Something went wrong. Try again later

    Steam Play

    Concept »

    A series of Steam features related to cross-platform play, including cross-buy, cross-play, and Linux compatibility layers.

    Short summary describing this concept.

    Steam Play last edited by franzlska on 08/03/21 09:32AM View full history


    First introduced in 2010, Steam Play was designed as a way for Steam users' purchases to automatically apply regardless of computer platform, including downloading the appropriate version for a user's operating system, whether it be PC, Mac, or Linux. The system covers nearly every Steam game which offers more than one platform, although some semi-exceptions exist, such as Portal 2, where purchasing the game on PC, Mac, or Linux does not allow the game to be downloaded on a PS3, but activating the PS3 version on one's Steam account allows the game to be downloaded on PC, Mac, and Linux as well.

    Alongside cross-platform purchase, Steam Play was also used to describe Steam's cross-platform server system, allowing players to use compatible servers regardless of whether they use a game's PC, Mac, or Linux version.

    In 2018, Steam Play was rebranded to describe Valve's Proton compatibility layer for Linux. Rather than being implemented on a per-game basis, Proton automatically applies when Steam users attempt to run games without native Linux ports while on a Linux-based OS.


    This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

    Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

    Comment and Save

    Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.