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It's only a matter of time before more and more EA published games move over to EA Anti-Cheat, and now Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 is set to get it.

Currently rated as Playable on Steam Deck and Gold on ProtonDB, an update planned for March 2024 will entirely break it on Steam Deck and Desktop Linux. Announced on the EA website, they said they've "identified an issue affecting our Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 PC players" and so "to create a safe and fair experience for all players, we will be rolling out an update in March 2024 that will transition PVZGW2 for PC over to EA Anticheat".

In the post they clearly say "With this update, we will be ending support for Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 for PC on Windows 7, 8, 8.1 operating systems. Additionally, Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 will not run on the native Steam OS for Steamdeck with this update."

So players on Steam Deck / Linux will be left with a broken game. Concerning for many reasons, because once again it shows developers can and will just break their games on certain platforms - even when put through Steam Deck Verified by Valve, it's not a guarantee that the games will continue working unless the developers support the platforms directly.

EA Anti-Cheat is the cause of other games not working too including EA SPORTS FC 24. How long before they include it in other games, like Apex Legends, which is currently Steam Deck Verified?

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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QuoteSo players on Steam Deck / Linux will be left with a broken game. Concerning for many reasons, because once again it shows developers can and will just break their games on certain platforms - even when put through Steam Deck Verified by Valve, it's not a guarantee that the games will continue working unless the developers support the platforms directly.

Indeed. But this is why so many of us for years have opposed DRM and tried to call attention to such tactics. But alas, most people don't listen, "it won't affect me.".
Termy Feb 15
Another case for "not buying anything from EA".
And another case for "a shame that steam still doesn't support choosing the version".
Szkodnix Feb 15
EA doesn't want our money?

Fine for me! Their wish is granted.
elmapul Feb 15
i played plants vs zombies 1 and loved it, then they destroyed plants vs zombies 2 with dlc or something like that.
then they made this spin off that... i havent played but dont seems like an good game, i mean, i liked plants vs zombies for the gameplay not the characters, so i dont see the point of playing with then in an completely different game, especially if that means they wont ever make an "plants vs zombies 3" but an sequel for the spin offs...
and as if that wasnt bad enough now they break the steamdeck compat with this...
Quoting: BlackBloodRum
QuoteSo players on Steam Deck / Linux will be left with a broken game. Concerning for many reasons, because once again it shows developers can and will just break their games on certain platforms - even when put through Steam Deck Verified by Valve, it's not a guarantee that the games will continue working unless the developers support the platforms directly.

Indeed. But this is why so many of us for years have opposed DRM and tried to call attention to such tactics. But alas, most people don't listen, "it won't affect me.".
You won't see me advocating for DRM, but Anti-Cheat isn't DRM. It does accomplish the same feat DRM is most effective at: preventing customers from using products.

But this game does include third-party DRM already according to the Steam page:

QuoteIncorporates 3rd-party DRM: EA on-line activation and Origin client software installation and background use required.
Does it even work now? There's a single-player mode. I imagine that would still be playable even with the anticheat..?

I don't know what I'm supposed to tell people. Buy your games on GOG and itch DRM-free, then use a Wine launcher? That rather defeats the ease-of-use of Proton. Steam automatically updates games, so even if it works now, there's no guarantee it'll work in the future unless you smuggle the game files out if it happens to not include Steam DRM (which it does not in this case). There's just no easy way to guarantee that what CAPCOM and EA are doing by bolting on DRM after the fact won't render your game unplayable in the future aside from...well, just not buying from Steam.

Hell, even having a Native Linux version at one time is not enough guarantee! Rocket League had one until a few years ago, and now Psyonix is talking about integrating Easy Anti-Cheat, which may or may not work in Proton.
jams3223 1 years Feb 15
I don't have any EA games in my collection. Ever since the PS3 era, their games haven't been as good as they used to be. Even if they do come out with something decent, it lacks innovation.
TheSHEEEP Feb 15
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Quoting: BlackBloodRumBut alas, most people don't listen, "it won't affect me.".
That's just the default when you purchase EA games. Linux or not, they have a tendency to shut things down or break it long after you purchased something. Not even getting into their egregious MTX shenanigans.

"Don't buy games from EA" is a very valid stance in today's gaming world.


Last edited by TheSHEEEP on 15 February 2024 at 2:21 pm UTC
Mohandevir Feb 15
Forgot about that... I should have held back from buying Jedi Survivor.

Will it suffer the same fate?
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Quoting: pleasereadthemanualYou won't see me advocating for DRM, but Anti-Cheat isn't DRM. It does accomplish the same feat DRM is most effective at: preventing customers from using products.

But this game does include third-party DRM already according to the Steam page:
You know what I don't like about you? You raise valid points that I can't logically dispute. You are correct, it's not technically DRM, but it is being used in much the same way a DRM would be to restrict peoples usage.

Quoting: pleasereadthemanual
QuoteIncorporates 3rd-party DRM: EA on-line activation and Origin client software installation and background use required.
Does it even work now? There's a single-player mode. I imagine that would still be playable even with the anticheat..?

I don't know what I'm supposed to tell people. Buy your games on GOG and itch DRM-free, then use a Wine launcher? That rather defeats the ease-of-use of Proton. Steam automatically updates games, so even if it works now, there's no guarantee it'll work in the future unless you smuggle the game files out if it happens to not include Steam DRM (which it does not in this case). There's just no easy way to guarantee that what CAPCOM and EA are doing by bolting on DRM after the fact won't render your game unplayable in the future aside from...well, just not buying from Steam.

Hell, even having a Native Linux version at one time is not enough guarantee! Rocket League had one until a few years ago, and now Psyonix is talking about integrating Easy Anti-Cheat, which may or may not work in Proton.
Well, this is the core of the problem. A lot of these anti-cheats are not limited to the online aspects (as one might hope) but rather apply to the title as a whole, so it's highly likely that this anti-cheat will stop the game working lock, stock, and barrel.

Your first suggestion is a valid option, but I agree it's not optimal. But perspective is quite key to this issue, Steams DRM is relatively minimal, in comparison to the likes of Denovo and such, which is a good thing. This means assuming you have a game which has been, or is going to be updated to include further DRM (or anti-cheat) and you're not worried about the online capacities you have four relatively simple options:

1) If you haven't yet updated the game:
- Copy the games data files to another directory. (e.g the files with the bin file). When Steam comes along and updates it, just copy back over the old files. Steam won't touch them again unless there's another game update or your verify game files. So keep that other backup safe.

2) If you've already updated the game or purchased it after:
- You can use the Steam console to download a specific depot version which will allow you to downgrade to the previous version, assuming the depot still exists. Copy it as above, just in-case.

3) If the above can't work for whatever reason and you have a GOG version, install the GOG version into a prefix, then copy the GOG's files into the Steam game directories files replacing them entirely.

4) Set sail.

Of course, all of these are less than ideal but, better than nowt.
Geppeto35 Feb 15
Apex is a very good game, in term of gameplay.
Lost in Random is quite a nice game also.

Just for Apex, I hope for a better consideration of linux users by this company.
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