Little Kitty, Big City was provided by Double Dagger Studio for review. Thank you!

This review used an LCD Steam Deck. OLED details will be coming later.

Little Kitty, Big City is an interesting game. Do I think it's designed primarily for children? Absolutely. Can adults still have fun with this little adventure game? I think so. While I would recommend this game mostly to children or parents to buy their children, I wouldn't shy away from recommending this game to an adult who just wants to have a relaxing afternoon or two playing as a little kitty in a...moderately sized city. The city isn't all that big, but there are plenty of nooks and crannies for you to explore.

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In Little Kitty, Big City, you're a young kitten, apparently 3 months old to be exact, who has fallen from their high-rise residence, and it's up to you to guide them back to their home. To do so, you'll need to interact with a variety of other animals, each with their own unique personalities. In exchange for completing some of the quests in the game or just exploring, you can find the prized fish you seek! Once you've acquired enough fish, you will have the stamina to climb back home.

The game gives you a basic but useful set of moves. You can crouch, sprint, swipe with your paws, and jump. You'll also have the chance to interact with certain objects, such as pulling them out of the way of crawl spaces so you can access new areas or knock objects off of counters to break them. There's no "combat" in Little Kitty, Big City, it's purely for moving objects around with physics.

The animation of the kitty and your movement work quite well, although if you quickly rotate the cat, it can go inside of itself briefly. I also encountered a couple of bugs when jumping that caused me to get stuck. I originally thought this required exiting and re-entering the game to fix, but there is an "Unstick Me!" button in the options menu to respawn. You will need to use the Touchscreen to select the option. Luckily, the occasions are rare where you would need to push the button.

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Presentation-wise, the game is quite pretty to look at, but I think it fits the overall cartoonish nature of the game quite well. The sound is a mixed bag, while I found the ambiance and background noise/music pleasant, I found the sounds associated with the cat to be quite grating. As a cat person myself, I found it quite sad that the meowing the kitty does when certain things happen is pretty irritating. There's also not much variety in the sounds that play when you do certain moves, meaning it can get repetitive fast.

Progress is a bit of an odd one in Little Kitty, Big City. If you "speedrun" the main objectives, you could finish this game in less than 2 hours. You simply have to find all the fish (which are marked on your map) and then climb the tower. The bulk of your time will be spent doing the game's "sidequests," mostly helping out other cute animals in the city with their problems.

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Yes, you can acquire hats for your kitty by finding them in the world or completing quests.

Young children should have a blast playing as the little kitty, exploring the city, and just enjoying jumping around. If you aren't focused on progressing straight through the game, there's plenty of fun. Anyone else could probably 100% the game in less than 5 or 6 hours. The main quests can be done in less than 3 hours, and the side quests or "cat-chievements" can be done by exploring the city and finding its secrets.

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Is that a Supra?

I had fun with my time on Little Kitty, Big City. The whole game is just a pleasant bundle of innocence to be enjoyed. Is it short? Yes. And the price is rather steep for the game's length at $24.99. But I think it'd be a great game for a parent to buy their child who's just started gaming. There's no combat, no game-overs, and you can't take "damage" at any point. This is as casual a game as you're going to get, but it still has some challenges related to finding secrets and landing your jumps.

Little Kitty, Big City - Steam Deck Performance

Little Kitty, Big City doesn't have too many settings for you to fiddle with, which makes things simpler for me!

The game has excellent controller support, and it recommends using a controller to play the game. It also defaults to the Steam Deck's 1280x800 resolution. The only graphics quality setting is a simple slider that changes from "Low" to "Very High." In keeping with the rest of the game, the settings are "casual."

But here are 2 preset settings for you, one for quality visuals and another that prioritizes battery life. Both target 60 FPS, as the game just feels much nicer at high framerates, and we can get away with it.

Recommended Settings - 60 FPS

In your SteamOS settings, set an FPS Limit of 60 FPS / 60Hz, and we'll have a TDP limit of 12W.

We're setting the graphics quality to Very High for this one. The game is short, and we get the addition of nicer shading if we run at high graphics settings, so I don't mind the extra power draw we'll incur to have a nice and smooth-looking game.

At these settings, we get a reasonably stable 60 FPS. The frame rate isn't terribly solid, but that's the case even with the max TDP. Little Kitty, Big City seems to have CPU usage spikes from time to time, and the Steam Deck struggles to keep up, so while we can hit 60 FPS a lot of the time, we do see drops to 58 or 57 from time to time. I didn't notice this, but if you are particularly bothered by the drops, you might want to lock to 50 instead.

There was also one specific spot in the game where the FPS dropped to below 50 FPS, but it's the only spot I found that does it, likely due to the shadows in the area.

Power draw varies, but I'd say it's around the 20-23W mark most of the time, so Steam Deck LCD owners can expect around 100 minutes of battery life. Steam Deck OLED owners, probably just over 2 hours.

Temperatures were around 70-75C, so nothing out of the ordinary here.

Battery Life Settings - 60 FPS

If you want your battery to last a little longer, here are the settings to go for.

Set a 60 FPS / 60Hz limit in SteamOS and your TDP Limit to 8W.

Then, in the in-game graphics settings, set the Graphics Quality to Low. We lose a lot of shading here, and the water looks a bit worse, but otherwise, we don't lose a huge amount of visual fidelity, and we get to use a bit less power with these settings.

Again, we can hold a reasonably stable 60 FPS, with some drops here and there, which are mainly CPU-related. Performance is pretty much identical to the Recommended preset above; we're just trading visuals for battery life.

Because of the reduced settings, our power draw is now down to around 14-16W, meaning our battery life on a Steam Deck LCD should be around 2.5 Hours, and a Steam Deck OLED should get at least 3 hours.

If you like, you could lower your framerate to 40 or 50 FPS to save some more battery life. But as the game is only a few hours long anyway, unless you want to play the entire game in one sitting, with one charge, there's no need to sacrifice the framerate for more battery life.

Temperatures held around 65C for this preset.

Accessibility:

Little Kitty, Big City does have a dedicated accessibility menu. It allows you to disable vibration, auto-advance dialog, and invert the camera rotation. You can adjust the font size here, although even the smallest was perfectly fine for me. If you're visually impaired, the font size can become huge. There also appear to be remappable controls, but the button was greyed out. Presumably, this is just for keyboard players.

Conclusion:

Little Kitty, Big City is a delightful little game. Best described as a 3D Platformer, I think it'll hold the attention of anyone looking for a relaxing game, at least for a few hours. This will appeal to a younger audience that is less focused on progress and "getting things done." No one will find anything offensive here. It's about as wholesome as you can get.

Performance on the Steam Deck is great. Aside from a slightly unstable framerate, which wasn't too noticeable to me, the controls work wonderfully well, and we get the choice between a great-looking game and a decent-looking game with respectable battery life.

If you have some money to spend on an experience and aren't expecting to sink tens of hours into an epic, then Little Kitty, Big City deserves your attention.

But here's a challenge: Can you run Little Kitty and Big City on the battery life preset and beat the game before your charge runs out? Let us know in the comments if you have (on your first try)!

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

Monster Hunter Stories was provided by CAPCOM for review. Thank you!

This review used an LCD Steam Deck. OLED details will be coming later.

Before getting to try Monster Hunter Stories, my only experience with the Monster Hunter franchise was a game way back when on the PSP, and later Monster Hunter World. Sadly, I didn't particularly gel with either game. But Monster Hunter Stories takes a different approach to gameplay and art style. So let's take a look at it now that this Nintendo 3DS game is finally making its way to Steam!

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Get ready to set off on an adventure together with your Felyne Friend, Navirou

Monster Hunter Stories adopts a much more colorful and "friendly" aesthetic than its main series counterparts. Graphics are stylized and shaded in a more traditional JRPG style rather than the somewhat realistic look most Monster Hunter games use. While the graphics don't particularly impress, they do the job well enough. This is pretty much a straight port of the 3DS version of the game, so some of the game worlds can look "flat." There's no 3D grass in grassy plains, so the graphics are probably more in line with what you'd expect from a PS2 or Gamecube game. The Monsters themselves look fine and are animated well.

There's not too much to comment on in terms of audio. A lot of the game's dialogue is voice-acted, which is nice. The game's soundtrack isn't particularly memorable, but it sets the theme for the game depending on the area you are in. Footstep noises might irritate, especially when you're on foot and not riding a mount. It would have been good if there was a separate option for footstep volume in the options menu, but alas, it's bundled in with Sound Effects as a whole.

