We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)

Check out our first impressions after a dozen hours of gameplay with Steam Deck, Valve’s future handheld console.

Nintendo Switch is the queen of handheld consoles. Well established in the market, relatively accessible, with a popular catalog, it won the hearts of players. But soon, the Steam Deck will make its debut. This console created by Valve (which owns Steam) wants to be ” an all-in-one portable device for your PC games “combine” power, comfort and adaptability “Although pre-orders are open since early 2022, you will have to wait until the end of the year to receive it.

At the end of March 2022, Numerama was able to hold it for a week. We played with this new console for a dozen hours, making it work Syberia: the world first. That’s what this first experience with the Steam Deck was worth.

The three models of Steam Deck

There are currently three Steam Deck models, with some variations in specs, especially in storage:

The three models of the Steam Deck. // Source: Valve

Yes, the Steam Deck has a place in the market

The conclusion of our first experience may answer the main question: yes, the Steam Deck has its place in the market. Although the device is a behemoth, its weight remains moderate and the grip is very pleasant. With good quality materials and correct performance for its stated ambition, the console defends itself well.

We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)
Steam Deck // Source: Louise Audry for Numerama

From there to compete with Switch? The Steam Deck is likely to appeal especially to console players (Xbox, PS) who want a complementary experience; or to those for whom playing on a PC isn’t necessarily practical. It will also convince PC gamers who simply want to take their games with them. The Steam Deck therefore lives up to its promises.

But it will be difficult to compete with Switch in the strict sense, particularly because the catalog is an element of choice: it is a matter of preference and, where Nintendo has its own reputation, Steam Deck will allow you to play games that already exist on PC and other platforms. (sometimes included Switch).

We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)
Steam Deck // Source: Louise Audry for Numerama

The two handheld consoles also share a flaw, namely a weak battery. But where the Steam Deck really fails is in the annoying ventilation. It activates after a few minutes of play, makes an airplane noise and just never stops. We also noticed drops of frame ratebut it didn’t have much of an impact on gameplay.

All the details of these strengths and weaknesses are in our video, which you can find at the top of the article.

We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)
Steam Deck // Source: Louise Audry for Numerama
We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)
Steam Deck // Source: Louise Audry for Numerama
We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)
Steam Deck // Source: Louise Audry for Numerama
We loved the Steam Deck (despite its hellish wind tunnel)
Steam Deck // Source: Louise Audry for Numerama
For further

Source: valve

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