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What do you think is Valve's strategy with Steam Deck?

Dane

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I think it can be a game changer in the portable PC industry, current powerful solutions are 3x the steam deck entry price.
 

Saber

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Their plan from my point of view is:

- Bringing more people into steam gaming without the necessity of a super-duper powerfull PC or being a PC fetish, while baiting people who already have their games on Steam
- Allow people to play their games in a portable machine, selling point being both their games their console(Nintendo is just their games)
- Flexibility and libertity with their new plataform, something that consoles didn't do much
- Response to Switch fanbase, as they clearly don't care basically about anything other than "playing games while in their bathrooms"
 
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JimboJones

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Improve the current standard of handheld pc as it seems like a growing niche, could potentially be huge in a few years.
Help create a baseline for other manufacturers to work off.
Funnel more people to buy from steam.
 
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ReBurn

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I think the idea is to make money and increase the value of their company.
Well There It Is Jurassic Park GIF
 
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MrFunSocks

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I think people overestimate the ‘on the go’.

A lot of us just like to play on the couch, in front of the tv, away from the desk. I have a monster PC but just can’t be arsed to play on it anymore.

We’ve all gotten use to tablets and handhelds.
Not to mention that this thing is HUGE. I highly doubt you'll ever see anyone on the bus or train playing this thing. It'd need a backpack to itself lol.

If you're going to play this at home and you already have a monster pc then there are already solutions that you probably own that will do the job better.
 
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Fahdis

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Not to mention that this thing is HUGE. I highly doubt you'll ever see anyone on the bus or train playing this thing. It'd need a backpack to itself lol.

If you're going to play this at home and you already have a monster pc then there are already solutions that you probably own that will do the job better.

I will personally make a custom made backpack for this. Thanks for the solution. It will carry a car battery so I can play the thing on the way to damn work!
 
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KAL2006

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The strategy is to get more people into the Steam eco system. Or people who are already in the ecosystem to buy more games.

To expand PC gaming to the portable gaming sector.

How successful they will be time will tell. I personally think they will be successful obviously not do gangbusters like Switch but decnet enough to continue with making a successor. I do think if they want to go big they will need to spend much more on marketing as well as have retail partners selling there system as well as marketed bundle games. However I think they are going to be careful and work in tiny steps, the first step is obviously to just sell it directly from Steam and have barely any marketing to keep costs of the device down (no retail cut, no marketing costs). Once it's release and it gets positive feedback lots of impressions on social media then once they are confident and component costs have further reduced they can finally try to go mainstream and work with retail, and have a marketing campaign. They need adverts on TV, bundles (GTA5 bundle, Fortnite Bundle, COD Warzone Bundle etc) sold in big stores.
 

Fredrik

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Not to mention that this thing is HUGE. I highly doubt you'll ever see anyone on the bus or train playing this thing. It'd need a backpack to itself lol.

If you're going to play this at home and you already have a monster pc then there are already solutions that you probably own that will do the job better.
Feels like people are going in circles back to old Switch discussions. It’s exactly the same with Switch, while it’s smaller and lighter it’s still not something you carry around in the pockets of your pants, you have it in a bag. And the portability is the reason it’s selling, without that it’s just a weak console. And yes, without the portability Steam Deck is just a weak PC. Not much more to say really, we just have to wait and see if portability is a Nintendo exclusive thing or if it can be interesting for PC (and Xbox) gaming too.
 

Sean Mirrsen

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Feels like people are going in circles back to old Switch discussions. It’s exactly the same with Switch, while it’s smaller and lighter it’s still not something you carry around in the pockets of your pants, you have it in a bag. And the portability is the reason it’s selling, without that it’s just a weak console. And yes, without the portability Steam Deck is just a weak PC. Not much more to say really, we just have to wait and see if portability is a Nintendo exclusive thing or if it can be interesting for PC (and Xbox) gaming too.
And we already know that by itself Nintendo exclusivity does not carry a product, see: Wii U. So perhaps if the value proposition here is high enough, with all the features Steam and SteamOS bring it over a traditional Windows PC (as far as being a gaming device goes), perhaps it will indeed succeed in establishing itself.
 