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You can ride your Monsties in the open world to traverse the map quicker

Now, we get into the game's combat system. In battles, you and a Monster of your choice in your party will participate in the fight against one or multiple enemies, and the combat is turn-based, unlike the real-time combat usually seen in the Monster Hunter games.

Monster Hunter Stories adopts the tried-and-trusted rock, paper, scissors mechanic. One move counters another, but in itself can be countered by a 3rd move. The 3 basic attacks you can execute are Power, Speed, and Technical. Depending on the moves you and your enemies pick, you'll either have the advantage and deal bonus damage, draw and both deal damage, or have a disadvantage and take extra damage.

There are also special abilities, such as the ability to command your "monstie" in a fight to use a certain skills, or you can use items yourself to heal or give other stat boosts. The game's combat is focused on recognizing what kind of attacks your opponent will use and choosing the correct counter-move, as well as finding the enemy's weakness to deal the most damage.

There's a fair amount of strategy involved in what abilities to use when and when is best to attack or sit back and attempt a heal. I found the combat to be pretty enjoyable, it can feel relaxing and tense at times, depending on how difficult the fight is, and I think the game is balanced pretty well. There are no difficulty options, so that's an important thing.

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The game's combat requires strategy while not being overly complicated

The story is pretty basic. Unlike the Monster Hunter games, in Monster Hunter Stories, you are a Monster "Rider" rather than a Monster "Hunter," so your aim is to coexist with monsters when possible rather than hunt them down. While Monster Riders are usually confined to their village and the surrounding areas, the protagonist decides that he wants to see the world, so the story begins as you go on an adventure with your Monstie party.

Also, there's something to do with your childhood friend getting all angsty, hating monsters, and running off, so you must find him whilst the world is being corrupted by some dark force, but I'm sure that's all fine!

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A big glowing purple crystal emanating a strange aura? I'm sure that's fine!

Monster Hunter Stories is a solid game. Don't be put off by its cartoonish aesthetic and lower price tag. This game is launching at $30, but that's not a reflection on how much fun it is or, indeed, how long the game is. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Monster Hunter Stories. It's a light-hearted adventure that, despite some technical shortcomings, has charm and beauty in its own right. As for the game's length, while it's not quite your typical 100-hour JRPG, it'll take the average player around 40 hours to beat the game, according to Howlongtobeat.com.

But can we be a Monster Rider on the go with our Steam Decks?

Monster Hunter Stories - Steam Deck Performance

Monster Hunter Stories has few graphics settings to choose from, so this should be fairly simple.

The game does have good controller support. All the menus can be controlled with your Steam Deck without the need for a touchscreen or touchpads. Sadly, the game doesn't support 16:10 resolutions, so you're stuck playing at 1280x720 with black bars along the top and bottom for this one.

As there are limited quality settings, I will provide just one preset, targeting 60 FPS.

Recommended Settings - 60 FPS

In your SteamOS settings, set an FPS Limit of 60 FPS / 60Hz, and we won't have a TDP limit here.

We're running max settings for this one, which in this game means turning Anti-Aliasing On, having the Shadows on High, and playing at 1280x720 resolution, with an in-game frame cap of 60.

In these settings, the game locked at 60 FPS for me. The game is CPU-intensive on a single thread, so the graphics make almost no difference in performance. Lowering the TDP Limit just starves the CPU of power, which causes slowdowns below 60 FPS. If we want to maintain 60, we must keep the TDP at 15W.

Power draw tended to stay around the 19-21W mark for most of the game, interestingly even in menus and smaller areas, the CPU usage is still very high. Steam Deck LCD owners should expect around 100 minutes of battery life. Steam Deck OLED owners will probably get just over 2 hours.

If you want to save some battery life, you can lower your SteamOS FPS Limit to 40 or even 30, lowering the power draw from 19-21W to about 17W. It's a minor saving, though, and I'd rather have smooth gameplay. Even if you reduce the FPS limit to 40 or 30, the CPU usage still maxes out on one thread, so the power savings are minimal. This is likely a drawback of being a straight 3DS port.

GPU temperatures tend to hold around 70C, but the CPU is often at 80C or above, likely due to that high single-thread usage.

While the game only lets you save at certain points, it does autosave quite frequently, so don't worry too much about getting stuck where you can't save and your battery is running low.

Accessibility:

Monster Hunter Stories has some basic accessibility options. You can enable/disable subtitles for cutscenes, adjust camera sensitivity, and remap controls.

Conclusion:

Monster Hunter Stories is a fun, light-hearted adventure of a young adventurer off to see the world with their Monster friends. As a side note, you can play as a boy or a girl if that interests you! If you're after a relaxing game that airs on a JRPG's side but isn't as intense as many are, then Monster Hunter Stories is a great choice.

Performance on the Steam Deck is nearly flawless. The only two things I found that let it down are the high CPU usage, which causes high power draw (and temperatures), and the fact that the game doesn't support 16:10 resolutions, so you'll have black bars. I couldn't make the framerate drop below 60, and the controls work fine on the Steam Deck.

You can buy Monster Hunter Stories with confidence that it'll work well on your Steam Deck, just make sure you stay near a charger if you want a longer play session.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

Dead Island 2 was provided by Deep Silver/PLAION for review. Thank you!

This review used an LCD Steam Deck. OLED details will be coming later.

After a year of being an Epic Store exclusive, Steam users can finally get their hands on Dead Island 2. But was the game worth the wait? And how does it perform on the Steam Deck? Well, let's find out!

If you aren't familiar with the game, Dead Island 2 occurs during a zombie outbreak in LA, often called Hell-A. Due to the sudden outbreak and general mass panic, players will end up as part of a rag-tag group of survivors who aim to escape Hell-A. It is slightly confusing that the game is called Dead Island and yet takes place on the US Mainland, but let's ignore that small detail for now.

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The focus of Dead Island 2 is surely the combat, and thankfully, it's one thing that Dead Island 2 does well. The combat is very gory and takes advantage of a new system the developers created, allowing you to deal realistic damage to bodies. Cutting a zombie with a sharp object will cause their skin to slice exactly where you swung your weapon, while blunt objects will likewise cause body deformation.

As you might expect, you can also dismember limbs to incapacitate zombies or decapitate them for the killing blow. I discovered that failing to decapitate a zombie can cause it to return to "life" moments later, so it's good to ensure you've done the job properly before moving on and turning your back.

Most of the time in Dead Island 2, you'll use melee weapons. There are ranged weapons, such as firearms, but they're few and far between, and melee weapons are much easier to come by and, in certain situations, much more wise to use to their ability to knock back enemies and crowd control.

The combat is very satisfying, and being able to push back zombies and then deal a devastating swing to take them out feels oh-so-good. The game isn't for the faint of heart, though. It's about as gory as you can get, with visible organs inside the body, burnt flesh, and plenty of icky environmental stuff going on, too. Fortunately, you're probably too panicked fighting back the horde to be squeamish.

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Visually, the game also impresses. The game is still a visual treat, even in the lower settings I was playing. The environment of LA/California is pleasant and sunny, and it'd be a nice place to stroll if there wasn't an angry horde of zombies trying to bite your face off at every street corner. You can even run with some upscaling on with the built-in FSR2 support, and the game holds up well.

The only visual effect I wasn't a huge fan of was the bloom effect when exiting a building, which blinds you for a few seconds. It's likely used to give you a sense of unease about not being able to see if there are enemies outside when you first leave a building, but it felt a bit unnecessary, and it can't be disabled in the options.

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Story-wise, Dead Island 2 is pretty forgettable. You start on a plane trying to evacuate people from LA, and the zombie pandemic has already begun. However, as it turns out, one of the passengers is infected, resulting in the plane being shot down to prevent the quarantine around LA from being breached.

After this point, the story revolves around repeated attempts to get yourself and the group of survivors you run into out of LA. There are a couple of twists and turns here and there, but none of them are particularly thrilling.

Depending on your character, you might find story interactions and cutscenes more or less bearable. For example, one of the protagonists you can choose is a Paralympian who, despite the ongoing zombie apocalypse, repeatedly says during the game that they must escape LA to get to the Paralympic trials. It's a small thing, but I found it pretty irksome that your main goal for escaping LA is to attend the Paralympics in the middle of a zombie apocalypse.

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I did find some issues with the objectives in certain quests. It's not always 100% clear what you have to do in every situation, and it's quite easy to get lost in some of the environments. Sometimes, the game will guide you quite well by placing waypoints for you to reach, but other times, it leaves you with a vague objective with no concrete instructions. I found this needlessly frustrating, where you want to move to the next area and face some more enemies.

