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Valve announced on Thursday that its previously invite-only Steam client for Linux is now available for all to download, test out and submit feedback. The announcement came shortly after Steam received a platform-wide update, with Valve welcoming Linux gamers to the service in what is turning out to be a very interesting year for the publisher.

At present there are a total of 39 games that will run on the Linux platform including the much celebrated free-to-play Team Fortress 2 and terrifying horror puzzler Amnesia: The Dark Descent. The open beta comes only weeks after co-founder and managing director Gabe Newell’s admission that gamers will be able to buy a living room-optimised games console running Steam some time in 2013, with many signs pointing to a Linux-powered machine.

One such sign came when software engineer Drew Bliss declared Linux to be more viable than Windows 8 for gaming at this year’s Ubuntu Developer Summit. Valve also added Big Picture mode to all three versions of Steam which transforms the client into a controller-friendly full-screen interface with the click of a button.

The Steam download page recommends Linux gamers use Ubuntu 12.04 LTS as a base, though there are all manner of hardware and software configurations being discussed over at the official Steam Linux community group. Valve have also establish a GitHub bug reporting repository which users can use to submit any problems they encounter.

Grab the Steam for Linux Beta @ SteamPowered.com

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Source: Steam Blog

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