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The Steam Deck | Review Mega Thread

Draugoth

Member
Previous Thread


Frequently Asked Questions

The Steam Deck is finally released, does this mean I can pay for it now?

No, not necessarily.
Each week Valve will send out purchase emails in the order of the queue for your model and region. The only users who will be able to make a purchase today are those at the beginning of the queue in Q1. You will only be asked to pay when your unit is ready to ship.

How long do I have to purchase my Steam Deck when I receive my email?

After receiving your email you will have 72 hours to complete your purchase. If you do not complete your purchase in this window, your place in line will be surrendered and reservation will be canceled. Reserving another Steam Deck will put you at the end of that respective queue.

Can I change what version of the Steam Deck I want to buy when it's my time to purchase?

No.
You cannot change the model of Steam Deck that you reserved. If you want a different model, you must cancel your reservation and make a new one with the model you wish. Note that this will put you at the end of that respective queue.

What about the Steam Deck official dock? Can I buy that when I check-out too?

As far as we know currently, no. Valve has said that the official dock will be available for purchase in late Spring 2022.

What purchase methods can I use to pay for my Steam Deck?

You will be able to use any payment method you normally use on Steam to purchase your Steam Deck. This includes credit card, PayPal, and Steam Wallet funds.

What comes in the box?

The Steam Deck ships with a carrying case (with the Steam Deck already inside), a microfiber cloth, and a 45 watt USB-C AC power adapter for your region. No other additional accessories.

I have another question that isn't answered here about the Steam Deck or the ordering process!

We will add additional FAQ answers here that we see asked here in the comments and the subreddit. Please take a look at these additional great resources:

Valve Steam Deck FAQ

Steam Deck Enhanced FAQ by u/Servor


Price Chart:







Positives:
  • Powerful, high-quality hardware at an unheard-of price
  • Infinitely customizable controls make decades of games playable
  • Easily lets you balance performance and battery drain
  • Suspend and resume games
  • Doubles as a full Linux PC
  • Your Steam library anywhere, anytime
  • Even AAA games run smoothly
  • Massive potential for PC wizards and emulator fans
  • Comfortable to hold, with controls that feel great
  • Keeps cool where you hold it
  • Most games run fine off SD card
  • Anti-glare display is excellent

Negatives:
  • Unfinished, buggy software
  • Noisy fan almost never stops whining
  • Some of the most popular games still don’t work
  • Two hours or less of battery life at highest fidelity
  • Ridiculously large and heavy
  • Incomplete Steam library support
  • Bluetooth issues
  • Sweaty Palm Syndrome

Scores:

