Matt Matthews has produced a new Linux gaming article examining a routinely discussed facet of Linux evangelization: how well does a Linux game perform when compared with an identical title for Windows? Matt benchmarks Quake 3: Arena (with a 3dfx Voodoo 3 card) on both operating systems using several driver sets, including an XFree86 4.0 pre-release snapshot. Matt concludes:
The bad news is that in practical playing situations, the more polished Windows drivers provide the best performance for playing Quake 3 Arena. And if you want the very best performance, you should use the WickedGL drivers. But, as I see it, the good news is that at 800×600 and below, Linux isn’t that far behind. Assuming that the drivers can be optimized to increase the performance at 1024×768 and higher, Linux may eventually be competitive across the board. Certainly, Linux is far ahead of where it was just a year ago, both in performance and stability. So, as I normally play at 800×600 anyway, I’ll continue playing Q3A in Linux and forego booting into Windows every time I have the desire to frag someone.