With Valve releasing their Linux-based Steam Deck in time for the Christmas season, it has people asking the question, will this be the year of the Linux take over?
Realistically Valve has some hurdles to overcome before that even enters the realm of an actual question. Currently, many PC gamer’s favorite games will not work on Linux because the companies that develop the Anti-cheat software for those games do not have a version compatible with any Linux version.
Valve, the developers of Steam, and its compatibility layer ‘Proton’ have come a long way in the last few years, and much of your Steam library will run on Linux with a few exceptions, like games that use the pesky anti-cheat software. But what if Valve was working with those anti-cheat developers? That would be incredible, right? That is EXACTLY what is happening! Valve is working with BattlEye and Easy Anti-Cheat to get support before launch.
That, however, isn’t Steam’s only hurdle. Some games that are DirectX12 only, for example, do not currently work with Steams Proton or with wine-staging. One recent example is Assassin’s Creed Valhalla which, to my knowledge, at the time of writing this, no amount of witchcraft will get the game to run on Linux. I have tried myself many times to get it to run on Pop!_OS, which is System76’s Ubuntu-based OS, with no success.
So is Linux the future of gaming on PC?? Not likely, not with Microsoft’s stranglehold on the desktop market. The conversations have started, which is the first step, and I believe there’s a lot of people sitting on the sidelines, waiting and hoping that Steam can get all their favorite games running on Linux so they can make the switch to Linux. I, for one, am very invested, as I made the switch to Linux a couple of years ago, and I have no interest in going back to Windows. I would love to one day be able to play Battlefield on Linux. That alone would be a success in my book.