PC Gamer - 85/100
Right now it's a handheld gaming system first and foremost, and it does that so well it's almost comical how much cheaper it is than other handheld PCs, which tend to cost around $1,000. It doesn't even make sense to call them competitors. The Steam Deck is in a class of its own.
The Verge- 6.5/10.0
When I flew to Valve’s headquarters last August to see the Steam Deck, I told you why I was putting money down: I loved the idea of taking my PC games on the go, resuming them right where I left off on my desktop, finally having the time to play through Control and Resident Evil 2 and Fallout 4 and The Witcher 3 and a mountain of indie games I used to wait years to buy on Switch because that’s the only way I found enough time to see them through. So far, that’s the one part of the Steam Deck that’s largely working out, and I can only hope it’ll get better.
GamesRadar - 4.5/5.0
Steam Deck will be part of a PC gaming revolution, but early adopters should be ready to play their part in that journey.
Eurogamer - 3.0/5.0
Yes, there are still many improvements that need to be made at the software level and I can't help feel that elements like fan noise and battery life can only be resolved with a revised processor on a more efficient process node. And despite having hardware in hand for a while now, there are still many questions we need to answer - such as how well the handheld ideal holds up with Windows installed, for one. There've been many challenges in reviewing Steam Deck and many frustrations over the last couple of weeks. However, when the 'wins' started to roll in, I only only became more intrigued and excited about the system and the potential it offers. Reviewing Steam Deck is essentially reviewing a PC, which can be done in any number of different and interesting way. And with that in mind, I can't wait to read other reviews and to find out what other surprises the system may have to offer.
Tom's Hardware - 4.0/ 5.0
Valve's Steam Deck is a powerful, flexible gaming handheld that feels great and lets you take your games on the go. Just don't expect it to last too long, and know that some games may not work perfectly out of the box.
Engadget - 81/100
The Steam Deck is a Frankenstein synthesis of a Wii U and a Vita, but with Valve’s DNA coursing through its cables. It’s a Steam Controller and a Steam Machine in one hefty package, and I’ve come to appreciate it for what it does best. The Steam Deck isn’t a mobile device to take on your everyday commute; it’s a Steam library extender, opening up new places to play around the house. I wouldn’t recommend the Steam Deck as an introduction to PC gaming, but for millions of existing Steam users, it’s worth the price of entry, even if you just play a few times a month, two hours at a time.
Wccftech - 8.6/10.0
Valve's next major hardware project is a portable powerhouse that can handle the majority of what you can throw at it, although it might take some tweaks here and there to get that true PC experience. For all but a small sliver of the Steam back catalog, there will be some tweaks or setup necessary to make each game shine.
Mashable -4.0/5.0
There's a lot to like about the Steam Deck, but it's not its most perfect self at launch.
Techradar - 4.5/5.0
The Steam Deck is a brilliant gaming device that should appeal to PC gamers looking for a way to play their games while on the go, but who don’t fancy a gaming laptop. For console gamers who want a polished, straightforward experience, knock half a star off our score, but don’t discount the Steam Deck either.
Trusted Reviews - 4.5/5.0
The Steam Deck is a more powerful alternative to the Nintendo Switch, capable of playing virtually any PC game on the go. Performance is excellent for a portable, with SteamOS offering a console-like experience, while still retaining all of the versatility of a PC. Battery life isn’t great when playing demanding games, but the Steam Deck remains the absolute best option for portable PC gaming.

Videos Reviews

Digital Foundry:


PC Gamer:


Linus Tech Tips:


Gamer Nexus:


Publication Reviews

 
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Banjo64

Gold Member
I’m glad for people who want this, it seems like a very capable machine. It does nothing for me personally, as sad as it sounds I can’t get over the visual appearance.
 

Romulus

Member
seeing this thing run Doom Eternal at ultra settings compared to something like Switch's abomination is hilarious. It's not even optimized for SD either despite it being fine-tuned for Switch. Newer hardware of course, but damn
 

Spacefish

Member
They need to hurry up and make a v2, hopefully smaller and with a nicer screen. The thing I want the most is an extra usb-c on the bottom with a seamless dock like the switch, my launch switch has shit battery life but I barely even notice since I never play for more than 3 hours and docking it requires no effort.
 

Inviusx

Member
Seems like a neat experiment on Valves behalf but the end result is just 30fps PC games at low settings on a small screen.

Not sure who the target market is for this.
 
Seems like a neat experiment on Valves behalf but the end result is just 30fps PC games at low settings on a small screen.

Not sure who the target market is for this.
Nope. Have you watched a single review. Most recent or semi-recent AAA games can run at 720-800p at a solid 30 with a mix of medium-high settings (and many just on high across the board).
 

Robb

Gold Member
Sounds like a good piece of hardware, although I’d wait until the second iteration before jumping in.
 

Zuzu

Member
In some ways it's impressive but I find it hard to really want one when it doesn't have an OLED screen. I've experienced the Switch's OLED and it's amazing. I don't wanna go back to an LCD with poor colour calibration like the Deck has.
 

Orta

console wars 2020 - participant
Very cool gadget but end of the day, we're obsessive PC gamers and aren't going to put up with this thing chugging along 12 months down the line with new releases regardless of its hardware.

