Destiny 2 Isn’t Supported On Steam Deck, And Playing It Could Get You Banned

Destiny 2 Isn’t Supported On Steam Deck, And Playing It Could Get You Banned
Image: driltracts / Kotaku Australia

Destiny 2 on Steam Deck? Bungie says, “Dunno about that, champ.”

The Steam Deck has finally been released (in America). Not in Australia yet, but perhaps eventually. While the Steam Deck has plenty of games available, unfortunately, it looks like one very popular game is a big no-no. That game is Destiny 2.

According to a post on the Bungie Help website, the studio has put its foot down regarding Destiny 2 on the Steam Deck.

That’s right. Attempting to access Destiny 2 on the Steam Deck somehow? That’s a paddlin’. And by paddlin’, I mean a swift and complete account ban. But what could drive such a severe response? One Twitter user presents a reasonable theory: that Steam Play’s Proton has trouble with anti-cheat programs. The theory is that the anti-cheat platform may be unable to determine who is cheating and who is not, it may simply flag everyone for bans. That would take Bungie a long time to sort through, so it’s easy to see why it might prefer to wash its hands of the situation entirely.

This theory was later somewhat confirmed in a This Week At Bungie blog post, posted a couple of days after the original report. The post states:

Our goal is to maintain a secure environment for Destiny 2, as it features both PvE and PvP combat in an evolving, dynamic world. Maintaining the integrity of our security is a complex and long-term process. In some cases it means teaming with partners like BattlEye and following their recommendations, in others, it means choosing to not support platforms that could provide bad actors with ways of compromising our own Bungie developed anti-cheat security systems.

The blog post continues by stating that the Steam Deck is ‘not a supported platform’, so attempting to play the game on the console will trigger their ‘automated security systems to see usage as a potential threat to the community’. So basically, while Destiny 2 is supported on Windows/Mac and the Steam Deck automatically has access to almost every game on Steam, some games built for Windows or Mac OS may still struggle on Steam OS. Thus, built-in security systems will immediately flag it due to its unsupported Linux-based OS.

However, the blog post also suggests that this might not always be the case, stating, “While we investigate possibilities of support for new and future platforms, we do not have any additional information at this time.” This might mean that the game will eventually be available on Steam Deck, but it doesn’t look like it’s coming any time soon.

Comments

  • Is it that proton/Linux is just terrible security wise or is it that nobody has done any work with it, game/anti-cheat devs etc?

    • the quick and dirty version is it’s more of a technical limitation thing. in windows these anticheat programs like battleeye usually come with invasive af kernel drivers that watch what you do like a hawk. wine, on which proton is based, doesn’t run in kernel space, and its implementation of the windows kernel is mostly a shim that redirects windows function calls to linux/other compatible OS ones. it also doesn’t come with any ability at all to load drivers written for windows because wine expects the linux side of your system to take care of that.

    • I’m not an expert on this but my understanding is that while you can run Battleye software on Proton, you’ve got no way to truly guarantee that e.g. the OS kernel and drivers are what they say they are, and that they’re not just telling the anticheat software what it wants to hear. (On Windows and Mac there are hardware level solutions for this – e.g. TPM on Windows). I guess different devs will have a different tolerance for that kind of risk.

      • that’s crap on their part, when they could release a kernel module for linux that verifies everything is above board and talks to the userland part of the anticheat (including through wine). there’s also a crapload of options available to determine if a system it’s running on is in a known good state (for example the built and running kernel config usually is available at /proc/config.gz even), an just refuse to run if it isn’t. this doesn’t have to be as big of a problem as they make it out to be.

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