Game publishers thoughts on Steam Deck

Since its launch 15 months ago, Steam Deck has made a lot of noise in the market. Thanks to good sales of the portable PC and Valve’s ongoing support many publishers start caring about verifying their titles – even as soon as at launch.

SteamOS powered handheld has been on the market for a little over a year now, so it’s easy to assume that publishers already formed their own opinions about the Steam Deck. We’ve asked them what they’re thinking about Valve’s device. Do they already have some strategies for working with the handheld? Specifically, do they intend to have their future and already available games verified for the Deck? Additionally, in case of new titles, do they intend to be more open about their testing and experiences with the handheld? We’ve got answers from:

John Pickett Head Translator & PR Director

The Steam Deck is an interesting expansion to the services that Steam offers. We do think it’s valuable to have our games available on the Steam Deck so fans can play them outside of their homes, and to that end, we have submitted our entire Steam catalog for verification. We’ve made some minor adjustments to our games where possible in order to improve compatibility, but it’s also a fact that many of the games we license for localization use engines or features that just aren’t compatible with the handheld device, so there’s little we can do there to improve compatibility. Going forward we plan to continue submitting our releases for Steam Deck verification. If there are adjustments we can make to improve compatibility, then we will, but we also accept that there will be many games where we cannot, so Steam Deck compatibility will not be a deciding factor in what games we license or release on Steam.

Publisher website

Patryk Kawiecki, Marketing & PR Specialist

As a company, we are constantly monitoring current trends in the video game market. Steam Deck’s popularity keeps growing, which can be seen thanks to quantity of verified games and rising numbers of similar devices from other manufactures.

We consider Steam Deck a compromise between PC and portable consoles. Because of specific distribution model, this device is aimed at conscious customers, who are interested in both the games and the technology.

We analyze all of our titles released on Steam in terms of their availability on Steam Deck, as we have a lot of experience in preparing games for portable video game consoles. It would be unwise to not take advantage of this opportunity. The effect Is that the list of our games labeled as verified for Steam Deck keeps expanding. It applies to both newly released games and those that have been available on Steam for years.

In conclusion,  Steam Deck immediately became a significant part of the market, and nothing suggests that its dynamic growth is going to halt anytime soon. That’s why we will be watching further development of the device.

Publisher website

Michał Azarewicz, Publishing Manager

Steam Deck has quickly become an important part of the PC landscape – huge popularity of the device shortly after its launch and new similar handhelds designed by other manufactures are a proof of that. The first game, which forced us to face the Steam Deck, was Shing!, which was verified some time after its release. It was a good opportunity for us to learn, since we had to adjust the game not only on the technical level, but also in terms of readability and UI.
We try to make sure that all our games work on the Steam Deck from day one or even from the moment we decide to release a demo version. It’s highly important for us to reach the PC players both when they can finally decide about their purchase and during the time when they can test our game for free.
Our new titles – Hamster Playground and Date Z, work on Deck and you can enjoy them on the device freely. I personally feel that Valve’s handheld quickly found its place both on the market and inside the hearts of players. Nowadays, the question “Is it available on the Deck?” is just as common as “Will it come to Switch?” some time ago. I my opinion, it shows that nobody should neither disregard or ignore the Steam Deck.

Justin Pfeiffer – Marketing Manager

Naturally, we would like all of our titles to be greenlit on Steam (even yellow lit ‘playable’ would be great), but we haven’t taken any specific steps to market or direct our games toward the Steam Deck platform. Right now, it is a supplemental option for Steam players to enjoy our games. However, we do want Steam Deck to be more of a focus for our future releases. It’s popular hardware and it’s worth making sure players have a great experience with our games there.

Paweł Skaba, Head of Marketing

The Steam Deck launch was indeed very unique. In the early days a lot of the technical documentation, including the information about the certification process and publishing games on the device were quite scarce. But after some time both Valve and ourselves caught up with the process. We can’t say that Steam Deck’s requirements, from the perspective of releasing games on the device, is a huge issue for us. Besides PC, our main platform to publish games on is the Nintendo Switch. That’s why many of the elements being worked on by our developers or porting partners easily match those of the Steam Deck. We’re an indie publisher, so any opportunity to increase our sales and expand our reach is very useful to us. Although every Steam Deck player is of course using Steam, to us they have somewhat different shopping habits than people just playing on desktop. They more closely resemble Nintendo Switch players. That’s why our marketing communication related to that specific platform is often different, and more focused on other aspects and advantages of the given game. Every time we try to make sure that our game is supported by the Steam Deck or – at least, is set up for receiving this type of support in the near future.

Publisher website


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