34 votes

Steam Deck launch day megathread

The Steam Deck is launching today and the embargo on review units will be lifted. Use this thread to post any and all noteworthy coverage, information, or thoughts.

49 comments

  1. [6]
    lou
    (edited )
    Link
    Linus Tech Tips: The Steam Deck is incomplete. Gamer Nexus: Steam Deck 1-Month Review: SteamOS Difficulties, Software, & User Experience. Gamespot: Steam Deck Review. Digital Foundry: Steam Deck...
    10 votes
    1. [2]
      kfwyre
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      PC Gamer: The Steam Deck is already the emulation system of my dreams
      5 votes
      1. spctrvl
        Link Parent
        I hope the steam deck gets the attention of emulator dev communities, from videos I've seen it looks like PS3 and Wii U emulation are already close to full speed, even without any specific...

        I hope the steam deck gets the attention of emulator dev communities, from videos I've seen it looks like PS3 and Wii U emulation are already close to full speed, even without any specific optimization and on demanding games like BotW and Persona 5.

        5 votes
  2. [15]
    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    According to SteamDB, which is tracking the status of Deck Verified games, we are at the following numbers at the date of release (with likely more to come): 433 Verified 398 Playable 389...

    According to SteamDB, which is tracking the status of Deck Verified games, we are at the following numbers at the date of release (with likely more to come):

    427 433 Verified
    399 398 Playable
    389 Unsupported


    EDIT: Valve has added an official compatibility status page here. You can log in and and see your library sorted into the different categories.

    I couldn't figure out how to access it from within Steam itself and had to use a browser, but if anyone's able to find within the program itself, let us know.

    8 votes
    1. [6]
      Protected
      Link Parent
      Only 186 games in the Unsupported list are not VR games. I'm wondering, does unsupported mean "Unsupported because these are actually VR games and the Steam Deck is not VR equipment" or...

      Only 186 games in the Unsupported list are not VR games. I'm wondering, does unsupported mean "Unsupported because these are actually VR games and the Steam Deck is not VR equipment" or "Unsupported if you attempt to plug your VR headset to the Deck to play this game in particular"?

      4 votes
      1. [5]
        Seven
        Link Parent
        It's the former. People have attempted to play VR games with the Deck before and it does work, just not super well obviously.

        It's the former. People have attempted to play VR games with the Deck before and it does work, just not super well obviously.

        6 votes
        1. [4]
          SunSpotter
          Link Parent
          Does that mean VR would work on desktop once SteamOS 3.0 becomes available as a public download? Seems like I remember hearing VR can be dodgy on Linux, but if Valve has patched that up and it's...

          Does that mean VR would work on desktop once SteamOS 3.0 becomes available as a public download? Seems like I remember hearing VR can be dodgy on Linux, but if Valve has patched that up and it's just a matter of hardware capability this is actually great news.

          1 vote
          1. [2]
            Diff
            Link Parent
            SteamOS 3.0 won't have any secret VR sauce since the device it was made for isn't really capable of VR. It'll be even dodgier than a normal Linux PC since it doesn't have the raw power most VR...

            SteamOS 3.0 won't have any secret VR sauce since the device it was made for isn't really capable of VR. It'll be even dodgier than a normal Linux PC since it doesn't have the raw power most VR games demand.

            2 votes
            1. SunSpotter
              Link Parent
              I'm not sure it's a matter of power, in the case of a dedicated PC install. But if the optimization and secret sauce as you say isn't there, then who knows. It does seem like in previous...

              doesn't have the raw power most VR games demand

              I'm not sure it's a matter of power, in the case of a dedicated PC install. But if the optimization and secret sauce as you say isn't there, then who knows. It does seem like in previous iterations of SteamOS, VR support was a complaint many users had. Regardless, it will be hard to say until a download or repo for 3.0 comes out. Currently Valve only has SteamOS 2.x available to the public, unless you're lucky enough to already have a Steam Deck.

