Linux is making great strides when it comes to desktop gaming. The ongoing development of software like Wine, Proton, and Lutris makes it evident that gamers have now started considering Linux distros for their gaming needs. Valve is also at the forefront of developing gaming-related software and hardware compatible with Linux.
Thanks to the rapid advancements made in the Linux gaming industry, you can now enjoy Rocket League on your Linux desktop, with minimum hassles out of the box. Here’s how to install Rocket League and “kick-start” your soccer journey on Linux.
Step 1: Claim Rocket League on the Epic Games Store
Before you can play Rocket League on Linux, you need to own the game. Don’t worry, you don’t have to pay for anything since Rocket League is free-to-play for all. You can claim it on the Epic Games Store and add it to your gaming collection, without spending a dime.
To start, head over to the Rocket League Epic Games Store page and click the Get button on the right. It will prompt you to log in to your account. If you don’t have an account already, create one using the sign-up form provided. Once logged in, follow the on-screen instructions to claim and add the game to your library.
Step 2: Download and Install Heroic Games Launcher
Now that you own the game, it’s time to install Heroic Games Launcher, which is a third-party client for the Epic Games Launcher. On Arch Linux and its derivatives, you can install the package from the AUR:
yay -S heroic-games-launcher-bin
Debian and Ubuntu users can download the official DEB file from the GitHub Releases page and install it manually using dpkg.
Download: Heroic Games Launcher
Enter the following command to install the DEB package:
sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/heroic_*.deb
There’s also an AppImage file on the GitHub Releases page. If you prefer AppImages over other distro-agnostic packaging formats, you can choose to download that instead. All you need to do is grant execute permissions to the downloaded file using the chmod command and launch the app by double-clicking the file.
On other Linux distributions, you can install the launcher package using Flatpak. But first, you should check if Flatpak is installed on your system or not. If not, you can follow our detailed guide on installing and using Flatpak for Linux.
Issue the following command to download Heroic using Flatpak:
flatpak install flathub com.heroicgameslauncher.hgl
Step 3: Download Rocket League on Linux
Launch Heroic by either accessing it from the Applications menu or entering heroic in the terminal. Upon launch, you’ll find an option to log in using your Epic Games account. Click on the Log In button and enter your account credentials to continue.
Once logged in, click on the Library option from the left sidebar to view all the games owned by you. Select Rocket League from the list of games (or search for it) and click on the Install button to continue. You can either choose to continue with the default settings or change the path of the game files and Wine. Click on Install once done.
Heroic Games Launcher will now start downloading the game for you. This may take some time depending on your internet speed.
While the game downloads, you can set up Wine by clicking on the Wine Manager option located at the bottom-left of the window. The recommended route is to download the latest packages for all the three available compatibility layers: Wine-GE, Wine-Lutris, and Proton-GE. This will save you some time if the game acts up on the default Wine configuration.
To do that, click on the Download icon next to the latest version of Wine. You can then switch to the next tab (i.e. Wine-Lutris) and do the same.
Once the Rocket League download finishes, click on the Play Now button to launch the game. You might see a prompt asking you to install Wine Mono and set up some configurations, but most of it is automated and you don’t have to do much, except click on Install.
Usually, Rocket League should work just fine without any manual configurations. But in case it doesn’t, you can click Settings to go to the configurations page. There, under the Wine Version label, select another version of Wine.
Heroic Games Launcher will automatically save the changes and you can run the game again by clicking Play Now.
If you’re coming from Windows and don’t find the Rocket League gameplay experience on Linux seamless, you can always tweak in-game settings such as resolution, maximum frame rate, texture quality, etc. to get the highest possible frame rates on your machine.
Rocket League’s ProtonDB Rankings
The current ProtonDB ranking for Rocket League is Platinum, meaning the game works perfectly out of the box. You can definitely improve the gameplay experience by performing some minor tweaks but usually, the game works, even though there’s no native Linux support for it.
Players have reported some issues like sudden dips in FPS and in-game text being too small, but none of it is extreme enough to impact the playability of the game.
Platinum is the highest ProtonDB ranking for non-native PC games, followed by Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Borked. Some titles including CS: GO, Payday 2, and DOTA 2 have the Native ranking, which is inarguably the best as it denotes native support for Linux offered by the game developers.
You Can Now Play Rocket League on Your Linux Desktop
Gaming on Linux has reached new heights that seemed impossible a few years back. Wine and Valve are dedicated to bringing the best gaming experience to Linux desktops, with their compatibility layer software, namely Wine and Proton.
The community is also doing an enormous job writing and developing drivers for gaming controllers and related hardware. With all of these forces combined, you can expect to see some major advancements in the Linux gaming world in the upcoming years.
This doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy playing games on Linux right now, however. In fact, it’s the complete opposite. There are several games for Linux, distributed in the Flatpak format, that are free to install and play for anyone interested.