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Recently we had announcements from both Easy Anti-Cheat and BattlEye in regards to Linux, specifically for the Steam Play Proton compatibility layer and the Steam Deck and now BattlEye are making it easier. While developers who produce native Linux games can just use the native versions of both anti-cheats, the situation is different for Proton because it's running the Windows version.

The problem with the previous announcements was that developers had to opt into it manually, with EAC specifically explaining that developers had to upgrade to a new SDK. Not something that's actually quick and easy, since a lot of games need to go through many hands to test and approve it, especially for bigger developers.

Valve has now announced that at least for BattlEye, the experience for developers is a lot easier. Devs only need to reach out to BattlEye to have Proton support turned on. They say that "No additional work is required by the developer besides that communication". This is good news, as it's one less hurdle to overcome but it does still need developers to go and at least do that, although a quick email is a bigger incentive than upgrading some of the tech used that's for sure. On Twitter, Valve developer Pierre-Loup Griffais mentioned Valve had been working with BattlEye on this for "a long while".

Additionally both Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord and ARK: Survival Evolved have already enabled this, and Valve said they "expect others to follow soon". Note: while ARK has a native Linux version, Studio Wildcard have almost never actually supported it, the port is awful. Hopefully then we will see PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS enable it, that sure would be incredible to see fully running on Linux and then the Steam Deck when it releases.

When you go to install a game that uses BattlEye, like those noted above, Steam should then also be prompted to install the new "Proton BattlEye Runtime". If not, make sure to search your Steam Library and install it manually.

Going along with this there's a new Proton Experimental update for November to enable this newer BattlEye support, plus also fixing a regression with the 2K launcher. To use this you need both Proton Experimental and the Steam Client Beta. Using Proton Experimental is easy, as shown below:

Make sure it's installed by searching for it in your Steam Library, then select it from the Compatibility menu in the Properties section of a game. See our quick video below:

For an explainer in text form:

  1. Search for Proton Experimental and install if not already.
  2. Right click any game on Steam and go to Properties.
  3. Select the Compatibility menu on the right side.
  4. Ensure the "Force the use of a specific Steam Play compatibility tool" is ticked.
  5. From the dropdown box that appears select Proton Experimental.
Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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25 comments
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Spyker 6 Nov
This is huge. A big milestone for Linux gaming :)
scaine 6 Nov
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C'mon Destiny 2... you can do it!
lectrode 6 Nov
Really hoping for Z1 Battle Royal, which I haven't played since switching exclusively to linux back when the game was still called H1Z1
So I guess the bar is lower now. We'll be finding out who can't be bothered to just send an email.

I had a look at the list of games that use BattlEye and it's not as many as EAC, and most not really a big loss, but there are a few in there that I think people would like to be able to play.
Ehvis 6 Nov
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The tweet makes it sound like the BattlEye support is tied to the Steam client. If that's the case, I'm sure we'll have a couple of unhappy people.
mirv 6 Nov
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Quoting: EhvisThe tweet makes it sound like the BattlEye support is tied to the Steam client. If that's the case, I'm sure we'll have a couple of unhappy people.

It does sound that way, and would like more information myself on the matter. At least it doesn't need a kernel module.

My guess is that that authentication is routed through Steam and BattlEye will basically pattern match on that (I guess?) and verify differently.
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Come on, give me Arma 3...
fagnerln 6 Nov
I'm curious to see how efficient those AC will be, I mean, as it's not as lower level in comparison to the Windows. It will be really bad if with this move, a lot of new cheaters start using it.
chelobaka 6 Nov
Quoting: fagnerlnI'm curious to see how efficient those AC will be, I mean, as it's not as lower level in comparison to the Windows. It will be really bad if with this move, a lot of new cheaters start using it.

If it would be the case Valve may introduce AC kernel modules for Deck since they completely control the environment.
Liam Dawe 6 Nov
Quoting: EhvisThe tweet makes it sound like the BattlEye support is tied to the Steam client. If that's the case, I'm sure we'll have a couple of unhappy people.
Yes, there is a new Proton BattlEye Runtime that gets installed. Added a note to the article.
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