New BioShock patch makes its unplayable on Linux devices

bioshock broken on linux patch big daddy enemy boss-min

Publisher 2K Games recently released a series of patches for BioShock, BioShock 2, and BioShock Infinite. These were described to be “quality of life updates,” but further information was not provided. However, now the updates have released it’s clear that this was not the case with Linux players now unable to run BioShock.

The supposed quality of life updates were actually introduced to add 2K Launcher integration. 2K Games is trying to move its titles to its own launcher but is having to tweak older titles to make that possible. Unfortunately, an unintended side effect of these patches is that none of the three games affected now run on Linux devices.

It’s troublesome that Linux PCs are affected but the real issue lies in the handheld market. Many handhelds run on Linux software including Valve’s Steam Deck. The portable PC’s entire selling point is that it can run Steam games on a handheld device. But as of this patch none of the three BioShock games function properly on the Steam Deck anymore.

Thankfully, there are work arounds to get BioShock running on your Linux devices. All three games still run via Proton 7.0-4 on Steam Deck. Proton 7.0-4 is the latest version of a piece of software intended to make running Windows only applications possible on Linux.

Probably an accident

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Even the biggest sceptic will acknowledge that this was probably just an accident. 2K doesn’t benefit much from alienating its Linux audience even if that audience is relatively small. We expect 2K to work on a fix at some point in the future to give Linux users easy access once again. However, if this happens in a few weeks’ time or in the distant future is unknown. All Linux users can do is pray that 2K Games values them enough to take action sooner rather than later.

Valve approves 150 more games ahead of Steam Deck launch

Video game publisher Valve has approved another 150 games for the Steam Deck. This is in addition to the original 160 that was announced a few weeks ago. These verified games are titles that will run on the Deck with no major issues. Some games not on the list will also run fine but should be judged on a case-by-case basis.

The Steam Deck is Valve’s upcoming handheld console. It is attempting to offer the customization of a PC with the convenience of a console. Launching on February 22, the Steam Deck can be pre-ordered at three different price points: $399 for the 64GB version, $529 for the 256GB version, and $649 for the 512GB version.

With over 300 titles verified it’s a given that some incredible games will work on the Steam Deck at launch. The official list varies greatly with everything from 2D indie games like Cuphead to AAA blockbuster racing games like Forza Horizon 5 being included.

Only time will tell if the Steam Deck justifies its price but critics seem impressed. Valve let various content creators get hands-on and most only had good things to say about it. Given how stale the handheld gaming market has become a worthy competitor is a welcome addition.

How Steam Deck compatibility works

steam deck games compatibility categories

All of the games available on Steam can be purchased and booted on the Deck. However, only those that are ‘Verified’ are guaranteed to work out of the box. Any games that are listed as ‘Playable’ should run fine but may require tweaking to get just right.

There are also games listed as ‘Unsupported’ which will not function on the Steam Deck. They may open up but won’t run properly. The last category is ‘Unknown’ which refers to games that Valve itself hasn’t tested yet. These have a chance of running fine but may also be incompatible with the Steam Deck.

Valve announces Steam Deck, a powerful Switch-like portable PC

It’s not every day that we get a new console announcement out of the blue. However, that’s exactly what happened this morning as Valve revealed its new portable console. Named the Steam Deck, it’s a handheld PC that will allows you to play your whole Steam library on to go.

Similar to the Nintendo Switch, the Deck is a hybrid console that can be used either portably or docked. When docked it operates as a budget PC of sorts, coming in at just $399. There are pricier models at $529 and $649 that have more internal storage. Regardless of model a Micro SD card can be installed to expand the device’s storage capabilities.

How well does it run games?

Steam Deck portal 2 search

A handheld gaming PC means nothing if it can’t actually run games well. There are some genuine concerns in this regard due to the nature of PC gaming. Whilst console games are heavily optimised for specific platforms, PC games have to cater to a wider range of systems.

Thankfully, it appears as though this won’t be a problem. During IGN’s insider test Valve confirmed that the Steam Deck should be able to run all games at 720p or above. Considering the smaller screen, this should suffice for most titles. Especially if it can deliver a consistent 60 FPS experience too.

It uses a GPU based on the latest AMD RDNA2 architecture. Its CPU is also an AMD based, quad-core Zen 2. These are strong specifications that fall closer to what we thought the Switch Pro would have before the inferior OLED was announced instead.

Valve CEO Gabe Newell admitted in an interview with IGN that the pricing was ‘painful’ to pick. Clearly, Valve is selling the Steam Deck at a loss in order to sell more and hopefully establish itself in the mobile market. Given that Valve takes a cut out of all Steam game sales, I’m sure it’ll make its money back in due time.