It does give a tantalising glimpse at what Nintendo will be aiming for or to surpass with a new Switch however.
 
Sounds like I would be better off waiting for v2 for a better hardware and software experience. Guess that’s fitting since you can’t buy one anyway
 
Negatives:
  • Unfinished, buggy software
  • Noisy fan almost never stops whining
  • Some of the most popular games still don’t work
  • Two hours or less of battery life at highest fidelity
  • Ridiculously large and heavy
  • Incomplete Steam library support
  • Bluetooth issues
  • Sweaty Palm Syndrome

I'd say the biggest negatives right now are:
1 - No dual-boot yet. Apparently it's either/or with SteamOS and Windows.
2 - No Windows drivers. I really don't want to be stuck with Steam games right now, considering I also have games on GoG, Gamepass, EGS, Origin, etc.


Eurogamer - 3.0/5.0
Where is this 3 out of 5 coming from? I don't see any score on Eurogamer's page.
 
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Saber

Member
DF speak goods things about it, which is kinda cool. My only concern is how good the dpad holds. But the games showed running on it looks damn impressive.
 

Esppiral

Member
I was expecting PS4 level of graphics at 1080, but o lord into low 20 when a game is running at 1080p does not look promising at all.
 
I'm getting two, a must have for portable gaming especially if you have a large steam library.

For a small screen, 720p is more than enough

If I could handle Doom Eternal on the Switch, I would totally appreciate Doom Eternal on Steam Deck
 
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Skifi28

Member
It'll be interesting to see how people used to playing at 100+ fps can go back to playing at 30 for many recent releases.
 
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SoraNoKuni

Member
My only concern right now is Size and Screen, if the next iteration manages to have the same screen inches or more and be kinda smaller(node shrink maybe will help), I'll certainly grab one, I was on the fence for this as well, I am sure the community will make it really awesome for emulation and a lot of other stuff.
 

Mr Hyde

Member
Too bulky and heavy for my taste, but it got lots of good things going for it. The endless customization sounds very appealing for a handheld device. Maybe in the future Valve releases a somewhat sleeker and slimmer design. Maybe I'll bite then.
 

McCheese

Member
As someone who uses my switch docked most of the time, the way the performance tanks at higher resolutions on the deck is making me really consider cancelling my Q1 preorder. I wanted a hybrid PC for older games on the go, not a portable console that struggles above 800p
 

Redneckerz

Those long posts don't cover that red neck boy
I am one of those who finds this absolutely fascinating and am actually considering buying one later on down the line (say, Q4, when the most surgent issues are fixed and early bird/Q1/Q2 preorders are out).

I am not a hardcore gamer. I have a 1 litre mini PC with just enough juice to run PS360 games and older retro games (which is my forte). My console: A used up X360 with way too many games i still need to play. By all means i am a gamer who does not want the most expensive gear to have a good time (To the point where i would consider a now still hypothetical HP Elitedesk mini 1 litre PC with Rembrandt APU to be the machine for me when it comes to simple yet effective gaming).

Getting what is essentially PS4 one performance at 720/800p means PS360 games will mostly fly (Enslaved still drops from 60 fps but okay) and for the base price of 399, where ill just shell some extra dough for a large SD card, that is rather a steal.

So consider me fascinated. Even with the suboptimal screen, i am more than forgiving considering what it can pump out. In a way it reminds me of the Sega Nomad and Atari Lynx - Also huge handhelds that held amazing power (And when it came to the Lynx, it actually beated certain consoles at the time) at the cost of battery.

As someone who uses my switch docked most of the time, the way the performance tanks at higher resolutions on the deck is making me really consider cancelling my Q1 preorder.
If that is what makes you consider cancelling, then you have had unrealistic expectations in check. Valve made it abundantly clear that the Steam Deck is mean't to play PS4/XBO and a little beyond games at 720p/800p resolution at 30 FPS - And it achieves this mostly so. The closest current-gen competitor to this is the Series S, so it will be interesting to see how the Steam Deck will fare against the Series S versions. Sometimes these get hamstrung, but perhaps if Steam Deck is succesful, devs will optimize more for the Series S aswell - Which is a steal for the price it has.

