By Kevin E. Glosser
I have no choice but to wholeheartedly recommend Cedega. My fears
were refuted. More impressively, TransGaming has turned me into more of
a believer than Fox Mulder of the X files ever was.
Before purchasing, make sure the games you are planning on playing
via Cedega, are supported. You should be able to get a good idea if you
will have any problems. The TransGaming website has a playability list.
If the score is three out of five or higher, it likely plays fine. Even
if the game doesn't score that well, it could play well in a future
version of Cedega. Keep in mind, that different versions of the program
may have different levels of playability. However, I would expect the
newer versions to only increase the chance of a particular game working
Potential customers may also want to check TransGaming.org for the
forums available there. As I've stated a few times, "your mileage may
vary". Your choice of Linux distribution and hardware will play a role
in just how much work you have to do to get Cedega working for you. A
patient person will naturally be more likely to have success. As Linux
users, I expect that not to be a problem for most.
Purchasing Cedega consists of subscribing for a monthly fee. You must
buy at least a three month membership. However, you are not required to
renew. Once you subscribe for three months, you can download Cedega and
you basically then own it. Even if you give up your subscription you
still can use it for as long as you want. Of course, next year when a
new game comes out that maybe doesn't run under 4.2.1, but runs under a
newer version, you will probably want to upgrade.
The cost is five US dollars (three British pounds Steve) per month.
On first inspection, the monthly fee appears more costly than it really
ends up being. One year ends up being sixty US dollars. I paid sixty
dollars for id Software's DOOM III this year. Basically, for the price
of one "A plus" game title, you get the ability to play all Windows
games in Linux. Is it worth it? If you are asking me, the answer is yes!
To further evaluate the cost, let's examine what we are paying for.
TransGaming pays it's staff with the money we provide, they continue to
develop better versions of the software. They must also develop
solutions to any new technology Microsoft adds. Direct X, for instance,
is continuously under development. Included with the Cedega software
comes technical support and the ability to vote on what TransGaming
works on next. In addition to the vote you get as a subscriber, you can
actually pay for additional votes. TransGaming claims this allows you to
set precedent on development if you believe your interest is being
Cedega's virtues are many, but as I mentioned, it's not perfect.
There are some things they could add to improve the product. I'd like to
see some kind of verbose error message always appear in the window manager, if
possible. The ability to choose which Linux partition to install games
to, without having to resort to indirect methods, would be nice. The
documentation is good, but I would like a text file detailing all the
possibilities for the game specific options. Some type of general
recommendation could be provided. Even better would be inclusion of game
specific configuration options. Even if it was only "Run WOW in 98
mode", that would help. Sharing a Cedega installation is possible,
however it is not a simple procedure yet. This type of future support
would be nice. Linux complicates this, however, a solution of some type
must be available. It should be noted that Cedega, like WINE installs
all files into a phantom Windows directory structure which resides by
default in your home directory.
The word cedega has multiple meanings. It was cleverly chosen as the
name of TransGaming's product due to it's most common definition. It is
most commonly known as a unique grape used in the creation of some of
the finest wines in the world. TransGaming has built upon that
definition, taking the WINE project to new levels. In the process,
Cedega has given me what for so long I have been
searching. The last dependency to Microsoft is gone. No longer must I
rely on Windows to play my favorite games. I can safely remove Windows
from my hard drive, once and for all.
Thanks to Cedega, "I am FREE, at last."