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Steam Linux Beta client goes live

Limited access offered to participants of Linux testing

Valve has launched the beta client for Steam on Linux to selected participants.

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As Valve explains, "the Steam for Linux Beta client supports the free-to-play game Team Fortress 2. Approximately two dozen additional Steam titles are now also available for play on Linux systems. Additionally, the Steam for Linux Beta client includes Big Picture, the mode of Steam designed for use with a TV and controller, also currently in beta."

The Linux Beta client is currently available for installation on Ubuntu 12.04.

Valve began taking applications for beta participants last week. It said that, for more extensive beta testing, the company is seeking input from experienced Linux users. The firm says it received over 60,000 responses. Only one thousand slots were available.

The Beta client will, however, become available to a widening group of users over the course of the beta.

"This is a huge milestone in the development of PC gaming," says Valve boss Gabe Newell. "Steam users have been asking us to support gaming on Linux. We're happy to bring rich forms of entertainment and our community of users to this open, customer-friendly platform."

The company has previously outlined ambitions to create a Steam client for Ubuntu 12.04 that works as well as the Windows version, with a full library of games that begins with the release of Left 4 Dead 2.

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