Popular game titles that you can play on your Linux machine – Steam + Lutris best games

Gaming on Linux is now a better option thanks to you. Yes, your enthusiasm, commitment, and community strength have made Linux Gaming bigger than ever. Not only you have more than 5000+ native Linux games, but now you also have the largest catalog of games from Windows too. With the release of the Steam Play Proton, Linux gaming has seen a revolution in terms of catalog, performance, and attention from both users and developers.

According to ProtonDB, a community dedicated toward testing and reporting games that are working or not working reported around 11,091 games to be running on Linux. Not that big number compared to Windows. But many big titles are now playable thanks to Steam Play. Now, you may ask, what’s the difference between using Lutris, Wine, and using Steam Play Proton for running windows titles?

What are those?

Wine is a compatibility layer that allows you to install Windows programs on Linux. Lutris, on the other hand, utilizes the power of Wine to run community curated Games and Windows-only programs. On the Lutris website, you can find a vast list of apps and games that have modified launcher, installer, and tweaks so the app runs well without hiccups. Without Lutris, installing even a simple windows app is so buggy in Wine.

Steam Play Proton, on the other hand, provides its own version of modified Wine, DXVK, and Vulkan support. They optimize Wine codes to run better and perform better in gaming. And these optimizations and low-level tweaks provide amazing performance on Linux, even sometimes beats Windows. Support for Vulkan means games that are developed with Vulkan instead of DX will help run the game with native-like performance on Proton.

So, enough mumbo jumbo let’s jump into the list of some hot games for Linux. Do note that I will only add games that are rated Native, Gold, or higher only.

Top games for Linux – Sorted by popularity

Terraria – Journey’s End

Ratings:

Steam: Overwhelmingly positive – 4,634 Curator review

Game details:

Dig, Fight, Explore, Build: The very world is at your fingertips as you fight for survival, fortune, and glory. Will you delve deep into cavernous expanses in search of treasure and raw materials with which to craft ever-evolving gear, machinery, and aesthetics? Perhaps you will choose instead to seek out ever-greater foes to test your mettle in combat? Maybe you will decide to construct your own city to house the host of mysterious allies you may encounter along your travels?

In the World of Terraria, the choice is yours!

Blending elements of classic action games with the freedom of sandbox-style creativity, Terraria is a unique gaming experience where both the journey and the destination are completely in the player’s control. The Terraria adventure is truly as unique as the players themselves!

Are you up for the monumental task of exploring, creating, and defending a world of your own?

Key features:

Sandbox Play

Randomly generated worlds

Free Content Updates

Comments from the Curator:

“A shedload of content, a 2d procedurally generated Metroidvania with a heavy crafting focus. Sink a great amount of time into this one for super cheap” – Cynical Brit Gaming

“A great 2D Sandbox game, which has plenty of content. It’s not updated as much as it used to be but there is occasionally an Update.” – Just Good PC Games

“2D platformer sandbox combined with Minecraft. Tons of content and much deeper than a first glance will suggest. A no-brainer for Metroidvania fans.” – /r/pcmasterrace Group

“Many blocks. Such adventure. Very survival. 10/10 paws. 🐾” – Critiquing Doge

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Runs out of the box – Some pointed out Proton version works better.

ProtonDB rating – Gold (Windows version on Linux) – Needs ProtonTricks

“Install dotnet40 using proton tricks; Made a link from drive_c/users/steamuser/My Documents/My Games/Terraria to ~/.local/share/Terraria, so that I can share worlds with the Linux server (as server did not run well in Proton) as well as not having to move saves if I decide to return to the native version.” – User

Warframe

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive – 1,931 Curator review

Game details:

CHOOSE YOUR WARFRAME

With more than 30 Warframes, each fully customizable with their own unique abilities, you can create the perfect Warframe for you.

ASSEMBLE YOUR ARSENAL

Katanas. Crossbows. Flamethrowers. Expand your Arsenal with more than 300 diverse Weapons, then modify each one to match your playstyle.

