So the Steam Deck; it has quickly become the only way I game. And I have FOUR gaming PCs and nearly every Nintendo, Xbox, and PlayStation console. I spend at least an hour a day gaming... which--when compared to my gaming habit in 2021--is up from an average of zero hours per day.
And I'm absolutely in love with this thing! And it's that time of the week again; Steam Deck news time!
First up, EmuDeck has a new release and it's got some awesome improvements:
- First, it offers official support for its first non-Steam Deck handheld: the Anbernic Win600.
- Next, Left Analog stick mirrors the d-pad controls for 2D systems
- SRM new recursive search can find games in subdirectories
- SRM remembers your custom artwork on subsequent scans.
- CHD tool renamed to EmuDeck Compression Tool can now convert GC/Wii games to rvz, with up to 65% compression!
- Powertools are now easier to install by activating dev mode automatically for you.
- New bezels for Dreamcast, N64 and PSX. Atari 2600 fixes.
- HD Texture Packs folder. Currently for Mesen with more system soon to come!
They also added support for Naomi, Mame Standalone, PS2 QT, Ryujinx, and easyRPG emulators.
Plus, they added fixes for certain emulators!
You can download the latest release at emudeck.com or with the link in the description!
Next, let's talk about Linux market share increasing again in the month of July.
Linux OS marketshare on the Steam Hardware Survey increased by zero point zero five percent. And again, such a small percentage of a massive group such as the Steam playerbase is still tens of thousands of folks.
If we drill down into the metrics, we can see that Arch Linux and Manjaro grew the most, with Pop!_OS 22.04 and SteamOS Holo in third and fourth place respectively. SteamOS Holo is likely--but not wholly--Steam Deck owners.
Comparing the Steam Deck's GPU numbers to the SteamOS Holo install base, we can see that about 0.04 percent of SteamOS Holo users are not playing on the Steam Deck. Which is interesting!
But this makes me wish we had absolute numbers, though. As percentage points and how much they changed are coarse representations of the actual stats.
There's a new build of Proton Experimental and it's got some exciting changes. The most notable change is that Halo Infinite is now playable, though on the Deck there is some minor graphical artifacts. But given the clip at which Valve updates Proton Experimental, they're sure to have this stuff sorted in no time.
What's really cool about this, though? Is that Valve has gotten Halo Infinite's online mode working as well. I have yet to play much of Halo Infinite, but it's great to see what was once one of my favorite franchises so represented on the Steam Deck.
The Steam Deck is coming to new regions. Later this year, according to Valve and their partner Komodo, the Steam Deck will be shipping to Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. Valve has vowed that this expansion will not negatively impact the shipments to existing reservations as the Komodo reservation queue is entirely separate from the North American and European queues.
It's great to see that Valve is making good on their promise to ship to more regions.
In anticipation of this news, Famitsu interviewed Valve's Greg Coomer and Eric Peterson. It's an interesting read (I had to use Google Translate, though). Famitsu asked about more "Half-life" and "Portal" games and Greg spoke favorably about new entries in those franchises, but had nothing concrete to announce. Which is to be expected.
So Insomniac games announced on August 3rd that Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered had been ranked as Verified on the Steam Deck.
This is exciting as being able to play Spider-Man on PC was cool enough--but being able to play it on my Steam Deck? That's going to be awesome. The game actually comes out on August 12th.
If you want to pre-order the game or buy it the day it comes out, use the affiliate link!
Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered
Developed by Insomniac Games in collaboration with Marvel, and optimized for PC by Nixxes Software, Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered on PC introduces an experienced Peter Parker who’s fighting big crime and iconic villains in Marvel’s New York. At the same time, he’s struggling to balance his chaotic personal life and career while the fate of Marvel’s New York rests upon his shoulders.
Steam Deck Update
Finally, let's talk about the SteamOS 3.3 update and the associated Steam Deck client update. There's a LOT to unpack, here. So let's talk about it. First, many of these features were known to us in the beta channels. However, they've now finally landed in the stable channel and, therefore, will affect far more people now.