I didn't play the game to solve puzzles or find hidden objects. Going on a "treasure hunt" to find 4 items is pretty much just filler in every game it's ever been in, and it's the same in Dead Island 2, and it interrupts an otherwise fun experience. I understand the game might be shorter without these artificial obstacles thrown in the way, but it is frustrating nonetheless.

Dead Island 2 does have co-op support for up to 3 players, although I only got the chance to play the game solo. The game does scale difficulty, so you should find the game a reasonable challenge regardless of the amount of players you're with, depending on your difficulty setting. I imagine a game like this is much more fun with friends, as you can sort of gloss over awkward story moments.

Dead Island 2 - Steam Deck Performance

Dead Island 2 gets off to a great start. Its menus and gameplay have full controller support. The game defaults to the Steam Deck's 1280x800 native resolution, and it supports AMD FSR2 upscaling, which helps it achieve a few extra frames of performance.

There's not much else to say, so let's get straight into the settings preset I have for you today. There's only one, but I think the game still looks great with the settings as they are, and we get to run the game at 40 FPS.

Here are the base settings I used. For the graphical settings, you'll need to go to the "Advanced" settings at the bottom of the Display menu shown here.

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Recommended Settings - 40 FPS

In your SteamOS settings, set an FPS Limit of 40 FPS / 40Hz, and we won't have a TDP limit here.

To get up to 40 FPS, I set everything to its lowest setting possible, except Texture Quality, which I put on Ultra, and FSR2, which is set to Balanced. VRAM takes a bit of a pounding here, but I didn't find it caused stutters in this case.

With these settings, we can get 40 FPS in most cases. However, there are some situations where FPS will drop, and we can't avoid that. Particularly when swinging a weapon and making contact with a zombie, the deformation/gore system in place seems to hit the Steam Deck's GPU pretty hard, and you'll likely drop into the high 30s at these points.

The main saving grace here is that while in the swinging animation, you aren't doing too much, and there's so much going on that the FPS drops didn't feel terrible. The times when you're simply walking around the world map and going through menus all ran at 40 FPS for me, so I think it's an acceptable compromise.

I think the game still looks great.

The screenshots above were taken when this preset was expected to be 50 FPS. However, later in the game, I found that framerates deteriorated, and the power draw got unreasonably high, specifically at night. So, while the graphics look the same, I recommend you lock the game to 40 FPS, not 50 FPS. I didn't retake the screenshots as I wanted to present the game in various situations, and you can't go back and repeat missions in Dead Island 2.

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Later in the game, performance frequently drops to around 40 FPS, making the 40 FPS lock more appropriate.

The power draw isn't too bad. It ranges from 19-24W with the 40 FPS lock. If you were to lock the game to 50 FPS, the power draw would be around 26-29W. Steam Deck LCD users shouldn't expect much more than 2 hours of battery life.

Temperatures tended to hang around 75C for the most part.

Just one preset?

I debated making different presets for Dead Island 2, but ultimately, the above settings were my sweet spot. With the 40 FPS lock and low settings, the framerate is quite solid throughout most of the game, and I just found it nicer to play that way instead of going for 50 FPS and experiencing jarring drops in framerate.

Running at 30 FPS is also difficult, as the SteamOS frame limiter introduces unacceptable input lag, and the in-game frame limiter introduces micro-stuttering, neither of which is ideal.

Accessibility:

Dead Island 2 features some accessibility options, such as bindable keys and adjustable sensitivity, as well as the ability to display subtitles and the size of the subtitles.

The UI is not scalable (aside from the subtitles), although I generally found it reasonably easy to read on the Steam Deck.

Conclusion:

If you want a game you can dive into, have mindless fun, and chop down the zombie hordes, maybe even with some friends, then Dead Island 2 is probably the game for you. It's not a game to be taken seriously; the storyline lets it down if that's what you're here for, but the visuals and combat impress, and for many people, those are arguably the two points you want to impress in a game like this.

Performance on Steam Deck is mixed. We can hit decent performance targets, but the combat in the game takes a heavy toll regardless of our settings, so expect frame drops here and there. The control scheme, however, is excellent and works well in every aspect of the game I tried. Don't let the frame drops dissuade you from playing this game on the Steam Deck; it's a good time, regardless.

The developers make the following note about the game's Steam Deck compatibility, which you may wish to read HERE. This mainly covers issues when linking your Epic Games account to play online.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

Final Factory was provided by Never Games Limited for review. Thank you!

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

Final Factory is an interesting game. The closest thing I can relate it to is Factorio, but in space, with a fair few differences. The game aims to build up a factory to automate production processes, and just like Factorio, this can get incredibly complex and require lots of planning and reworking as you progress. There are parts I like about how the game handles certain aspects and parts that could be improved upon, so let's dive into the review of Final Factory!

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Much like Factorio, you start Final Factory with... well, basically nothing. You're just a lonesome ship floating in space with a couple of fighter drones for some basic protection.

Drones do most things in Final Factory, and you'll utilize them for fighting, logistics, mining, and research. Fighting drones will man defense platforms or can be pulled into your fleet and follow around the main ship, while logistics drones come in a few varieties. Still, they all perform the same duty: moving items from one station to another. Stations you build require stability, power, and heat venting. This makes it more difficult to make one large station to handle your needs, so setting up logistics drones to carry items between stations is necessary.

Mining drones are simple. They mine nearby asteroids for a time and then despawn, requiring you to build more. Research drones also work identically, using an asteroid or planet for some research before despawning. Because they only last a short time, automating the production of mining and research drones is a must.

I do quite enjoy the way stations are handled. Like I said before, they have needs, meaning building a station is like a puzzle. You need to plan where every aspect of the station is situated, where the solar panels will be, where the cargo holds, and where the logistics hubs will be for logistics drones to take/deposit resources. Logistics drones are that they only move in a straight line, meaning you have to build your stations in a sort of "grid" of your own, making for it all to flow smoothly.

I'll admit that games like Final Factory can sometimes be a bit overwhelming for me once the tutorial ends after the first hour. The game gives you goals to aim for so you have some direction, but they can be lengthy and vague, such as "automate the production of planetary research bots." This was a several-step process requiring multiple production buildings and a bit of a logistics headache to ensure they all had the resources they needed.

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I feel the building and logistics side of things is pretty solid. It does get complicated, to the point where I feel like you need to dedicate some serious time to organizing your stations or at least read up on some third-party tutorials or guides before diving too far in, but whether that's a bad thing or not depends on what you want out of Final Factory, I guess.

If you aren't prepared to spend a decent chunk of time figuring out logic problems in your head about how to get resources between stations with the straight-line logistics drones and limited space you have to work with, Final Factory might not be for you. Eventually, you will have a headache and probably have to demolish parts of your stations and rework them to expand.

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Combat-wise, I wasn't sure what to expect from the game. When first booting, I wasn't sure that the game had combat, but it doesn't take long for you to run into your first enemy. The combat is fairly basic. As you might expect from a game about automation, your fighter drones will do most of the fighting with you. You can research better drones and better fleet tech, allowing you to have more drones with you, but they will essentially follow the player's ship and attack anything that gets close to you.

Enemy bases are mostly made up of fleets of enemy ships alongside spawners, which periodically spawn ships that can be destroyed. You do have some abilities you can use in your command ship, such as a fairly weak weapon that pales in comparison to the large number of drones you'll soon have and the ability to order your drones about a bit if you want them to be more focused in a particular place.

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The world map has some interesting mechanics. Nearly all of the map is covered in the "fog of war." Interestingly, once you explore an area, if you don't maintain an active presence there with yourself or an exploration station, the fog will gradually reclaim the area, making you lose sight. This means you need to place defense platforms and exploration stations periodically so you can keep an eye on your empire. The enemies can also rebuild if you let the fog creep in.

Enemy strength also increases the further from the center of the map you get, going from 20% near the center to 300% at the edges of the map. They also seem to get more frequent. There's a little indicator at the bottom right that lets you know how strong the enemies are in your area.

Exploration is rewarded in the form of ancient alien structures, these can be star gates, which allow fast travel, or giant obelisks which can be activated in return for Lumin Orbs. These Orbs can be spent at another alien structure in return for upgrading the player's ship. I put all my orbs into increasing the player ship's speed, as I soon found traveling any long distance to be painfully slow, and as I said, upgrading health and weapons was a bit pointless, as I mostly let my drones fight for me.

