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:
- Search for Proton Experimental and install if not already.
- Right click any game on Steam and go to Properties.
- Select the Compatibility menu on the right side.
- Ensure the "Force the use of a specific Steam Play compatibility tool" is ticked.
- From the dropdown box that appears select Proton Experimental.