Its a couple months late but it's finally here! Lutris 0.3.5! So what's new? What took so long? Well, feature wise, not that much is new. We took what we had in Lutris 0.3.4 and made it better: lots of testing went into this release and we tried to fix any annoyances we could find. The goal was to build solid foundations for things to come, and believe me when I say there are lots of them!
This release marks the spot where Lutris goes from a little personnal project to a full fledged Open Source project. We got several solid contributors and testers, there's an ITP (Intent to package) open in Debian ( https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=757966 ) and even PlayOnLinux's creator came to tell me that we are going in the right direction!
So, for real, nothing new in this release? Well they might not be obvious but there are lots of new things. The most important change is that we are now providing all runners used in Lutris (with the exception of Steam and your web browser). That means that we have every emulator compiled and packaged for Lutris itself and can install anyone of them whether they are made available to your distro or not, all this without root access. Most emulators are available in their latest version (for example we ship ScummVM 1.7 which was released a few months ago and isn't available in most distributions). Some of them have been patched to provide a better experience, most notably PCSXR which has been modified to be relocatable and provide a better fullscreen experience (still not perfect but more on that in a later post).
So, yes, now is the time that we stop being a simple game manager client and start being maintainers of more than twenty emulators and game runners. Speaking of runners, this release brings two more: Virtual Jaguar and Desura and makes Mupen64plus finally usable! Support for Desura is still very experimental but that's going to be fixed in Lutris 0.3.6.
Please be aware that most runners are only available for 64bit systems as 32bit OSes are less and less common and most of them are not fit to provide a good gaming experience. If you are a 32bit OS user and want support for more runners, please make yourself known so we can work on that.
Besides the much improved runner support, some UI improvements have been added, such as being able to open a file browser in the game's directory from the right-click menu or displaying your connection to lutris.net status. More important, many many bugs have been fixed, providing a much better experience than we had in 0.3.4. I really hope you enjoy this release, we put a lot of work and love in it. I'd like to send huge thanks to everyone who have helped make this happen, especially Xodetaetl who is now a core team member and everyone else who have sent patches and tested the development version: Ryochan7, Freso, Frenchkiss, Dennisjj and all the others that have reported bugs on IRC and github.
Now that we have another version shipped, what to expect in the next milestone? Well, the github is already packed with cool new features, here's what's planned in Lutris 0.3.6:
- Integration with GOG and Humble Bundle, making lutris a full fledged client for those platforms
- Integration with the TOSEC database ( http://www.tosecdev.org/ ) allowing you to import those folders packed with ROMs in a matter of minutes,
- Better management of wine version (kinda like PlayOnLinux does)
- The "Lutris Runtime", a set of libraries allowing you to run any game independently of what's installed on your system (Steam and Desura have a similar feature)
- More metadata available in the client: release year, genre, platform, runner and the ability to filter by these criteria.
This next release will mark the end of the 0.3.x branch and the one after will bring major changes and new features! Keep in mind that we have a long way to go before releasing a 1.0 version.