Flip Arch Linux Right into a Gaming System With Steam

You may have heard that Linux is a bad choice for the operating system when it comes to gaming. It may have been true in the past, but it's definitely not the case now. You can enjoy your favorite games on Arch Linux by installing the official Steam client.

Downloading Steam on Arch may seem difficult to some users as the Steam package is not available in the official Arch repository. However, you can still install Steam on Arch using third-party sources. We're going to talk about downloading Steam on Arch and fix some common issues that you might encounter during or after the installation.

Install Steam on Arch Linux

Although there are many free Linux games online, playing Steam games on a Linux system is still a dream come true for many. In addition to playing Linux games, you can enjoy Windows games on your Arch computer with Steam Play.

Here's how to download and install the official Steam client on Arch Linux.

Use Pacman

Since Steam isn't available in the official Arch repository, you won't be able to download it directly using Pacman without reconfiguring it.

  1. Start your terminal by pressing Ctrl + Old + T. on your keyboard.

  2. Open the Pacman configuration file under / etc /.
    sudo nano /etc/pacman.conf

  3. Look for the following line.
    # (Multilib)
    #Include = /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist

  4. Comment out these two lines by removing the # character from the beginning.
    (Multilib)
    Include = /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist

  5. Save the file with Ctrl + Ö.

  6. Enter the following command into your terminal to update your system's package lists.
    Sudo Pacman -Syu

  7. Install Steam with:
    Sudo Pacman -S steam

  8. Pacman will download all the required dependencies along with the official Steam package.

  9. You can restart your system after the installation by entering the following command.
    Restart

Related: How to Install Android Apps and Games on Linux

Using Flatpak

The Steam client is also available in the Flatpak repository. Flatpak is not preconfigured on Arch-based distributions, so you will need to install it manually. Here's how to do it.

  1. Open your terminal by pressing Ctrl + Old + T..

  2. Update your system's package list by entering the command.
    Sudo Pacman -Syu

  3. Enter the command given below to download and install Flatpak on your system.
    sudo pacman -S flatpak

  4. Now configure Flatpak by adding the Flathub repository to your system.
    sudo flatpak remote-add –if-not available flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

You can now easily download Steam using Flatpak. To do this, enter the following command into your terminal.

sudo flatpak install com.valvesoftware.Steam

After installing Steam on Arch, make sure to configure Steam Play on your Linux system. This way, you can run any Windows game on Linux with ease.

Common problems with Steam on Arch Linux

The official ArchWiki for Steam clearly states that "Steam for Linux only supports Ubuntu LTS". As such, Valve is not responsible for troubleshooting issues and bugs related to Steam on Arch. This, in turn, has made the package unstable with many problems.

No writing problem

One such problem with Steam on Arch is the lack of fonts or broken fonts issue. The characters in the navigation menus look something like this. Note that the menu fonts are not clearly visible.

This is because the font package used by Steam in its software is not present in Arch Linux by default. To fix this, manually download and add the font:

  1. Open your terminal with Ctrl + Old + T..

  2. Create the directory "/.fonts" and enter it.
    sudo mkdir ~ / .fonts / && cd ~ / .fonts /

  3. Download the Steam fonts to the folder you just created.
    wget https://support.steampowered.com/downloads/1974-YFKL-4947/SteamFonts.zip

  4. Unzip the fonts in the directory with the "unzip" command.
    unzip SteamFonts.zip && rm SteamFonts.zip

If you do not have the "unpack" package on your system, download it with pacman

Unzip sudo pacman -S

After the official Steam client is installed on your Arch-based system, it's time to play some games. Here are some of the best games to play on Arch Linux using Steam.

1st counterattack: global offensive

There's probably no one who hasn't heard of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. It is one of the most popular games in the world that has made its impact on the esports industry. CSGO is a multiplayer first person shooter game developed by Valve.

Players can team up to form teams to compete in various challenges like deathmatch, bomb disposal, arms race, danger zone, etc. With 9 great cards to choose from, you won't get bored of this game anytime soon.

2. Dota 2

Dota 2 is another multiplayer online battle arena game developed by Valve Corporation. The game is played between two teams, each consisting of five players who control a main character called "The Hero". Both teams defend their base on two opposite edges on the shared map. The first team to destroy the enemy's base wins the game.

3. Rocket League

Do you know what's even better than playing football with your legs? Play with cars. Rocket League is the perfect game for fans of racing and sports games. Choose your favorite car from the garage, customize it and hit the giant ball around the field to score goals.

4. Portal 2

Portal 2 is without a doubt one of the best games ever made for computers. The player takes control of a character who is handling a portal weapon. Instead of bullets, the weapon fires portals that connect two distant surfaces.

Players have to solve puzzles using the futuristic weapon provided to them. Portal 2 also has a co-op mode that can be played locally or with a friend over the internet.

Play Steam games on Arch-based distributions

Millions of users around the world use Steam to play games on their computers. However, for Arch users without Steam, the game catalog is significantly reduced. However, you can easily install the official Steam client on Arch Linux using Pacman or Flatpak.

Playing games is the best way to bind your time while having fun. Despite what the internet says, Linux users are not really deprived of the fun of the game.

The 10 best Linux games to play for free

If you're looking for the best Linux games to play for free, here are 10 titles to get you started …

About the author

Deepesh Sharma
(17 articles published)

Deepesh is Staff Writer for Linux at MUO. He has been writing informational content on the Internet for over 3 years. In his spare time he enjoys writing, listening to music and playing the guitar.

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