MrFunSocks

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Feels like people are going in circles back to old Switch discussions. It’s exactly the same with Switch, while it’s smaller and lighter it’s still not something you carry around in the pockets of your pants, you have it in a bag. And the portability is the reason it’s selling, without that it’s just a weak console. And yes, without the portability Steam Deck is just a weak PC. Not much more to say really, we just have to wait and see if portability is a Nintendo exclusive thing or if it can be interesting for PC (and Xbox) gaming too.
I'd love to know what percentage of people actually play their switch "on the go". I'd take a stab and say it's quite a low percentage. Maybe kids in school, but that's about it I'd think. I've literally never seen a single person playing one in public, even on public transport to big cities here in Australia.
 

Fredrik

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I'd love to know what percentage of people actually play their switch "on the go". I'd take a stab and say it's quite a low percentage. Maybe kids in school, but that's about it I'd think. I've literally never seen a single person playing one in public, even on public transport to big cities here in Australia.
I’m not disagreeing but the portability is still what makes it anything other than a weak console, and it is certainly popular.
Slouching in the couch and gaming while the TV is occupied or gaming in bed is likely more common ways to use the portability. Goes for both Switch and Steam Deck.
 
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MrFunSocks

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I’m not disagreeing but the portability is still what makes it anything other than a weak console, and it is certainly popular.
Slouching in the couch and gaming while the TV is occupied or gaming in bed is likely more common ways to use the portability. Goes for both Switch and Steam Deck.
The thing is that you can already do that with your phone and steam link, and it’ll look better and be at significantly higher settings and resolution and on a better screen. I can play my steam games at high resolution and Ultra settings on my 1600p 10.5” OLED Tab S6 or my 6.8” 1440p OLED S21 Ultra via stream link. Why would I choose the Deck at low-medium settings and 720p over that?

That’s what I’ve been getting at - the majority of people that this is for already have other ways of doing this better, because they’re just gonna be playing at home anyway and they have better PCs than the Deck.

I took this earlier today:
Crysis 2 at Ultra settings and 1440p.
 
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Fredrik

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The thing is that you can already do that with your phone and steam link, and it’ll look better and be at significantly higher settings and resolution and on a better screen. I can play my steam games on my 1600p 10.5” OLED Tab S6 or my 6.8” 1440p OLED S21 Ultra via stream link. Why would I choose the Deck over that?
Lets not exaggerated please, I use Steam Link, Nvidia Shield, Remote Play, Geforce Now, Virtual Desktop etc etc. It works but not as well as native gaming.
 

Shmunter

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The thing is that you can already do that with your phone and steam link, and it’ll look better and be at significantly higher settings and resolution and on a better screen. I can play my steam games at high resolution and Ultra settings on my 1600p 10.5” OLED Tab S6 or my 6.8” 1440p OLED S21 Ultra via stream link. Why would I choose the Deck at low-medium settings and 720p over that?

That’s what I’ve been getting at - the majority of people that this is for already have other ways of doing this better, because they’re just gonna be playing at home anyway and they have better PCs than the Deck.

I took this earlier today:
Crysis 2 at Ultra settings and 1440p.
MrFunsucks shining a spotlight on reality
 

Fredrik

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If your network is good there’s no difference.
Of course it is. You get added latency and image artifacts. It’s how I currently do all my comfy couch PC gaming and for many games I play I think it works okay, but it’s not like native gaming, that’s just the reality of the tech.
Having native PC gaming on a portable PC with built in controller with every control method known to man included is going to be a whole other level of awesome.