EXPERIENCE FAST-PACED COMBAT

Slice and dice through hordes of enemies, or go in guns blazing, or sneak your way in — the choice is yours.

EXPLORE OPEN WORLDS

Explore, discover, fight, and fly in massive open landscapes within Warframe.

FLUID PARKOUR MOVEMENT

Seamlessly leap, slide, and glide through capital ships and underground compounds with a robust movement system.

A SOLAR SYSTEM IN RUIN

In the far-future world of Warframe, grotesque clones and capitalist machines dominate our solar system. Fight back against greed and corruption as you explore 18 worlds filled with techno-organic horrors.

SQUAD UP

You don’t have to work alone. Invite three friends or fight alongside the 38 million strong in our Tenno community.

NINJAS PLAY FREE

Warframe is entirely free-to-play. With no barrier to entry, there’s nothing to stop you and your friends from joining our world. Welcome to the Origin System, Tenno.

MATURE CONTENT DESCRIPTION

The developers describe the content like this:

This Game may contain content not appropriate for all ages, or may not be appropriate for viewing at work: Frequent Violence or Gore, General Mature Content

Comments from the Curator:

It’s a free2play cooperative 3rd person space ninja simulator with a fair business model and flashy graphics. Can get a wee bit repetitive – Cynical Brit Gaming

Warframe’s daunting complexity doesn’t detract from its delicious combat and flexible progression. – PC Gamers

Many players. Such sci-fi. Very co-op. 9/10 paws. 🐾 – Critiquing Doge

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Gold – Needs Custom Proton version 5.9-GE-3-ST

“Game is enjoyable by using GE” – User

Rocket League

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive – 86 Metascore

Game details:

Rocket League is Going Free to Play this Summer

Play between now and the launch of free to play and receive Golden Cosmos Boost, Dieci-Oro Wheels, Huntress Player Banner, and “Est. 20XX” Title that displays the year you started playing Rocket League. Anyone who played Rocket League prior to 7/21/2020 will receive these items, plus the Faded Cosmos Boost! The items will be granted at launch.

Rocket League is a high-powered hybrid of arcade-style soccer and vehicular mayhem with easy-to-understand controls and fluid, physics-driven competition. Rocket League includes casual and competitive Online Matches, a fully-featured offline Season Mode, special “Mutators” that let you change the rules entirely, hockey and basketball-inspired Extra Modes, and more than 500 trillion possible cosmetic customization combinations.

Winner or nominee of more than 150 “Game of the Year” awards, Rocket League is one of the most critically-acclaimed sports games of all time. Boasting a community of more than 57 million players, Rocket League features ongoing free and paid updates, including new DLCs, content packs, features, modes and arenas.

Comments from the Curator:

Fast, stupid and thoroughly enjoyable – Rocket League will eat your life five minutes at a time. [Sept 2015, p.55] – PC Powerplay

Amazing, simply amazing. Rocket League has the perfect balance of fun and competitive gameplay and is a must for…Well anyone really. – GameStyle

Rocket League is the perfect game for short sessions. Gameplay is quick and easy to understand, with nice graphics to boot. Lack of diversity is the game biggest issue – delight quickly turns into boredom. – EuroGamer Poland

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Feature was limited by the devs

ProtonDB rating – Platinum – Some cases Startup flags: -dx11 requires, in most cases, the game runs flawlessly without tweaking.

Runs flawlessly using the latest Proton. – User

Rocket League has native linux support, but playing with proton is better – User

PayDay 2

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive – 79 Metascore

Game details:

PAYDAY 2 is an action-packed, four-player co-op shooter that once again lets gamers don the masks of the original PAYDAY crew – Dallas, Hoxton, Wolf and Chains – as they descend on Washington DC for an epic crime spree.

The CRIMENET network offers a huge range of dynamic contracts, and players are free to choose anything from small-time convenience store hits or kidnappings, to big league cyber-crime or emptying out major bank vaults for that epic PAYDAY. While in DC, why not participate in the local community, and run a few political errands?

