My main focus is testing PC games in Linux. I have had a lot of success with PlayOnLinux in Linux Mint! I am working hard at creating step-by-step guides on how to install, configure and optimize PC games in PlayOnLinux. I am also a artist with skills in drawing, sculpture, graphic arts, 3D modeling and music.

Report article RSS Feed Black Mesa Linux Tutorial

I was really excited to hear Black Mesa finally released their mod after 8 years of development. What an amazing accomplishment! Of course the first thing I wanted to do is see if it runs in Linux. Using Mint 13 as my personal choice for Linux Distribution, I decided to use PlayOnLinux to install Steam, SDK and Black Mesa.

Posted by booman on Sep 30th, 2012
Intermediate Other.

Black Mesa Linux Tutorial

For instructions on how to setup PlayOnLinux for Steam & Source games, please see my tutorial: Steam and Source games

Before you start download the game, you will need SDK first.

Open SteamGo to Library
Click the menu "All GAMES"select "TOOLS"

Scroll down the list until you see:

  • Source SDK
  • Source SDK Base 2006
  • Source SDK Base 2007

Its a good idea to download all three because you will have full support for almost all mods in Steam.

I'll walk you through the Source SDK installation:

Right-click Source SDKclick "Install Game..."

Download and Install

Hard Drive space needed and estimated download time

Click next


Click next

Click Finish

Source SDK will take some time to download depending on your internet speed.
When its done you will see a confirmation at the bottom of the Steam client

Now its time for Black Mesa.

Go to the GameFront website: Blackmesa_setup.exe
Download all three files:

Save them to your desktop

After its downloaded right-click the blackmesa_setup.exe

Click Open With

Click Wine Windows Program Loader

Agree to the LIcense Agreement

Click I Agree

Destination Folder:
This one is tricky because by default it wants to install in my .wine folder instead of .PlayOnLinux
If you are using Wine then this directory is fine, but I installed Steam with PlayOnLinux.
Note: You can always open PlayOnLinux first and run an executable for the setup.exe

The default Desitnation Folder is incorrect for PlayOnLinux.

I let it install to the default Destination Folder and then cut/paste it to the correct folder later.

Click Install

Uncheck "Run Black Mesa"Click Finish

Navigate to: /home/username/.wine/drive_c/Program Files/steam/steamapps/sourcemods
Note: username is where you put your login/account name for Mint 13

Cut the BMS folder

Navigate to: /home/username/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/Steam/drive_c/Program Files/Steam/steamapps/sourcemods

Note: This should only take a few seconds. If you copy, it will take a lot longer.

Restart Steam


Go to Library

double-click Black Mesa

Side Note: If you get any errors make sure you have all the correct Direct X packages installed for your Steam Virtual Drive in PlayOnLinux. I didn't get any errors because I previously installed Half-Life 2 and ran it. If Half-Life 2 runs without problems then Black Mesa should also. There was some video stuttering and some audio popping in the beginning, but as the game initialized those went away.

Check out my other PC Game Guides at
I have covered several different methods of installing and playing Windows games in Linux

I was even able to crank the graphics up.

Post comment Comments
Daniel~ Oct 2 2012, 9:42pm says:

If your like me your kinda use to games not working in Linux, it happens to often to ignore. Booman has done something a little special here. He brings together Wine Steam and PlayonLinux in a way that makes it look and feel easy. I'm still a nube in Linux, but I was never in doubt as to what I needed to do.What more can I ask of a guide?

Black Mesa Simply works!

+2 votes     reply to comment
booman Author
booman Oct 3 2012, 2:31pm replied:

Thanks Daniel.
I know there a lot more to running Steam in Linux Mint 13, but once its working... Black Mesa was pretty easy
Not to mention extremely fun! Black Mesa brought back the nostalgia of the original Half-Life

+1 vote   reply to comment
Daniel~ Oct 3 2012, 2:38pm says:

It's like I'm dreaming of playing Half-life, it's the best of half-life and a lot more. Thank you Booman, this is fun!

+1 vote     reply to comment
booman Author
booman Oct 15 2012, 2:28pm says:

I'm still playing Black Mesa and its WONDERFUL! I am amazed by the professional development! Every model and map seems to have been given special attention. So many assets from large to small. I even found a WD40 can in one of the boxes. I don't care how long it took to develop, Black Mesa is the largest community driven achievements I have ever seen for a game!
I probably won't ever play the original Half-Life ever again because Black Mesa has improved ever aspect of the game.
Great Job! I hope Valve has taken notice!

+1 vote   reply to comment
Guest Nov 26 2013, 2:38pm says:

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booman Author
booman Apr 10 2014, 3:10pm replied:

Great question, I havn't actually tried it, but I wonder if the mod will work with the Linux version as well....

+1 vote   reply to comment
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