Edit: And you can obviously do your Ultra visuals in-house streaming as well, without the need of that extra Xbox controller 😉
 
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MrFunSocks

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Of course it is. You get added latency and image artifacts. It’s how I currently do all my comfy couch PC gaming and for many games I play I think it works okay, but it’s not like native gaming, that’s just the reality of the tech.
Having native PC gaming on a portable PC with built in controller with every control method known to man included is going to be a whole other level of awesome.

Edit: And you can obviously do your Ultra visuals in-house streaming as well, without the need of that extra Xbox controller 😉
Depends on your network, like I said. For me it’s completely negligible to the point where it may as well be native.

I don’t want to play with a 1.5KG controller. I don’t have an “extra” controller either, it came with my series X. I spent all of zero dollars on a “comfy couch” (god I hate that term haha) device yet I have one. Multiple actually, all of which have better screens than the deck and with a more comfortable controller.
 
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Fredrik

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Depends on your network, like I said. For me it’s completely negligible to the point where it may as well be native.

I don’t want to play with a 1.5KG controller. I don’t have an “extra” controller either, it came with my series X. I spent all of zero dollars on a “comfy couch” (god I hate that term haha) device yet I have one. Multiple actually, all of which have better screens than the deck and with a more comfortable controller.
It can be better or worse based on your network, sure, but there are lots of near scientific tests out there showing exact figure for input latency as well as display latency in optimal conditions, so in the end it’s just that you’re used to it. I’m using it too so I don’t say it’s crappy, I’m a big supporter of streaming and in some cases I prefer PC games through Geforce Now over native consoles games. But I still know it’s not like playing natively. I think 2 frames of extra latency is what you can expect, or more depending on your network.
 
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Ogbert

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The thing is that you can already do that with your phone and steam link, and it’ll look better and be at significantly higher settings and resolution and on a better screen. I can play my steam games at high resolution and Ultra settings on my 1600p 10.5” OLED Tab S6 or my 6.8” 1440p OLED S21 Ultra via stream link. Why would I choose the Deck at low-medium settings and 720p over that?

That’s what I’ve been getting at - the majority of people that this is for already have other ways of doing this better, because they’re just gonna be playing at home anyway and they have better PCs than the Deck.

I took this earlier today:
Crysis 2 at Ultra settings and 1440p.
To be honest, that looks like the sort of setup that would make my virginity grow back.
 
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RoboFu

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its a steam machine trojan horse. They are taking what the switch has taught people "TV DOCK" and they look at their user spec list and what kid of games they are buying and created this portable steam machine that will play those games easily on your tv and portable for way less than you can buy a PC for right now.
 

Graciaus

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"why would they make their platform open and allow people to replace the OS and install their competitor's stores?"

You think people would install other stores? Lol.
 
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Fredrik

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Looking at their hardware track record I'd say this is destined for the same green storage cube my Steam controller and Steam Link are sitting in.
We’ll see, I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. I’m honestly more excited about this than I’ve been for either of the new consoles. Somehow this feels fresh, even though it’s really not.
Regarding their hardware I still use my Steam Link. Still functional. But the Steam Controller… Yeah… it’s very dusty.
 

tsumake

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As was mentioned before, if this thing is popular it could create a new base spec for pc games. Developers could make “Steam Deck” settings for there games, targeting 720p/60 or 30. This in turn would encourage developers to optimize their games, perhaps creating a development ecosystem for the system. A result of this would be games having lower system specs which makes the entry barrier lower overall for pc gamers, thus expanding the user base (for Steam).

If it sells. If not, it’ll be yet another curio from Valve. It will also be a killer portable emulation machine 👍
 

SomeGit

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We’ll see, I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. I’m honestly more excited about this than I’ve been for either of the new consoles. Somehow this feels fresh, even though it’s really not.
Regarding their hardware I still use my Steam Link. Still functional. But the Steam Controller… Yeah… it’s very dusty.
Regardless of commercial success, one thing about all of Valve hardware is that it's still supported.

