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Destiny 2 won't work on Steam Deck — and I'm pissed

Destiny 2: The Witch Queen screen capture
Bungie to my hopes of Destiny 2 on Linux (Image credit: Bungie)

Update: The Steam Deck can now run Windows — but there's a big catch, so you may want to hold fire if you're lucky enough to have the handheld PC.

People have started getting their hands on the Steam Deck, with reviews everywhere mostly praising the new handheld gaming PC. A surprising amount of Steam games run on the device with more getting verified and addressed each day. But if you were hoping to play the popular first-person shooter Destiny 2 on the Deck, you're going to be severely disappointed.

Bungie, developer of the shared world shooter, has come out and said that it will not support the Steam Deck or Linux in general on its Destiny help page. Furthermore, anyone trying to circumvent this policy will face an immediate ban. Considering that other games with anti-cheat software can work on the Steam Deck, this news is a serious bummer. I, as both an avid Destiny player and Linux fan, am incredibly irritated with Bungie's decision.

Bungie has not clarified why it is maintaining a Windows-only stance on PC, but it comes across as ridiculous for a couple of reasons. For one, the anti-cheat that Destiny 2 uses, BattlEye, supports Linux and Bungie need only ask to enable support. It'd not likely to add too much overhead since Valve's Proton compatibility layer (how the Steam Deck plays Windows games) does the heavy lifting and support.

The second reason this is stupid is because Destiny 2 has a Stadia version, which is a Linux-based platform. Even if the rumors about Google having its Linux compatibility layer similar to Proton are true (versus a straight-up port), Bungie nonetheless supports a Linux-based platform. It leaves one to wonder why the company won't support the Steam Deck.

Bungie isn't known for making the best decisions and this one seems incredibly short-sighted. If the Steam Deck's popularity continues on its upward trajectory, Bungie is losing out on more potential money for its very popular title. And with the recent launch of the new The Witch Queen expansion, there are more people playing Destiny than ever.

There are workarounds, like playing on GeForce Now or Stadia in the Deck's browser. That said, Destiny 2 is, in my opinion, the best first-person shooter out there and despite some shady actions over the years, Bungie has quite the community surrounding this title. I'm baffled why Destiny 2 won't come to the Steam Deck, and I think Bungie is making a big mistake here.

Jordan Palmer
Jordan Palmer

Jordan is the Phones Editor for Tom's Guide, covering all things phone-related. He's written about phones for over five years and plans to continue for a long while to come. He loves nothing more than relaxing in his home with a book, game, or his latest personal writing project. Jordan likes finding new things to dive into, from books and games to new mechanical keyboard switches and fun keycap sets. Outside of work, you can find him poring over open-source software and his studies.