Final Factory - Steam Deck Performance

Final Factory looks okay at first glance, with full support for 16:10 aspect ratio resolution, including the Deck's native 1280x800. Unfortunately, things do fall off a bit after that. There's no native controller support, so a community layout is needed to control the game. That does mean controlling things lacks some polish and is much slower than just using a keyboard and mouse.

The UI is also a bit of an issue. I don't often find this a problem, even on games where Valve's testing supposedly says it is, but Final Factory has a small UI, and while it does offer UI scaling, it just doesn't do the job very well. It only offers to scale up to 110%, and any scaling beyond 105% results in UI elements clipping inside each other. You can check out the comparison screenshot below to see 105% vs. 110% scaling and notice how the 110% causes UI elements to overlap, making it unpleasant to play with and look at.

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Ultimately, we'd need 120% or 125% scaling to make the text easy to read on the Deck and a fix for those UI elements merging. The recommended community controller layout does map a magnifier to L1 on the Steam Deck, so you can zoom in to text if need be, but it's far from ideal.

We also don't have many graphics settings for Final Factory; it is just a simple "Quality" option with Low, Medium, and High options. The main difference between the options seems to be shadow quality, and some Anti-Aliasing also comes into play. But I prefer the "Medium" option for my recommended settings. It clears up some of the aliasing on the edges of stations and offers some shadows, instead of Low, which has pretty bad aliasing and no shadows.

Final Factory is more CPU intensive than GPU, so we can afford some graphical quality without sacrificing much performance.

Recommended Settings - 40 FPS

Note: Because of the sandbox nature of Final Factory, we can't account for every scenario in our testing. I didn't, for example, build a large factory covering the entire map, which would undoubtedly cause performance issues.

For Final Factory, we're locking our Framerate to 40 FPS/Hz in SteamOS and setting our TDP limit to 10W.

As I said before, we're just going to run the "Medium" quality setting, which helps ensure that the GPU doesn't take away any power that the CPU might need when things get more intensive. We're keeping the resolution at 1280x800, as it's difficult enough to see text as it is! We're also disabling Vertical Sync.

These settings are based on a factory made after a few hours of playtime. As you progress further into the game and get larger factories, your performance may well suffer. In that case, you can try increasing your TDP limit and lowering your framerate to 30 FPS.

The game does suffer from stutters at times. This is unavoidable, regardless of the TDP limit, and I imagine it's probably to do with a sudden CPU spike. However, as Final Factory isn't very action-oriented, I feel like the game still feels playable as far as performance goes.

Battery drain can vary quite a bit, Final Factory seems to quite effectively cull objects that are out of view, even cutting down on how CPU-intensive factories are when they are off-screen, therefore I generally found the battery drain to be about 11W when in quiet areas, and going up to 15W in busy areas. So, on a Steam Deck LCD, you should expect around 2.5 hours of battery life, maybe 3 hours in a pinch. Steam Deck OLED players can expect at least 3 hours of battery life, likely 3.5 hours.

Accessibility:

Final Factory offers subtitles, UI scaling, which we've already covered earlier in the article, and the ability to "disable skybox motion," which stops the background in the game from moving. The movement is very slow and almost imperceptible, but it must have bothered some for it to be an option. You can also remap the controls.

That's it as far as accessibility is concerned.

Conclusion:

Final Factory is for a specific set of people. Those who enjoy painstakingly planning out their stations so that they can have a smooth-running logistical operation will probably love Final Factory. Planning and logic are an absolute necessity rather than a nice-to-have here.

The gameplay outside of the factory building does fall a little flat. Combat is mostly non-interactive, with your defense platforms and your fleet taking care of it. So, as long as your factory automates the production of combat craft, you probably don't have to fight yourself actively ever. As you would expect, all mining, research, and crafting will eventually be automated.

Story-wise, I'm not sure how much is going on here. It's vague, although I think we're the bad guys, much like Factorio. We aim to exploit the system of its resources while the native inhabitants fight back. The ancient aliens who left the artifacts in space seem to be on your side, but again, it is hard to say if they were good or evil.

Final Factory will be enjoyable to those who love Factorio, as it plays very similarly in its gameplay mechanics, so if you want to dive into another game in a similar vein but with a different atmosphere and a few alterations, Final Factory might be the game for you. If you disliked Factorio and how much it taxed your brain, Final Factory is no different, so you might want to steer clear! I wasn't a huge fan of Factorio, so that's reflected in me giving the game 3.5/5, but I think there's a solid game here if you're into that kind of thing.

Performance on the Steam Deck is acceptable. Even with a fairly large factory, maintaining 30 FPS is attainable despite occasional stutters. The main issue is the UI scaling, as some text is genuinely hard to read, and the controls are also a little confusing to get used to at first.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

When I first started playing Tunguska: The Visitation, I wasn't sure what to expect. Even now, I'm not really sure what games I can compare it to. Some elements remind me of the original Fallout 1 and 2 titles. The game is played from a top-down perspective, which you can rotate, but the camera always remains fairly zoomed out. There's a huge variety of gameplay mechanics here, making Tunguska a pretty daunting game.

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First, let's start with the combat, as it's an essential part of the game. It requires strategic thinking and tactical gameplay. If you're the kind who always loves to go in guns blazing, this game probably isn't for you. You'll need to use cover, ensure you've brought enough ammo with you, and likely have a variety of weapons to switch between depending on the scenario you find yourself in.

A few shots or hits from an enemy will kill you, and even just 1 or 2 shots could give you a bleeding status effect, which gradually drains your health unless you have a bandage or another item to stop the bleeding. It is brutal. But the brutality can be entertaining and satisfying when you finally defeat that group of enemies that's been causing you so much trouble. The game tends to quicksave often, so you can try again quickly, even if you die.

Besides the combat, Tunguska has a plethora of other things going on. You can gather seeds from plants and sow crops in fields, there's a day/night cycle with weather and random events that can happen, and you can level up 2 separate EXP bars for survival and combat, allowing you to spend points in multiple different skills to make surviving easier.

Inventory management is also a factor here. Not only do you have a weight limit, but you also have a size limit, meaning carrying multiple large weapons is not an option. You must manage your space well to carry healing supplies, weapons, quest items, and ammunition. Some might find this irritating, and I agree, in most games, it is. However, in Tunguska, this inventory management style suits the game well. It's a survival game at its heart, and before embarking on an expedition, the lack of ability to bring everything with you means you need to think about what you might encounter and, therefore, what you might need to take with you.

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The game's world is split into many fairly small areas. Most of these are areas you can walk across in about a minute before reaching a loading area for the next. I feel like this is a pretty solid design choice. It helps the player manage an area; once they defeat enemies, they know not to worry about things wandering into the area. Given how difficult combat is and how scarce ammo and other things can be, the developers need to manage what the players might encounter to not overwhelm them. Having smaller areas makes it possible for the developers to control each scenario players might encounter.

Most areas have some form of enemy that you might encounter, but also friendly NPCs. When you first arrive in The Zone (the games playing area), you come to a friendly village. You can talk to every NPC in the village, find out what they know about the area, and trade with them for supplies. This depth and detail help the game. Checking with the different NPCs to see if they have that item you need to barter for is a quest in and of itself, and when you finally find someone willing to sell you that pistol ammo or bandage, it's a good feeling.

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Tunguska: The Visitation is a unique experience. I've not played a game like it. It combines several gameplay mechanics into a competent survival, almost adventure game. Suppose you are looking for a game that will challenge you with elements of tactical combat, inventory management, and general ability to survive in a hostile environment. In that case, it might be the game for you!

Tunguska: The Visitation - Steam Deck Performance

Tunguska: The Visitation fully supports the 16:10 aspect ratio, so we can run at the Deck's native 1280x800 resolution. It also has pretty decent controller support. It occasionally requires you to use the analog stick to move cursors on the screen, but while in gameplay, the controller support can't be complained about.

While I did try to get Tunguska working at 60 FPS, it seems to put too much of a tax on the CPU to pull it off. So I've created 2 presets for you to use here, one for 40 FPS with high graphics quality, which I recommend, and one for 30 FPS if battery life is your aim.

Recommended Settings - 40 FPS

Start by locking your SteamOS settings to 40 FPS/Hz, then set your TDP limit to 10W.

The game doesn't have many choices for graphics settings, just resolution and a "Graphics Quality" setting. We'll keep the resolution at 1280x800 and set the Graphics Quality to "High."

This creates a fairly nice-looking image, and given the game's nature, I found 40 FPS perfectly adequate. This isn't some fast-paced FPS or action-based game. You pretty much plan everything out, even your shots.

