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WineX and unicorns  

Why unicorns, you might ask? Because WineX works like friggin' magic.

Lemme explain. I'm not normally one to play video games. Err... wait... what I mean is that I don't play video games on computer. In fact, I think the only games I do play on my computer are Nethack (possibly the most addictive "video" game of all time) and SameGnome (a simple stones game). Otherwise, I'm all about the video game consoles (SNES, N64, whatever).

But... My fiance's brother stayed with us this weekend. I'm letting him borrow a laptop with a wireless network card in it, so he can goof around on the home network. Well, he gets the bright idea to play Starcraft and he wants to play head-to-head with me.

I really didn't want to have to reboot my laptop into Windows (I was in Gentoo Linux at the time). So, stretching my brain, I remembered something about WineX. It's a windows emulator for Linux that can emulate games that need to make use of DirectX. I issued a quick 'emerge winex' and within the hour I had WineX compiled and running. It was a cake walk to get Starcraft going. I just mounted the CD, ran the install and the rest is history.

Now, I had sort of expected that to work, since I had used Wine before. But, I didn't expect networking to work (for some reason). However, when I started Starcraft into mutiplayer mode and selected Battle.net, it went about downloading the Battle.net upgrade. This allows you to play on a LAN without using IPX (ick).

As soon as the upgrade completed, I was rocking. I was able to create a multiplayer game and Matthew (that's the soon-to-be brother-in-law) was able to join the game.

Sadly, though, it ran pretty slow. I'm still working on that, though. And I haven't given up hope yet.

Note Okey doke. I tried running Starcraft under different kernels and I'm making some progress. Gentoo actually has a gaming-sources kernel, but that only seemed to be a little bit faster. It's weird, but the vanilla-sources actually seemed to be the fastest.

Now I'm just having a problem with the mouse usage in Starcraft. Check out my post on the Gentoo Forums if you are interested.


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