A Console Gamer’s Journey with the Steam Deck: Chapter 2

September 24rd, 2022

It’s been about a month and a half with my Steam Deck, and I’m checking in!

Xbox Cloud Gaming Experience

After the painful, non-intuitive process of installing Xbox Cloud Gaming on the Steam Deck, running my Game Pass was a piece of cake. Each time I launched Xbox Cloud Gaming, my Game Pass loaded instantly, and I had no issues playing games through it–granted I only played one game through Game Pass so far, as I will mention in the coming paragraphs.

Getting Used to it All

I initially had a growing list of gripes when I first fired up my Steam Deck–mostly getting used to the controls and the size/weight; however, most of my complaints have leveled off. While the Steam Deck has not gotten lighter, I’ve grown used to playing it while resting against a surface and quickly forgetting the inconvenience once I got immersed in a game. The controls fit right, and I even got used to the track pads, which substitute as the “mouse” on PC (for the most part). So far, I have played:

  • Lifeslide
  • Death’s Door vis Xbox Cloud Gaming and Game Pass
  • Moolander
  • Monster Hunter Rise

Almost two months in, I have had no performance issues while gaming. The frame rates were smooth aside from a few choppy bits during a long stint with Death’s Door, and everything loaded swimmingly. In fact, I have bragging rights that my Monster Hunter Rise game loaded quicker than my partner’s, who was playing beside me on PC.

Multi-player on Monster Hunter Rise also ran smoothly. There were no issues like I had experience when trying to play A Way Out or Gauntlet. I battled monsters with others while enjoying buttery smooth controls and gorgeous graphics. Unfortunately, I had to plug in my Steam Deck on several occasions during a hunt, and the fan sounded like my Steam Deck was about to take flight like a Boeing 747. The body of the Steam Deck also grew very hot during extended game sessions.

For Future Consideration

All the while, I found out that Valve is already working on a second iteration of the Steam Deck:

Steam Deck represents the first in a new category of Steam handheld gaming PCs. In the future, Valve will follow up on this product with improvements and iterations to hardware and software, bringing new versions of Steam Deck to market. Like the original, and like all PCs, these future products will continue to provide access to the same Steam game catalog that gamers already know and love.

-Valve via PC World

While it is still a mystery what Valve will choose to improve on, I would personally love to see improved ergonomics, quieter fan, improved speed and download for the base model, and most importantly, more compatible games like Destiny 2 or Tekken 7. I know it many of them have to do with compatibility to the Deck OS versus Steam itself. I also hope to see a more gamer-friendly way to connect the Steam Deck to Xbox Game Cloud, or even Epic Game Store.

Overall, I am still very happy with my Steam Deck, and I will continue to use it regularly. At this point, I am putting slightly more hours on my Steam Deck over my Nintendo Switch, but that is less due to system preference but more so the particular game I’m in the mood to play. I am now considering the dock for the Steam Deck. The reasons why I am on the fence are 1) I got this to play handheld, so why doc it and 2) added expenses. The jury is still out–so stayed tuned for the next chapter of my journey with the Steam Deck!

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Source: PC World

Featured Image Courtesy of Valve (Steam Deck)

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