7000 titles confirmed working out of the box on Proton? That’s all very fine, yes sir, but what if you don’t care about quantity? What if one considers ONLY the most desirable Top 50 games (based on popularity) out there, how good is Linux? That’s the real question, isn’t it ?
Well, I took a look very recently at the top 50 games on Steam with the highest number of concurrent players over the past 2 weeks.
And the verdict is…
|Counter-Strike: Global Offensive||Valve, Hidden Path Entertainment||Valve||935189||WML||Native|
|Valheim||Iron Gate AB||Coffee Stain Publishing||224934||WL||Native|
|PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS||KRAFTON, Inc.||KRAFTON, Inc.||187140||W||No Go|
|Apex Legends||Respawn Entertainment||Electronic Arts||135993||W||No Go|
|Rust||Facepunch Studios||Facepunch Studios||113780||WM||No Go|
|Grand Theft Auto V||Rockstar North||Rockstar Games||86330||W||Proton|
|Team Fortress 2||Valve||Valve||83162||WML||Native|
|Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege||Ubisoft Montreal||Ubisoft||65661||W||No Go|
|Rocket League||Psyonix LLC||Psyonix LLC||60503||W||Proton|
|ARK: Survival Evolved||Studio Wildcard, Instinct Games, Efecto Studios, Virtual Basement LLC||Studio Wildcard||57952||WML||Native|
|Destiny 2||Bungie||Bungie||49895||W||No Go|
|Warframe||Digital Extremes||Digital Extremes||43494||W||Proton Potential|
|Wallpaper Engine||Wallpaper Engine Team||Wallpaper Engine Team||40124||W||No Go|
|Dead by Daylight||Behaviour Interactive Inc.||Behaviour Interactive Inc.||38003||W||No Go|
|Black Desert Online||Pearl Abyss||Pearl Abyss||34723||W||No Go|
|War Thunder||Gaijin Entertainment||Gaijin Distribution KFT||33489||WML||Native|
|Garry's Mod||Facepunch Studios||Valve||31795||WML||Native|
|Path of Exile||Grinding Gear Games||Grinding Gear Games||31510||WM||Proton|
|World of Tanks Blitz||Wargaming Group Limited||Wargaming Group Limited||29874||WM||Proton|
|Euro Truck Simulator 2||SCS Software||SCS Software||29624||WML||Native|
|PAYDAY 2||OVERKILL - a Starbreeze Studio.||Starbreeze Publishing AB||27774||WL||Native|
|Unturned||Smartly Dressed Games||Smartly Dressed Games||24018||WML||Native|
|Brawlhalla||Blue Mammoth Games||Ubisoft||23052||WM||Proton|
|Monster Hunter: World||CAPCOM Co., Ltd.||CAPCOM Co., Ltd.||19720||W||Proton|
|Sid Meier's Civilization V||Firaxis Games, Aspyr (Mac), Aspyr (Linux)||2K, Aspyr (Mac), Aspyr (Linux)||19079||WML||Native|
|The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt||CD PROJEKT RED||CD PROJEKT RED||16352||W||Proton|
|Arma 3||Bohemia Interactive||Bohemia Interactive||16163||W||Proton|
|Cities: Skylines||Colossal Order Ltd.||Paradox Interactive||15995||WML||Native|
|SMITE||Titan Forge Games||Hi-Rez Studios||15379||W||No Go|
|Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord||TaleWorlds Entertainment||TaleWorlds Entertainment||14269||W||Proton Potential|
|Cyberpunk 2077||CD PROJEKT RED||CD PROJEKT RED||14087||W||Proton Potential|
|Dying Light||Techland||Techland Publishing||13773||WML||Native|
|Fallout 4||Bethesda Game Studios||Bethesda Softworks||13456||W||Proton Potential|
|Left 4 Dead 2||Valve||Valve||12951||WML||Native|
|Phasmophobia||Kinetic Games||Kinetic Games||12884||W||Proton|
|Paladins||Evil Mojo Games||Hi-Rez Studios||12250||W||No Go|
|Don't Starve Together||Klei Entertainment||Klei Entertainment||11176||WML||Native|
|Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout||Mediatonic||Devolver Digital||7368||W||No Go|
|World of Warships||Wargaming Group Limited||Wargaming Group Limited||7087||W||Proton|
|The Forest||Endnight Games Ltd||Endnight Games Ltd||6818||W||Proton|
|The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim||Bethesda Game Studios||Bethesda Softworks||6654||W||Proton|
|NBA 2K20||Visual Concepts||2K||6278||W||Proton Potential|
|Raft||Redbeet Interactive||Axolot Games||5675||W||Proton|
|Age of Empires II (2013)||Skybox Labs, Hidden Path Entertainment, Ensemble Studios, Forgotten Empires||Xbox Game Studios||5543||W||Proton|
By the way, let me first say that Valheim is absolutely killing it. For a game that’s just recently launched and from a small studio, getting to the top 3 of concurrent players is almost unheard of. Turns out that I have been playing it too, and you should expect to read something about it pretty soon. But more on that later.
So what did we get among the Top 50 games on Steam?
- 34 games overall working well on Linux out of 50: 68%.
- Among these 34, 19 have native clients, and 15 run well with Proton.
- An extra five games kind of work on Proton but not perfectly (example: Cyberpunk 2077, which works OK on AMD but is kind of broken on Nvidia, still)
- 11 games are borked (22%) in one way or another.
(Note: ARMA3 is considered as ‘working’ even though BattleEye prevents you from joining official servers. It it still, however, possible to host your own multiplayer sessions with friends for Co-op).
We can see from the above that Proton is a major enabler: it makes the compatibility on Linux jump from 19/50 (38%) to somewhere between 68% and 78%.
Among the 11 games that are considered borked:
- Most of them do not work because of EAC (7)
- One of them (Destiny 2) because of another DRM/anti-cheat system
- Another one relies on BattleEye
- and Black Desert Online checks for very specific Windows drivers or properties and does not launch otherwise.
We can see how big of a deal EAC represents (or even Anti-Cheat systems in general). If we had some kind of EAC support, we could bring the compatibility in top 50 from 68% (34/50) to something closer to 82% (41/50). That would be a major breakthrough for all those games that rely heavily on multiplayer features. Turns out a lot of predictions we received for 2021 are about Proton/WINE finally implementing support for EAC – that’s not even a rumor, we know it’s actively being worked on in the WINE project. The only question is WHEN, not IF.
Last but not least, Mac has ONLY 21 out of the Top 50 games working… 42%! I will let that sink in a little. We already know that Linux has become a much better platform than “native Mac”, but the gap is now very wide and will keep increasing going forward while Mac is pretty much stuck in the dust with their non-existing Proton support.
Of course, the real objective is to get to 100%, be it by more native titles and/or better Proton support.
But the glass is not even half full anymore, it’s getting refilled as we speak.
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