Gaming Linux

5 Casual Linux Games You Probably Don’t Know About

Justin Pot 03-11-2010

linux gamesThe sheer amount of software you can find in your average Linux package manager is astounding. For example, Ubuntu offers 502 free game downloads, all a single click away in the software center. Other Linux distributions, including Fedora and Suse, offer just as many choices.


With that many games it’s hard to know what’s worth playing and what’s not. It wasn’t easy, but I spent a couple of days trying various games out. Keep reading to hear about five simple Linux games I personally enjoyed but think many Linux users may not be aware of, and feel free to suggest more in the comments below!

Which Way Is Up?

linux games

Gravity is subjective.

At least, it is in this game. Turn a switch and the entire field of play is rotated, meaning up, down, left and right are all redefined. A puzzle game with a few enemies and obstacles, this game is strangely addictive.


Ubuntu users can click here to install Which Way Is Up; users of other distros should check their package manager or check out the official Which Way Is Up website for more information.

Secret Maryo Chronicles

5 Casual Linux Games You Probably Don't Know About maryo

Does the name sound familiar? That’s intentional. Secret Maryo Chronicles is a not-so-subtle tribute to Super Mario Bros, the quintessential platform game. And everything is here: mushrooms, fire flowers, pipes and more.

Everyone born in the 80’s harbors a desire to play more Mario levels in classic 2D fashion, so this game is certainly worth checking out. Ubuntu users can click here to install Secret Maryo Chronicles, and click here to install the game’s optional music. Check your package manager if you don’t use Ubuntu, or check out the official Secret Maryo page for more information.


Numpty Physics

5 Casual Linux Games You Probably Don't Know About numptyphysics

This one’s just awesome. Have you ever doodled on a pad of paper, wishing you could watch the results follow the laws of physics? Now you can!

In Numpty Physics the objective is to hit the yellow star with whatever red object is on the screen. Your tool for accomplishing this? Whatever you want. What you draw will interact with everything onscreen in accordance with the law of gravity. This is hardly scientific, but it is very intuitive and quite a bit of fun.

Ubuntu users can click here to download Numpty Physics. Other Linux users should check their distro’s repositories, or the official Numpty Physics page for download information. You’ll even find fan-made levels there!


Ice Breaker

5 Casual Linux Games You Probably Don't Know About icebreaker

Everyone loves penguins, and penguin-related games are appropriately plentiful on the Linux platform. This game, a simple penguin take of the PC classic “Jezball,” isn’t exactly ambitious. Still, if you like the source material odds are you’ll like this game. The penguins are really just a bonus attribute so far as I’m concerned.

Ubuntu users can install Ice Breaker by clicking here; users of other distributions should check their repositories.

Frozen Bubble

linux games


Okay, I’ll admit it: you’ve probably heard of this one. Frozen Bubble is a well-designed puzzle game you should probably check out. Featuring a great-looking user interface and energetic movement, the goal of Frozen Bubble is to clear the playing area out completely this is achieved by hitting clusters of marbles with marbles of the same color.

It’s also a lot of fun, and includes a great two-play mode. You can click here to install Frozen Bubble; users of other Linux distributions should check their package managers or head over to the official Frozen Bubble page to find installation information.

There’s Lots More

This is just scratching the surface, of course. The Ubuntu Software Center offers 502 free games by default, and that doesn’t even include the hundreds more you can find on the web. You should also check out Tim’s recent article eight awesome free and open source games for Windows, Mac and Linux 8 Awesome Free Open-Source Games You Can Enjoy on Windows, Mac, and Linux Read More , of course, because there are some great games in there. You can also find 3 applications for discovering and installing awesome games 3 Tools to Discover & Install Awesome Linux Games Read More , if you want.

Do you have a favorite Linux game that I’ve missed? Point it out below, including package names and links. I’d love to discover more treasures, and I’m sure I’m not alone on that.

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  1. dana theteacher
    December 13, 2010 at 8:39 pm

    Nice! And you are right I haven't heard of them,