Valve is making some strange choices when it comes to Linux, and it’s been using different icons to SteamOS and Linux. It’s unclear why they are doing this, but the worst scenario imaginable is that some games will be built for SteamOS and not for generic Linux distros.
Valve made an important decision a while back and replaced the Tux logo in Steam and on their website with their own SteamOS version. This is certainly causing some confusion since SteamOS is a Linux distribution and everything that works on SteamOS also works in other Linux systems. It’s probably a marketing decision and it’s Valve’s prerogative to use whatever icon they choose.
It’s also worth pointing out that Valve wants to release a new console this November, and it’s aptly named Steam Machine. It will be powered by SteamOS, which is a Linux distribution based on Debian. So, it’s pretty much a guarantee that everything that will be built for SteamOS will be compatible with pretty much any modern Linux distribution as well.
Enter The Escapists: The Walking Dead
This is a new game that was just released on Steam. The Escapists: The Walking Dead is listed as a multi-platform title, and that’s not something new. It can run on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux, which is actually a great thing. The official website mentions Windows, Mac OS X, and SteamOS, the system requirements say SteamOS+Linux, and the dedicated announcement that appears when you first start Steam mentions SteamOS and Linux separately. What’s going on?
There are two possible explanations. One is that someone somewhere got lazy and just left the two icons, SteamOS and Linux, in the announcement. The second explanation would be that Valve is working to replace the Tux Linux symbol with the SteamOS symbol in the gaming community’s conscience.
Whatever the reason, it’s strange to see that happening and we hope that nothing will happen in the near future that will make us pay attention at games aimed at SteamOS and Linux.