How to Use Valve’s Steam Deck: Tips on Setup, Controls, and More

Valve’s new moveable console, the Steam Deck (to not be confused with Elgato’s Stream Deck), formally launched on Friday. If you happen to preordered early, you need to have yours in hand beginning this week, Valve tells WIRED. You’ll doubtless discover it’s not the simplest system to navigate, because it has a number of settings and customization choices and doesn’t include any directions. We’re right here to assist.

First announced on July 15 last year, Valve’s Steam Deck was initially set to launch earlier than the 2021 vacation season, however with the continued provide chain points, that acquired pushed again. 

There are two huge software program variations that set the Steam Deck other than different consoles. The primary is the sheer variety of video games you possibly can play on it, because of Valve’s Steam sport market, which is preloaded onto the Steam Deck OS—though most of those video games weren’t designed with a 7-inch touchscreen in thoughts (learn our story about the right way to discover appropriate video games for more information). In case you have a PC, Steam, and a ton of video games you’ve already bought (and sure rather a lot that you simply haven’t but performed), the Steam Deck can look very interesting. Second, you should utilize the Steam Deck in desktop mode to run different packages and launchers—assume Battle.internet and Origin—when you’ve put in Home windows (it comes with Linux).

If you happen to haven’t but purchased the Steam Deck, or are ready on your preorder to reach, we even have a overview of the Deck that may assist reply a few of your broader questions on its performance and what gameplay is like. And, you already know, whether or not it’s price shopping for one other console—particularly when probably the most inexpensive possibility is $399 for 64 GB (lower than the file dimension of Cyberpunk 2077).

This text is geared extra towards what you are able to do when you even have a Steam Deck in hand. So, let’s get to it. Right here’s the right way to do among the most vital actions on the Steam Deck.

Tips on how to Get to the Steam Deck’s Settings

There are two methods to get to your settings on the Steam Deck. First, navigate to the Wi-Fi image within the prime bar and hit the A button. The second is to press the Steam button on the left facet of the Deck, scroll right down to Settings, and hit A. It’s also possible to entry a smaller settings menu by hitting the Fast Settings button on the best facet of the deck (the three dots). This menu will solely allow you to modify issues like the quantity, your microphone, and the display screen brightness.

Tips on how to Examine Whether or not Your Steam Deck is Up-to-Date

When you’re in your settings, scroll to System. Software program Updates is on the prime of the System menu. If you happen to hit the Examine For Updates button it can both begin downloading the replace or revert again to the Examine For Updates button if there isn’t one. Beneath the button, it reveals you the final time the Deck checked for an replace.

Tips on how to Examine Your Steam Deck’s Battery Life

The Steam Deck has two methods to test your battery life—and see its projection for a way lengthy you might have till it hits 0 % (though this fluctuates drastically, so take it with a grain of salt). The primary is to scroll as much as the highest navigation bar and click on on the Battery icon. The second is to hit the Fast Settings button. This may mechanically convey you to the battery life display screen, which reveals you the proportion of cost it’s presently holding on the left and what number of hours and minutes it tasks the battery will final on the best.

Tips on how to Put Your Steam Deck in Airplane Mode

The quickest and best technique to put your Steam Deck in Airplane mode is to hit the Fast Settings button and scroll right down to Airplane mode. Toggle this on and it’ll change to blue. You at the moment are in Airplane mode.

Tips on how to Regulate Your Steam Deck’s Speaker and Microphone Quantity

Apart from the speaker quantity buttons on prime of the Steam Deck to the left of the fan, the simplest technique to modify each the speaker quantity and your microphone is by urgent the Fast Settings button. From right here you possibly can flip your quantity and mic up or down or mute them utterly.

It’s also possible to do that through Settings > Audio by urgent the Steam button or scrolling to the highest of the display screen and hitting the Wi-Fi image. On this menu, you may also modify the output and enter gadgets on your audio system and microphone.

Tips on how to Format Your MicroSD Card on Steam Deck

In your settings, open the System menu. Scroll right down to Format SD Card and hit the Format button. The Deck will immediate you to verify that you simply want to format your SD card, which implies all knowledge on the cardboard will likely be misplaced and can’t be undone. Hit Verify and the button adjustments to “Formatting … ” This would possibly take a couple of minutes. The button will change again to “Format” as soon as it’s finished, with out supplying you with a notification. Price noting, the Steam Deck codecs SD playing cards in ext4 format, which isn’t the usual format for an SD card out of the field, so it have to be formatted earlier than use.

Tips on how to Take a Screenshot on Steam Deck

Press the Steam button and the R1 set off on the similar time. This may solely work whereas utilizing the Steam Deck UI, not on Desktop mode. To view your screenshots, hit the Steam button, scroll to Media, and scroll to All. To maneuver your screenshot off the Steam Deck, you possibly can add it to Steam by hovering over the picture and hitting the Choices button (the burger) and selecting Add.

Tips on how to Change Your Obtain Area on Steam Deck

Head to your Settings and scroll right down to Downloads. Obtain area is the primary possibility on this web page, and you may choose the area you need from the drop-down menu (though Valve doesn’t suggest altering your obtain area).

Tips on how to Buy Video games on Steam Deck

{Photograph}: Valve

Head to the Retailer and seek for the sport by tapping on the search bar to convey up the keyboard, or by choosing the sport from the principle display screen or your wishlist.

From the sport’s retailer web page, you’ll see a inexperienced Add to Cart button on the best. Much like Steam on a desktop, it’ll ask you whether or not it is a present or for your self, then ask you to enter your cost methodology (it’s a lot simpler to do that on desktop with a keyboard, somewhat than utilizing the deck’s touchscreen keypad) or enter your safety code for an present card. Hit the inexperienced Buy button. You’ll then must go to your Library to obtain the sport.

Tips on how to Obtain Video games on Steam Deck

In case you have already bought the sport, head to your Library, choose the sport, and hit the blue Set up button. This may present you the compatibility display screen so you understand how it can doubtless play on the Steam Deck. Hit Set up and also you’re set.

Tips on how to See Your Storage House on Steam Deck

In your Settings, scroll right down to Storage. On the prime of the display screen, you will note each your inner drive and your microSD, together with how a lot house is left on each.

Tips on how to Examine Which Video games Are on Your Steam Deck MicroSD Card

Within the Storage menu of your settings, scroll throughout so the microSD drive is chosen. This may present you a breakdown of what’s taking over house on the drive, in addition to every of the video games and their file sizes.

Tips on how to Transfer and Delete Video games on Steam Deck

There are two methods to uninstall video games in your Steam Deck, however just one technique to transfer a sport between your inner drive (both the eMMC or the NVMe SSD, relying on which mannequin you might have) and your microSD card.

Whereas on the Storage display screen in your settings, hover over the sport you want to transfer and press Y to maneuver it from the present drive to both your inner storage or your microSD card.

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