Serious Sam 3:BFE GPU Graphics Performance in Ubuntu

The new and heavily awaited Steam client for Linux is getting better and better everyday, while many beta testers who have access to its limited closed-beta are giving feedback to Croteam developers through Steam’s discussions. Yet many of you are still trying to bypass the beta, while the majority of newcomers into Linux are completely ignorant of Steam and Linux gaming era. How will it perform on a selection of different cards ? What drivers should I use ? Should I upgrade my hardware ? What graphics card should I buy ? …. and the query list goes on. So guys, today, I am trying to give you some answers and just a little taste of  Steam’s current progress in terms of performance and development.

You see, here at UbuntuXtreme, we are lucky enough to be a part of this linux gaming party, so we have spent the last few days benching all night long. Thus, in this review we’ll take a look at Serious Sam 3: BFE GPU Graphics benchmark performance with 17 graphics cards. So far up to this point, I have to thank my friends at Voodoo People Project who were willing to lend me their hardware or you wouldn’t read this article now. Thank you guys! I am sure our readers really appreciate your noble gesture :)

Truth be told, I’ve been hesitating whether or not to post this review. When I had been working half way through the benchmarks (using public beta v172672), I’ve got informed via Steam that CroTeam has released a new vesion (173348). So I had to re-run all the benchmarks way back up to date. As it seems, things might gonna change again (for the better I hope so)  in the upcoming few weeks, since Croteam releases updates once in a while based upon Steam feedback. However, yesterday, the SS3 beta was suspended by CroTeam and it’s time for the official release and purchase. With that in mind I wondered whether or not to continue with this article. Considering that people would like to know what performance is like with the current drivers, I guess I had to continue my work and  (when the new version is available) then go for an update.

The plot — Run, Gun and try to Live

Shoot first, ask questions later; this review will cover some basic information about the game and then get down in performance tests. Welcome back Sam, we missed you!

Despite the game’s original release date on November 22, 2011 (for Windows), today there is a Linux version that was made available through the Linux Steam beta on the 7th of November 2012.  Linux gaming community welcomes the final chapter of Serious Sam series, the old-school bad-ass guy who kills everybody who gets in his way. However, if you are not familiar with the game’s title, notice that Serious Sam it is known as one of the classics First Person Shooting games, similar to Quake and Doom.
There are many funny moments in the game, especially if you are a fan of splatter films. For instance, your reward for finishing a level isn’t a cutscene or a story (as it’s used to be in other games), but it’s a score-board that penalizes you for taking too long . . . hehe !!

The game’s story takes place in the 22nd century, during Mental’s invasion of Earth, as implied during The First Encounter. Following the typical naming scheme, the third instalment brings the not-so-creative title “Before First Encounter“, which is (obsiously) exactly what the name implies —  a prequel to Serious Sam: The First Encounter.

Well, it happens to Open Source that anything can be tweaked and adjusted, which is certainly an advantage. Croteam offers you a variety of choices to customize the game according to your needs. You can play in a third-person view, change the behavior of a weapon, turn the camera bob, adjust the field of view, show the frames-per-second, turn the HUD off, run benchmarks… and so on.

Are you   Serious ?

So, are you ready to be enrolled in a bloody mess and gore ? Triple the blood, triple the gore, maximize the adrenaline and kill all kind of ugly alien monsters in Cairo. As you can probably imagine, this game is an old-school thrash metal shooter. So if you are not into bleeding rage stuff, you will probably click the dislike button; played it once, hated forever. But it’s obvious you can’t be Serious if you do that :p

So let’s wrap things up: In this article we are going to look at OpenGL class graphics performance measured with no less than 17 graphics cards from AMD (Radeon HD) and NVIDIA (GeForce GTX) using Ubuntu 12.04 32bit. Steam is still in beta phase and this article aims to give you just the current performance of Serious Sam 3. Nothing more, or less. There are still many bugs, crashes, drop performance, mouse lags etc. but I think it’s time for all of you Linux users to have a taste of what’s currently happening. After all, Christmas is near so maybe it’s time for a hardware upgrade.

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