Up to four friends co-operate on the hits, and as the crew progresses the jobs become bigger, better and more rewarding. Along with earning more money and becoming a legendary criminal comes a character customization and crafting system that lets crews build and customize their own guns and gear.

Key Features:

  1. Rob Banks, Get Paid – Players must choose their crew carefully, because when the job goes down they will need the right mix of skills on their side.
  2. CRIMENET – The dynamic contract database lets gamers pick and choose from available jobs by connecting with local contacts such as Vlad the Ukrainian, shady politician “The Elephant”, and South American drug trafficker Hector, all with their own agenda and best interests in mind.
  3. PAYDAY Gunplay and Mechanics on a New Level – Firing weapons and zip tying civilians never felt so good.
  4. Dynamic Scenarios – No heist ever plays out the same way twice. Every single scenario has random geometry or even rare events.
  5. Choose Your Skills – As players progress they can invest in any of five special Skill Trees: Mastermind, Enforcer, Ghost, Technician and Fugitive. Each features a deep customization tree of associated skills and equipment to master, and they can be mixed and matched to create the ultimate heister.
  6. More Masks than Ever – PAYDAY 2 features a completely new mask system, giving players the ability to craft their own unique mask with a pattern and color of their choice, resulting in millions of different combinations. (and more)

Comments from the Curator:

Payday 2 is a Co Op game. While it might have benefitted with a cool story arc for a single player mode the game offers a great outing with 3 other friends for an experience that will keep having you come back for more. Payday is simply the improved, polished and closest experience you’ll find to robbing an actual bank. It’s just legal. – Impulse Gamer

As it stands right now, Payday 2, while it won’t be for everyone, is a lot of fun. Although the stealth mechanics are basic, there’s enough strategic depth and teamwork required so that stealthing missions can be challenging, and extremely satisfying when successful. – NZ Gamer

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Runs out of the box

Euro Truck Simulator 2

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive

Game details:

Travel across Europe as king of the road, a trucker who delivers important cargo across impressive distances! With dozens of cities to explore from the UK, Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, and many more, your endurance, skill and speed will all be pushed to their limits. If you’ve got what it takes to be part of an elite trucking force, get behind the wheel and prove it!

Key Features:

  1. Transport a vast variety of cargo across more than 60 European cities.
  2. Run your own business which continues to grow even as you complete your freight deliveries.
  3. Build your own fleet of trucks, buy garages, hire drivers, manage your company for maximum profits.
  4. A varied amount of truck tuning that range from performance to cosmetic changes.
  5. Customize your vehicles with optional lights, bars, horns, beacons, smoke exhausts, and more.
  6. Thousands of miles of real road networks with hundreds of famous landmarks and structures.
  7. World of Trucks
  8. Take advantage of additional features of Euro Truck Simulator 2 by joining our online community on World of Trucks, our center for virtual truckers all around the world interested in Euro Truck Simulator 2 and future SCS Software’s truck simulators.
  9. Use in-game Photo Mode to capture the best moments and share them with thousands of people who love trucks. (and more)

Comments from the Curator:

“Unexpectedly engrossing. Heed the mockers and you’ll miss one of the PC’s finest and freshest driving games.”

85/100 – PC Gamer

“With its stellar gameplay and presentation, Euro Truck Simulator 2 set a new standard for the simulation genre.”

95/100 – Gaming Nexus

“There are titles in the simulation market which can be sold on the novelty factor alone, but tend to be disappointing games. Euro Truck Simulator 2 is not one of them, it is strangely cathartic, engaging and relaxing.”

True PC Gaming

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Runs out of the box – Full performance and controllar support

The Elder Scrolls Online

Ratings:

Steam: Overwhelmingly positive – 4,634 Curator review

Game details:

Experience an ever-expanding story across all of Tamriel in The Elder Scrolls Online, an award-winning online RPG. Explore a rich, living world with friends or embark upon a solo adventure. Enjoy complete control over how your character looks and plays, from the weapons you wield to the skills you learn – the choices you make will shape your destiny. Welcome to a world without limits.

