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Ubuntu is often seen as a "work only" operating system. However , there is also fun to be had on Ubuntu.
This page aims to give information on fun aspects available for your Ubuntu system.

Sections that will be covered includes:

  • Gaming
    • Minetest
    • Steam


This section will cover games available on Ubuntu.

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What is Minetest

Minetest is an open world sandbox style game. You gather and mine resources. You craft items. You build buildings and networks and whatever you really want to build. You are completely free to do and build whatever you want to. For those that know Minecraft , this is a lot like that and is an alternative to Minecraft.
Minetest is free software.

Lots of screenshots of the amazing stuff that can be created in minetest:Minetest screenshots by various players

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How do I get Minetest

Minetest can be installed straight from the Ubuntu repositories.
However , that version will not be the latest version. If you want the latest version then you have two choices.

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Notes on mods

Minetest uses a default game called minetest_game that contains the basics for playing the game.
This is included in the minetest install and also referred to as "vanilla" game without any mods.

Minetest does feature a whole load of mods that improves the game. There are some really great mods that greatly improve the gameplay as well as things that you can do and create inside the game.
For example mods like mesecons , pipeworks , technic and unified_inventory are highly recommended as those adds many networking , electrical , interface and tool improvements.

You can view and find all the supported mods for minetest here: Minetest Mods

To get the most out of minetest mods really are necessary as it adds a whole lot of extra content and enjoyment.

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Notes on subgames

Although mods are highly recommended to get the most enjoyment out of minetest , some users may find that
managing and updating lots of separate mods are too much for them. This is where subgames comes in.

Subgames are easy installable add-ons for minetest. A subgame is a fully working version of the base
minetest_game as well as mods already build-in. Subgames are created by community members and there are
various ones available. Some subgames also have tweaked minetest_game settings that works better.

The biggest advantage with using a subgame is that you don't need to manage mods. The mods are already included in the subgame and when you install the subgame the mods are also automatically there.
This makes installation and updating very easy as you

  • Only have to install the subgame and not the mods and
  • When updates are done for mods you only update the subgame

This make life very easy for the player as mod updates are frequent and you only have to update one thing every time , the subgame itself.

So how do you know which subgame to use ?
The choice is entirely up to you and will differ from player to player.
The subgame creators usually list all mods and setting modifications that their subgame contain.
So look carefully at each one and decide on one that has the mods you want to use and gameplay settings you are comfortable with.

A list of subgames can be found here: Minetest subgames

A good example of a proper subgame is VanessaE's Dreambuilder and can be found here: VanessaE's Dreambuilder
That subgame is an example of one that has almost all mods you could ever need.
It is also regularly updated and well maintained , which is also an important factor to look for.
It is no use to have a subgame that is not maintained and updated , then you don't get the latest nice and are stuck in old versions of mods or settings.

  • NOTE that most mods and subgames requires the latest version of minetest. So it is good practice to always use the latest stable release at the very least.

  • NOTE that it is very important to choose the correct mods or subgame that you want to use. Mods and subgames adds content into your world that you play in. If you later remove some mods it will create messy unknown entities in your world ( as the mod that provides it has been removed ) and in some cases can make your world unplayable. First test out the mods or subgames you are considering in an testing world and once you decided on your mods or subgame of your choice then you can start a new world using those for long term play.

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Notes on multiplayer and servers

Minetest has full multiplayer support. You can play alone , or you can play with others.
There is 2 options for multiplayer:

  • You can join public servers
  • You can host your own server

Joining public servers are very easy. Minetest includes the multiplayer client by default and you don't need to install anything extra to join servers. To find public servers to join you have 2 options:

  • On the main menu of minetest , upon startup , click on the client tab at the very top , and then click on the option public server list to enable it. You will now see a list of available servers to join.

  • Go to the minetest forums server section for a list of servers and descriptions and address info. That can be found here: List of public minetest servers

You can host your own server for example if you want to play in the same game with your family at home or with friends on a lan. Or even if you want to host a server that is open on internet for others to join. Documentation on creating and managing your own server can be found here: Creating and maintaining a minetest server

Mods and subgames are managed by the server. The mods or subgame and all it contents will be available to all your players that joins. Clients do not need to have the same mods and subgames installed as the server in order to play on it , which is great. The same applies if you join someone else's server. The mods and subgame are managed by his/her server and you don't need to have the same installed.

NOTE: It is not wise to connect to servers when you have old versions of minetest that you use. Most public servers runs the latest versions of minetest and latest versions of mods and subgames. Many of those require features only available in the latest version of minetest. Always ensure that you use the latest stable version of minetest at a minimum.

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Notes on file locations and backups

Minetest makes backups easy. By default all your mods , subgames , settings and actual world data is stored in ~/.minetest
If you backup that whole folder , all your minetest data will be safe.
Note that is a hidden folder in your home folder , you will need to enable showing of hidden files to actually see that folder and always ensure that your minetest is properly shut down before making a backup.

Restoring is as easy as re-installing latest version of minetest , and then simply copy back that folder to your home folder and all will be restored.

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Where do I find help and support for Minetest

Help , info and support can be found here:

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General info on what is Steam

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How to install steam

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How to search steam for linux games

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General steam tips , backups etc.

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page under construction

ZATeam/Fun_On_Ubuntu (last edited 2015-03-30 16:31:07 by inetpro)