This isn't an issue, but more of the steps that I've taken to ensure that steam proton works with my system and setup.
The focus of this was to play elden ring mainly, but now that it's set up right, I can play most of my steam library with minimum issues.
First off, I have tried steam native and steam runtime, but they have not worked. From research, most people have said that their issue was fixed by using steam flatpak, but I cannot confirm if that's what allowed the issue to be fixed as it was a combination of multiple things.
After that, I looked at all of the proton builds installed and installed proton ge for flatpak from pacman.
Another issue was permissions and my external SSD. Since my external SSD was formatted as exfat, it does not play well with Steam because it requires user permissions, which exfat does not have on its own. I have tried fstab using special flags, but in the end I decided to just format the drive to ext4 and reinstall all the games.
A weird issue that I've had is that Elden Ring will not work on my main luks drive on the laptop, but will work when installed on the external SSD, not sure if this is a game specific issue or not.
Lastly, I used the
command to view installed packages and saw that I had lib32-amdvlk installed, while my system has NVIDIA graphics. I have removed the package to prevent any further issues and then restarted my system.
Upon startup, steam works fine running on flatpak. In order to let the steam flatpak access my external ssd, I have used the flatseal package in order to add the file path manually.
After all of these changes, and using the latest proton ge version on flatpak, all of the games that I have tried in my library work (especially Elden Ring).
Hopefully this helps some other people out with their steam issues.