          2. Seven
            Link Parent
            One of my friends uses SteamVR on Linux and it's usually fine. I don't expect SteamOS to work any differently than any other version of Linux

            One of my friends uses SteamVR on Linux and it's usually fine. I don't expect SteamOS to work any differently than any other version of Linux

            1 vote
    2. [6]
      kfwyre
      Link Parent
      A quick comparison between release day and today, one week later: 2022-02-25 2022-03-04 Change Verified 433 535 +102 Playable 398 471 +73 Unsupported 389 711 +313 I was interested in this data...

      A quick comparison between release day and today, one week later:

      2022-02-25 2022-03-04 Change
      Verified 433 535 +102
      Playable 398 471 +73
      Unsupported 389 711 +313

      I was interested in this data mostly to see what kind of trajectory we might expect for Verified titles, especially now that the hardware is released. Over 100 in a week is incredibly promising.

      4 votes
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        An additional week of data: 2022-02-25 2022-03-04 2022-03-11 W1 Change W2 Change Deck Verified 433 535 721 +102 +186 Deck Playable 398 471 580 +73 +109 Deck Unsupported 389 711 775 +313 +64 Steam...

        An additional week of data:

        2022-02-25 2022-03-04 2022-03-11 W1 Change W2 Change
        Deck Verified 433 535 721 +102 +186
        Deck Playable 398 471 580 +73 +109
        Deck Unsupported 389 711 775 +313 +64
        Steam Total Games N/A 67,165 67,399 N/A +234

        I don't plan on doing this every week, but seeing the sustained jumps in these early weeks, particularly in Verified games, is very exciting to me.

        6 votes
      2. [4]
        teaearlgraycold
        Link Parent
        Can you add a row for games not yet checked?

        Can you add a row for games not yet checked?

        1 vote
        1. [2]
          MimicSquid
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          Steam has more than 50,000 games, so all three categories combined barely crack 3% of the total catalog. It'd be interesting to see what percentage of the expected playtime this month those 1,717...

          Steam has more than 50,000 games, so all three categories combined barely crack 3% of the total catalog. It'd be interesting to see what percentage of the expected playtime this month those 1,717 games cover, though. Looking at SteamSpy, by the time you get down to the 390'th game by playtime last week you're seeing each game only having a tiny fraction of the total playtime on Steam.

          6 votes
          1. kfwyre
            Link Parent
            This is unsubstantiated, so take it with a grain of salt, but I read somewhere that Valve was prioritizing which titles they verified for Deck based on the combined playtimes and wishlists of...

            This is unsubstantiated, so take it with a grain of salt, but I read somewhere that Valve was prioritizing which titles they verified for Deck based on the combined playtimes and wishlists of people who reserved Decks. I think it makes a lot of sense to do that -- focusing on the high-leverage items first for the people who you know are interested in the device.

            9 votes
        2. kfwyre
          Link Parent
          I didn't pull the data for those dates, but the current number of games tracked by SteamDB is 67,165.

          I didn't pull the data for those dates, but the current number of games tracked by SteamDB is 67,165.

          6 votes
    3. [2]
      pseudolobster
      Link Parent
      Where on the site do you find these lists? Clicking your links give me "Due to Algolia limitations, we do not support currency switching in instant search", which is annoying since I'm not trying...

      Where on the site do you find these lists?

      Clicking your links give me "Due to Algolia limitations, we do not support currency switching in instant search", which is annoying since I'm not trying to switch currencies, in fact I really don't care about the prices, I just want to see the list of games.

      1 vote
      1. kfwyre
        Link Parent
        SteamDB > Click search bar > Press enter > Click orange "Instant Search" bar in top right > Expand "Platforms" submenu on right > Select the options you want

        SteamDB > Click search bar > Press enter > Click orange "Instant Search" bar in top right > Expand "Platforms" submenu on right > Select the options you want

        2 votes
  3. [3]
    moocow1452
    Link
    Has anyone on Tildes managed to get one of these day one, or are we going to have a big unboxing thread three months later?

    Has anyone on Tildes managed to get one of these day one, or are we going to have a big unboxing thread three months later?

    6 votes
    1. kfwyre
      Link Parent
      Q2 gang here. I plan on making a thread when I get mine in October. 😆

      Q2 gang here. I plan on making a thread when I get mine in June October. 😆

      10 votes
    2. Autoxidation
      Link Parent
      I am also reserved for Q2. Hoped I'd be Q1 with a reservation 17 minutes after opening but alas.