I wanted a hybrid PC for older games on the go, not a portable console that struggles above 800p
That's literally what the Steam Deck can do. And again, the console is primarily made for 720/800p gaming on PS4/XBO equivalent titles. That it beasts Doom Eternal at Ultra settings at 60 fps is such a far cry (heh) from the Switch version at 720p (and lower) at 30 fps. It is a monumental leap in handheld gaming.

Again i feel your expectation is unrealistic, and that's not something Valve can solve.
 

Draugoth

Member
I'd say the biggest negatives right now are:
1 - No dual-boot yet. Apparently it's either/or with SteamOS and Windows.
2 - No Windows drivers. I really don't want to be stuck with Steam games right now, considering I also have games on GoG, Gamepass, EGS, Origin, etc.



Where is this 3 out of 5 coming from? I don't see any score on Eurogamer's page.

Google Search shows as 3.0/5.0
 

McCheese

Member
I am one of those who finds this absolutely fascinating and am actually considering buying one later on down the line (say, Q4, when the most surgent issues are fixed and early bird/Q1/Q2 preorders are out).

I am not a hardcore gamer. I have a 1 litre mini PC with just enough juice to run PS360 games and older retro games (which is my forte). My console: A used up X360 with way too many games i still need to play. By all means i am a gamer who does not want the most expensive gear to have a good time (To the point where i would consider a now still hypothetical HP Elitedesk mini 1 litre PC with Rembrandt APU to be the machine for me when it comes to simple yet effective gaming).

Getting what is essentially PS4 one performance at 720/800p means PS360 games will mostly fly (Enslaved still drops from 60 fps but okay) and for the base price of 399, where ill just shell some extra dough for a large SD card, that is rather a steal.

So consider me fascinated. Even with the suboptimal screen, i am more than forgiving considering what it can pump out. In a way it reminds me of the Sega Nomad and Atari Lynx - Also huge handhelds that held amazing power (And when it came to the Lynx, it actually beated certain consoles at the time) at the cost of battery.


If that is what makes you consider cancelling, then you have had unrealistic expectations in check. Valve made it abundantly clear that the Steam Deck is mean't to play PS4/XBO and a little beyond games at 720p/800p resolution at 30 FPS - And it achieves this mostly so. The closest current-gen competitor to this is the Series S, so it will be interesting to see how the Steam Deck will fare against the Series S versions. Sometimes these get hamstrung, but perhaps if Steam Deck is succesful, devs will optimize more for the Series S aswell - Which is a steal for the price it has.


That's literally what the Steam Deck can do. And again, the console is primarily made for 720/800p gaming on PS4/XBO equivalent titles. That it beasts Doom Eternal at Ultra settings at 60 fps is such a far cry (heh) from the Switch version at 720p (and lower) at 30 fps. It is a monumental leap in handheld gaming.

Again i feel your expectation is unrealistic, and that's not something Valve can solve.

You are spot on, it’s a great device. I have not had a PC for almost a decade so was really expecting this to be fine with older games on a 1080p or even 1440p monitor but it seems the bus speeds cripple it at higher resolutions regardless of how intense the game is.

It’s an amazing portable system and for its native resolution is well specced, but not the cheap 1440p Civ 6 machine I was hoping it might also be.
 
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Marvel14

Member
Conclusions:

1. It's a great system for technically adept gamers.

2. Lacks mainstream appeal due to complexity of configurable options, super short battery for high end games and subpar portability.

I can see a subset of PC, PS and Xbox gamers getting it...but it is not a mass market device-Yet.
 

Redneckerz

Those long posts don't cover that red neck boy
You are spot on, it’s a great device. I have not had a PC for almost a decade so was really expecting this to be fine with older games on a 1080p or even 1440p monitor but it seems the bus speeds cripple it at higher resolutions regardless of how intense the game is.
Seems to hit 60 fps on a lot of PS360 games.

