While computer giants such as Intel Corp. and IBM are looking into commercial applications for the Linux operating system, a Tustin start-up sees a new entertainment opportunity: making games for true gearheads.
Linux is an operating system that works on a PC and is available for free on the Internet. Though much more difficult to use than the novice-friendly Windows 95, Linux is becoming a cult favorite among computer experts, boasting an estimated 12 million users worldwide.
"That's a lot of people who, we think, also enjoy playing computer games," said Scott Draeker, president of Loki Entertainment Software.
Launched last summer, the three-person company works with computer game publishers to translate big-name computer games and make them work on a Linux system. The company, which pays the publishers a licensing fee for the rights to work on the game, already is working on its first product.
Loki, citing contractual restrictions, declined to disclose either the name of the game or the publisher. Staff members expect the title to be released by the first quarter of 1999.
"The game industry is a business where development costs are very high," Draeker said. "So far, they're willing to do anything to find new ways to bring in additional revenues for their already successful titles."
P.J. Huffstutter covers high technology for The Times. She can be reached at (714) 966-7830 and at email@example.com.