First, three features that I've wanted for a while now:
- Added Achievements page to overlay
- Added Guides page to overlay (while in-game press Steam button)
- Added a scheduled night mode feature, allowing players to choose if and when they’d like night mode to automatically turn on
I even asked for these features in previous videos! Next, Valve added a few quality of life features:
- Added a button to clear entered text in search bar
- Adaptive Brightness toggle is now active again
And they also added warning if your Steam Deck overheats!
But that's only the tip of the iceberg.
- Added missing Deck buttons for Gyro Enable and Button Chord options
- Added support for game-bundled Virtual Menu icons in the in-game Deck UI
- Miscellaneous performance improvements
- Added support for Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese, and Korean keyboard. We are still refining these keyboards, please provide feedback in the forums.
- Added initial IBus IME input support on the desktop for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean keyboards
- Fixed desktop mode keyboard sometimes failing to show or dismiss
- Fixed on-screen keyboard showing up under the Steam or Quick Access menu
- Updated keyboard behavior for improved fast typing on trackpad and touchscreen. (pressing a key while holding another key will now commit the held key instead of waiting for first to release)
- Fixed some touch styling issues with the virtual keyboard
- Added a new Steam Deck software update channel selector – there are now three options:
- Stable: Recommended experience for most users. This option will install the latest stable Steam Client and SteamOS.
- Beta: Testing for new Steam features. Updates frequently. This option will install Steam Client Beta and the latest stable SteamOS.
- Preview: Testing for new Steam and system-level features. Updates frequently. You may encounter issues. This option will install Steam Client Beta and the SteamOS Beta.
- You will only see patch notes for the update channel you've selected.
Performance / Stability
- Fixed some performance problems for users with many screenshots
- Fixed several crashes related to managing screenshots
- Fixed several crashes related to non-Steam shortcuts
- Fixed some native Linux games not exiting when force-quit through Steam
- Fixed flatpak Chrome closing improperly when quit through Steam
- Fixed a bug where some flatpak applications (like Edge) couldn't successfully quit
- Fixed a performance issue with some games when the backlight changes intensity
- Updated Firefox to be installed as a Flatpak, rather than from the OS repositories, to ensure timely updates
- First-time launches of Firefox from the desktop will now prompt for installation via the Discover Software Center, which will handle updates as they are published.
- Updated network connections created/edited on the desktop to default to system-wide, ensuring they are available in gaming mode
- Added VGUI2 Classic Plasma Desktop theme
- Resized virtual keyboard in Desktop mode to the appropriate dimensions
- Added support for the Qanba Obsidian and Qanba Dragon arcade sticks in Desktop mode
- Added an option to scale the Steam Deck user interface for external displays
- Added a toggle for automatic scaling of the Steam Deck user interface for external displays
- Added ability to adjust image display settings for external displays that have overscan issues
- Fixed the panel staying off when disconnecting from dock shortly after resuming from sleep
- Fixed the panel backlight staying on while docked
Audio / Bluetooth
- Fixed Bluetooth profile selection not being saved when switching away from Desktop mode
- Fixed echo cancellation CPU overhead when the microphone isn't being used, improving power usage in idle or near-idle scenarios
- Fixed multi-channel audio on external displays
- Fixed audio out on some capture cards
- Fixed some instances of corrupt audio after resuming from sleep
- Fixed audio output with some 32-bit games that use ALSA
Drivers / Firmware
- Updated graphics driver with compatibility and performance fixes
- Updated wireless driver with fixes for WiFi disconnection issues on 5Ghz
- Updated controller firmware utilities to support future controller hardware revisions
Then, the next day, Valve pushed another update that resolved a stuttering issue introduced in the previous patch.
Well, that's it for news this week. This was the biggest update to the Steam Deck. Ever. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and you'll consider subscribing to this blog!