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Valve reveal the new Steam Deck
Valve reveal its new portable gaming PCHunderes of the best PC games in your pocket
I was delighted to see that Valve have taken a stab at the hardware market once more, although this time taking a leaf out of Nintendo's book and designing a hybrid handheld gaming device that enables you to connect to a monitor or simply take it with you and play the latest games from the Steam marketplace on the fly.
Due for launch in DecemberSteam deck promises to unlock PC games on the move
Valve products in the past have always been very well thought through and designed. In the past when picking up the Steam Gamepad for example I was surprised why it did not take off, for me it was one of the best designed game controllers on the market. Valve have gone from being a game developer historically behind titles such as HalfLife that then went on to spawn Counter-Strike, today they are the dominant force when it comes to digital marketplaces. Most PC games today are bought digitally directly from Steam, which is why it makes sense for them to enter the hardware market and create a seamless experience to enjoy games on the move.
Valve are undeniably taking inspiration from the enormously profitable Nintendo Switch ”
Valve is approaching Steam Deck very differently to Nintendo SwitchIt will serve as a a more flexible and open mobile PC
Nintendo has a tight walled garden approach when it comes to its product experience. Yes, you can download apps on Switch like YouTube and Twitch. You would not for example be able to use it with Microsoft Windows for example, the Steam deck seeks to change all of that. One thing that the Switch has shown us is that it is possible to play incredible games on the move with rich graphics and immersive gameplay. For example the fact you can play a game like Super Mario Odyssey in 1080p whilst sitting on a busy commuter train is quite amazing.
The Steam Deck features a 7 inch LCD touchscreen, wi-fi connectivity, analogue and touch controls, gyroscope for motion detection. Also it features a base station so it can easily be connected to an external screen. It has a strong chip in the Zen 2 AMD processor and AMD RDNA 2 GPU with 16GB of RAM.
Steam deck could be a game changer as games become more platform agnostic?
As is the case with the Playstation 5, XBox series X there has been a huge surge in pre-orders with scalpers no doubt preying on the opportunity to capitalise on supply and demand. However we think more players in the hardware space is a great thing, it drives innovation and ensures gamers are being served with the best experience before deciding to part with their money.
The Steam online store is a modern marvel of e-commerce. We think that the ability to play literally thousands of games on the fly will appeal to PC gamers looking to make progress and be entertained on the move. Nintendo serves a different and much wider audience of casual gamers and family consumers and we think that as long as they keep investing and developing in the best 1st part games featuring the likes of Super Mario and Zelda they should not have too much to worry about!