Fortnite is more popular than ever, now expanding and having three new game modes that are attracting more players than before. With the battle royale gaining more popularity, fans want to know why this game still isn’t on Steam Deck, with Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney blaming that on Linux.
Speaking with The Verge after beating Google in a lawsuit, Sweeney was asked several questions in a quick lightning round. Naturally, one of them revolved around the free-to-play shooter not being compatible with the Steam Deck, which seems like a perfect match.
Here’s what Sweeney had to say about Fortnite not being playable on Steam Deck:
“If we only had a few more programmers. It’s the Linux problem. I love the Steam Deck hardware. Valve has done an amazing job there; I wish they would get to tens of millions of users, at which point it would actually make sense to support it.”
Considering how Valve has touted their handheld being bought by millions, Sweeney bringing up “tens of millions” feels like moving the goalpost. Before this, Sweeney previously brought up how he isn’t confident in Linux and the Steam Deck handling anti-cheats properly. Another obvious answer is that Valve and Epic compete with each other, which is why the battle royale isn’t currently available on Steam.
That’s not to say there isn’t any way to play Fortnite on Steam Deck, as there are ways to replace Linux with Windows for those who want it. While not the safest thing to do, this method does let players access games not on Steam, like Genshin Impact, Honkai: Star Rail, and, well, Fortnite.
It’s worth noting that even without Windows, the Steam Deck is fully capable of playing online games like Apex Legends and Warframe. The handheld should be able to run this battle royale with little to no issue, but Epic won’t budge.
Fans don’t have to rely on Valve’s handheld either, as competitors like the ROG Ally and Lenovo Go offer decent alternatives, complete with Windows. Gamers who don’t want to spend too much just to play Fortnite can also pick up a Nintendo Switch, which has the game readily available in the eShop.