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Forspoken needs desktop Linux to spoof being a Steam Deck to work

By - | Views: 31,242

Update 25/01/23: Valve are now forcing the spoofing of a Steam Deck server-side, so the workaround is no longer needed.


In a case of what the heck? Square Enix and Luminous Productions just released Forspoken, which works on Steam Deck but it won't run on desktop Linux without spoofing it being a Steam Deck. One of those moments where I had to blink a good few times, wipe my glasses and let out a big sigh. 

To run it on desktop Linux you can either load launch Steam directly with "-steamdeck" or by setting "SteamDeck=1 %command%" as a launch option for the game itself. No this isn't a joke. It's not entirely clear why but I'm not going to say the developer or publisher actively chose to block Linux desktop, it's more likely they just didn't think about what they were doing outside of letting it run on Steam Deck specifically (which runs SteamOS Linux).

Without that workaround, launching it on desktop Linux gives you this:


It "didn't be installed" on my Windows Linux.

But when launching with the workaround, well it's a different story. 

Doesn't exactly seem very stable either, it would completely crash if I picked a different overall graphics preset. Some individual graphics settings made it completely crash too. I also couldn't get it to go above 30FPS, with Vsync off and a limit set to 120FPS it just wanted to stay at 30FPS (and plenty below that).

Looks like a rough launch with it being Mixed on Steam so far and plenty of critic reviews have not been particularly kind on it either. At £64.99 it just doesn't seem worth the price.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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33 comments
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>Forspoken needs desktop Linux to spoof being a Steam Deck to work
>It "didn't be installed" on my Windows Linux.

It do be like that sometimes my bro.

The restriction is... weird, and normally I would say "I'll take it," but all the reviews I saw says the game is mediocre with some issues and the PC req is being so high means that, while I appreciate it being possible to run in Linux in general, I don't want it, thanks.
jordicoma 25 Jan
Quoting: tohurSteamDeck=1 only applies if you are using a Nvidia GPU I think as my game launches just fine without it. also highly suggest using gamemode with gamemoderun %command% . I got this thing included with the GPU I bought over the summer so if you do not own the game yet I would wait TBH for a sale or after some updates because the game is poorly optimized on PC as it runs like crap on both Linux and Windows for me
I have a rx6600xt and yesterday I tried the demo. It doesn't launch.
I'm sure with this parameter it uses dx11 or a version with less features with dx12 (wine can emulate/adapt many dx12 features but not all).
It's not worth it 80€ for a game. For me I think 60€ it's the maximum for a AAA game.
We are on a recession plus inflation and they are increasing the price.
For me it's a pass even if it were a native game.
Hope they fix it for the next update. It's not complicated to make a function if(linux) then, else other.


Last edited by jordicoma on 25 January 2023 at 11:27 am UTC
einherjar 25 Jan
At least this hilarious thing, made me hear of that game.
Isn't that a good, cheap marketing ;-)
gabber 25 Jan
Let's hope I'm paranoid: in the back of my head the idea of Valve focusing steamdeck and leaving the desktop behind is starting to grow.
- Protondb is more like steamdeckdb now. Only showing "Deck Verified Games"
- Steam OS 3.0 not officially released
- some devs testing only on steamdeck (as is the case here)
soulsource 25 Jan
Quoting: Matombosounds like they normaly render with dx12 but have a buggy fallback for dx11 or vulkan in the engine. they saw that their default dx12 renderer didn't work on the SD but the fallback did. so they hacked in an if-case based on that env varble to chose the fallback. obviously not much thought went into it, otherwise they would have choosen something more semanticaly sensefull, like checking for wines self identifying env variables

just educated guesses
I investigated this approach for one of the games I am working on too. The fallback to DX11 in case of WINE, I mean. The performance impact was drastic, so I decided against this. With a bit of work (and a lot of help from the Steam Deck developer's forum) I managed to fix the game's issues with DX12 (at least on AMD hardware...), so now players on Proton get acceptable FPS together with correct graphics.
And as a free bonus, that work also fixed a general graphics bug that by sheer chance never surfaced on Windows (but could very much have appeared after the next GPU driver update).
robvv 25 Jan
Quoting: jordicomaI have a rx6600xt and yesterday I tried the demo. It doesn't lunch.

Maybe you could try offering it dinner?
Eike 25 Jan
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Quoting: gabberLet's hope I'm paranoid: in the back of my head the idea of Valve focusing steamdeck and leaving the desktop behind is starting to grow.
- Protondb is more like steamdeckdb now. Only showing "Deck Verified Games"

I don't know what you mean here...

https://www.protondb.com/search?q=time%20hack
Liam Dawe 25 Jan
Article updated.
Quoting: tohurSteamDeck=1 only applies if you are using a Nvidia GPU I think as my game launches just fine without it. also highly suggest using gamemode with gamemoderun %command% . I got this thing included with the GPU I bought over the summer so if you do not own the game yet I would wait TBH for a sale or after some updates because the game is poorly optimized on PC as it runs like crap on both Linux and Windows for me
No it needed it, and is now forced by Valve.
Liam Dawe 25 Jan
Quoting: gabber- Protondb is more like steamdeckdb now. Only showing "Deck Verified Games"
Just factually false.

Quoting: gabber- Steam OS 3.0 not officially released
Well, it's just not ready yet? They also need NVIDIA drivers to work better with Wayland and the New Big Picture Mode where it's currently just bad on it.
jordicoma 25 Jan
Quoting: robvv
Quoting: jordicomaI have a rx6600xt and yesterday I tried the demo. It doesn't lunch.

Maybe you could try offering it dinner?
Sorry, english is not my first language.
Probably I should try
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