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Update 27/06/19: Steam Play Proton 4.2-9 was released as well, to fix multiplayer issues with "Mordhau, SOULCALIBUR VI, and others with problems from 4.2-8".

Original Article:

Steam Play has been updated today reaching 4.2-8 along with DXVK also seeing an update to 1.2.3, let's take a look.

As a quick refresher: Steam Play is the system built into the Steam Client on Linux, that allows you to play games meant for Windows. As for DXVK, it translates D3D11 and D3D10 into Vulkan for use with Wine and it's part of Steam Play (but it can of course be used with Wine directly).

Firstly, the Steam Play update includes these changes:

  • Fixes for games which embed web browsers using the Steam client. For example, Football Manager 2019.
  • Fix an issue with Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night and other titles crashing with an error dialog on exit.
  • Upgrade wine-mono to 4.9.0, which includes winforms support. This may help some game launchers.
  • Various window management and alt-tab fixes.
  • Fix for controllers losing force feedback when removed and re-added.

Full changelog found here as always.

As for DXVK, here's what's new there:

  • Fixed bug that would cause some Unreal Engine 4 games to show error messages upon exit (PR #1104)
  • Fixed regression which would break texture loading in World of Warships and potentially other games (#1096)
  • More minor CPU overhead optimizations
  • Implemented timestamp disjoint queries properly to make measuring time on the GPU more robust.
  • Improved memory allocation behaviour under memory pressure. This may in some situations improve performance on lower-end Nvidia GPUs.
  • Improved staging buffer allocation behaviour to limit the amount of memory that is permanently reserved for resource uploads.

I'm honestly amazed that even more performance is being squeezed out of DXVK. It's already very impressive and every optimization, even a minor one, brings us that little bit closer to perfection.

Pretty fun to see them both updated on the same day, quite unexpected but a nice surprise to be sure.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Steam Play, Wine
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29 comments
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Comandante Ñoñardo 27 Jun, 2019
As I said before: This work justify the 30% cut.
We will never see a feature like this from EPIC, Ubisoft or EA.
kuhpunkt 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: Comandante ÑoñardoAs I said before: This work justify the 30% cut.
We will never see a feature like this from EPIC, Ubisoft or EA.

*20-30% cut
cprn 27 Jun, 2019
I didn't try that for a while but does any of you have issue of Kingdom Come not starting at all? I last played it 8 months ago, worked flawlessly. And yeah, I did link all the DLLs from Win64Shared to Win64 so it's not that. I don't even remember how to debug this (it's the only game I ever run with Steam Play)! Help?
Nocifer 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: gradyvuckovic1. PRAISE LORD GABEN AND LORD PHILIP!

2.

Quoting: BeamboomI'm slowly gliding over to the conclusion that Steam Play probably is the solution for gaming on Linux.

Don't get me wrong, I will always be eager to support native binaries, but let's face it: The companies/individuals who work on porting to Linux are way too few and the interest at the game developers too low.

Absolutely. The way I see it, the battle strategy is thus:
Gamers can't game on Linux because there's no games?
Game devs won't port to Linux because there's no gamers?
Fix: Bring the games to Linux, so the gamers can come, then the game devs will follow.

"How do we know this won't kill native games?"

Here's my logic: Why doesn't Linux get more games?

Is it hard to port a game to Linux? No, not now, not with engines like UE4, Unity, Godot, or even the in house engines the likes Ubisoft and EA use, as their software is designed to be flexible so they can easily port to new game consoles and new platforms. We've seen that with Stadia.

Bringing a game to Linux doesn't mean porting it, it means supporting it, and there in lies the issue.

Support is more or less a fixed cost, despite how many customers you have. Support includes testing, checking compatibility, running tests on multiple hardware configurations, providing help staff, etc. That's not happening right now because "not enough Linux gamers to justify that cost".

Proton doesn't just offer porting, it also offers support, kinda. Valve takes the heat of support and supplies the commitment to porting (updating Proton), the game developer just gets sales.

