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Update 17:09 UTC: they said in a new Twitter post, that they're now going to be adding specific settings just for the Steam Deck:

Our team, striving to provide all players with the best experience, continued looking for ways to maximize #AtomicHeart performance and is glad to announce that it has been made possible to add specific graphics settings relevant for Steam Deck with the future patches. Stay tuned

So we've gone from having all settings, to having none and next we're getting dedicated settings. Okay then.

Original article below:

This is just weird. Developer Mundfish seems to have intentionally removed all graphics options for Atomic Heart on Steam Deck.

Originally, they seemed to be claiming it as a bug and that it would be fixed. A month later though, and their team on Twitter has made it clear it was intentional:

We hear all your feedback.

Removing the graphics settings in Atomic Heart on Steam Deck was a hard decision for us to make in order to maximize performance, Steam Deck battery and gameplay stability.

Our main goal here is to provide best game performance on every platform.

Respectfully, I'm going to have to firmly disagree. Removing player choice like this is not acceptable in my opinion. Give the game good defaults (like a "Steam Deck" preset), and then let people tweak it as they wish afterwards - that would be the proper way to do it. Also have an option to reset to the defaults as well, this is all just basic stuff for a PC platform. 

Hiding options in the name of maximising performance? That just doesn't make any sense.

Good intentions perhaps but simply the wrong way to go about this. It ends up feeling like they're trying to cover something up. It doesn't affect desktop Linux with Proton at least (I checked) just the Steam Deck.

It feels just as silly as Striking Distance Studios hiding the benchmark mode for Steam Deck in The Callisto Protocol.

You can see a whole bunch of gameplay on Steam Deck from release in my video below:

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What do you think? It's weird right?

You can buy it on Humble Store and Steam.

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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly. Find me on Mastodon.
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dpanter May 18, 2023
This move is beyond stupid. Unacceptable nonsense.

edit: They now say they will implement "Steam Deck dedicated settings"? Less stupid is still, well, you guessed it.

Last edited by dpanter on 18 May 2023 at 5:44 pm UTC
Termy May 18, 2023
What a bullshit. It's really time for valve to introduce a way to roll back updates...
Raaben May 18, 2023
Maybe it's because I haven't had my coffee yet but, what?

On my Deck I almost always tweak the settings no matter what they default to for it; some games will run well enough for me if cranked up more and some I want to sacrifice a bit from the defaults for more stable performance.

Having options is just gaming 101, and to take them away makes no sense.
Klaas May 18, 2023
Oh they've managed to program the options menu in a way that it degrades performance so much that they had to remove it to make it run on the Steam Deck? If not then I don't understand why they think that the message on twitter makes any sense at all.
kmartinez501 May 18, 2023
Well that definitely sucks...I am waiting to buy the game on sale. I wonder what is up with PC gaming this last year with broken ports and troglodyte decisions. Even Asus has fallen from grace.
StoneColdSpider May 18, 2023
Its like they are deliberately trying to piss off Deck owners.....
elmapul May 18, 2023
that sound like an stupid decision, but at least they can better debug or Q/A it with everybody running in the same settings.
if they are trying to write an more optimized code specifically for the deck, having people changing settings all the time may make it harder to know if the code you written harmed the performance in this scenario (number of enemies on screen, that part of the map, that angle, etc) or the slow down was due to something else.
later on they an add back more options for people who want to make some tradeoffs or fine tune it even more to try to squeeze more performance.

if the game was in "early access" or anything like that, i think the reception of this move wouldnt be so bad...
but being realistic here: they probably wont optimize their code and probably received an bag of cash from MS for doing stuff like that...
CatKiller May 18, 2023
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QuoteRemoving the graphics settings in Atomic Heart on Steam Deck was a hard decision for us to make

You chose... poorly.
SethM May 18, 2023
This further reduces my likelihood of buying Atomic Heart. Not a good move at all.
scaine May 18, 2023
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Not a game I'd touch anyway, since it has Denuvo, but haven't they heard that you can plug a SteamDeck into a monitor? Now when you do that... what happens? Just, no options?

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