How Steam Deck Has Changed Your Gaming – Good, Bad and Ugly

By Todd Russell Aug24,2023

It’s been over a year since I’ve owned the Steam Deck, and am not alone, as many others jumped aboard right away to get their hands on one. It’s an amazing little portable gaming device that has taken over about 90% of my current portable gaming. Previously it was the Nintendo Switch I used most the time, but I’ve really slipped from playing on that since the Steam Deck graced my gaming world. It’s just an all around handy gaming device that let’s me play a decent amount — not all — of my library of Steam PC games. Am OK that it doesn’t play *everything* btw, so not sure what the author of the piece below is going on about

Yes, just came across this curious opinion piece on the Steam Deck titled: How Steam Deck reignited my passion for gaming and then killed it – Reader’s Feature via MSN. I found this perspective a bit illogical, here’s a quote from it the author:

“When I bought the Steam Deck, I found it created the opportunity to have my entire collection of games to hand. Meanwhile there seems to be very little going on with the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S and the marketing is all about big blockbuster titles that will tempt me with additional DLC charges. Where are the fun pick up and play titles?

I don’t want to pay £70 for some epic, life consuming adventure, I just want to have fun playing video games. I remember the 1983 – 2008 period of gaming as a golden era, and the whole industry now feels formulaic and boring in comparison. Meanwhile the Steam Deck is getting more use than any other console I’ve owned, reminding me how much I love video games. Will Starfield put a big smile on my face like Sega’s Emergency Call Ambulance does? I doubt it.”

Let’s tackle these in order. Firstly, I never expected the Steam Deck to have “my entire collection of games to hand” from the onset at least — Valve has been transparent about how many games are validated and those that aren’t. Yes, there are some games that I wish worked better, particularly those with smaller text. I need to work on the magnifying glass option. And, yes, there are some games I wish worked period on the Steam Deck – and didn’t when I first tried. I’m not good about going back and retrying later to see which games work and don’t though, that’s sort of like work. My current playflow is more like: whatever I’m playing at the moment and if I’m out and about, I might check to play on the Steam Deck.

Not sure I agree with “very little going on with Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X/S” — maybe the author means a lot happening that he’s not interested in or checking out? Both of these platforms have had a lot going on. I’m not tapped into everything happening on the PS5, despite having a PS+ account and I’m behind on the newly added games to Game Pass for the Xbox, but I have received updates on both fairly frequently. There’s plenty to play. It sounds more like not the type of games the author is interested in playing. That’s really the gist of his entire article, or at least my reader interpretation. What do you think?

As for not wanting to pay 70 pounds for a game, I’m totally with the author there, but perplexed why he’s simply focusing on that price point — the most expensive games are not necessarily the best, most desirable or even worth of the time for the $$ spent. Very, very, very few games every year do I pay over $50 for. Before I’m shelling out that kind of money for a single game, I have to know I’m planning on playing it quite a bit. Have made a video before saying I sort of use the $1 per hour estimate. So a game that costs $70 USD, I’d want to play for at least 70 hours. There aren’t many new games that I will take that chance on, because a small number of newer games generate that amount of play/replay from me. The vast majority of newer games I play for less than 10 hours, which means I’m looking to spend less than $10 to buy. Compare that to some classic arcade games like Robotron that I’ve been playing literally for dozens of years.

Not saying my game buying fits everybody reading this, but it is how I rationalize purchases: will I play this for at least the amount of hours of the $$? For example, just bought XENOTILT and paid $14 for it. I played it for 4 hours on the first day. Hopefully, over time as they continue to add to it and it leaves “Early Access” I’ll get in at least another 10 hours. This plays good on the Deck, btw.

Would imagine there are gamers that wait for the newest console or PC game at the highest price and judge the state of gaming based on those releases. My response to that is, why? There are sooooo many different gaming genres out there that’s it’s way too narrow-minded a viewpoint to judge all gaming by the most expensive new release games. That’s like judging Hollywood by the most expensive movies, tentpoles as they call them. A lot people do this, but there are more games out there now than any one person could ever play in a lifetime and new ones at all price points, including free, released all the time. Find a new genre, try something you rarely play, explore, enjoy, play. Don’t let any single facet of gaming spoil the overall fun.

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