Steam machines are still PCs so they still work for new games (provided they meet the minimum specs), Steam controller is still supported by Steam Input and will for quite a while and Steam Link still connects and stream just like in 2013. I don't even have to touch on the VR headsets, since those still work to this day for new titles.

Same will apply to this, regardless of commercial success it will still play new PC games well into the decade provided it meets the minimum specification, which while may not be true of future AAA games will likely be true for smaller titles.
 
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MrFunSocks

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To be honest, that looks like the sort of setup that would make my virginity grow back.
O.......K......? Kinda spoken like someone who wouldn't need it to grow back in the first place.

I plugged a controller in and took a photo. I don't *ever* play on a mobile phone or tablet or anything like that. I downloaded Steam link on that phone and plugged a computer in just to prove the point that you can already do in-home PC gaming on a portable. If I was going to play like this I would use a Razer Kishi or a controller attachment with a phone holder and connect via bluetooth.

"why would they make their platform open and allow people to replace the OS and install their competitor's stores?"

You think people would install other stores? Lol.
You think people don't use GoG/Game Pass/EA Play/Ubisoft/Epic game store/etc?


As was mentioned before, if this thing is popular it could create a new base spec for pc games. Developers could make “Steam Deck” settings for there games, targeting 720p/60 or 30. This in turn would encourage developers to optimize their games, perhaps creating a development ecosystem for the system. A result of this would be games having lower system specs which makes the entry barrier lower overall for pc gamers, thus expanding the user base (for Steam).

If it sells. If not, it’ll be yet another curio from Valve. It will also be a killer portable emulation machine 👍
Why on earth would you want lower required minimum specs for games?! We should be demanding higher minimum specs, not lower. Imagine if all games had an SSD and 16GB of RAM as a requirement? Gaming would be so much better.
 
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FStubbs

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A minority use gog and the others aren't worth mentioning. So no.
I can't imagine with all of the exclusives Epic/Tencent pays for that they haven't brute forced their way into a significant share of the market.
 
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Sean Mirrsen

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Why on earth would you want lower required minimum specs for games?! We should be demanding higher minimum specs, not lower. Imagine if all games had an SSD and 16GB of RAM as a requirement? Gaming would be so much better.
Because 99% of what higher requirements allow you to get with modern games, is doable on lower requirements with a bit of effort. It justs costs more to make and buy the hardware to run it. I've yet to see a modern AAA high-requirement game that didn't do something I could easily see a simpler, less resource-intensive game doing. In fact I know of one very old indie game that makes better use of extremely potent hardware than all of the AAA games this and past year together, because it actually needs that computing power and RAM.

Dwarf Fortress, if you're wondering. One word about graphics out of you and I'll melt your motherboard with fifteen thousand years of a planet's worth of history.

edit: In a less snarky manner, a lower base spec allows games to reach a broader range of people, most of whom don't live in the US and thus can't afford constant upgrades, and also demands that a developer actually pay attention to optimization. So that if a game's "minimum spec" is 1080p@30, or even 720p@30, on reasonable hardware, all the 'enthusiasts' who demand eye-gouging resolutions and framerates, can actually get what they want with hardware they're likely to already have, including that of the consoles. The game runs better for more people, reviews and sells better, and in all likelihood doesn't cost all that more to make.
 
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MrFunSocks

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Because 99% of what higher requirements allow you to get with modern games, is doable on lower requirements with a bit of effort. It justs costs more to make and buy the hardware to run it. I've yet to see a modern AAA high-requirement game that didn't do something I could easily see a simpler, less resource-intensive game doing. In fact I know of one very old indie game that makes better use of extremely potent hardware than all of the AAA games this and past year together, because it actually needs that computing power and RAM.

