Whether you consider it more Linus-proofing or simply a thoughtful gesture for a growing Linux gaming audience, an updated Ubuntu Budgie Welcome app will make it easier than ever for gamers to start playing out of the box!
Ubuntu Budgie is one of several Ubuntu “flavors,” and distinguishes itself from Ubuntu proper by using the Budgie desktop environment and incorporating lightweight applets that extend functionality and features.
It’s an elegant Linux distribution making a concerted effort to be as user-friendly as possible. This begins with an attractive Welcome app that appears after the OS is installed. “Budgie Welcome” aggregates a treasure trove of information, settings, and software that are incredibly helpful to have at first run.
Whether you want to update your GPU driver, select a default browser, customize your desktop theme, configure backups, add extra functionality, learn keyboard shortcuts, or get involved with the community, the options are there and they’re smartly organized.
A Built-In Gaming Toolbox
A new version, Ubuntu Budgie 22.04, launches this April (it’s available for testing now), and the community is adding another layer to the awesome Welcome app: gaming!
I’ve tested out the newest development version, and the gaming menu adds quick and easy simultaneous installations for Steam, Lutris, and RetroArch. Users can also get quick access to Discord and OBS Studio.
Where it truly shines is offering various tools that deliver richer gaming experiences, including MangoHUD, CoreCtrl, Polychromatic, and OpenRGB.
The contributors are currently deciding whether to add additional utilities like GreenWithEnvy and enhanced checks and functionality in future versions. (Imagine the Welcome app recommending the automatic installation of gaming-specific libraries, or OpenRazer if it detects Razer peripherals.)
The gaming features being implemented are firmly in “alpha” territory right now but should mature as the 22.04 release inches closer.
With Valve’s Steam Proton making considerable strides and the upcoming Steam Deck launch, Linux gaming is rapidly becoming more viable. So kudos to the Ubuntu Budgie team for adding features like this.
If you want to get involved and help test the Welcome app’s new gaming options, click here to visit the Ubuntu Budgie community project page. Feedback and suggestions are welcome!