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Proton Experimental update makes Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty just about playable on Steam Deck

It requires some warm up time for texture caching.

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty’s latest demo has been unplayable on Steam Deck since it was released. Users could get through the introductory cutscene and were then treated to an endless black screen until they quit. However, a new update for Proton Experimental now allows Steam Deck users to play the demo, though it still doesn’t run that well.

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Related: What is the release date of Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty?

Proton Experimental is an advanced branch of the Steam Deck’s software that you can switch to ahead of its official rollout to all users. A recent update to the latest branch contains performance improvements that now allow Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty to run. YouTuber Steam Deck Gaming has shown the demo in action, and while it does allow you to play the game, it doesn’t look very good and has several stability issues.

Much the same as PC users have been reporting, Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty runs very poorly on Steam Deck. Once you’re into the game, it lags and stutters with an abysmal framerate for the first ten minutes or so. This is thought to be due to a texture caching issue frontloading everything in the area, causing the game to start slow and speed up over time as you play. Even once things level out, you need to move everything in the settings down to performance mode just to see what you’re doing. If not, the stuttering is so bad that you’ll die to the nimble enemies and brutal combat before you have a chance to draw your sword.

Related: Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty recommended specs and minimum PC requirements

Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty may not be optimized for Steam Deck, but it is meant to be playable on PC. With so many performance issues still being reported, it’s hard to say if the game will be playable from start to finish on the platform when it launches in a couple of days. The fact that you can play it on Steam Deck is a good sign for Valve’s handheld device. FromSoftware’s Elden Ring is Verified and runs well on it, and fans of the genre will be eager to jump into a similar adventure in Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty.

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Jamie Moorcroft-Sharp
Jamie Moorcroft-Sharp is a Staff Writer at Gamepur. He's been writing about games for ten years and has been featured in Switch Player Magazine, Lock-On, and For Gamers Magazine. He's particularly keen on working out when he isn't playing games or writing or trying to be the best dad in the world.