19 out of 25 games ported in less than a year, with a few more not far behind, more companies need to take a page from Valve's book and learn how to get things done.
As far as drivers go, they really aren't that bad atm, not even the AMD ones. There may be other issues at play and perhaps certain cards that run into issues, but I have been getting decent performance out of my system lately and my rig is a budget build with only a dual-core Athlon II and Radeon HD 5670. With some newer games I have to run on medium settings, but I would of had to even on Windows. Some of the Valve games seem to have intermittent lag while things are loading, but that usually only lasts during the first area or two before clearing up and likely has more to do with the way they coded things and my limited hardware than anything to do with drivers. Even screen tearing which used to annoy the hell out of me is much less frequent lately, particularly with the last few driver releases. My biggest problem with AMD has to do with OpenCL when it comes to Blender and Cycles rendering, which is really making me consider dropping them for Nvidia when the time comes to replace my card.
Man, it's been a while since I played through those first couple of levels. For the most part it seems to running well, albiet with some minor lighting glitches with the flashlight. Also it crashed on manual save the second time I saved. Portal also crashed on save for me. All the normal quirks of Source are present, of course: ladders are still rather odd, physics occasionally get wacky, and loading seems to take forever given the hardware I'm using. Still, it's a goddamn good game.
One thing, why is everyone saying AMD's drivers are so bad, nothing works?
Because I have been playing just about everything without any glitches. Portal, Brutal legend, Serious Sam 3, Rochard, Dungeon Defenders, Bastion, Psychonauts, The Cave, Trine 2, etc...
Is this just a case of people repeating some FUD?
Also, I haven't rebooted my notebook in 2 months, and powermanagement works fine, and suspend-resume has given me no issues either. I also do hotplugging of displays all the time. Sure, video decoding seems to only work perfectly in XBMC, but I distinctly get the idea that fernetmenta was the only one that tried very hard. (IMHO, we should all settle on one standard, not 3. Ah well.)
I'll go against the grain here and play Devils Advocate. For one, we've already played these games and many of us are bored of them. Two, Valves Games are really the only thing on Linux Steam that would please graphics fanbois. Three, enough of the Pixel-Art games and Puzzle games please, they were OK at first, but now it's just meh.
So what does Valve need to do? Push AMD and Nvidia harder to up the quality of Drivers and make installs easier. Push AAA Devs to start porting some of their catalog to Linux, for goodness sakes, Desura has Fallout, Freespace and Descent. Not to mention double the amount of Games. Heck, even DJL has more than Steam. I appreciate what Valve is doing, but they are not doing enough as the Numbers for May will show. I'm predicting a 50-60% loss in Linux users in the coming Months because the quality and quantity just isn't there.
There are a lot of good games coming from Kickstarter that will have Linux support. Road Redemption is one and it is ending in 48 hours. Between Kickstarter, Humble Bundle, and Steam things are really moving for Linux games. Developers are realizing that the cost of porting to Linux is worth it. I for one could care less if Call Of Duty 9: Extremely Regurgitated ever comes to Linux. I have too many Linux games now, I haven't had time to play them all. This is something that has not happened with Linux games for me ever.
i see some problems with nvidia drivers, but we have other drivers to install not only 319. the people with ati/amd have a lot of problems but its normal
WTF? AMD drivers and sailing smooth here so don't speak for everyone. I play L4D2 highest settings with only a bit of stutter in the initial start of a map (I assume things are still loading). I should note that I realize that's not much of a accomplishment.