PLAY THE WAY YOU LIKE

Battle, craft, steal, siege, or explore, and combine different types of armor, weapons, and abilities to create your own style of play. The choice is yours to make in a persistent, ever-growing Elder Scrolls world.

TELL YOUR OWN STORY

Discover the secrets of Tamriel as you set off to regain your lost soul and save the world from Oblivion. Experience any story in any part of the world, in whichever order you choose – with others or alone.

A MULTIPLAYER RPG

Complete quests with friends, join fellow adventurers to explore dangerous, monster-filled dungeons, or take part in epic PvP battles with hundreds of other players.

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Gold – Usually runs better than Windows

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Ratings:

Steam: Overwhelmingly positive – 4,634 Curator review

Game details:

The Witcher: Wild Hunt is a story-driven open world RPG set in a visually stunning fantasy universe full of meaningful choices and impactful consequences. In The Witcher, you play as professional monster hunter Geralt of Rivia tasked with finding a child of prophecy in a vast open world rich with merchant cities, pirate islands, dangerous mountain passes, and forgotten caverns to explore.

Key features:

PLAY AS A HIGHLY TRAINED MONSTER SLAYER FOR HIRE

Trained from early childhood and mutated to gain superhuman skills, strength and reflexes, witchers are a counterbalance to the monster-infested world in which they live.

  • Gruesomely destroy foes as a professional monster hunter armed with a range of upgradeable weapons, mutating potions and combat magic.
  • Hunt down a wide range of exotic monsters — from savage beasts prowling the mountain passes, to cunning supernatural predators lurking in the shadows of densely populated towns.
  • Invest your rewards to upgrade your weaponry and buy custom armour, or spend them away in horse races, card games, fist fighting, and other pleasures the night brings.

EXPLORE A MORALLY INDIFFERENT FANTASY OPEN WORLD

Built for endless adventure, the massive open world of The Witcher sets new standards in terms of size, depth and complexity.

  • Traverse a fantastical open world: explore forgotten ruins, caves and shipwrecks, trade with merchants and dwarven smiths in cities, and hunt across the open plains, mountains and seas.
  • Deal with treasonous generals, devious witches and corrupt royalty to provide dark and dangerous services.
  • Make choices that go beyond good & evil, and face their far-reaching consequences.

CHASE DOWN THE CHILD OF PROPHECY

Take on the most important contract to track down the child of prophecy, a key to save or destroy this world.

  • In times of war, chase down the child of prophecy, a living weapon foretold by ancient elven legends.
  • Struggle against ferocious rulers, spirits of the wilds and even a threat from beyond the veil – all hell-bent on controlling this world.
  • Define your destiny in a world that may not be worth saving.

FULLY REALIZED NEXT GENERATION

  • Built exclusively for next generation hardware, the REDengine 3 renders the world of The Witcher visually nuanced and organic, a real true to life fantasy.
  • Dynamic weather systems and day/night cycles affect how the citizens of the towns and the monsters of the wilds behave.
  • Rich with storyline choices in both main and subplots, this grand open world is influenced by the player unlike ever before.

Mature Content Description

The developers describe the content like this:

This Game may contain content not appropriate for all ages, or may not be appropriate for viewing at work: Nudity or Sexual Content, General Mature Content

Comments from the Curator:

The current paragon of role-playing titles and open worlds, The Witcher: Wild Hunt is a game for the ages; a rich and immersive world full of significant decisions and a feeling of intelligent and epic fantasy. Peerless. – LevelUp

This is the new standard for open world role-playing games. There is no such thing as a perfect game, but The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt comes as close to perfect as any RPG to date. – Darkstation

Probably the best open-world RPG ever made, but it still falls prey to some of the genre’s worst traps. – PCWorld

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Platinum – Runs flawlessly, better than Windows, no tweak required

Lutris version also works flawlessly

“I tried running the GoG version of this game using Proton 5.0.9 via Lutris and it works! Slightly better FPS than on Windows 10 1909.” – User

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive – 83 Metascore

Game details:

“Counter-Strike took the gaming industry by surprise when the unlikely MOD became the most played online PC action game in the world almost immediately after its release in August 1999,” said Doug Lombardi at Valve. “For the past 12 years, it has continued to be one of the most-played games in the world, headline competitive gaming tournaments and selling over 25 million units worldwide across the franchise. CS: GO promises to expand on CS’ award-winning gameplay and deliver it to gamers on the PC as well as the next gen consoles and the Mac.”