Battery drain varies slightly, but you should expect a 13-15W drain on your battery. This gives us around 2.5 hours of battery life, which is pretty good. Temperatures stay relatively cool, not exceeding 70C in my experience.

Battery Life Settings - 30 FPS

If you want to get a little more out of your battery, which you might well want with Tunguska, as it isn't a very pick-up-and-play game, then these settings should help you out.

Set your FPS lock in SteamOS to 30 FPS / 60Hz. Then, you can get away with a TDP limit of 6W here.

In the in-game settings, we're keeping our 1280x800 native resolution but setting the Graphics Quality to "Low" this time. The game still looks pretty decent, but to be honest, using the Low setting will mostly result in lost shadows and some lighting effects.

Our battery drain tends to hover around 10-11W, with spikes up to 12W in intensive areas. This gives us an estimated battery life of around 3.5 Hours. It's up to you if you wish to trade the shading and lighting effects for an extra hour of battery life, but it's not a huge compromise to make, in my opinion. Temperatures are also a little cooler, being around 60-65C using these settings.

Accessibility:

Tunguska: The Visitation offers a few accessibility options, but not all the ones it needs. You can increase/decrease the brightness at night, adjust the UI size (although this appears to be locked on the Steam Deck), and adjust the game's difficulty, such as how much damage the player takes.

One thing I think is missing here is an option for those who are hard of hearing. Tunguska has "Distortions" that inhabit the game world, and running into them can kill you. You're meant to detect distortions by hearing a humming/beeping noise and then throwing a rock to find their exact position. However, to my knowledge, there is no help for deaf players who may be unable to hear this sound in the first place, thus making finding distortions very trial and error for them. Worst of all, the Distortions will move each time you play, so you can't even memorize their positions.

Conclusion:

Tunguska: The Visitation is an interesting game. It doesn't quite have the polish of a game with years of post-launch updates, but it's still getting post-launch updates to add and improve content, which is a huge plus in its favor. I'm not sure I'm the target audience for this game, with its somewhat deep survival mechanics and tactical gameplay, as well as an intriguing storyline to go along with it. Still, for those who want such a game, I think Tunguska offers a unique experience I haven't seen elsewhere.

As for how it performs on the Deck, there's nothing egregious. We're easily able to run at a stable 40 FPS with nice visual settings, which is just perfect for a game like this, we get a reasonable amount of battery life, the controls work well and the UI size is adequate. I did find aiming to be a little tough on the controller at first, but you soon get a feel for it. If you want a survival game with deep mechanics, quests, and a storyline, as well as one that will play nice on-the-go, you won't go far wrong with Tunguska: The Visitation.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

It's taken a little while to get around to reviewing Baldur's Gate 3 for the Steam Deck, but there are a couple of reasons for that. The game has received major updates since its release, including the much-awaited FSR2 support, and Baldur's Gate 3 is such a big game. With such varying environments and depth, a full gameplay and performance review needed to be done right. And the long awaited day is here, let's talk about Baldur's Gate 3.

Baldur's Gate 3 Character Screen
Baldur's Gate 3's character creator allows you to create a unique character, both in terms of appearance and abilities.

If you somehow missed it, Baldur's Gate 3 is rightly considered one of the best games of all time, winning almost every Game of the Year award that it was nominated for. Why does it deserve such acclaim, you ask? Well, in my opinion, it's down to the clear passion and love the developers have put into this game. There is attention to detail everywhere. It is a true role-playing game.

Many people love the idea of Dungeons & Dragons, but organizing a game night and having someone awkwardly play a Dungeon/Game Master can be overwhelming. Baldur's Gate 3 is probably the closest I've seen a video game get to offering you the freedom of a true Dungeons & Dragons experience. Sure, there's only 1 "campaign", and you are following a set storyline, but there are so many choices to make, branching paths that can lead to numerous outcomes, there are even "choices" that aren't obvious that you can even make! To truly experience all of Baldur's Gate 3, you would need hundreds of hours.

Talking to Gale in Baldur's Gate 3
Gale is one of the first potential party members you meet.

We haven't really discussed any gameplay mechanics yet, have we? So let's get into that. I'll start with the combat system. As you can imagine, Baldur's Gate 3 bases everything on Dungeons & Dragons, so we have familiar mechanics at play here. The game plays out battles turn-based, with turn order based on an initiative roll all participants take instantly at the start of combat.

Certain attacks, whether with weapons or spells, deal damage within a range. The target can do a "saving throw" to perhaps mitigate or nullify the damage/effect received from such an attack; of course, these dice throws are all done behind the scenes in the game to keep progress steady. It all works and flows beautifully, but you might well expect that for a system that has been around for literally decades and has gradually been refined.

The combat is satisfying; when you position yourself properly on the battlefield and have that spell available that will do just the right amount of damage to defeat that enemy and the attack hits, there's no feeling quite like it. Especially if you're in a cooperative game with friends and everyone in your party cheers because you got some good RNG on your hit!

Dice rolls are handled somewhat differently when out of combat, and I'm a huge fan of this fact. While simulating every dice roll in a combat scenario would be tiresome and ruin game pacing, simulating dice rolls during conversations or when trying to complete a skilled task is a different story. Trying to persuade or charm someone so you can avoid a fight and watching the dice roll around the screen, everyone in your party on voice chat holds their breath as they await to see what number you roll. And then... it happens... the fated 1 appears on the screen, and "Critical Failure" flashes along the top. Before you know it, your entire party is in a fight for their lives.

In case you haven't worked it out yet, even though I'm not a huge Dungeons & Dragons fan myself, I am in awe at how Larian Studios has successfully brought mechanics from a tabletop game to the video game medium. Other games, such as Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic, did use D&D mechanics behind the scenes, but it was never so obvious as it is here, and it works so well. If you have played Larian's last game, Divinity: Original Sin 2, a lot of this will feel very familiar.

Checking out a temple in Baldur's Gate 3
Baldur's Gate 3 will take you across many environments, some less welcoming than others.

I won't go into too much detail on Baldur's Gate 3's storyline here, as it's best experienced yourself, but it is well crafted and introduces interesting characters who are well voice-acted. It's key that a game like this nails the storyline because the whole point of participating in the combat, of making your character stronger, is to reach the next plot point. I'm glad that Baldur's Gate 3 rewards players' progress with a detailed and branching storyline that can go in multiple directions depending on your choices throughout the game.

The visuals are no slouch either; they aren't world-class, but they do the job very well, and the game is quite scalable, fortunately for us Steam Deck users. They allow you to get immersed in the world, with different environments standing out clearly from one another, ranging from pleasant to unnerving. Characters are also well-detailed, expressing themselves with their body and the tone of their voice.

Looking at a giant wolf in Baldur's Gate 3
Baldur's Gate 3 doesn't have the best visuals around, but they do a good enough job to let you get immersed in the world.

As mentioned during this review, Baldur's Gate 3 lets you experience all this with your friends. The game supports up to 4 players in cooperative play, meaning you don't have to awkwardly assign one of your friends to be a Dungeon Master and cringe as you listen to them try and play 10 different characters. You and 3 of your friends can now go on an adventure together, listen to professional voice actors, have the computer do the mathematics for you, and have a good time while doing so!

Baldur's Gate 3 - Steam Deck Performance

Baldur's Gate 3 gets off to a good start. We have 16:10 aspect ratio support, including support for the Deck's native 1280x800 resolution. We also have a well-scaled UI that's easily readable on the Steam Deck.

The game's HUD/UI changes entirely when using a gamepad compared to a keyboard and mouse. Well-designed radial menus allow you to select all your attacks/abilities and navigate all the menus in a fairly simple fashion. It handles it beautifully, considering that when using a keyboard and mouse, there can be upwards of 40 buttons to click on the screen.

Given the GPU, and at times CPU, intensity of the game, I'm only offering 1 preset for settings today, but it should serve you pretty well!

Please note: While the game does have split-screen support on the PC, the developers disabled it on the Steam Deck, so I will not be covering split-screen performance in this review. You can enable it yourself by following our guide, but it will negatively impact performance.

Recommended Settings - 30 FPS

Set the Frame Rate Lock to 30 FPS / 60 Hz in the SteamOS menu, and we'll need all 15W of TDP that the Steam Deck can deliver for Baldur's Gate 3.

Then, in the in-game settings, do the following. Set FSR 2.2 to "Quality," then you'll want to select the "Low" Preset, as most settings will need to be at their lowest possible so we can maintain 30 FPS. Dynamic Crowds can be left on, as when testing in a crowded area, it seemed to have no performance impact for the Steam Deck anyway.

