Linux Osmos Release

Posted by on Apr 28, 2010 in Linux, Osmos | 48 Comments

We’re excited to announce that Osmos has been successfully absorbed by Linux, and is now available! Our newly initiated, one-man Linux warrior, Mr David Burke, has done an amazingly quick and solid job on the port, and it’s been running smoothly on a wide variety of Linux distributions and machines. (Big thanks to all our beta testers!)

Look what just got absorbed!Check out our FAQ for a list of Linux distributions that Osmos has been confirmed to run on. Or, if you’re unsure, download the free demo (in .deb, .rpm, or .tar.gz form) here.

As always, Osmos is DRM-free.

In terms of hardware specifications, the game has been tested on all sorts of machines. Dave’s primary laptop is actually a four year-old Core 2 Duo with on-board Intel graphics, and he made sure the game would perform well on low-end machines. For the record, though, here are our “official” minimum Linux requirements:

  • Processor: 1.0 GHz
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Video card: any hardware supporting OpenGL
  • Sound card: no special hardware required; any driver supporting OpenAL

As for input, the best Osmos experience is to play with a 3-button mouse; but we’ve made sure it plays well with just a trackpad and keyboard for all the laptop folk out there. (Check the in-game control menu for details.)

For those of you who have already purchased Osmos from Hemisphere, the Linux version is already yours — just follow the link in your original purchase email. (We’ll send you all a new one in the next day or two in case you’ve lost it.) And for new players, we’re still offering our $10-deal for all three (PC + Mac + Linux) versions together.

Still to come…

1) Dave plans to write a post-mortem on his experience with doing the Linux port. Expect to hear his thoughts and feelings (and possibly gripes) on the subject in the next week or so.

2) This port is also an experiment for us as a studio. Specifically, is it worth porting games to Linux? We hope the answer is yes, but we’ll find out soon enough. And you will too. We plan to publish statistics on our sales and downloads on all three platforms in about a month’s time.

Thanks, and happy Osmoting! :)
-The Hemisphere Team


  1. Pat
    April 28, 2010

    Thanks guys! This is one of the reasons I bought Osmos (on top of it being awesome). Great timing with Ubuntu 10.04 releasing this Thursday. Awesome job!

  2. velofreak
    April 28, 2010

    Oh great! Thank You so much! Goodbye Win-VM!

  3. Liam Dawe
    April 28, 2010

    Good job guys, will be downloading in a moment!!

  4. Neil
    April 28, 2010

    Cant wait for the iPhone version…!!

    the iPad version will be brilliant tho… it’d be like the iPad was made for it…! lol…

  5. ighea
    April 28, 2010

    THANK YOU SO MUCH! There is never enough games for GNU/Linux! You are AWESOME!

  6. John
    April 28, 2010

    Awesome! Thanks for everything guys!!

  7. M1AU
    April 28, 2010

    Great! Will buy it ASAP!

  8. Michael
    April 28, 2010

    To be honest I was not really couning on ever seeing a linux version of Osmos after the win and mac versions had been out for some month. Still, you guys did a rock-solid port in – what it seems – a very small amount of time. Nice!

    I already bought this morning, can’t wait to get home to finally play the full version :)

  9. Artificial Intelligence
    April 28, 2010

    I have build pkgbuild for both demo and full version for Arch Linux users.



  10. johkra
    April 28, 2010

    Great news, thanks to Dave for his work.

    Although I pre-ordered the game and already own a copy, I bought it a second time to support you.

    Keep up the good work!

    P.S. Please check the spelling of “Ubuntu” in the supported distros part of the FAQ.

  11. alexrudd
    April 28, 2010

    Awesome; I’ve been waiting for this. Checked to make sure the demo ran and insta-buy right after. Thanks!

  12. Rob
    April 28, 2010

    Is there anything people who bought the game on steam can do to get a legitimate linux copy without buying it again?

  13. faemir
    April 28, 2010

    Nooo, why did I buy it on steam D:

  14. n3wt0n! » Osmos for Linux has gone gold!
    April 28, 2010

    […] Osmos for Linux has gone gold. I was one of the handful of people to help test the Linux build of the Osmos demo and I’ve got to say that it’s smooth. […]

  15. Paul
    April 29, 2010

    Bought, thanks!

  16. eddybox
    April 29, 2010

    Wow, thanks for all the awesome support and feedback everyone! Warms our hearts. :)

    For those who purchased on Steam looking for a free Linux copy, we do have that “spread the word” offer. All you have to do is blog about the Linux release and send us the link. ;-)

    Thanks again!

  17. trbhythnu
    April 29, 2010

    Is there some way to buy this without paypal? I’m willing to register for pretty much any other reasonable service or even a bank transfer is necessary. This games is pretty awesome and relaxing and is a breathe of fresh air for simple(for a little while ;) Linux gaming.

