 3D games looked in it.
So, I browsed to the 3D Games section of Haikuware and tried out a number of games including Chromium BSU, Cube, Cylindrix Haiku, Doom, FooBillard and QuakeIII for Haiku.
Of these, the only one that even appeared like it might work was FooBillard in which I saw the billiard table and could get it to move and rotate. Also I could get the ball to move but the movement was horribly slow and disjointed like the fps were very, very low.
At this point I was getting disappointed.
However, not to be outdone, I installed PrBoom from Synthetic Package Manager and, guess what, this works perfectly, or almost, in Haiku gcc2hybrid r39983 on my Dell E520 with nVidia GeForce 7300 LS and Intel 82801H/ICH8 HD Audio controller.
SPM installed PrBoom to /boot/apps but to get sound in the game I had to download the timidity patches zipfile from here and unzip it to /boot/apps/prboom/. Then I opened /boot/apps/timidity.cfg in StyledEdit and commented out the line

dir /boot/home/config/share/timidity

and replaced it with
dir /boot/apps/prboom

Now sound works perfectly.
Still not a gamer but this game looks very good for an OS that's still in Alpha. Alright, it's not WoW but it's so much better than games in DosBox.
One minor disappointment is that the game does not fill my 1920x1080 screen but seems to be something like 1460x1050 which is still highly acceptable.
Also, when I quit the game, the background image on my Desktop has shrunk in size. However, just mousing around brings the original wallpaper back.
I should mention, too, that I use my wireless mouse in the PrBoom game and this works very well.

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