2020-09-24

how to play life is strange with the japanese dlc on linux

at this point in time, 2020-07-10, it is possible to play life is strange with japanese audio and subtitles outside japan even on linux, if the user makes certain changes to the games files. i did not play long enough to check that this leads to a reliable full game experience, but it works in the menu and the beginning.

all commands are to be executed on a terminal. the steps are as follows

step 1: install windows steam with wine

  • the dlc is only installable on windows. but we can use wine
  • close any currently running steam client
  • go to the steam homepage and download the windows installer
  • run winecfg, and in the dropdown for the os version, select windows 10 or 8, save and close. steam cant be installed on some older windows versions
  • install steam in the wine environment by running wine SteamSetup.exe and following all steps
  • then close steam

step 2: add the language pack dlc

  • the dlc store page is region locked, but a steam install url works. usually, steam reacts to install links when clicking them in the browser but we want to use the wine installed steam
  • run wine "$HOME/.wine/drive_c/Program Files (x86)/Steam/Steam.exe" steam://install/425570
  • a dialog should open, asking you to install the game, accept and continue. this should not only start the installation of the game but also add the language pack dlc to your account
  • to verify that the dlc has been added to your account, check https://store.steampowered.com/account/licenses/
  • let the game installation finish and close steam

step 3: copy the language files

  • you could now play the game via wine, but this would probably have worse performance compared to the native version, especially if used without dxvk
  • copying the language files from the wine installation over to the linux installation basically just works - but there are many files at various deep paths and the linux game files are all lowercase
  • to solve this, you can use the ruby script shown below by creating a new text file in your home directory, for example with nano copy-lis-jpn.rb, and inserting the script text
  • you will need the ruby interpreter (a long standing popular language suited to the task, incidentally of japanese origin). you can uninstall it afterwards if you dont want to keep it
  • maybe check that the two paths under # config really exist on your system
  • run the script with ruby copy-lis-jpn.rb
  • the script checks if files are already copied, and if not, copies them and lowercases the file name. if all files are ready, the script ends with "done"
  • that should be it. the dlc is not listed in linux steam, but in-game, in the language settings, you should now be able to select the new audio and subtitle language
  • if everything works, you can uninstall the game in wine steam to free the disk space

copy-lis-jpn.rb

# config
source = "#{Dir.home}/.wine/drive_c/Program Files (x86)/Steam"
dest = "#{Dir.home}/.local/share/Steam"
# end config

require "fileutils"
# add the rest of the path prefix that is always the same
source = "#{source}/steamapps/common/Life Is Strange/LifeIsStrangeGame"
dest = "#{dest}/steamapps/common/Life Is Strange/share/data/lifeisstrangegame"
# get all source paths
paths = Dir.glob("#{source}/**/*JPN*")
# copy paths
paths.each {|a|
  # get the full destination path
  b = dest + a.gsub(source, "").downcase
  unless File.exist? b
    FileUtils.mkdir_p File.dirname b
    FileUtils.cp a, b
  end
}
puts "done"