Play MTG Arena on Linux

In this tutorial I will show you how to install Magic the Gathering Arena on Debian Stretch using PlayOnLinux.

My Setup

I tested the game on following system and am amazed how well it works.

  • Thinkpad T480s
    • Intel i5 8250U
    • Intel UHD 620 onboard GPU
    • 12 GB DDR4 Ram
    • Game Resolution of 1920*1080
    • Low graphic settings

Depending on your hardware specs, the graphics settings will vary. Having a dedicated GPU will benefit gameplay. I am content playing on low settings without the need of dedicated graphics.

PlayOnLinux

PlayOnLinux is a graphical frontend for Wine with which you can install Windows applications on Linux. Wine emulates the Windows runtime environment by translating Windows system calls into POSIX-compliant system calls.

Download MTG Arena

First download MTG Arena Windows executable from the official website: https://magic.wizards.com/en/mtgarena

Install PlayOnLinux on Debian Stretch

On Debian Stretch you have to add the contribution repository by adding it to /etc/apt/sources.list.

  • Edit /etc/apt/sources.list with the text editor of choice. Make sure to add contribto each source entry as demonstrated below.
deb http://deb.debian.org/debian/ stretch main non-free contrib
deb-src http://deb.debian.org/debian/ stretch main non-free contrib
  • Update system packages:

    sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade

  • Install PlayOnLinux:

    sudo apt-get install playonlinux

Other Linux distributions

PlayOnLinux packages are available for several Linux distributions including Ubuntu, Arch Linux and Fedora. You can download the appropiate package here: https://www.playonlinux.com/en/download.html or clone the git repository for the latest development version and build from source.

git clone https://github.com/PlayOnLinux/POL-POM-4

Installation

  • Start PlayOnLinux

Manage Wine Versions

  • First nagigate to Toolstab in the top menu bar and select Manage Wine Versions

  • Click on Tools in the upper navigation bar. From the dropdown select Manage Wine Versions and add 3.20. Do this for x86 and amd64.

Install the program

Now we will create the Windows virtual drive and install Magic the Gathering Arena!

  • Click the Install Button

  • In the install menu choose Install a non-listed program

  • Click on Next

  • Select Install a program in a new virtual drive

  • Name the virtual drive e.g. MTGA

  • Select Use another version of Wine
  • Select Configure Wine

  • Select 3.2

  • Select 64 bits windows installation


  • Install Mono and Gecko when prompted.

  • When the Wine configuration window appears, make sure that Windows 10is selected under the
  • Applications tab. This is crucial as the installer will crash if any other version is selected!

    • Then navigate to the Libraries tab and select d3dx11_43 to install DirectX 11. Click on Add and then on Apply.
  • Press the OK button to close the configuration window.


  • Point to the MTGAInstaller.exe Windows executable installation file and press Next

  • Install MTG Arena! Yaaaaay!

Final steps

After the installation of Magic the Gathering Arena has finished the Installation Wizard will guide you to some further few steps.

  • Select MTGA.exeto add a shortcut.
  • Then select I don't want to make another shortcut.

  • Name the shortcut e.g. MTGA.

Set the Video Memory size

  • Before you start the game, head to the Configure button (the one with the cog-wheel icon).
  • In the popup window select the newly created MTGA Windows virtual drive and select the Displaytab.
  • Leave all values at default except for Video memory size.
  • Set it to a minimum of 4096. (This is the maximum on my system - it might be higher depending on your system ressources).

    Play the Game

  • That’s it!

  • Play the game!

    Notes

  • The installation process might crash several times while downloading filess. If so, don’t give up and restart the process. The installer should continue downloading files.

  • I highly advice stopping any background applications or activities during installation. My

  • installation crashed several times while surfing the web.