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Apparently now a Quality of Life Update means adding a launcher to existing games and breaking them, if you're 2K that is.

Just recently BioShock Remastered 1 & 2, plus BioShock Infinite all had this "Quality of Life Update". Expecting some sort of bug-fix and polishing that the name implies, it was nothing of the sort. Instead, the patch notes for all three simply state:

This week's update features various quality-of-life improvements, including:

  • Account linking option added in-game
  • The addition of a new Launcher which includes a Store to purchase new content

For BioShock Infinite I can confirm the update breaks launching the older Native Linux port from Virtual Programming. Not great for those of you sticking to Native versions and paid for that.

Looking over various reports, many people are mentioning that the launcher update has broken all three for them on Steam Deck. Confusing though, as testing all three across desktop Linux and Steam Deck and all three worked out of the box for me with Proton 7.0-4 and no other changes and I wasn't even shown a launcher on Steam Deck. All good, until I tried running them again on desktop and sometimes the launcher just doesn't show up so they don't run. Frustrating.

You can see my video guide on how to switch between Proton versions or a Native Linux build if it exists.

Infinite was noted to be Unsupported on Steam Deck anyway, but forcing Proton 7 makes it work in my testing.

As for BioShock Remastered 1 & 2, neither of them had a Native Linux version so players on desktop Linux and Steam Deck were using Proton. The problem here is that both had been through Deck Verified with the first being "Playable" and the second being "Verified".

Thankfully, the community has stepped in to provide multiple workarounds for these games if the launcher has broken them for you. If you add these as a launch option (under Properties for each game) it should work for all titles across desktop Linux and Steam Deck to skip the launcher and I've tested them personally working:

BioShock Remastered 1:

bash -c 'exec "${@/2KLauncher\/LauncherPatcher.exe/Build\/Final\/BioshockHD.exe}"' -- %command% -nointro

BioShock Remastered 2:

bash -c 'exec "${@/2KLauncher\/LauncherPatcher.exe/Build\/Final\/Bioshock2HD.exe}"' -- %command% -nointro

BioShock Infinite:

bash -c 'exec "${@/2KLauncher\/LauncherPatcher.exe/Binaries\/Win32\/BioShockInfinite.exe}"' -- %command% -nointro

There's been a lot of unhappy gamers on Windows too, so 2K have a bit of a storm brewing with all three titles getting negative reviews on Steam. Hopefully they will learn from this. It's just another reminder of the problem with launchers and publishers just stuffing them into games with no real benefit to users.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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53 comments
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ridge 5 Sep
Yikes :S Don't know if it's only the Steam version that suffered this fate, but still glad I trusted my gut and downloaded all the GOG installers for my copies of the BioShock games onto my network storage.
Corben 5 Sep
They did it already with The Quarry. And on the first launch on Deck, it wouldn't start, though on the second launch. But it induced quite some stutter and jitter to the frame rate. The game works much smoother and better without the launcher using the same method to override the executable ran by Steam + Proton.
You got it all wrong, "Quality of Life" in this future context means to improve the life of 2K Games, and not you the product.

In America, people are products & corporations are people.

2K just became 0.5K in my book.
Brisse 5 Sep
More like Ruined Quality of Life.
QuoteHopefully they will learn from this. It's just another reminder of the problem with launchers and publishers just stuffing them into games with no real benefit to users.
HA!

Just look at the trash they release every year with the WWE name on it..... Dont hold your breath hoping for them to learn anything...... Best way to teach them a lesson is to keep your money in your wallet......
I finally beat BioShock 1 a couple of months ago (OMG, that took how many years!?) but I enjoyed Infinite so much I'd likely go for a fourth playthrough—good to know this workaround for 2K's bullshit.
scaine 5 Sep
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I've never once, ever, in over 1100 games, experienced a launcher which improved a game experience. I don't even read the text they inevitable try to force down your throat - there's a "Play" button and I press it, rolling my eyes.

All launcher adds to the gaming experience is:
1. Longer load time
2. One extra button to press before you're playing (at least, since they often try to get you to create an account for additional milking)
3. Increased likelihood that the game will break entirely, especially for Linux players, or Big Picture players.

Absolutely trash. And for a company to pass a launcher off as a quality of life improvement is disingenuous bullshit.
Corben 5 Sep
Quoting: scaineI've never once, ever, in over 1100 games, experienced a launcher which improved a game experience. I don't even read the text they inevitable try to force down your throat - there's a "Play" button and I press it, rolling my eyes.
Only launcher I can live with is the Elite Dangerous launcher. I'd prefer not to have it either, as it also just adds an annoying layer, but it has at least some benefits: It shows current server status, and it allows me to switch between Horzions and Odyssey while having both installed. But this one is the exception.
mphuZ 5 Sep
No one promised that the "quality of life" would change for the better
Brisse 5 Sep
Quoting: Corben
Quoting: scaineI've never once, ever, in over 1100 games, experienced a launcher which improved a game experience. I don't even read the text they inevitable try to force down your throat - there's a "Play" button and I press it, rolling my eyes.
Only launcher I can live with is the Elite Dangerous launcher. I'd prefer not to have it either, as it also just adds an annoying layer, but it has at least some benefits: It shows current server status, and it allows me to switch between Horzions and Odyssey while having both installed. But this one is the exception.

The Arma 3 launcher isn't too bad I think. I played that game since early access so I remember it didn't always have a launcher, but they added one eventually, not to push ads about their other games or anything, but to manage mods, launch options (there are a lot!) and to provide news and insight on the ongoing development and state of the game itself.

With that said, most launchers are totally unnecessary and just a tacked on annoyance. The exceptions are very few, but they do exist.
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