Comments from the Curator:

It may lack some of the community niceties, beloved maps (Assault, anyone?), and little features of past games, but Global Offensive delivers on the promise of a faithful, polished, and better looking Counter-Strike for whoever wants it. Even if the community doesn’t meet the golden standard of 1.6 and Source, CS:GO will remain a multiplayer classic for those willing to put in the time to learn the maps and weapons. – Destructoid

CS: GO stands as a glowing reminder that quality game design is rewarded in longevity and variety. Valve has not only updated the shooter but has completely outclassed its contemporaries. This is Counter-Strike, whatever the format you choose to play it on, and there isn’t a higher recommendation than that. – gamers™

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Runs out of the box

Dota 2

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive – 90 Metascore

Game details:

Every day, millions of players worldwide enter battle as one of over a hundred Dota heroes. And no matter if it’s their 10th hour of play or 1,000th, there’s always something new to discover. With regular updates that ensure a constant evolution of gameplay, features, and heroes, Dota 2 has truly taken on a life of its own.

One Battlefield. Infinite Possibilities.

When it comes to diversity of heroes, abilities, and powerful items, Dota boasts an endless array—no two games are the same. Any hero can fill multiple roles, and there’s an abundance of items to help meet the needs of each game. Dota doesn’t provide limitations on how to play, it empowers you to express your own style.

All heroes are free.

Competitive balance is Dota’s crown jewel, and to ensure everyone is playing on an even field, the core content of the game—like the vast pool of heroes—is available to all players. Fans can collect cosmetics for heroes and fun add-ons for the world they inhabit, but everything you need to play is already included before you join your first match.

Bring your friends and party up.

Dota is deep, and constantly evolving, but it’s never too late to join.

Learn the ropes playing co-op vs. bots. Sharpen your skills in the hero demo mode. Jump into the behavior- and skill-based matchmaking system that ensures you’ll

be matched with the right players each game.

Comments from the Curator:

Those who choose to commit to Dota 2 will find many happy hours within this immaculate update. – GameSpot

A great PvP game that offers some of the most intriguing and nuanced team combat around. – USGamer

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Runs out of the box

Team Fortress 2

Ratings:

Steam: Very positive – 92 Metascore

Game details:

“The most fun you can have online” – PC Gamer

Is now FREE!

There’s no catch! Play as much as you want, as long as you like!

The most highly-rated free game of all time!

One of the most popular online action games of all time, Team Fortress 2 delivers constant free updates—new game modes, maps, equipment and, most importantly, hats. Nine distinct classes provide a broad range of tactical abilities and personalities, and lend themselves to a variety of player skills.

New to TF? Don’t sweat it!

No matter what your style and experience, we’ve got a character for you. Detailed training and offline practice modes will help you hone your skills before jumping into one of TF2’s many game modes, including Capture the Flag, Control Point, Payload, Arena, King of the Hill and more.

Make a character your own!

There are hundreds of weapons, hats and more to collect, craft, buy and trade. Tweak your favorite class to suit your gameplay style and personal taste. You don’t need to pay to win—virtually all of the items in the Mann Co. Stores can also be found in-game.

Comments from the Curator:

“The most fun you can have online” – PC Gamer

Performance in Linux:

ProtonDB rating – Native – Runs out of the box – Some pointed out crashes and bugs

There you go

I compiled this list with good care, and I will eventually update this article with more games and more updates. I hope you found some top games that you can fire up and play without any hassle and stay browsing nixFAQ for more game review and gaming on Linux.

 

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