Dwarf Fortress, if you're wondering. One word about graphics out of you and I'll melt your motherboard with fifteen thousand years of a planet's worth of history.

edit: In a less snarky manner, a lower base spec allows games to reach a broader range of people, most of whom don't live in the US and thus can't afford constant upgrades, and also demands that a developer actually pay attention to optimization. So that if a game's "minimum spec" is 1080p@30, or even 720p@30, on reasonable hardware, all the 'enthusiasts' who demand eye-gouging resolutions and framerates, can actually get what they want with hardware they're likely to already have, including that of the consoles. The game runs better for more people, reviews and sells better, and in all likelihood doesn't cost all that more to make.
If you keep the minimum specifications super low and keep making them lower, you stifle innovation and progress. This isn't new or controversial.
 

Neil Young

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I see a bunch of "99% of people....fill in the blank" type posts. I find it a bit refreshing that there are companies out there that still take a chance with new ideas and don't depend on what's trending on Twitter or other current trends to make every decision. Will they lose money? Maybe, but it's not my money, it's a super rich corporation's money that I've given thousands of dollars to over the years.....so maybe it IS my money lol.

I hope this thing does well and I may get it as I'm in the market for a cheap pc and my Switch is not being used at all. I have a HUGE Steam library that I havent touched in years since getting out of pc gaming. I would love to check out WOW or The Old Republic again since it's been many years since I've played those (if they can even be played on the deck that is).
 
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tsumake

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If you keep the minimum specifications super low and keep making them lower, you stifle innovation and progress. This isn't new or controversial.

It doesn’t stifle anything. It encourages devs to optimize their games. You will still have system melting games in terms of graphics. Unless you think all game mechanics are intrinsically tied to raw computational power…
 
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NahaNago

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I'm guessing they are trying to make pc gaming hanheld more of a thing. If this becomes popular more hardware companies will copy it and then valve can stop supporting it.
 

Jigsaah

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The guys on Last Stand Media had an interesting take on the Stream Deck and how it potentially help Xbox. Gabe has already claimed Xbox is his preferred of the 2 consoles. He's also mentioned that you can remove Steam OS from the Stream Deck and replace it with something else (*cough*Windows) to allow the system to run other platforms including Steam, Epic Games, Blizzard, Uplay....you get the point. Not only that, but Valve has stated that the design is open for any other manufacturer to essentially copy the design to release on their own with that manufacturers branding. Which means, Sony, Microsoft, Stadia, Luna could all make their own version of the Steam Deck.

I believe Valve's plan is to sell the most robust and versatile handheld ever made and to completely break down barriers for those who may not be looking to spend $2000 on a PC. I think they are also looking to take a wrecking ball to the walled gardens that currently exist around consoles, handhelds and PC. If this is the case, it's no wonder Gabe likes Xbox more, they are trying to do the same thing to an extent.

Just a moment I'll grab the video where the Dukes discuss this.
 

rnlval

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Gabe Newell in an interview to IGN said that "Hitting Steam Deck Price Was 'Painful' but 'Critical'". That means they might be eating some of the costs to release their PC/console at 399, but at the same time, it's completely open and people can even install other stores on it.

Something seems wrong. If they're investing in a long term plan to increase the adoption of Steam, why would they make their platform open and allow people to replace the OS and install their competitor's stores?

Just for some context, in article Gabe also says “We’re doing this for the long haul. And there’s a lot of opportunity.”, so this is clearly a long term plan and they've been working on this for a long time.

What do you think is their master plan?
Almost all handheld ecosystems are "garden walled" devices e.g. Android, iOS, Switch.
 
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The thing is that you can already do that with your phone and steam link, and it’ll look better and be at significantly higher settings and resolution and on a better screen. I can play my steam games at high resolution and Ultra settings on my 1600p 10.5” OLED Tab S6 or my 6.8” 1440p OLED S21 Ultra via stream link. Why would I choose the Deck at low-medium settings and 720p over that?

Because streaming games to a phone is cheeks, no matter your internet speeds. The input lag is absolutely disgusting.
 
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