Recognizing $XDG_GAMES_DIR

Jerome Leclanche adys.wh at
Fri Dec 20 14:24:33 PST 2013

On Fri, Dec 20, 2013 at 5:07 PM, Ingo Ruhnke <grumbel at> wrote:
> On Fri, Dec 20, 2013 at 4:10 PM, Rex Dieter <rdieter at> wrote:
>> Why should games be treated differently that other applications?  Ie, why
>> not just put stuff under $XDG_DATA_HOME ?
> While I have seen a few games using $XDG_DATA_HOME for savegames it feels
> like the wrong place for them. As far as I understand XDG_DATA_HOME (the
> standard really isn't all that clear on what it's actually meant to be used
> for), it's basically just the user's version of /usr/share/, meaning it
> might contain themes, add-ons, mods, icons and other third party program
> data. Savegames on the other side are your personal data, so you really
> don't want to get it mixed together with third-party stuff.
> So at the moment I would store them together with the config data, as that's
> the kind of data you want to backup. It's also matches best what games do
> under Windows where you have a singe directory for the games itself and then
> a ~/MyGames/ directory for config, savegames and screenshots. The problem
> with this is that savegames aren't exactly like config, config tends to be
> small, while gamesaves can go into the Gigabytes depending on the game, with
> screenshots or video recording the situation might even get more bloaty. But
> as games save all those files automatically without a file dialog they need
> a default location of where to store them.
> I am not sure that a XDG_GAME_HOME is needed, as the damage done by
> spreading things out further could be more harmful then just stuffing
> everything into XDG_CONFIG_HOME, but there is plenty of precedence for games
> specific location, namely /var/games/, /usr/share/games, /usr/games and so
> on.

That precedent alone is imho reason enough for $XDG_GAMES_HOME.
I'm conflicted myself about it, don't get me wrong. But in the end,
games managers (Wine's Windows games api, Steam, ...) will create a
location of their own for this stuff. Might as well try to catch this
one as early as possible.

> --
> Blog:
> JabberID: xmpp:grumbel at
> ICQ:      59461927
> _______________________________________________
> xdg mailing list
> xdg at

More information about the xdg mailing list