[how-to, steam-linux] How to play a Windows version of a game that comes with a Linux client in the native Steam


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Feb 25, 2019
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If, for whatever reason you decided you wanna play the Windows version of a game that has a native Linux client, there's an easy way to do it. And no, it's not installing the Windows version of Steam using Wine. Steam for Windows won't run fine and stable under Wine management and neither will the game itself. You can do it in the Linux Steam version.

For instance, Mad Max has a native Linux client and if you click "install", Steam will download the native Linux version. But if you wanna play the Windows version, simply follow these next steps:

• Right click on the name of the game, select "Properties"
• In the newly appeared dialog find the lowest line as on the screenshot below.
• check the box in the bottom of the dialog (I have marked it with a yellow rectangle) which reads "Force the use of a specific SteamPlay compatibility tool" and Steam for Linux will immediately start downloading the Windows version of the game.
In case that both Windows and Linux clients of the game use files with the same formats and only the executable files are different, Steam will download only the executable files for Windows and will remove those for Linux. If later you wanna go back to the Linux version, simply uncheck that box and the executable files will be replaced again.
The best part is that all of your progress in the game will remain intact!

The following screenshot is about ETS2 but the principle is the same for all games.


Rado, um, why would you want the Windows version of a game that has a Linux version available?
Rado, um, why would you want the Windows version of a game that has a Linux version available?
1. Bad Linux port - Serious Sam 3, Saints Row 3 are the perfect example for that.
2. To test and compare performance between Windows and Linux. Such as Euro Truck Simulator 2 - the Windows version of this game runs with SteamPlay 10 times better and more stable than it does in Windows.

3. To try and maybe play a game with trainer because the trainer is looking for a process named "gamename.exe", since all the trainers are Windows only.

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