88 GB/s is no slouch. 1080p would be the max though.
It’s an amazing portable system and for its native resolution is well specced, but not the cheap 1440p Civ 6 machine I was hoping it might also be.
You were expecting 1440p..... on a machine designed for 800p at high settings... and that has about oomph to do titles at 1080p.

Star Trek What GIF
 

CrustyBritches

Gold Member
Mainstream reviewers are looking at it from the perspective of an end-user similar to a Switch player because they were given the review guidelines from Valve and so they reviewed it like console or a phone instead of a umpc/handheld PC.

The actual market for this thing, the people that pre-ordered it within the first hour on July 16th, are not going to be looking at it from the perspective of a dummy user. It will be the GPD Win/Aya Neo/OneXPlayer crowd who likes to tweak and tinker. I ordered the second it went live and it didn't process my first order until like 8-10min later, then another after 13min. I'm in Q2(April, May, June). It will have been on the market for at least 6 months before random non-enthusiast could possibly receive it. The community tweaks and fixes that will happen during that time, along with Valve's own updates, will iron out many of the issues before your typical Verge or GameSpot viewer will be able to get it.

Not blaming the reviewers, it's just most of the industry-standard reviews are not for the actual people who will be getting the system(exception being guys like Phawx and GN).
 
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Deerock71

Member
Seems like a neat experiment on Valves behalf but the end result is just 30fps PC games at low settings on a small screen.

Not sure who the target market is for this.
This is the mystery wrapped in the riddle. They aren't poaching Nintendo fans, and they aren't poaching these:
South Park Wow GIF

From the front of their specced out 240 fps curved monitors.
 

Bakkus

Member
I know the batterty life sucks for the biggest AAA games, but how is it for indie darlings like Hollow Knight, Super Meat Boy, Cuphead, Undertale, etc?
 

Deerock71

Member
I know the batterty life sucks for the biggest AAA games, but how is it for indie darlings like Hollow Knight, Super Meat Boy, Cuphead, Undertale, etc?
Safe to say less than the Switch. Battery and screens are in Nintendo's favor.
 
On the gamespot video review, as they flick though there library tabs, its pretty interesting which ones are missing.

Also got to give props for mgsv and revengeance being on there fav list, good taste
 
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Bakkus

Member
Safe to say less than the Switch. Battery and screens are in Nintendo's favor.
True, but this looks to have a far better controller than those crappy joycons. And Steam also has a WAY bigger library of games. I have never played my Switch in portable mode and probably never will.
 

Inanilmaz

Member
In some ways it's impressive but I find it hard to really want one when it doesn't have an OLED screen. I've experienced the Switch's OLED and it's amazing. I don't wanna go back to an LCD with poor colour calibration like the Deck has.
Same. Gonna wait for a stronger model with OLED, even if i need to wait forever.
 

CrustyBritches

Gold Member
Safe to say less than the Switch. Battery and screens are in Nintendo's favor.
Is that safe to say? I'd like to see a normal Switch(non-oled) up against the Deck in TW3 and DOOM Eternal at the same settings. For DOOM Eternal that would be 360p-612p, 30fps, lowest settings.
 
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Deerock71

Member
Is that safe to say? I'd like to see a normal Switch(non-oled) up against the Deck in TW3 and DOOM Eternal at the same settings. For DOOM Eternal that would be 360p-612p, 30fps, lowest settings.
He was asking about indie darlings. Doom and Witcher 3 probably wouldn't qualify.
 

Mr Branding

Member
It all comes down to games and instead of paying full prices for year old games with weak performance on the eshop, I’d rather get the same games for a fraction of the price on a steam sale. Also, let’s not ignore the quantity of quality titles available on steam.
Some of the review scores in the op are bogus, dunno what that’s all about.
Q2 lesssgo
 
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