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How to play The Elder Scrolls Online on Linux

The Elder Scrolls Online is an MMORPG developed by Zenimax Online Studios and published by Bethesda Softworks. In the game, users take control of their created character to adventure and quest through the continent of Tamriel.

Elder Scrolls Online was released in 2014 on Windows. Bethesda has never contemplated a Linux release however, with a little tweaking, the game can be made to work on Linux.

Getting ESO working on Linux

The Elder Scrolls Online (ESO) is not a native port. If you want to enjoy this game, you must install the Linux version of Steam. To get the game working, follow the step-by-step instructions outlined below.

Step 1: The installation of the Linux Steam client is done through the terminal. To open up a terminal window, press Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T on the keyboard. Then, from there, follow the command-line installation instructions to get Steam working on your Linux PC.

Ubuntu

If you’re using Ubuntu, you will be able to easily install the latest release of Steam straight through the Ubuntu software sources using the Apt command below.

sudo apt install steam

Debian

If you’re using Debian Linux, it is possible to get the latest release of Steam working through the software sources on the OS. However, you must enable the “non-free” repo, and that is pretty tedious. A better route to getting Steam working on Debian is by downloading the latest DEB package directly from the internet using the wget command below.
wget https://steamcdn-a.akamaihd.net/client/installer/steam.deb

After downloading the DEB package, use the dpkg command to install Steam on your Debian Linux PC.

sudo dpkg -i steam.deb

Arch Linux

Arch Linux has the Steam client in their software sources. To get it working, use the Pacman command below.

sudo pacman -S steam

Fedora/OpenSUSE

Both OpenSUSE and Fedora Linux can install Steam via primary software sources. However, these methods tend to be tedious and not that user-friendly. A much easier way to install Steam is to set up the Flatpak release.

Flatpak

Steam is on Flatpak, and you can get it installed. To start the installation process, you need to enable the Flatpak runtime. To do this, install the “flatpak” package. If you need help, follow our guide on how to set up Flatpak on Linux.

Once the Flatpak runtime is up and running on your computer, use the flatpak remote-add command below to set up the Flathub app store. You will need Flathub to get the Flatpak release of Steam working.

flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

After the Flathub app store is enabled on your computer, the installation of the Flatpak release of Steam can begin. Using the flatpak install command, grab the latest version of Steam for Flatpak.

flatpak install flathub com.valvesoftware.Steam

Step 2: Now that Steam is installed on your Linux PC, launch the app by searching for it in the app menu. Then, log in with your user account and password.

Once you’ve logged into Steam, find the “Steam” menu, and click on it with the mouse. Inside of the “Steam” menu, look for “Steam Play” and click on it.

Step 3: In the “Steam Play” menu, you need to enable Steam Play in your Steam client. Steam Play will allow you to play Elder Scrolls Online on Linux.

Look for “Enable Steam Play for supported titles” and check the box next to it. Then, select the box next to “Enable Steam Play for all other titles.” Select “OK” to save changes.

Step 4: Find the “STORE” button at the top of Steam, and click on it with the mouse. Then, search for “Elder Scrolls Online.” Click on it in the search results to go to the game’s Storefront page.

Click “Add to cart” to purchase the game.

Step 5: Click on “Library” to access your Steam gaming library. From there, search for “Elder Scrolls Online” and click on it to access the library page for the game.

On the library page for ESO, click on the blue “INSTALL” button to download and install the game to your PC.

Step 6: Click on the green “PLAY” button to start up the ESO MMO launcher. When the launcher is open, use the UI to create and log into your Elder Scrolls Online account.

Step 7: Allow the ESO MMO launcher to download the latest updates to the game. Be patient; this may take a while.

After the game is done updating, click “PLAY” in the launcher to enjoy ESO!

Troubleshooting Elder Scrolls Online

Elder Scrolls Online runs in a near-native state, so there should be no problems while playing on Linux. That said, you should check out the ESO ProtonDB page if you do run into issues. For more information on how you can troubleshoot your ESO installation on Linux, click here.

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