HoN on Linux experiences
I got some more experience with playing HoN on Linux (about 8 hrs total in-game time, not much). I thought I'd post it
here, since the NDA allows for public discussion of the game now. I cannot post screenshots, since that is still not
From a technical standpoint, the [64 bit] Linux client is very stable for a beta. I've only spotted a few obvious
graphical glitches, and only rarely. Only a single time has it crashed, and that was when I accidentally invoked Compiz
exposé while the game was running. I'm impressed, it seems so solid and nice. Maybe I'm lucky, there are probably tons
of bugs I haven't spotted. I'm mostly new to everything and can't easily recognize if some spell is not working
correctly, or if things are imbalanced etc. But all-in-all, thumbs up from me.
The performance is good. I can play 5v5 matches smoothly in 1920x1200 resolution with most 3D-related settings on
"high". No anti-aliasing, though, my GFX card has its limits, being passively cooled and only 256MB. The game does not
support resolution change using xrandr yet, so lowering resolution to something other than native/default must be done
manually before starting the game (if you want that). I don't need to turn off Compiz, just works fine; of course, make
sure to unredirect fullscreen windows. The game does not seem to utilize multi-threading (it's only burning one core
100% when running, from what I've observed).
The game's audio support seems solid, and it's using ALSA by default. I can't remember hearing any hard glitches in
audio output. I suspend Pulseaudio when I'm running the game, and I've selected «plughw» as ALSA output in the game
options, to minimize audio latency. Unfortunately, running the game through the libalsa-Pulseaudio-ALSA-pipeline
introduces an unacceptable amount of audio latency. This happens in Ubuntu if you're just using default audio output and
not suspending Pulseaudio. I hope it will get fixed in future releases of Ubuntu/Pulseaudio, because audio support must
be solid for a good gaming experience IMO. This is definitely a very weak spot in most current mainstream Linux
distributions (the usual Linux audio chaos, and the latency issues ).
I found the game installer to be simple (MojoSetup), and it worked nicely. It actually did exactly what it should, and
nothing more. I recommend not installing as root, since this facilitates the very nice auto patch update
feature of HoN, which has worked surprisingly well for me.
On the online game server side, they [S2 Games] had some serious problems after a patch update yesterday, with a number
of hours of server downtime, but it's been back up and running nicely since yesterday evening (GMT+2). That's to be
expected when it's in beta-stage, after all. Networking/online play has worked quite good generally, for me.
As a person not familiar with DotA or any other such games, HoN is very difficult to get into. I've pretty much felt
like a moron from the beginning, everything being unfamiliar to me (including DotA gamer lingo). Needless to say, I
stick to noob-games. It's been somewhat better in later rounds (hey, I'm actually capable of learning), but my skill
rating is still very low. Guess that's the price I have to pay for being only an occasional Linux gamer (I'm more of a
programmer than gamer). Or perhaps I'm getting old. Nevertheless, it's still fun, just as long as my team gets a few
wins now and then. I should mention, there is also a good support forum and community with lots of information.
That's what I have for now. I am pretty sure I will be buying this game when it hits retail. Feel free to post your own
HoN-on-Linux-experiences in this thread .
System: Ubuntu Jaunty x86-64, 8GB RAM DualChannel, Intel Core2 Quad 2.5GHz,
Nvidia GF8600GT 256MB using 185.18.31 Nvidia driver.
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