Discord is the king of communication with gaming. Even on Linux, most people use it. It’s no secret why! The app provides users with unlimited free personal servers, unlimited chat channels, voice channels, multimedia support, and more!
While Discord is getting all the love as everyone’s favorite gaming chat app, it’s not the only one out there. There are dozens of other chat clients out there to use while gaming on Linux. Here are the best Discord alternatives for Linux gamers.
Riot is an open-source instant messaging application generally targeted at those looking to replace Slack with an open-source tool. Still, even though it’s not focused on gaming, it’s a reliable candidate for a Discord replacement.
One of the strongest reasons to consider Riot is that it supports multiple channels or “rooms.” These rooms are text channels where users can talk, which is very similar to Discord’s channel system. Additionally, Riot supports voice and video conferencing, so you’ll be able to chat with your friends while you play your favorite video games.
Notable Features – Riot
- Riot has a similar channel system to Discord.
- Riot supports both voice and video calls like Discord does.
- Users can join multiple Riot IM instances, much like users can join multiple Discord servers.
- Has a companion mobile app for Android and iOS, which Discord also offers.
- Riot lets users IM directly from the web browser, ensuring it works on even obscure platforms.
Riot is available to Linux users as a Snap package, a Flatpak package, as well as other downloadable binary packages. Head to their official website to get your copy of the Riot app on Linux.
Need help getting Riot working? Head over to our guide on Riot for Linux. It goes in-depth on how to install the software on Linux.
When Discord came onto the Linux scene, Steam wasn’t doing very well in the gamer-communication area. Fact is, Valve has coasted on the same Steam chat features for years, and it needed a lot of work for users to come back from Discord.
While it’s hard to see people ditching Discord as their primary way of gaming communication, the people behind Steam have done quite a lot to improve group communication, by introducing better group voice chat, and improved Steam gaming groups which have similar features to Discord. So, if you’re looking for a solid Discord alternative, do give Steam another shot!
Notable Features -Steam
- Steam group features allow for multiple gamers to join the same voice call, much like Discord voice channels do.
- Steam group chat users can share files, much like on Discord.
- Users can create multiple voice channels in Steam, or call individual friends privately through the Steam friend system.
- Much like Discord’s game store, Steam lets users buy and play their favorite PC games.
- Steam supports Linux, PC, and Mac, like Discord, which means it’s possible to chat with friends on other platforms.
Steam is available for download on a myriad of Linux distributions. For Ubuntu and Debian users, there’s a button on the Steam website that will grab the latest release of the app. For other distributions, check your software repository for “steam,” or download a package from the Steam Pkgs.org page.
Many users are on Discord purely for the stellar voice chat it provided while gaming. However, many in the Linux community have issues with the app, as it’s not open source, and is run by a private company.
If you’re someone who loves to play video games on Linux with friends but has issues with Discord, Mumble may be just the alternative for you. It’s an open-source voice chat app with comparable features to Discord, such as an in-game chat overlay, text-chat, etc.
Notable Features – Mumble
- Mumble is free and open-source, so there is no charge to use it.
- Mumble supports multiple voice channels, so gamers can chat in many different voice channels, similar to how Discord servers handle voice chat.
- Mumble has a minimal text chat which can be used to communicate, aside from voice.
- Users can host their Mumble server, and control all audio settings themselves, which is similar to how Discord lets users control settings in servers.
Mumble is an open-source application and the leading alternative to TeamSpeak. It is because it’s an open alternative to TeamSpeak that many Linux distributions have embraced it and carry it in their software repositories. To install it, open up a terminal, and search for “Mumble.” Or, if you’re lost, follow our tutorial on how to set up Mumble on Linux. Be sure to also check out how to host your own server too!
Telegram is a private, encrypted chat client for Linux, Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and the web. It’s not designed for gaming, but despite this, it’s a decent replacement for Discord. Why? It supports group chat, which is one of the most significant selling points for Discord. Secondly, it has voice call support, and video chat is on the way as well.
This app shouldn’t be your first choice if you’re thinking of ditching Discord. That said, it does offer up some similar features, and in a pinch, it can be great to use as a gaming communication tool on Linux.
Notable Features – Telegram
- Telegram supports voice calling from mobile as well as the desktop client.
- Telegram allows users to create groups and even public channels where hundreds of users can chat and communicate.
- Telegram is cross-platform and works on everything from the web via web-app, to Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS, Android, etc.
The Telegram chat client is available in most Linux distribution’s software sources, as the client is open source. However, not every Linux OS carries it. Thankfully, users can also download it from the Snap Store, Flatpak, and the developers also provide a generic Linux binary on their website.
Are you having trouble getting Telegram working on Linux? Check out our guide on how to install Telegram on Linux!
In this list, we went over 4 Discord alternatives to use on Linux. What do you think of them? What is your favorite Discord alternative? Let us know in the comment section below.