PC gaming is not only limited to Windows-gaming. You can play any game on your pc if you use a Linux gaming distro.
Gone are the days when setting up and running games on Linux was next to impossible. Nonetheless, in the past few years, Linux’s reputation is the gaming field has improved dramatically and made it easier to operate for beginners. Yet, there is still a solid-wall blocking the vision. That is, there will crop up multiple Linux gaming distros when you draw your attention to pick one. That is going to be a challenging task or sometimes frustrating too to find out which one most suitable for your machine, or which games are supported.
So, here, in this blog post, you will get to know about the best Linux distro for gaming, as well as their Pros and cons, and system requirements.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Best Linux Distros for Gaming in 2021
- 1.1 Steam OS
- 1.2 Batocera.Linux
- 1.3 Ubuntu GamePack
- 1.4 SparkyLinux
- 1.5 Fedora Games Spin
- 1.6 Lakka
- 1.7 Manjaro Gaming
- 1.8 Game Drift Linux
The Best Linux Distros for Gaming in 2021
The listed Linux Distros are randomly ordered. Read reviews first and then pick one according to your gaming-touch.
- Intel or AMD 64-bit capable processor.
- Minimum 4GBRAM is required.
- Minimum 500GB Hard Disk is required.
- NVIDIA graphics card AMD and Intel graphics support.
SteamOS is one of the best distros out there to choose for playing steam games. Emerged from the Linux-Debian family, specifically put forward for giving a thrilling console-like graphics while playing games on a PC. Numerous high-quality steam games are available to carry on the joy. According to some hardcore gamers, it is the most stable Linux distro for playing steam games.
Steam OS is considered as the most active Linux distro for gaming too, as it impressively encloses higher numbers of drivers for gamers regularly. Mainly joysticks/gamepads and graphics cards. If you don’t find any specific hardware driver built-in, you can always set up that manually by using the APT command. Thanks to Debian Jessie repositories where you could get much software, closer to your gaming needs.
- Support for many graphics cards.
- Smooth gaming experience.
- Run Steam games only.
- All CPU with minimum 2.4Ghz.
- Minimum 512MB RAM is required.
- Minimum 2GB Hard disk is required.
- ATI, NVidia or Intel all GUI are supported.
- Does not require a Graphic card.
If you’re looking for playing retro games with ease, there is no anything suitable than the Batocera Linux distro for old-games. As you probably know that too, playing retro games is fun unless we don’t have to mess around with the types of emulators. Plenty of different emulators are out there, and installing them one-by-one is not ideal though.
Here the Batocera takes off this complexity. It comes with various emulators by default. So you don’t need to bear this case anymore. However, in order to play any game, you must have the original copy of that game.
This Linux distro is minimal in size, and backpacks only resource that benefit gaming such as gamepads. You can boot-install this Linux distro in a USB. Such that whenever you want to play games simply put it on your PC, and start playing your favourite retro games anywhere, anytime.
- Suitable for low-end Machines.
- Compatible with Raspberry pi.
- Support for various graphics cards.
- Not suitable for running high-end games.
- Minimum 2.0GHz is required.
- Minimum 2GB RAM is required.
- MInimum 30 Hard disks are required.
Another best Linux distro for gamers that will guarantee to run around 85,842 games developed for Linux, Windows, various game consoles Sega, Nintendo, PlayStation, and the list keeps going on. It is emphasising to fill up the gap between games with different OS support. And let a gamer unlock the doors of dependencies. Quite often, we need to play games that are not currently available for our OS, for instance, games with different OS support demand that specific OS environment to run, certainly downloading them all on a machine, seems quite a headache.
Not anymore, this distro has pre-installed repositories, Lutris, Wine, etc. Lutris is an open-source gaming platform for handling console, Linux, Steam, and Windows games at single-environment.
Ubuntu Gamepack in a general sense doesn’t arrange you games by default; As opposed to that, it shares a gaming-environment. Where you can play games with different extensions on your machine without the need of any additional dependencies, anyway, it does offer a vast repository of games to one-click download.
- Compatible for playing games online.
- Support for all games, windows, steam, Linux, and console.
- Its performance is a bit slow.
