Valve Copies Nintendo's Homework With Steam Deck
Recently, Valve announced the Steam Deck, a new console that Valve says definitely isn't meant to compete with the Nintendo Switch.
On top of looking great, the Steam Deck also sounds great – conceptually, at least -- because even though "Steam Deck" isn't a name likely to get anyone outside of those that know whatever Urban Dictionary sex-term that certainly is tingly and excited. Still, it sounds cooler than the recently announced Switch "OLED Model," which is just the same old Switch but with a bigger screen (really, that's pretty much it) and a name randomly generated by the AI that's seemingly taken over Nintendo.
The Steam Deck will play most games from your pre-existing Steam library, buy more, and allow you to play from on a TV or as a handheld console. Valve promises an 8-hour battery life, meaning that the Steam Deck's sexy looks ensure it'll get stolen before you even have to worry about recharging it. You'll be able to either run Windows OS and turn the Steam Deck into a regular PC (and into an Xbox, holy shit) or run Linux and turn it into a good PC.
One of the biggest fears is that the console might not clear the GamersTM-prerequisite of 60 frames per second, but its devs say the console has been tested against every single game on Steam at 720p, and it's been doing pretty well. And while that's at best merely half the screen resolution you expect from an Xbox Series X or Playstation 5 game, it's still an incredibly respectable result for a handheld. "BUT PC GAMES GET MORE HARDWARE-HEAVY EVERY DAY!" Yeah, we guess that's why they say PC culture has gone too far, but the people at Valve claim that the Steam Deck will be upgradable to some extent, so just don't lose it when Valve announces that the upgrades will come in episodic format or something.
And before this starts to look too much like an ad, It's important to note that this is not Valve's first foray into gaming hardware, but yet another really promising one. Valve had previously tested the waters with the actually awesome Steam Link …
… the Steam Machines …
… and the Steam controller. So, y'know, gamer beware that you might be getting a Cleveland Steamer Deck instead.
If the Steam Deck proves successful, you can expect the Steam Deck 2 sometime in the next few decades. If the sequel also proves successful, you better enjoy the hell out of it because chances are you will never see a Steam Deck 3.
Top Image: Valve