You can technically run the Texture Quality above Low. I tried Ultra for a while, but it does introduce frequent stutters. The textures still look good on Low, so I opted to stick with Low and avoid most stuttering.

Here are the settings I used for reference:

Using these settings, the game runs at an almost constant 30 FPS, which was a really pleasant surprise for me. There are occasional stutters, mostly when entering cutscenes when the camera does a quick cut between angles and sometimes when an attack first hits. I also noticed some slight slowdown in very specific areas, but this was to about 28 FPS and wasn't very noticeable as you had to be in very specific places for it to occur, so if you are walking, it only represented about 1-2 seconds of play.

FSR 2.2 does cause some slight artifacts, most specifically around the hair. If you are a druid and change into a wolf, for example, there is noticeable ghosting when moving due to the amount of fur the upscaling is trying to cope with.

Battery drain varies wildly depending on your environment. You'll likely only draw about 13-15W from the battery in smaller interior areas. Outside, you'll likely draw 17-20W. There are some exceptions to this, which I'll cover in a moment. You should expect around 2 hours of battery life from a full charge.

Temperatures will be pretty toasty throughout. During a battle in an outdoor area, the temperature range was between 75-85C. In less intense situations, however, you can see drops to 70C. You should expect the fan to be somewhat loud for a fair amount of the game, though, so I would recommend playing with headphones to mitigate that.

The 'Dreaded' Act 3!

If you've followed Baldur's Gate 3, you'll probably be familiar with Act 3 and its performance. Act 3 is essentially the most intensive part of the game performance-wise. Since then, the developers have patched the game with some optimizations, which have helped, but it remains the most difficult part of the game to run, CPU-wise at least.

So, how does the Steam Deck's CPU hold up? To be honest, it still struggles. In certain areas of Act 3, I expect to see drops to the mid-20s. I noticed drops to 22 or 23 FPS occasionally, with the frame rate often hanging around 27 or 28 FPS. Do bear in mind, however, that this is a specific area in Act 3, and not the entire Act runs like this. Because of the game's turn-based nature, whenever any critical moments happen (such as combat), the frame rate doesn't have a huge impact on gameplay, and I found the game to remain perfectly playable on the Steam Deck.

Baldur's Gate 3 on Steam Deck in Act 3
An example of the framerate situation on Steam Deck during Act 3.

Accessibility:

As you would imagine with Baldur's Gate 3 and its extensive settings, it has plenty of accessibility support. I'm going to list them based on the number of options available.

When adjusting UI/Text size, a preview image is also shown so you can get an idea of the size of the text.

Here are some screenshots showing all the accessibility options available, as well as the preview feature for text sizes:

Conclusion:

In case you haven't guessed it yet, I was very impressed with Baldur's Gate 3 and what it offers cRPG fans. Having played Larian's previous games (Divinity Original Sin 1 & 2), I had an idea of what to expect here, but in my opinion, it surpasses those games by some margin. The polish the game has received, as well as a superior storyline and characters, set it apart.

What I'm most impressed with, however, is that our plucky little Steam Decks can run this absolute gem of a game. You might think that a large, possibly overwhelming to some, cRPG might not lend itself to playing on a portable device with a smaller screen and a battery life to consider. But the whole thing just works like a charm. The UI and controls are optimized so well for the gamepad that it seems like the game was designed for it from the get-go.

If you can live with the occasional dropped frame and minor performance issues during Act 3, you should not hesitate to pick this up for the Steam Deck if you've been considering it, Baldur's Gate 3 is the ultimate cRPG experience, right in your hands!

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

Outcast: A New Beginning was provided by THQ Nordic for review. Thank you!

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

I had pretty low expectations for Outcast: A New Beginning when first setting out. Having covered the game and keeping an eye on it pre-release, I wasn't sure how the quality of the game would hold up. It seemed like an arcadey shooter that would fail to hold up to its promises, with weak combat and grating dialogue. Having played the game and giving it a fair shot, I think I was both right and wrong about it.

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Outcast: A New Beginning takes place in a fairly large open world, which you mainly traverse with your trusty Jetpack!

Let's cover the basics of the game, movement, and combat. The movement feels quite nice. Your character is maneuverable and gains more maneuverability as you play through the start of the game, gaining a jetpack, which lets you jump higher and dodge, both adding a new dimension to your movement. The jetpack is also upgradable, allowing even more flexibility. While I did find it somewhat difficult to control at times, I think that's more down to how the game runs on the Steam Deck, but more on that later.

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There are "gates" scattered throughout the game world, which act as fast travel points. They require you to complete certain objectives to unlock them though!

The combat of the game is more satisfying than I expected. When looking at the trailers for the game, it seemed as though firing a weapon would feel weak and offer little feedback, whereas the opposite is true. Although there's a pretty hefty auto-aim in the game, lining up your shots and ensuring your hit is vital. Headshots do count here, and enemies die in a few shots, provided you've got the right equipment for the job. I am happy that enemies aren't bullet sponges.

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The combat in the game is a highlight for me, although it was difficult given the input lag I experienced.

In terms of visuals, the world of Outcast: A New Beginning is quite beautiful, and largely based in forested areas with plenty of foliage and dense tree cover. The game makes use of this to create subtle lighting effects of dappled shade. Other areas in the game are more open, however, such as grassy plains, beaches, and some mountainous areas. Regardless of where you are, there are probably lots of trees or lots of grass. The downside of all this foliage, however, is performance. The trees cast shadows, and a lot of the foliage is interactable, too, moving when the player character gets near; all of this undoubtedly has a toll on the game's performance.

While I don't feel that Outcast breaks any new boundaries in terms of graphical fidelity, I do feel that the choice of location/environment greatly helps Outcast look its best, even on low settings.

When it comes to character visuals and design, there's nothing too much to complain about here. The animations and visuals do the job they have to do, although I will say that at times, the player character's animations do look a little stiff and stilted. Jumping while standing still looks a bit... odd to me.

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The game world is quite beautiful, but character animations and details can be a little lacking sometimes.

In addition to satisfying combat and a beautiful game world, Outcast also has an upgrade system in place, where you can use resources found in the game world to upgrade your weapons, equipment, and jetpack. Weapons, for example, can have modules fitted to them, and your jetpack and general combat skills can be upgraded by finding resources/crystals in the game world and collecting them. This helps to keep the game from becoming monotonous. You're always on the lookout for those crafting and upgrading resources so you can better yourself. As it happens, the guns in the game also use certain crystals as ammunition, so it's good to keep scanning so you can find any that are nearby.

In terms of storyline, Outcast: A New Beginning has a reasonable story that punctuates gameplay with cutscenes from time to time. It is technically a sequel to the original Outcast game, but at the same time, a reboot. I wouldn't say you need to be familiar with the original to enjoy this game's story. Long story short, you are resurrected back to life on the planet you originally visited in the first game. However, much has changed, and a robot army is invading Adelpha, a planet of the mostly peaceful Talan race. In the original game, you were hailed as a "Messiah," so you again take up the mantle to protect the Talan race from the robot invaders and find out who is behind this invasion.

You aren't just doing this for the Talans' sake, though, and you are in danger of running into more cliches. You also have amnesia. You get glimpses into your past as you play through the game, which is centered on you and your family relationships. Your main aim is to help the Talans, with the belief that this will help you return to Earth and find out what happened with your family.

The dialogue can be a little grating, and Cutter Slade (the player character) is a little irksome at times. I think the game tries to pass it off as him being dead for a while, so his vocabulary is a little dated, making him an "old-school Navy SEAL," but I could have done without it.

But now we get onto the real killer: performance on the Steam Deck.

Outcast: A New Beginning - Steam Deck Performance

When booting Outcast: A New Beginning, you'll be asked if you want to boot in DirectX 11 or DirectX 12 modes. Make sure you pick DirectX12, as in my testing, DX12 tended to offer about a 3-5 FPS performance improvement depending on where you are in the game.

The game does get some basics right. It supports 16:10 resolutions and has pretty solid controller support, covering both the menus and the gameplay. However, the occasional menu is still controlled via a gamepad-controlled mouse cursor, which is very odd and does actually cause some issues.

Shockingly, the game has no upscaling support, there's no integration of FSR, XeSS, or even DLSS here, very strange for a fairly demanding title in 2024. Because of this, we'll need to use the FSR1 built into the Steam Deck when setting up our Deck for the game.

There's also no support for going below 720p when using the in-game resolution selector, so we'll need to force a lower game resolution in the Steam Game Properties.

