It has been a little over a month since the Steam Deck officially started shipping, with Gaben himself even hand delivering some of them. With more than a handful of the device out in the wild, Valve is making sure to keep its fans update with development progress and plans for the future.
In a post to the Steam community website, the developers shared plenty of information, including their priorities regarding anti-cheat, improving the on-screen keyboard, and goals to improve the Steam Deck’s battery life, just to name a few. You can check out the detailed press release and update video right down below.
Deck Verified: 2000 strong and growing
In just one month we’ve passed a huge milestone with 2000 games now officially Deck Verified or Playable. It’s been exciting to see the variety of games the community has been playing – new or old, big or small, every genre – it seems like players have been having a ton of fun on Deck. We’re going to continue charging through the Steam catalog and can’t wait to share the next big milestone here. We’re also listening carefully to customer feedback in this space, as we want to make sure the Deck Verified program is doing its job. To that end we’ve added a Feedback feature allowing customers to signal whether they agree or disagree with the Verified rating for each title.
One of our top priorities is to support as many titles on Steam as possible, and this includes titles that employ anti-cheat technology. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of developers, service providers, and Proton contributors we’ve made great progress in bringing these games to the Steam Deck community. The two biggest anti-cheat services, BattlEye and Easy Anti-Cheat, now have a streamlined path for developers that choose to enable support for Proton and Steam Deck. Elden Ring and Apex Legends are two examples of games which are taking advantage of this work, so far.
Steam Store and your Library
We’ve spent some time making the Steam Store more responsive and snappier on Deck. Plus we get that navigating through libraries can be unwieldy if you have a ton of games, so we’ve made it easier with fast scrolling. We’ve also added the ability to create dynamic collections within your library based on tags and other game characteristics.
…and connecting you to games beyond Steam
We worked closely with Microsoft to bring Xbox Cloud Gaming to Steam Deck users through the Microsoft Edge browser, and members of the community contributed to the Edge Flatpak that makes this accessible on Steam Deck. To enable input for Edge (a Chromium-based browser), we collaborated with the Google Chrome team on adding native support for the Deck controller, so it can be detected directly by websites.
Since launch we’ve improved the on-screen keyboard experience as well. Dual trackpad typing is now available, the game mode keyboard is now available in Desktop mode, and we’ve even added a bunch of new keyboard themes so you can pick whatever suits your typing mood.
Finding ways to improve battery life for Steam Deck is always high on our list. We find that depending on what you’re doing, you can expect between 2 and 8 hours of gameplay, but if you want to optimize for battery life even further there are additional options. In the past month we added the ability to reduce your framerate allll the way down to 15 fps (this setting works great for visual novels, puzzles and a lot of simulation games). And for those who love to tinker, we’ve made TDP (processor power), GPU Clock control, and FSR (screen scaling) settings available to optimize power even further.
While there is still driver work to do, you can now install Windows 10 (and soon, 11). We’ve been working with AMD and other partners and have been making steady progress on Windows Drivers. fTPM support is currently in beta, and once that ships Windows 11 can be installed. The last big piece is Windows audio drivers, and we hope to share good news about that soon.
Did we mention it’s a PC?
In the month since Steam Deck launched, we’ve seen folks using it as their work computer and main desktop; we’ve seen people using it to write code and for 3D modeling; and we’ve even seen the community starting to write software specifically for Steam Deck.
Planes, trains, and automobiles
And buses, parking lots, etc. People are sharing stories (and pictures) of how Steam Deck is keeping them busy (or happily distracted) while commuting, while waiting, and even while their kids are busy in an after-school class. We’re looking forward to seeing where you play yours next.
Speaking of what’s next (for us): More to come
Our goal continues to be finding ways to improve your experience on Steam Deck, and that means we’ll keep listening for your feedback. Please get in touch with us in the forums, and if you’re experiencing any issues with your Steam Deck, don’t hesitate to report the bug (we made a quick link to this available in the Quick Access Menu).
The Steam Deck is available now for reservations, with three different variations available for purchase. Anyone interested can head on over to the following link – just don’t expect to get it anytime soon, as shipping dates are slated for after Q3 (October 2022 or later).