Epic’s Easy Anti-Cheat service (EAC), which detects unfair play in games, will be familiar to many PC Gamers. It was recently made free and will soon be available in more games.
Valve is determined to have as many games on Steam Deck as possible. However, the implementation of anti-cheat technology seems to be a significant obstacle to that goal. Steam Deck utilizes a compatibility layer called Proton which allows Windows games to run on the Linux platform. Epic had announced that Easy Anti-Cheat would be compatible with Proton a few months ago. Developers could enable it with just a few clicks, which was good news considering its popularity. We now know that this may not be true.
Vermintide 2 developer (via GamingOnLinux), it will be difficult for many games. Vermintide 2, which uses EAC, has revealed that it may not be the right type. They replied to a thread asking for Proton support via the Steam Forum. It turns out that there are two versions of EAC. One that uses Epic’s Online Services and one that does not. While this may work for Epic’s Online Services users, it may not be applicable to some newer Epic Titles. Vermintide 2 is one game that uses the non-EOS Epic’s Anti-Cheat.
They believe it would be difficult to convert a non-EOS version into an EOS, and so receive Proton support. However, they are currently investigating whether this is feasible.
Tripwire Interactive and other developers have pointed out that Epic’s Anti-Cheat could cause compatibility issues. However, it’s not the only service that could be problematic. DayZ developers have also stated that it is unlikely that they will be bringing their game on Steam Deck, and many believe this to be because of BattleEye’s anti-cheat software.
This could prove to be a significant problem for Steam Deck, considering how many games it could affect. It’s still a useful piece of hardware, which many people are eager to get. To ensure that developers get enough demand, they will have to be notified by customers. If you don’t want the hassle of this, perhaps the AyaNeo Next premium handheld PC is more for you.
According to Valve, the Steam Deck launch is still scheduled for February. We’ll hopefully find out more when that happens.