The way I see it, the more people who use Linux for gaming, the more Linux gamers there are, the larger the potential marketplace gets. The more sales those game developers are going to get.

Sure, at first, for some game devs they will weigh up that market and say "Still not worth it to do a native port". But that revenue from Linux sales won't go unnoticed, and eventually it WILL make management of some game developers ask the question, "What are we doing to ensure we're compatible with Proton for those extra sales?".

Then we'll go through a period of time, where game devs are willing to 'half commit' to Linux, putting minimal effort into making their games run via Proton as long as that doesn't represent a large commitment, to enjoy some additional sales. That will result in many games working via Proton that currently don't, which will only increase the number of people who game on Linux.

So at what point does Proton cease to become relevant and suddenly get replaced with native games?

Hypothetically if Linux had 90% of the marketshare right now, would game developers continue letting gamers play their games via Proton? No.

Eventually, Proton ceases to become useful as a compatibility solution with minimal cost, and instead becomes a dependency burden. Just look at the number of times an update to Proton has caused a regression, if you become dependent on Proton, then you're subject to those regressions out of your control.

Supporting a game means testing, ensuring compatibility, performance, etc. Not because you want to, but because you want sales from your customers, and you want the game to run on their systems reliably, because you want those customers to tell their friends to buy the game.

Proton is an extra dependency, extra layer of complexity, an extra drag on performance, etc. When the costs of ensuring high quality Proton compatibility become larger than the cost of just doing a native port, then in my opinion it becomes cheaper and simpler to just do a native port and ensure a high quality result, with no Proton dependency to worry about.

Basically what I'm saying is, I think if Linux gaming gets to say, 10% of the marketshare, Proton will begin to naturally fade out and become replaced with natives anyway. And it will have a heroes funeral.

Right, that's one of the best and most succinct comments I 've read in a long time. Just wanted to get it out of my chest.

Now, my own 2 cents: Valve's Proton incentive is much like inversion of control in software development. Instead of us sitting around twiddling our thumbs and waiting for when the game developers will finally get off their high horses and start porting their games to Linux (which could happen at any point in time between tomorrow and the death of our Universe), we instead take matters into our own hands and make it so that whenever a game is released for Windows, it is "automatically" (in the sense that the developer is not involved in the process) made to also work with Linux. So even if the developers won't give a damn about us, Linux still gets to (...eventually) claim that it is a valid gaming platform able to run modern AAA games, which will bring in more gamers and eventually more proper, native games. So Proton is essentially a very good solution to bypass the "chicken and egg" problem of no gamers = no games but no games = no gamers.

P.S. - By "us" I of course mean the fine people working on Proton, Wine and DXVK (and associated projects like D9VK etc).
kaiman 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: cprnI didn't try that for a while but does any of you have issue of Kingdom Come not starting at all? I last played it 8 months ago, worked flawlessly. And yeah, I did link all the DLLs from Win64Shared to Win64 so it's not that. I don't even remember how to debug this (it's the only game I ever run with Steam Play)! Help?
I'm currently playing the GOG version with wine 4.11 and (as of yesterday) DXVK 1.2.3. That one did not even require copying any of the DLLs. It just worked. So I would assume the game runs with current Proton as well. Have you tried verifying the installation?

Otherwise, you could look at the DXVK logs in the game directory or enable proton logging if those are inconclusive.
cprn 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: kaimanHave you tried verifying the installation?
Yup. Didn't do anything.

Quoting: kaimanOtherwise, you could look at the DXVK logs in the game directory or enable proton logging if those are inconclusive.

The thing is there are no new logs or files changed in the game directory after I try to start it from Steam client or command line. There's nothing. And I have the PROTON_LOG=1 %command% in the game's launch parameters but there's still no steam-379430.log in my $HOME... :(

Actually, I tried with 3.16-9 Beta and it works (didn't have to copy DLLs), game runs (freaking slow, like a half of the performance I used to have, but works) and the log is generated then, complaining about overlay lib not loading (but it still works). After switching back to 4.2-8 it stopped working again.

