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Valve sent the developer of Lutris a Steam Deck to help development

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News I'm sure many Linux fans will be happy to see — Valve sent over a Steam Deck to the developer of Lutris, the free and open source game manager.

One of the most popular applications for gaming on Linux, Lutris can help you manage games across various different sources including Humble Bundle, GOG, Steam, Epic Games, EA Origin, Ubisoft, Emulators and more. Currently though, getting it working on Steam Deck properly would involve using developer mode as it doesn't have a proper Flatpak package available from Flathub (the current one is not official and doesn't work well).

Having a Steam Deck to hand should help further development on the Flatpak, as well as hooking up anything special needed for the Steam Deck specifically.

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pageround Mar 14, 2022
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Thats some goodwill for Valve. I use lutris to install GOG games.
Beamboom Mar 14, 2022
Wow, that's.... Amazing, actually.
ryad Mar 14, 2022
Hate to sound like a fanboy... But Valve is doing (almost) everything right.
Nocifer Mar 14, 2022
They could have played it by the book, creating Proton for us and then using it to power the Steam Deck and reaping the monetary rewards, and it would have been enough, and certainly more than what many other, purely open source companies have done for Linux in their heyday.

But they actually are going all out and behaving like a real enthusiastic open source supporter, collaborating with independent open source developers, pushing out everything they develop as open source, and really investing in Linux instead of using it only as a convenient cash cow.

At this point I'm seriously considering changing my policy of buying my games on GOG first. I still prefer owning a game instead of renting it, but other than that there is nowadays zero incentive for me to not support Valve and at the same time enjoy the convenience of Proton (not that I don't, there's always Lutris, but still), all for the sake of a company that is stuck in the "free as in beer", Windows freeware mentality of the '00s and refuses to acknowledge that the world has moved on.

I know the article is about Valve and not GOG and I'm going a bit off-topic now, but damn, it's really sad how GOG has managed to go from Linux hero to zero in the span of a few years. And it's not even only about Linux, or about Valve rising up and taking the reins; it's more about GOG feeling like it's in a permanent maintenance mode - Galaxy 2.0, their forums, the community wishlist requests... there is ZERO investment in the platform.

This could all change in an instant if only there was somebody at the top willing and able to do it (like Gaben in Valve's case), but if you go by the sad state of affairs that was the Cyberpunk 2077 launch last year (yes, I'm treating GOG and CDPR as a single entity, let's not kid ourselves) I feel like they may be too far gone by this point. A shame, because other than the overpromised/half-baked features and the slew of bugs and performance issues that plagued it at launch, Cyberpunk 2077 as a game really, really rocks - just as GOG as a concept also really, really rocks. In both cases, it all reeks of extremely bad management.
slaapliedje Mar 14, 2022
Nice. I mean really if there were a 'integrate other game stores within the Deck interface so you get the benefits of the ease of use of Proton' would be slightly better, but if there is an easy way to flip between Lutris and Steam, that's also be great!

This kind of goes with the idea that Gabe just wants a great gaming hardware device, rather than 'we want a piece of hardware that is tied to Steam for more $$$.'

Was just listening to a video talking about SteamOS and mentioning that it isn't all open source. And then he went on to say that other vendors could potentially use it to make competitors. Well the most important parts ARE open source, pretty much it's just Steam itself that isn't. So yeah, Asus, Alienware, etc could all try and make a competing device. Good luck to them. But the thing he didn't point out that the Stem Deck has over others is the custom controls. All the competitors so far just have standard xbox controls. I'm hoping a Steam Controller 2 comes out and that becomes the standard controller for PC gaming, and the features from it become a standard thing. We've been stuck on the standard of a xbox 360 for WAY too long.
seven Mar 14, 2022
pleasereadthemanual Mar 14, 2022
Quoting: GuestWhat's Valve's endgame here?
Seems pretty obvious. Make the Steam Deck a more attractive device by improving the ability to play games on the device outside of Steam, of which Lutris is currently the best way to do so. Given Valve's comments about not wanting exclusives and the nannying behavior from Microsoft that urged them to invest in GNU/Linux in the first place, it seems they don't want to be hypocritical and instead make it easy for users to leave Valve's own service, Steam, if they need to. The hope, I'm sure, is that it will make the Steam Deck a more attractive device to continue using in the long run and users will opt to stay with it out of affection for the experience outside of Steam, too.

When Amazon manufacturers devices like the Amazon Swindle, Echo, Firestick, Astro, Ring and whatever else, their primary concern is also getting people hooked on the Amazon ecosystem. Ebooks aren't that different from games on Steam, as whether the book is DRM-encumbered is up to the individual publisher and no one else (and in fact Amazon recommends that you don't enable DRM in the KDP publishing screen). But where Amazon has made the decision to make their GNU/Linux devices limiting for end users to improve the customer's experience with Amazon products, Valve has decided to give users better options to explore what you can really do with the device, even if that means the customer leaves Steam for a time. It doesn't even have a locked bootloader. Helping to improve Lutris just means the user can have a better experience.

Either approach will work well for different people. iOS offers a stable and consistent experience because Apple controls everything, and I'm told that Android offers a more powerful and featureful experience because the user is provided more options.
Purple Library Guy Mar 14, 2022
Quoting: pleasereadthemanual
Quoting: GuestWhat's Valve's endgame here?
Seems pretty obvious. Make the Steam Deck a more attractive device by improving the ability to play games on the device outside of Steam
Yeah, as games go it's really not an "end" thing. More of a "right now" game.
elmapul Mar 15, 2022
Quoting: slaapliedjeThis kind of goes with the idea that Gabe just wants a great gaming hardware device, rather than 'we want a piece of hardware that is tied to Steam for more $$$.'

its a win win situation for him.
either other stores support linux/work on it flawless, or every steam deck owner will purchase more games on steam and less in other stores.

in the first case he get ride of windows dependence, in the second case he make tons of money.
elmapul Mar 15, 2022
Quoting: slaapliedje. So yeah, Asus, Alienware, etc could all try and make a competing device

well, alienware already tried and burned thenselves in the fist steam machines atempt, didnt they?
not to mention they would have a huge disadvantage in terms of pricing, steam deck is most likely sold at loss to make money in the games.

another thing to consider, if others try to do their own machines, will they ship it with steamOS or windows?
steamOS is free, so they will have trouble to make their prices competitive if they dont use it, but valve has the diadvantage that they have to invest into improving proton/steamOS as well as testing all the games, while other vedors dont have to.
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