Recommended Settings - 30 FPS (Target)

In the Game Properties, force a Game Resolution of 800x500. Please note that forcing this resolution does cause some oddities, such as the cursor not reaching the whole screen. This doesn't matter for most menus, as they use the gamepad for controls, but a couple of menus use a gamepad-controlled cursor, and these menus do not work if we force the resolution this low.

In your SteamOS settings, set a 60 FPS/ 60Hz limit and your TDP limit to 15W or Off. Make sure your scaling filter is set to FSR and the FSR Sharpness is set to 5.

In the in-game graphics settings, you can go ahead and select the "Low" Preset. This sets everything as low as it can go, and that's what we'll need. You'll also want to set the "Max FPS" to "30." We're using the in-game FPS cap rather than the Steam Deck's, as it introduces less input lag, and we need to minimize that as much as possible.

Using these settings, we can hit 30 FPS at points in the game, often in the open plains or when overlooking a vista. Unfortunately, a lot of the game takes place in dense forests or places with lots of close vegetation, and in these places, the game will typically run around the mid-20s in FPS. Any areas with a great deal of NPCs, such as villages, will also tend to run closer to 20 than 30 as the CPU starts to take more power away from the GPU.

As you can see from the screenshots above, the game is both CPU and GPU-bound, which results in the game almost never achieving a fully stable 30 FPS, regardless of where you are. The game heavily leans on single-thread performance, a weak point of the Steam Deck. Often, one of the threads is almost locked to 100% load.

Unfortunately, these low frame rates introduce some input lag, which can make the game's combat a little difficult. The low frame rate can easily cause you to miss shots or overreact to movement, not to mention making combat difficult in the first place.

Outcast maxes out the Steam Deck, even in menus, so battery drain is around 25-26W the entire time, which puts your expected battery life at around 80-90 minutes at best. Temperatures can vary, but generally expect 80-90C, with the CPU being more towards the higher end and GPU towards the lower end of that range. In short, your Deck will get hot.

Accessibility:

There isn't too much accessibility in Outcast: A New Beginning. You can have subtitles, although they are a little difficult to read, given the low resolution we need to use on the Steam Deck. You can also change the basics like sensitivity and FoV, as well as the contrast/brightness and re-bindable keys. Sadly, there's no UI scaling, which could have benefitted the Steam Deck or other handhelds. There is, however, a filter for different types of colorblindness. Presumably, this would alter things like blips on the minimap and icons for resources to be different colors.

Conclusion:

I think Outcast: A New Beginning is an enjoyable game at its heart, far more enjoyable than I first thought when I was watching the trailers for the game. However, the Steam Deck isn't the place to enjoy this game.

If you have a decent gaming PC, laptop, or maybe even a higher-end handheld running an AMD 7840U or 8840U, I think Outcast: A New Beginning could be a great third-person Shooter with RPG elements. It's not a game to be taken too seriously, but to pick up and play in 30-minute stints, I think the game has the potential to be a good bit of fun. The upgrades keep things fresh, and the game world is large, but there's usually something to do, so it doesn't feel sparse or empty.

All-in-all, I would recommend the game itself, as long as it's played on the right hardware.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

Enshrouded was provided by Keen Games for review. Thank you!

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

Enshrouded is a curious game. It seemed to launch into Early Access with a bang, and yet I had somehow never heard of the game before it launched and was suddenly being mentioned everywhere. The privilege fell to me to try and get this sudden sensation running well on the Steam Deck, and I couldn't wait to see it for myself.

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Enshrouded takes place in a vast open-world

At first glance, Enshrouded seems like a more visually detailed version of Valheim, and in some ways, it is. It takes place in a very large open world, with the ability to construct bases out of various materials and building parts you scavenge, go exploring, craft furniture, weapons, and armor, and defeat various enemies throughout the many biomes.

I like the building system. You can choose from only a few building blocks for each material type, but you can also choose what size you want. This allows you to create structures with more intricate details in them. The structures also snap together well and can alter appearance slightly depending on what structure pieces are placed next to them, making it all fit together.

The combat is another plus point and is probably the most fleshed-out part of the game so far. The combat leans more towards the tougher side, and when you're at a low level, most enemies will kill you in 2-3 hits. This means learning to dodge and parry attacks is essential. The movement system allows you to maneuver fluidly while engaged, feeling similar to soulslike combat.

You have a variety of weapons you can use, from melee to ranged, and although it's frustrating when you die to an enemy and respawn at your base, the penalties applied aren't harsh.

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The game's combat can be harsh, but at the same time, fair.

Enshrouded is still in Early Access, and it's fairly obvious to see why. Although the open world is vast and sometimes beautiful, the world is quite empty. There are specific places you are guided to when on a quest, but a lot of the world feels barren currently. While playing, I didn't encounter any friendly NPCs besides ones that can work on your base. It feels like a shame that there aren't friendly villages/towns you can encounter, and I hope something like that is planned for the future.

Another thing that frustrated me is that digging with a pickaxe, for example, can alter terrain by mining. I thought, "Wow, what an awesome feature," but when I quit the game and reloaded my save, all the terrain editing and rocks had returned to their previous state. I understand this might be done to create infinite resources for players, maybe even to prevent grief, but having the feature present and not permanent makes me think they might as well not have had it present.

This is a bit of a common theme, sadly. Whenever you log off and back on, all the enemy and neutral animal spawns restart. Enemies always appear to spawn in the same locations, meaning there's no sense of surprise. You KNOW a wolf will spawn over by those trees, that a group of enemies will be by that ruin. It would make sense if this was a single-player RPG, perhaps, but on a game designed to be played on a dedicated server for 16 players, it feels very strange at how "scripted" and static it can feel.

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You can dig holes through rocks like this, but upon saving and reloading the game, it will return to its natural state.

Enshrouded is an Early Access title, and features can change. From a fairly empty open world to some curious design choices, the game has its issues. But does it have potential? Given that the developers have created a game engine from the ground up to make this game, they're in it for the long haul, and Enshrouded could become a fantastic title once it gets fleshed out with more content and polish, a game to watch for sure!

Enshrouded - Steam Deck Performance

Enshrouded gets the basics right for the Steam Deck, it has full controller support for both menus and gameplay, and it supports 16:10 resolutions, including 1280x800 which is the Deck's native resolution.

However, things start to fall apart a little when we get to performance. The developers have stated that optimization is one of their key concerns right now, as even players using GPUs such as the RTX 3080 have reported difficulties playing the game at decent graphical settings. Unfortunately, that means, for now, at least, Steam Deck users need to make heavy compromises to make Enshrouded "Playable."

Recommended Settings - 30 FPS

Start by setting a 30 FPS lock in your SteamOS settings, and removing any TDP limit, we'll need all the power we can get.

In the in-game display settings, set your resolution to 1280x800 (Native), adjust the Resolution Scale to 65% (520p), and then select the "Max Performance" Quality Preset to set all other settings to their lowest. Ensure FSR2 is your selected Anti-Aliasing method and FSR2 Quality is set to Performance.

Because we're able to run at 800p and just use the resolution scale, we get to keep a crisp UI with readable text, only the gameplay is reduced in resolution. Performance is mostly steady, often holding 30 FPS, with occasional dips into the high 20s, usually in combat or heavily forested areas, with some minor stuttering.

Battery drain depends on where you are. It can be anywhere from 20-24W but tends to lean towards the higher end of that range. As such, I wouldn't expect more than 90 minutes of battery life while playing Enshrouded. Temperatures tended to stay around 75-80C, so it runs a little on the hot side, but that's to be expected given that this game pushes both the CPU and GPU.

Whether this represents a "playable" experience is up for debate. As you can see from the images, the low-resolution scale makes for a very soft image. I would use the Deck as a "secondary" device, where I can log on and do some quick resource gathering or base building but not take on major quest lines or serious combat, as a sudden drop in performance could easily lead to unnecessary death and frustration.

Accessibility:

Enshrouded doesn't offer too much in the way of accessibility. There are a few options in the accessibility menu. Most of these are related to how the camera moves, such as removing camera swaying and shaking. There's also an option to add symbols to item rarity, so the rarity isn't just defined by a color, which would be helpful for those with color blindness.

Conclusion:

Enshrouded is a bit rough around the edges as of writing this review, but it has the potential to be one of the best survival sandbox games out there. Given the effort the developers have put in to lay the groundwork and the positive reception they've already received, I'm hoping they'll stick by this game and keep improving it until it's a great experience. The combat and base building are pretty much there, but exploring the world feels a little unrewarding right now, and some elements of the game feel very static when a more dynamic approach would have been appropriate.