  18. Michael
    April 29, 2010

    Guys, I really hope you make tons of money with this :P

    Thanks again for not being another Eufloria (promising linux version but not delivering….)

  19. RyanT
    April 29, 2010

    Very much thinking about buying this game. Tried it out and it’s one of the most intriguing and relaxing I’ve played in a long time.

    As a side note, perhaps you could push the Linux version by doing some interviews with or simply nudging Linux game sites about the game being available?

  20. Robert
    April 30, 2010

    Linux port? Great news! Will buy it for sure!

  21. eddybox
    April 30, 2010

    @RyanT: Any particular linux game sites you have in mind? Also, I visited your blog — interesting stuff! Very nice compilation and analysis on the Linux game market. And if you haven’t bought Osmos yet, keep in mind that we’re giving free copies to people who blog about the Linux release. :)

    @trbhythnu: you don’t need a PayPal account to by via the PayPal link. Any credit card will do. (Read the left side of the PayPal screen carefully.)

    @Michael: Thanks. :) btw, have the Eufloria developers said they won’t be doing a Linux port? If not, it may still be coming.

  22. RyanT
    April 30, 2010

    I’m not sure in terms of pure readership/marketing potential, but the main ones I know of:

    May be useful to get in contact with some of the larger mainstream blogs – omg! ubuntu! seem like one of the bigger sites (use it myself) focused specifically for one of the more well known distros.

    Thanks for the kind words on the blog. Hopefully your Linux release goes well enough that I can add it to the data of Linux games alongside World of Goo and Mystic Mine :-)

    Will definitely blog about the release and do a mini review for the demo (the news of the release has been pimped a bit already through twitter/ and at the ubuntu forums). Though it’ll probably be so good I’ll want to pay/donate anyway :)

    Oh yeah, adding donation option might be a good idea too.

  23. Liam Dawe
    April 30, 2010

    @eddybox i have submitted the game to my own site which my name links to and i have submitted different bits about it a few times to

    I will see if i can submit it to others for you as well.

  24. patl
    April 30, 2010

    Hi, I purchased Osmos from Hemisphere the first day it came out. When I follow my original link to get the Linux RPM, it downloads the Windows installer. How can I get the Linux RPM?

    Thanks a lot,


  25. Yann
    April 30, 2010

    Relaxing? Soooo frustrated when I lose a level :) Just bought the game, works great on Ubuntu 10.4, thank you so much, really enjoying it so far.

  26. John
    April 30, 2010

    Woohoo! This made my day! I bought Osmos a while back in the hope of having a Linux version. Now the dream has come true. :D

    Thank you, Hemisphere!

  27. Rui
    April 30, 2010

    Thank you so much for supporting Linux! We need more ISVs like you. Please do post you sales statistics.

    I actually bought both Osmos and Eufloria in advance of there being a Linux version. 1 down, another to go…

  28. eddybox
    April 30, 2010

    Thanks again for all the support and encouragement everyone! :)

    @Liam Dawe: Thanks for blogging and doing such a great job at spreading the word. Your encouragement and support has been really awesome from the very beginning — and definitely helped us find the “motivation” to do the Linux port. You rock! :)

    @RyanT: Thanks for the suggestions. Osmos has already been announced on some sites, and we’re hoping for a few of the others as well. We’ll ping them again if nothing happens. Hopefully we can add a good/useful data-point to Linux games sales as well. Donation… yeah, I guess we should add that. Or, it’s always possible to gift Osmos to a friend by purchasing and then sending us an email with the giftee’s email address so we can update their record in our database. (We should automate this.)

    @patl: You should have received an email from us in the past few days about the release, including a new download link. If not, you can have your link resent via this form:

    @Yann: I’d be curious to know where you find the frustration begins. If it’s in “Zen Attractors” or “Epicycles”, you may want to check our “roadside assistance” post here:


  29. Chronos
    May 1, 2010

    World of Goo, Machinarium, and now this! Ohboy-Ohboy-Ohboy! Thanks lads! Let Ubuntu flourish! Will buy is asap. Greetings from Hungary.

  30. Liam Dawe
    May 2, 2010

    Glad i could help, i will be sure to lend a helping hand whenever and wherever i can.

    My post on Ubuntu forums has generated a fair bit of interest too, i also noted a user on the forums directly said he came from my website which is cool for the both of us!

    I look forward to Dave answering my interview questions hopefully this weekend/weekend coming.

    If you need anything in the way of Linux stuff feel free to get in touch i am “liamdawe” on the forums and my email is “liamdawe at gmail dot com”

  31. Yann
    May 2, 2010

    Eddybox: Well, considering the fact that in many levels the bubble only merge, you only have a limited amount of time until ultimately the bubble all merge into a giant bubble that you will never be able to swallow – in many aspects it is a game of speed (grow faster than the opponents) and dexterity, made worse by the fact that every move has a cost. A very tough balance between the fact that you need to be active, but also not over overactive. Definitely not an easy game for me, although I enjoy it a lot :)

  32. figvam
    May 2, 2010

    I’m not comfortable about giving up my billing information to Paypal, too. If you could add any other mean of buying your game, it would be really great.