      I am also reserved for Q2. Hoped I'd be Q1 with a reservation 17 minutes after opening but alas.

      3 votes
  4. [4]
    lou
    (edited )
    Link
    Question: given the apparently inevitable success of the Steam Deck, why not make a full blown console? The licensing model of the Stem Machine clearly does not work for this kind of product, but...

    Question: given the apparently inevitable success of the Steam Deck, why not make a full blown console? The licensing model of the Stem Machine clearly does not work for this kind of product, but Valve itself demonstrated that it is capable of creating excellent gaming hardware. I would LOVE a stable and affordable console or console-like experience which benefited from the enormous PC game library and more reasonably priced Steam games. Not to mention the ability to play online games without subscription.

    Another thing, but I don't wanna create a new comment: when anyone reading gets a Steam Deck, if you're feeling adventurous, I would love to know if it is feasible to play WoW on the deck using only the built-in controls.

    5 votes
    1. [3]
      SunSpotter
      Link Parent
      A Steam console would need to have some kind of added benefit to it, and be priced similarly to offerings from Sony or Microsoft. Open support for VR (not being locked down to one headset) would...

      A Steam console would need to have some kind of added benefit to it, and be priced similarly to offerings from Sony or Microsoft. Open support for VR (not being locked down to one headset) would be a start though, and there's already a lot of nice to have's baked into the Steam Deck, so it's not out of the question that Valve could pull it off.

      The problem is that, I see a lot of people just thinking they may as well hook up their gaming laptop or move their existing desktop if they ever want a console experience. Not that most people would follow through with it, but the simple fact that its an option makes buying a steam console less attractive. The Steam Deck is different because no one wants, or expects to play their bulky gaming computer on the bus, and even a gaming laptop can be quite hefty. And yet the Deck is easily carried, just as powerful and comes with the same benefits. So one way or another, you'd need to convince people they could benefit from owing a Steam Console.

      3 votes
      1. [2]
        lou
        Link Parent
        A dedicated PC master racer would have no reason to purchase a Steam console. It wouldn't replace that. Desktop gaming PCs are not cheap, and neither are gaming laptops. The average Tildes user...

        A dedicated PC master racer would have no reason to purchase a Steam console. It wouldn't replace that. Desktop gaming PCs are not cheap, and neither are gaming laptops. The average Tildes user are programmers in the US, so it's easy to forget that money is a factor for a lot of people. If Steam allows me to have a good experience with a fraction of the money, I'm sold. Besides, a lot of people might want access to the PC library without having to build, maintain and upgrade a machine, or learning how to update drivers and swap DLLs. They (us) just wanna sit on the couch and press "on".

        3 votes
        1. MimicSquid
          Link Parent
          Agreed. TBH, even as someone who has tried to stay current on building/upgrading a PC over the years to play the latest and greatest, I'd pretty happily put that effort down and buy a Steam Deck...

          Agreed. TBH, even as someone who has tried to stay current on building/upgrading a PC over the years to play the latest and greatest, I'd pretty happily put that effort down and buy a Steam Deck if I hadn't just upgraded before the pandemic. Since the games on a Steam Deck can be modded just like on PC, my last concerns have been resolved. We'll see when my PC upgrade needs and a new Steam Deck hardware upgrade align, but as it stands I'm definitely interested.

          2 votes
  5. [12]
    skybrian
    Link
    I haven’t paid much attention, but I’m wondering how good the sound is and whether it would be a good base for building a musical instrument? A video game device should have low latency sound, right?

    I haven’t paid much attention, but I’m wondering how good the sound is and whether it would be a good base for building a musical instrument? A video game device should have low latency sound, right?

    4 votes
    1. [10]
      FlippantGod
      Link Parent
      It's Linux. If you are asking about the quality of the speakers, a few reviews said it was fine, or better than expected for a $400 handheld. I don't think anyone has started measuring them though.

      It's Linux. If you are asking about the quality of the speakers, a few reviews said it was fine, or better than expected for a $400 handheld. I don't think anyone has started measuring them though.

