How To Play The Marathon Trilogy In Ubuntu 12.04


Halo fans probably know this better than anyone, but for those of you who are in the dark, this is for you.  The Marathon Trilogy was a suite of first-person shooters developed for the classic Macintosh in the mid-90s by Bungie Software.  Mrathon 2 would later see a release for Windows 95, but other than that, the series became the flagship first-person shooter franchise for Macintosh.  The first Marathon, released in 1994, was the first first-person shooter to offer modifiable physics and dual-wield weapons and alternate shots.  While breaking a lot of new ground, the game itself is undeniably a timepiece, or benchmark example if you will, of the mid-90s pre-Quake era.

The version that is now available for Linux (and Mac and Windows) offers a lot more spice than the original release, including support for high-res textures, and high resolutions.  In Linux, the game makes available all of the resolutions Xorg believes that your monitor is capable of.  That includes Xinerama…  Here are a couple of shots showing Marathon with no effects ala’ the original, and one maxed out.  Very significant difference.

[one_half last=”no”]

No effects. Click to expand.


[one_half last=”yes”]

All the bells and whistles. Click to expand.


All three games use the Aleph One engine.  Installation is easy for any Linux distribution if you want to build it from source, but there is no need for that if you’re using Ubuntu.

First we must add the Playdeb repository.  There are 2 ways to do it.  You can simply install this .deb file, which will configure the repository for you by clicking on the link below.

[button color=”green” link=”” target=””]Click here to configure PlayDeb archives[/button]

Alternatively, you can configure the archives like so;

1.) Open up the Ubuntu Software Center.  Add the follow software source:

deb oneiric-getdeb games

2.) Now, let’s add the repo’s GPG key.

wget -q -O- | sudo apt-key add -

The rest is super easy.  Just use the buttons below to install each game.

[one_half last=”no”][button color=”green” link=”apt://marathon” target=””]Install Marathon[/button]

[button color=”green” link=”apt://marathon2″ target=””]Install Marathon 2[/button]

[button color=”green” link=”apt://marathon-infinity” target=””]Install Marathon Infinity[/button][/one_half]

[one_half last=”yes”][/one_half]

Or, you could do it the super easy way.

sudo apt-get install marathon*

About Dean Howell

Aside from being a huge Sega fan, Dean is an LPIC certified Linux professional with over a decade experience. In addition to spending his free time burning through the classics from Sega and evangelizing open source, he's also the editor-in-cheif of The Powerbase.
  • racineandy

    There isn’t a software package called “marathon-infinity” in your current software sources

    • Dean Howell

      You must first add the repository. It’s step 1.

  • Bobbo

    Don’t forget to….
    sudo apt-get update
    ….. after adding the repository, or you won’t get anywhere.

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  • Alain O’Dea

    Works like a charm. I have tried several times previously to do this by compiling manually and it always ends in tears. This time I got it to run from a compile, but the buttons are missing from the main screen dialogs which makes keyboard config etc impossible.

    The versions installed using your instructions work seamlessly and even have the added polish of desktop icons. They show up in Unity’s search too which is a huge plus when I want a quick escape from whatever frustrating programming problem I have decided to tackle today :)

  • Acharn0

    It appears the repo has been down since at least 9 December 2012. At least that’s the latest entry on Says they went down due to power failure and hardware failure. For the work-around, see That worked beautifully. You should remove the repo from Software Sources before you install the mirrors, though. It’s a little confusing about that. And you apparently need to install the two ppa entries. Anyway, that’s what I did and it worked and I’ve been grying to get this installed for four months now.

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