- Minimum CPU Support i686 (32bit) or amd64 (64bit) Pentium 4, or AMD Athlon
- Minimum 512MB RAM is required.
- Minimum 20GB Hard disk is required.
SparkyLinux introduced a gaming edition back in 2013 that is fully aimed towards exploring games on Linux. To develop this, several useful sparky software was replaced by some games and gaming features. Technically its core language is Debian Linux. Not to mention, it was one of the fastest distros for playing games upon its release.
With Sparky Gameover edition, you will get many pre-installed tools that will hand over you a better Linux gaming experience. On the top, it has Lutris for running cross-platform games together with support for steam games within the box, and Aptus tool which assists in downloading different emulators via the internet. Moreover, you can play online games also through chrome browser.
Not to mention, this Linux gaming distro comes up with an ocean of open-source Linux games by default.
- Support for all types of games.
- Pre-installed tools like wine.
- Comes with Linux Games.
- Does not support updated graphics cards.
- Not robust for running many steam games..
- 2Ghz Processor is required.
- Minimum 1GB RAM is required.
- Minimum 10GB Hard disk is required.
- For playing steam games Intel HD graphics or AMD Radeon 8500 is required.
Fedora Game spin is by default compatible and limited to run Linux games. It is what makes Fedora apart from others, basically, hundreds of Linux gaming are preinstalled in this distro. However, to play windows and steam games out-of-box, you’ll need to install their packages manually on the grounds that it does not fundamentally support games based out-side of Linux domain.
The prime reason for this Distro is that it only takes Linux games in because it is aimed to be a faster platform. That’s why it eats low-resources, and need a small space to operate. Despite the fact that it does not support all games, but, it is most the faster operating system to play all Linux games, moreover, it is easy to install.
- Comes with thousands of Pre-installed Linux games.
- Easy installation and run games very fast.
- Don’t have support for many games.
- Not suitable for gaming lovers.
- Almost all older or newer CPUs are supported.
- Minimum 10GB hard disk is required.
- Minimum 1GB RAM is required.
Lakka is based on Retroarch; it is also famous for its extensive support for various gamepads, including wireless gamepads of ps3 and ps4. Moreover, it is a perfect choice for people who are looking for to transform their out-dated pc into a video game. For sure, the performance is quite impressive. You will hardly face lagging or framedropping problems.
Lakka can turn a machine into a gaming console. It’s bootable too so that you can switch on gaming anytime, just make installed it on a USB and you’re ready to go. On behalf of that, Lakka can support all ROM games. However, it does not have any games due to some copyright issues. Significantly, you must own a ROM copy in order to play.
- All retro games are supported.
- Comes with so many Retro emulators.
- Does not support high-end games.
- Minimum 1GB RAM.
- Minimum 25GB Hard Disk.
- Minimum 1.2GHz processor.
- A high-end graphics card for playing graphics games.
Manjaro is the best and stable Linux distro for pro-gamers. It comes pre-installed with steam support and all the necessary gaming software, including video editing, recording, taking screenshots, and so on. All this make stand out and to be the best gaming distro for pro-gamers.
Any hardware you might use for gaming will be compatible with this; else you can download.
Manjaro comes with support for all games, retro, console, windows, steam. It supports different platforms and operating systems. The latest versions of emulators or runtimes like DOSbox, Dolphin, WINE, or Winetricks are stored there. They just need a few clicks to get them started working.
- Support all types of games.
- Support updates gaming drivers.
- Some games are not compatible with this Distro.
- Minimum 1.2Ghz processor is required (32-64)
- Minimum 1GB RAM is required.
- Minimum 4 GB hard disk is required.
- Video Card support- ATI, Nvidia or Intel graphics adapter.
Game Drift Linux another impressive Debian-based Linux distro. Grab it if you’re not familiar with Linux gaming, but you’ve used Debian. You’ll find this really fun and relevant to your taste.
Despite the fact, Game Drift is no longer supported in 2021. However, it still has a huge fan base. Mostly it is used for playing windows games. For the reason that its partnership with Codeweavers. A CrossOver technology that allows users to more than 12,000 window games, not only that it combines all of them into one. Altogether, it becomes a trigger of one-click-download of 12,000 games and starts playing.
- A store of games.
- Linux and Windows games are supported.
- It is not 100% free to use.