      5 votes
      1. [9]
        skybrian
        Link Parent
        "Linux" covers a wide variety of systems and low-latency audio requires the OS and applications to be optimized for it. Looks like they are running SteamOS 3.0 and this doesn't seem to be publicly...

        "Linux" covers a wide variety of systems and low-latency audio requires the OS and applications to be optimized for it. Looks like they are running SteamOS 3.0 and this doesn't seem to be publicly available yet?

        I haven't found schematics and I don't see any GPIO pins listed in the tech specs. The external adapter is USB 3.0. Maybe the controller button inputs could be repurposed?

        1 vote
        1. [8]
          FlippantGod
          Link Parent
          Yes, that is why I left it at Linux. IIRC the distro will be available within a few months at the latest. There have been teardowns, and I don't recall GPIO pins. But several controller components...

          Yes, that is why I left it at Linux.

          IIRC the distro will be available within a few months at the latest. There have been teardowns, and I don't recall GPIO pins. But several controller components are daughter boards and the connectors could probably be repurposed, and the back paddles seem especially promising.

          Are you concerned about input latency? It should be possible to achieve very low input latency. Audio latency is going to come down to your software stack. I don't anticipate anything preventing you from low-latency audio applications if you can get your hands dirty, but you probably have a better idea.

          3 votes
          1. [7]
            skybrian
            Link Parent
            Yes, for a musical instrument, reducing the total lag from pressing a button to hearing a change in the sound is important. This is just idle speculation anyway since I’m sticking to making a MIDI...

            Yes, for a musical instrument, reducing the total lag from pressing a button to hearing a change in the sound is important.

            This is just idle speculation anyway since I’m sticking to making a MIDI controller for now (with no sound synthesis on the device) and there are plenty of subproblems to solve. I was just thinking that there is a fair bit of hardware in common if I made a full, stand-alone instrument someday. (Battery power, audio amplifier and speaker, and audio jack.)

            1 vote
            1. [5]
              Pistos
              Link Parent
              In case it helps you, here's a bit of data from my personal experience: I do some audio work on Linux. In ardour, using either JACK or ALSA, I can get 5.3ms latency. It's good enough for me to be...

              In case it helps you, here's a bit of data from my personal experience: I do some audio work on Linux. In ardour, using either JACK or ALSA, I can get 5.3ms latency. It's good enough for me to be able to play on my piano, and hear synth sounds (via MIDI) in what feels very, very close to realtime. The delay between keypress and sound is just barely noticeable, but not showstopping.

              I did take time to tune various things (kernel compilation params, sysctl, etc. etc.) to achieve this, but I'd bet an even-more-determined person might be able to get under 5ms.

              5 votes
              1. poopfeast6969
                Link Parent
                I was able to get 5.3ms with zero effort on fedora 35. Probably something to do with pipewire.

                I was able to get 5.3ms with zero effort on fedora 35. Probably something to do with pipewire.

                2 votes
              2. [3]
                hungariantoast
                Link Parent
                Have you tried PipeWire yet? I'm curious how it compares. Also, if you or @poopfeast6969 don't mind me asking, how would someone go about measuring audio latency on Linux?

                Have you tried PipeWire yet? I'm curious how it compares.

                Also, if you or @poopfeast6969 don't mind me asking, how would someone go about measuring audio latency on Linux?

                1 vote
                1. poopfeast6969
                  Link Parent
                  That is a good question. I haven't measured the latency. I'm simply trusting that it's using the buffer size I've set. I can hear a reduction in latency over the default 1024 sample buffer (21.3...

                  That is a good question. I haven't measured the latency. I'm simply trusting that it's using the buffer size I've set. I can hear a reduction in latency over the default 1024 sample buffer (21.3 ms) and 256 samples (5.3 ms).

                  Because pipewire uses JACK interfaces, you set the pipewire buffer size using any program that can set the JACK buffer size.

                  4 votes
                2. Pistos
                  Link Parent
                  I am holding off on PipeWire because it self-proclaims as not stable/ready enough for general use. I have enough trouble as it is with JACK, ALSA and PulseAudio. If I'm going to try something new...

                  I am holding off on PipeWire because it self-proclaims as not stable/ready enough for general use. I have enough trouble as it is with JACK, ALSA and PulseAudio. If I'm going to try something new (which I'm willing to do), it needs to be relatively stable and hassle free.

                  re: latency: ardour's UI self-reports the latency based on the current settings for sample rate, buffer size, and period count. Furthermore, it allows you to measure and calibrate hardware latency by hooking up a loopback cable (connecting a physical output jack to a physical input jack) and running a test.

                  2 votes
            2. FlippantGod
              Link Parent
              Someone measured 2 frames of input latency on Dead Cells at 60fps. That is obviously a highly optimized case. I'm not sure it will be able to do anything faster than that even outside of graphical...

              Someone measured 2 frames of input latency on Dead Cells at 60fps. That is obviously a highly optimized case. I'm not sure it will be able to do anything faster than that even outside of graphical applications.

              2 votes
    2. knocklessmonster
      Link Parent
      Maybe. Live audio, because of the nature of live DSP, requires different configurations than games for processing priority to enable real-time audio, whereas games are nothing more than streaming...

      Maybe. Live audio, because of the nature of live DSP, requires different configurations than games for processing priority to enable real-time audio, whereas games are nothing more than streaming audio the default systems are already configured for.
      If SteamOS PulseAudio for their audio stack you'll either need to get JACK to play nice or witch it to PipeWire. This is not hard in Arch on a preinstalled system, but I'd be worried about breaking some Steam thing.

      2 votes
  6. [6]
    teaearlgraycold
    Link
    Has the embargo not lifted? Really weird that I can’t find any reviews that came out today.

    Has the embargo not lifted? Really weird that I can’t find any reviews that came out today.

    3 votes
    1. [4]
      PhantomBand
      Link Parent
      Why is there an embargo?

      Why is there an embargo?

      3 votes
      1. teaearlgraycold
        Link Parent
        Valve didn’t want people to show the 1st party software until the last minute so they could do last minute fixes.

        Valve didn’t want people to show the 1st party software until the last minute so they could do last minute fixes.

        8 votes
      2. emnii
        Link Parent
        It's a marketing strategy. They want all the reviews and press to hit at the same time so they make a big splash and catch a lot of attention.

        It's a marketing strategy. They want all the reviews and press to hit at the same time so they make a big splash and catch a lot of attention.

        7 votes
      3. vord
        Link Parent
        It's fairly standard practice for computing industry as a whole to give reviewers time to have reviews ready for release while limiting the quality degradation of review to get first mover. At...

        It's fairly standard practice for computing industry as a whole to give reviewers time to have reviews ready for release while limiting the quality degradation of review to get first mover.

        At least from what I've noticed.

        6 votes
    2. kfwyre
      Link Parent
      I think it lifts at 10 AM PST.

      I think it lifts at 10 AM PST.

      2 votes
  7. [3]
    FlippantGod
    Link
    It has been observed by youtuber The Phawx that the built in frame limiter produces better frame timings, and potentially lower CPU usage and power draw than games' frame limiters on the titles...

    It has been observed by youtuber The Phawx that the built in frame limiter produces better frame timings, and potentially lower CPU usage and power draw than games' frame limiters on the titles tested.

    I'm pleased that my very old speculations on battery life held up okay, although it would appear 4-6 hours will be the upper limit for undemanding, 2d titles.

    Anyone interested in tweaking lots of settings should have a great time trying wrangle more out of this system. The hardware really delivered.

    2 votes
    1. [2]
      Seven
      Link Parent
      Rock Paper Shotgun said that the battery lasted over nine hours playing Super Meat Boy.

      Rock Paper Shotgun said that the battery lasted over nine hours playing Super Meat Boy.

      3 votes
      1. FlippantGod
        Link Parent
        It's neat that it is achievable I guess. 30fps FSR upscaled minimum brightness (which is only suitable for playing in the dark, although it's nice to get it that dim) isn't terribly inspiring....

        It's neat that it is achievable I guess. 30fps FSR upscaled minimum brightness (which is only suitable for playing in the dark, although it's nice to get it that dim) isn't terribly inspiring. Close to 8 hours full res on at least some 2d titles is my target when I get mine, but I'm not holding my breath.

        2 votes