In their ongoing quest to dominate the world of PC-based game distribution, powerhouse Half-Life creator and hardware developer Valve has announced that the company’s popular Steam client is now available on Linux. Steam can be downloaded for free through the Ubuntu Software Center, which has proven to be the most popular distribution method for Linux users in the past.

David Pitkin, Director of Consumer Applications at Canonical, who provide professional engineering and online services to Ubuntu partners, has said this business move highlights the gaming industry’s growing demand for more open systems that favor both gamers and game developers. Pitkin explains, “We expect a growing number of game developers to include Ubuntu among their target platforms. We’re looking forward to seeing AAA games developed with Ubuntu in mind as part of a multi-platform day and date release on Steam.” Alen Ladavac, creator of the popular Serious Sam PC series, adds: “Who better to lead the charge into Linux gaming than Valve?”

To celebrate the arrival on Linux in true Valve fashion, Steam will be holding a sale until Thursday, February 21, where gamers can start their collection by snagging over 50 Linux titles at 50-75% off, including such indie gems as Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP, Amnesia: The Dark Descent, and Bastion. Now Linux users can share in the extreme wallet pains and the growing backlog of awesome titles under $5 that any Steam user knows all too well. And good luck in trying to resist those Steam sale urges, Linux users. I sure never could!