Ah....I see where you are getting your information, and see why you
think as you do, but you are jumping to a few false conclusions on how
games and other Linux software is redistributed.
First, unlike Microsoft there is no single developer or company who
creates the Linux OS. As a result there are many different brands and
developers of the Linux OS, and they all have differences that make
them unique and somewhat incompatible with each other. For example,
Ubuntu setup files use the deb package format and Fedora uses the rpm
package format. Its possible but not highly recommended to try and
install a software package in rpm on a deb system nor a deb package on
an rpm based system etc. Therefore each distribution makes custom
builds and setup packages for games and other software.
So to take Rocks and Diamonds, for instance, you would not download
the game from the Rocks and Diamonds website directly. Instead you
would go to the Ubuntu software repository and see if there is a setup
file for Ubuntu there. If so you could go to Ubuntu Software Center,
select Rocks and Diamonds from the list of games, and software center
would download and install the game plus any dependencies such as SDL
that are required. Fedora Linux, Arch Linux, Debian Linux, you name it
all would have their own way of downloading and installing the game
directly from their own software repositories. Does this make sense?
So to clarify my point is that most software is not downloaded and
installed from the original developer directly. Instead your
distribution such as Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, Arch, whoever gets the
source code from the developer, compiles it, creates a setup file for
it for their distribution/brand of Linux, and puts it in their own
repository to download and install. this is a service they do so you
don't have to worry about all the manual instructions of compiling and
setting up the game by hand. Linux developers are well aware most
people don't have the technical skills to do that on their own, and
you just have to know where to get all the games and software for your
Linux platform already packaged and ready to install.
So to answer your question "why are directions for Linux so
complicated" its because the developer makes the assumption you use
Linux and know about software repositories and such. They give you
generic instructions to compile and install the software in case your
Linux distribution A, doesn't have an available version for download,
or B, you are a developer planning on creating such a package for
redistribution. Since I suspect you didn't know about global software
repositories where setup files etc are stored it is easy to be mislead
or given to false assumptions that all software has to be compiled and
installed according to those directions on the Rocks and Diamonds
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