  33. Nils R Grotnes
    May 2, 2010

    Thanks! Bought it, and love it. :)

  34. Spieletipp: Osmos für Linux | Linux und Ich
    May 3, 2010

    […] schneller Tipp an die Freunde des entspanntes Physik-Spiels. Osmos wurde am 28.4. auch für Linux veröffentlicht. In dem Spiel steuert ihr ein kleines Partikel (engl. Mote) in einer virtuellen Welt. Das Partikel […]

  35. Invalid Entry
    May 5, 2010

    After trying the Penumbra: Overture and Prey demos, I was glad to see that Osmos is much better written than these two: it doesn’t prevent alt-tab, doesn’t move my mouse pointer so that I can’t use it, and also it handles wide screens correctly.

    Also separate sfx and music volume settings is a must that too few games take care of :(.

    The only problem — besides the game being quite sluggish with the default settings on my 1.6 GHz Pentium-M / Radeon 9700 Mobility in 1280×800 — is that my PC froze after a few minutes, but I think it’s because of my hardware… or maybe the open-source driver.

  36. Meal Worms
    May 5, 2010

    Hey there,

    Osmos makes heavy use of framebuffer blending which ATI drivers have a history of supporting poorly. I’d recommend using the latest drivers from ATI, but if the game still isn’t performant, then yes, I’d try the open source drivers.

    Note also the ‘Rendering Detail’ setting in the ‘Visual Options’ menu that can be used to reduce the game’s impact on the GPU.


  37. leighman
    May 5, 2010

    Just bought this after seeing it mentioned on Helios Blog.
    Thanks for bringing such an awesome game to Linux, guys! And for keeping it DRM free.

  38. LifeScientology
    May 6, 2010

    Even NASA is advertising the Linux release of Osmos :-)

  39. Chris^2
    May 6, 2010

    Yes! Please bring this game also to my iPod!

  40. Gavin
    May 6, 2010

    I also bought this game after reading the Helios Blog.

    It is so difficult to find great games for GNU/Linux relative to Windows (I have been a computer gamer for well over a decade now). I installed this game on Windows and Mac, too, but I took out my credit card because of the GNU/Linux version.

    Awesome game so far. It remains to be seen if I have the ability to beat it, though. ;)

    Great job. And as long as you keep the GNU/Linux versions coming, I will continue to take out my credit card.

  41. adam
    May 18, 2010

    thanks for the port!

  42. Mike
    May 19, 2010

    So you know, I bought this after seeing a post on Planet Ubuntu, because it was available for Linux.

  43. Rohan Dhruva
    June 26, 2010

    The demo does not work on Ubuntu 8.04 – neither the deb nor the tar.gz. Both fail with the inability to find I am guessing this is happening because Ubuntu does not have a newer version of libopenal? If so, could this somehow be ‘backported’ to work on older Ubuntu? I would have posted this on your forums, but that requires registration.

  44. Osmos – Zellbiologie mal ganz simpel und unterhaltsam « LifeScientology – Ein Blog mit Bio-Chemie
    June 29, 2010

    […] 29. Juni 2010: Bin zwar nur Windows-Nutzer, aber seit einiger Zeit gibts Osmos auch für Linux und Mac, sowie bald auch für iPad und iPhone. Da helf ich gerne beim Marketing mit […]

  45. Zenitur
    July 16, 2010

    Thank you very much. I’ll buy it when learn how to use Paypal in Russia (without credit card) and tell about this in russian thematic forums

  46. Jon Pritchard
    December 16, 2010

    Hello. I don’t know if this is the right place to direct support questions. However I’ve just picked up Osmos in the Humble Bundle, and it has the same issue as the Linux demo did a while back. I get crackly sound and a slight slow down after a while. For example, if I hold down the left-mouse button to produce a stronger jet, the sound begins to make crackling noises and the bubbles slow down. When I quickly exited the program to examine the processor graph, I didn’t see any spikes or anything. I’m on Fedora 14 and I do use Pulse audio.

    Thanks in advance.

  47. Anonymous
    April 2, 2011

    At least you can hold down your mouse to produce a stronger jet. I just get a stream of rapid-fire little jets.

    Can’t expect much though in the way of support from an indie company…

  48. eddybox
    April 10, 2011

    @Anonymous: a stream of rapid-fire little jets is what’s supposed to happen. I suspect that’s what Jon meant. :)

    @Jon: Are you running the latest Linux version? (1.6.1) Also, check this info on our FAQ: