Steam Deck is Valve’s first foray into handheld gaming. Launched earlier this year in February, Steam Deck is a handheld gaming console, or as Valve calls it ‘handheld gaming PC,’ much similar to the Nintendo Switch. Though they have many differences, there is one that towers above all.
The Steam Deck runs PC games rather than console ones, and its source is your Steam library. The fact that the same library that you access on your gaming PC can now be played on the go is a much-coveted feature of the Steam Deck. The Deck runs on Valve’s SteamOS, which itself is a distro of Linux. Yet still, it is able to run Windows games. This is thanks to Steam’s Proton.
Valve states, “The Proton translation layer allows most Windows games to run with equal or better performance on SteamOS, without requiring game developers to do any heavy porting work to get their games running.” However, not all of Steam’s catalog can be run on the Deck. Deck Verified badge that titles can acquire if they meet Valve’s standards, is what indicates if a game can run on the Deck.
A game must fulfil the following criteria to be verified:
- Full controller support with appropriate on-screen buttons and automatic on-screen keyboard pop-up when required.
- No compatibility warnings and any launchers should be useable with a controller.
- Support default resolution (1280 x 800 or 1280 x 720) with legible text and “good” default settings.
- Full system support – either native build for Linux or full compatibility with Proton, including anti-cheat.
Earlier in August, Steam announced that 4500 games had been Deck verified, however, it has just been announced that the Deck has actually now reached the 5000 verified and playable titles milestone.
According to SteamDB, there are now 2139 verified and 2882 playable titles. This quite a large number, however, there are still quite a large number of games still that don’t fall in the category, as Steam has about 105,804 games playable on Windows. Valve still has ways to go to bring popular titles that are not verified on Steam Deck such as PUBG, and Destiny 2.
There are, however, quite a lot of popular recent games on Steam Deck such as Kena: Bridge of Spirits, God of War, Stray, Elden Ring, and Death Stranding. Many more are yet to come as Valve has decided to carry on with the Steam Deck into the future, and has quite a lot of plans. Thus we can be sure that the number of playable and verified games is sure to keep on increasing.
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