System Shock: Enhanced Edition How to Fix No Music on Steam Deck

System Shock: Enhanced Edition How to Fix No Music on Steam Deck 1 -
System Shock: Enhanced Edition How to Fix No Music on Steam Deck 1 -

Out of the box, there is no music when playing on Steam Deck. Fix inside.


Greetings, Hacker.
The game has no music on Steam Deck, because Steam Deck’s Linux setup has no MIDI service installed.
So, all we have to do is install one, and then tell Steam to launch it when runnning this game.
Sounds simple right?
It is, mostly. But for now installing a MIDI service requires disabling Steam Deck’s read-only state, and running some terminal commands. I will tell you exactly what you have to do, so don’t worry if you are not familar with Linux.
That means that a Steam Deck system update may remove the MIDI service we are installing. If that happens you can just do these steps again.
I will investigate a Flatpak-based MIDI service, which will allow the MIDI service to persist between Steam Deck updates. But for now, you can do these steps to get music Now.
Time to do some hacking, Hacker.

1. Install MIDI/Soundfont rendering engine (Fluidsynth)

First, be aware that we are installing a software package to Steam Deck’s Linux system. This should have no adverse effects, other than it will be undone the next time your Deck gets a system update (as Deck system updates replace the entire Linux system partition).
Got that? Okay, let’s begin.
First, go to Desktop Mode.
Then, open the start menu and go to System > Konsole. this opens a Linux console terminal.
Adjust the window so that it fills the top half of the screen, this will let it cooperate well with the popup keyboard.
You may use the Deck popup keyboard (Steam + X) to enter commands. Make sure to press Enter after you type each one.

steamos-readonly disable

and hit Enter to allow installing system packages.
Now, we must set up Pacman, which is Arch Linux’s software distribution service, in order to install the MIDI service.
Before that, we need to assign a password for Deck’s linux user. This won’t require you to log in anywhere, it is only needed for doing things in the terminal.
Enter the command


You will be prompted to enter a password. Choose any password you want, but remember it for later. I suggest ‘deck’.
Now, we initialize Pacman. Enter both of these commands:

sudo pacman-key --init
sudo pacman-key -u
sudo pacman-key --populate

This will prompt you to enter the password you created earlier.
And finally, we can install the MIDI service.

sudo pacman -S fluidsynth

The capital letter matters.
Fluidsynth is the name of the MIDI engine. It will prompt you to press Y on the keyboard to continue. You may use the Deck popup keyboard to do so.
Lastly, enter

steamos-readonly enable

to lock the Deck’s system partition again.
What we installed was just the MIDI engine, but it has no sound files to use yet.
Now we need to download a MIDI soundfont, which is a file that contains all the audio data of all the instruments.

2. Get a soundfont

You have several options. Unlimited, really, but here’s just a couple:

Go to either webpage on your Deck in desktop mode and download the zip. Find the .sf2 file inside and extract it to your Home/Music folder.
The guide will assume you chose WeedsGM4.sf2, simply replace this filename in the next section with whatever soundfont you downloaded if you got something else.
You shouldn’t have to do this part again if Deck has a system update, because we are saving it to your Home partition. The Home partition is not reset by Deck system updates.

3. Edit game’s launch options

Now that the MIDI engine and soundfont are installed, we must tell Steam to run them when launching the game. In Desktop mode, open your Steam library, right click System Shock: Enhanded Edition, and select Properties.
In the Launch Options field, copy and paste all of this:

fluidsynth -is -a pulseaudio ~/Music/WeedsGM4.sf2 & %command% ; killall -9 fluidsynth

If you got a soundfont other than WeedsGM4, be sure that you replace ‘WeedsGM4.sf2’ in the above line with the appropriate filename!
That command looks like a lot of stuff, let me break it down for you if it looks scary.
The first part tells Steam to launch fluidsynth, telling it to launch in background mode and tells it which soundfont to load.
The & tells Steam to launch the first part in the background, and then launch the second part.
The second part, %command%, tells Steam it should now launch the game itself (System Shock)
The ; tells Steam to wait until the game exits before executing the last part of the line.
The last part, killall -9 fluidsynth, tells Steam to close the MIDI engine once you exit the game so that it does not continue to use system resources.

4. The End?

Now, if you go back to Gaming Mode and launch the game, you should hear music once you hit the main menu.
If you hear nothing, make sure you installed your soundfont to the right place (/home/deck/Music) and that the filename matches what you put into the Steam launch options.
Enjoy the game!
Please check out my Deck controller preset “Deck SS2-Esque”! I think it does a good job of boiling down SS1’s complex UI into something very usable on a controller, and eliminates a lot of the tedium of picking up items in this game.

Written by Big Trov

This is all for System Shock: Enhanced Edition How to Fix No Music on Steam Deck hope you enjoy the post. If you believe we forget or we should update the post please let us know via comment, we will try our best to fix how fast is possible! Have a great day!

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