Edit: You know what? I think it's the prefix installation. When I switch Proton version it runs the installation scripts, installs VC Windows patches and DirectX. But for 4.2-8 it doesn't. How do I force run the installation scripts without removing/redownloading the whole game?


Last edited by cprn on 27 June 2019 at 5:41 pm UTC
x_wing 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: cprn
Quoting: kaimanHave you tried verifying the installation?
Yup. Didn't do anything.

Quoting: kaimanOtherwise, you could look at the DXVK logs in the game directory or enable proton logging if those are inconclusive.

The thing is there are no new logs or files changed in the game directory after I try to start it from Steam client or command line. There's nothing. And I have the PROTON_LOG=1 %command% in the game's launch parameters but there's still no steam-379430.log in my $HOME... :(

Actually, I tried with 3.16-9 Beta and it works (didn't have to copy DLLs), game runs (freaking slow, like a half of the performance I used to have, but works) and the log is generated then, complaining about overlay lib not loading (but it still works). After switching back to 4.2-8 it stopped working again.

Edit: You know what? I think it's the prefix installation. When I switch Proton version it runs the installation scripts, installs VC Windows patches and DirectX. But for 4.2-8 it doesn't. How do I force run the installation scripts without removing/redownloading the whole game?

Try deleting the proton prefix for the game.
cprn 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: x_wing[...] Try deleting the proton prefix for the game.

Yeah, I'm a moron. After few minutes of trying to find the prefix directory and failing greatly I decided to just re-download that 46 gigs, why not, I have fast intertubes, right? So I selected the game, dropped "uninstall" and confirmed without noticing my sticky shift made me select half of the library...

Why is there no "cancel" button while accidentally uninstalling 97 games, Valve!?

Why???
Whitewolfe80 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: Solitary
Quoting: Whitewolfe80... I know people love to white knight them but no the track record of cancelling projects and features that they have invested heavily in the past when the demand was not as expected. I hope am just being negative and valve never turn off the money tap. However it must be working as they keep paying for development mmm I wonder if we could get hold of the steam play sales for the top ten steam games (excluding battle eye games)

I am not sure what kind of track record you are talking about, that kind of behavior is typical to Google... I am not aware of project that would eat lot of money and got canned (except rushed Steam machines, but that probably didnt cost that much).

But to be honest, I don't think they can stop supporting Linux at this point... Linux as gaming platform is the "future", because of the same reason as it is on servers and in other cases. Sure, it might not always be direct support, like Google Stadia is basically walling off the user from it. But that's where Valve will beat Stadia, because you still have to buy games on Stadia, so yet another library and one that you cant even play locally. Steam offers local play and once streaming service goes live you will be able to stream (almost?) any game from your massive library... no need to port thanks to Steam Play or already native games. If they offer some basic streaming for free like Stadia (fee taken from the 30% cut) then it's no brainer. So no, they really can't stop supporting Linux as it is their competetive edge and future-proofing.

Well its clearly not just me as Valve felt the need to come out and publically state they are fully committed to linux, I have worked at enough large companies for that statement to worry me. If everything was fine you wouldnt need to keep saying something it would be a given yeah why wouldnt it be. Same sort of feeling a soccer manager gets when the chairman gives you the full confidence line in the press. Like I said maybe its just me be cynical but not sure i have have the same rosey picture as most, I hope am wrong.
Purple Library Guy 27 Jun, 2019
Quoting: cprn
Quoting: x_wing[...] Try deleting the proton prefix for the game.

Yeah, I'm a moron. After few minutes of trying to find the prefix directory and failing greatly I decided to just re-download that 46 gigs, why not, I have fast intertubes, right? So I selected the game, dropped "uninstall" and confirmed without noticing my sticky shift made me select half of the library...

Why is there no "cancel" button while accidentally uninstalling 97 games, Valve!?

Why???
Ouch.
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