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Need even more information on the upcoming Linux-powered Steam Deck from Valve? We've got some more that has trickled through to talk about.

Firstly, in a newer IGN video the team at Valve went over the hardware and power of the Steam Deck and talked about what it's actually capable of. During the video Valve developer Pierre-Loup Griffais mentioned "We’ve been looking at various games over the past few years in the back catalogue but the real test for us was games that were coming out last year", he continued, "They just couldn’t really run very well on the previous types of prototypes and architectures we were testing and this is the first time we've achieved the level of performance that is required to run the latest generation of games without a problem. All the games that we wanted to be playable is the entire Steam library, we haven't really found something that we could throw at this device that it couldn't handle.".

Now that sounds pretty exciting. However, there's a difference between developers saying it can handle it and it works, and what we're all expecting the performance to actually be like. Griffais mentioned how most games will scale down "to their 800p 30Hz target really well" but "if people start heavily favouring image quality then we might be in a position where have trade-offs but we haven't really seen that yet".

In a follow-up Twitter post Griffais mentioned "The "30 FPS target" refers to the floor of what we consider playable in our performance testing; games we've tested and shown have consistently met and exceeded that bar so far. There will also be an optional built-in FPS limiter to fine-tune perf vs. battery life.".

Really interesting to know there's going to be an FPS limiter built in. There's already some available on Linux like libstrangle to tweak that.

What we also know as well from Griffais in a Twitter reply, is that the Steam Deck itself will be using the gamescope project that we mentioned back in January 2020 which is a Wayland compositor for the normal Steam gaming session (not the KDE Plasma desktop mode) - so it's likely the FPS limiter used is built into that directly.

Another very interesting bit of info is that Steam Big Picture is getting overhauled, using the new UI built for the Steam Deck which was confirmed by Valve developer Austin P on a Steam post where they said "Yes, we are replacing Big Picture with the new UI from Deck. We don't have an ETA to share yet though.".

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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36 comments
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CatKiller 26 Jul
Quoting: subWhen it comes to compatibility, that Kotaku article has this interesting bit:
The parenthetical part was Kotaku editorialising.
whizse 26 Jul
  • Supporter
That's interesting. I noticed one of the links to Steamworks had this line "We're continuing to improve Proton compatibility, and our goal is to get as close to full coverage as possible." which sounds a bit more realistic.

Though I'm doubtful that there's any big breakthroughs coming. Wine and Proton development usually happens at a pretty sustained pace.
Eike 26 Jul
Quoting: whizseThough I'm doubtful that there's any big breakthroughs coming. Wine and Proton development usually happens at a pretty sustained pace.

They explicitly said they've got stuff not shown yet. I don't believe in "everything", but "most new" would be great already.
whizse 26 Jul
  • Supporter
Quoting: EikeThey explicitly said they've got stuff not shown yet. I don't believe in "everything", but "most new" would be great already.
Maybe that's getting the anti-cheat vendors to start supporting Proton? Or hopefully a solution to CEG?

It doesn't really make sense to sit on stuff otherwise. Push it out and get as much testing done as soon as possible before release!
elmapul 26 Jul
digital foundry did an framerate count on some of the footage of games running on steam deck
Quoting: whizse
Quoting: EikeThey explicitly said they've got stuff not shown yet. I don't believe in "everything", but "most new" would be great already.
Maybe that's getting the anti-cheat vendors to start supporting Proton?
That we've got a quote on; they specifically said they were working with the anti-cheat vendors to get Proton support for anti-cheat. I believe it was practically in the same breath that they mentioned "stuff not shown yet"; it kind of looks like that's on top of the anti-cheat.
That said, they're not going to get every game working. But it could be significantly more than now.
It would probably be worth having a couple of people go through looking at all the "Gold" or so games and every one that works fine but you have to put some little thingy in the command line, putting that in so it's automatic. Just that would significantly increase how many games Just Work.
So long as I can attempt to run games at 60 FPS i'll be happy but if I am limited to 30 FPS without a way to change it then that's a huge dealbreaker for me. I don't expect 144Hz but 30 is way too low and is very noticible for me.
Eike 26 Jul
Quoting: elmapuldigital foundry did an framerate count on some of the footage of games running on steam deck

I guess I found the wrong video, but still quite interesting:
Valve Steam Deck Spec Analysis: Can It Really Handle AAA PC Gaming?
("Proton really needs to deliver!")


Last edited by Eike on 26 July 2021 at 6:16 pm UTC
Eike 26 Jul
Quoting: PublicNuisanceSo long as I can attempt to run games at 60 FPS i'll be happy but if I am limited to 30 FPS without a way to change it then that's a huge dealbreaker for me.

I read you can choose that.
sub 26 Jul
Quoting: Purple Library Guy
Quoting: whizse
Quoting: EikeThey explicitly said they've got stuff not shown yet. I don't believe in "everything", but "most new" would be great already.
Maybe that's getting the anti-cheat vendors to start supporting Proton?
That we've got a quote on; they specifically said they were working with the anti-cheat vendors to get Proton support for anti-cheat. I believe it was practically in the same breath that they mentioned "stuff not shown yet"; it kind of looks like that's on top of the anti-cheat.
That said, they're not going to get every game working. But it could be significantly more than now.
It would probably be worth having a couple of people go through looking at all the "Gold" or so games and every one that works fine but you have to put some little thingy in the command line, putting that in so it's automatic. Just that would significantly increase how many games Just Work.

I guess we all agree that giving the impression to journalists and potential customers "that the full catalog will work" is harmful to the project and should be sorted out asap?

We all know there's quite a bunch of people out there just waiting to dissect that - I guess - wonderful machine once it's out and make a big fuzz out of every single game not running properly. It would be really sad seeing the Deck going down like the Steam Machines just because PR was handled naively.

Maybe Valve is afraid of admitting that Proton is not perfect (though really good, don't get me wrong).
But not communicating that openly will cause major damage to the project.

Just my 2 cents.
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