As for how it runs on the Steam Deck, I'm undecided as to whether or not this is a "playable" game. Before this review was written, Valve declared the game as "Unsupported" on the Deck due to performance issues. Perhaps the game receiving this grading will encourage the developers even more to optimize the game. With a little optimization here and there, we could easily achieve a solid 30 FPS experience and maybe up that resolution, scaling a notch or two.

This game is one to watch, but I'd skip it now if you want to play primarily on the Deck.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

I'm back again, with another Yakuza review, the third this month! Every time I close my eyes, I see Kiryu...

As usual, if you're interested in the Yakuza series, you should definitely start with Yakuza 0. All the games are inter-linked, and if you start the series at number 6, you're going to be confused as to who all these characters are and the background behind them. But trust me, the time commitment to play all of these games is worth it thanks to how well-rounded and meaningful the stories are.

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Yakuza 6 focuses back onto the series main protagonist, Kazuma Kiryu

Yakuza 6's story takes a page out of the Fast & Furious book, it's all about family. Family has been a running theme throughout the Yakuza games. There's probably a family member protecting another one, or you know, killing another one in every game. But Yakuza 6 is very much based around Kiryu protecting those closest to him, even if they aren't related by blood.

Story-wise, a lot of your time will be spent running around trying to gather information on what happened to your "family" member, whom I won't disclose to keep from spoiling. The information gathering is pretty painfully slow, so you might want to mix it up with some intriguing side stories before you get frustrated about being told to go somewhere to get information and finding out that person doesn't know what you wanted to know, but they do want you to help them out with something!

Yakuza 6 actually turns in as the shortest game in the mainline Yakuza series (If you count Kiwami 1 and 2 as replacements for Yakuza 1 and 2), but it's still a good length. You'll likely still be plodding your way through the story at the 20-hour mark, and that's not including all the side missions and minigames that Yakuza games always have in abundance.

Combat gets a bit of a re-vamp with the newly introduced Dragon Engine. For the first time in the series, we actually get proper ragdolls, which are put to great use given that Kiryu can punch and kick people with the power of a thousand intercontinental ballistic missiles.

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Kiryu, punching a man with the power of an ICBM, as described above. Onlookers are stunned.

However, I found some frustrating points/issues with the game. The new combat system feels more fluid but seems to suffer from a bit of "looseness." This is most noticeable when locking on a target in combat. In older Yakuza games, the lock-on felt instant. If you were locked on, close to the target, and threw a punch, that punch would connect if the opponent didn't dodge. Now, although the combat feels more fluid and natural, it also means features like lock-on don't always work as well, and even when locked on, you can simply miss a punch or a kick and end up kicking to the side of an enemy, even if they didn't dodge.

Ultimately, it isn't a deal breaker, and most of the hitboxes are generous with Kiryu's moves so that attacks usually connect regardless. Still, on the odd occasion where Kiryu does kick thin air right next to an enemy, it is frustrating.

Regardless, it still doesn't excuse the developers from putting minigames like calming a crying baby every 30 seconds as you move through the city. Thankfully, it's only in a small portion of the game, but boy, was I getting annoyed by the end of it.

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Yes, this is a minigame within Yakuza, you'll get used to it, unfortunately.

But let's get onto what you're here for: how the game performs on the Steam Deck.

Yakuza 6: The Song of Life - Steam Deck Performance

Don't ask why, but while Yakuza 4 Remastered supported 16:10 resolutions, Yakuza 6 still does not. It uses the same trick as Yakuza 5 Remastered, where the game runs at 1280x720, and then artistic borders are put around the top and bottom of the screen to make it up to 1280x800. It's a novel idea, but it's still annoying that the game is restricted to 16:9 aspect ratios.

As we're accustomed to for Yakuza games, we have full controller support, and as always, it works without a hitch, so you won't have any difficulties playing on the Steam Deck itself. It's worth noting that Yakuza 6 does allow the player to pause the game at most points and save anywhere, and also allows players to reload at basically any point too, so having a long battery life isn't quite as urgent here as it was in the previous games.

Yakuza 6 is a little more customizable in the graphics settings than Yakuza 4 and 5 Remasters, so let's take a look and see what we can get out of our Steam Decks with this game. The basic graphics settings are the same across both presets we have here. Fortunately, one improvement Yakuza 6 does have over the remasters is that game logic is not tied to frame rate, so we can run at 40 FPS if we desire, not just 30 or 60.

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The basic graphics settings used by both of our presets.

Recommended Settings - 40 FPS Quality

This newfound ability to run at 40 FPS comes in handy because, regardless of what we do, we cannot maintain 60 FPS in Yakuza 6 on the Steam Deck, sadly. These settings are for the best-looking experience while still maintaining a smooth framerate, and are my preferred way to play Yakuza 6 on the Deck.

Set your Frame Rate Lock in SteamOS to 40 FPS/Hz and remove any TDP Limit, we'll need the full 15W for this. Then go into your advanced graphics settings and make sure they are configured as they are below. I found that keeping shadows on Medium instead of turning to Low helps prevent some strange artifacts on shadows when moving, which can get distracting. SSAO is a bit of a killer on performance, but it also improves how the game looks, especially the darker alleyways.

Yakuza 6 also gets a Resolution Scale option, and we're setting that to 85%, as it's hard to notice the drop, and it gives us the extra bump in performance we need for those Shadows and that SSAO.

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My recommended Yakuza 6 Settings

With these settings, our power draw varies between 18W - 21W, which means we can expect around one and a half hours of battery life, maybe just a bit more, from a full charge. Temperatures reach around 80C in intensive areas, which can be a little hot, but it's only for brief periods, and the game often runs closer to 70C than 80C.

As you can see from the frame time graphs (upper left corner) of the above screenshots, in certain intensive battles, you will get slightly erratic frame times, but for 99% of the game, it is a fairly consistent experience. The 1st screenshot is an extreme example, where you are in a battle of over 20 individuals, once there were around ten remaining, the frame-pacing evened out, and most battles are with less than ten fighters.

Battery Life Settings - 30 FPS

First, we'll set a 30 FPS / 60Hz lock in our SteamOS settings, we can set an 8W TDP Limit here and hold the 30 FPS we need for a playable experience. We're losing out on the shadow quality and SSAO of the quality preset above, and we're also lowering our resolution scale to 75% here. While these are fairly big compromises on the visual quality of the game, they greatly reduce power draw. Because of the "Low" setting on shadows, though, you will likely notice shimmering/artifacts.

Yakuza 6 BatterySettings

With this TDP limit, we get a power draw of around 10-12W, which gives us around 3 hours from a full charge, more than I expected to get, if I'm honest. The frame rate is pretty stable, and the game still looks decent, although far-away objects will appear aliased and slightly pixelated due to the lower resolution scale.

Personally, I'd rather play at 40 FPS and have greater visual quality than play at 30 FPS and gain an hour or so of battery life, but if you want to sit down for a longer play session, then this might be the right preset for you.

Issues with the Puyo Puyo Minigame

This is just a small note, but one worth making. Currently, the Puyo Puyo minigame will crash your Steam Deck if you attempt to play it. I tried it with Proton and Proton Experimental, and they resulted in an immediate crash back to SteamOS, Proton GE didn't crash, but resulted in garbled graphics inside the minigame, so you'll need to avoid it in Club SEGA venues.

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Puyo Puyo's garbled graphics on Proton GE

Accessibility:

Yet again, the only accessibility option in Yakuza 6 is subtitles. You can also limit the amount of gore shown, which I don't believe has been an option in previous Yakuza games, but you can't disable it entirely.

Conclusion:

Yakuza 6 is a pretty short experience in the grand scheme of the series. It brought in a new game engine with pros and cons that would later be refined by its successors. While I don't think it's the best Yakuza game out there (that goes to Yakuza 0), it's another decent entry. In my opinion, Yakuza had a bit of a streak of "Good, but not great" games from Yakuza 3-5. Yakuza 6 has started to make changes to pick things up, but it's not quite there yet. That could have prompted the developers to completely change to a new protagonist and a turn-based combat system in the next release.

Regardless of the gameplay itself, I can't help but feel proud that the Steam Deck can handle every Yakuza game we've thrown at it. Even now, we still have some flexibility and can go for 40 FPS with nice visuals or drop down to 30 FPS and preserve battery life.

Yakuza 6 has received "Very Positive" user reviews on Steam and has a Steam Deck Compatibility Rating of "Unsupported." However, we found that it runs just fine without any tweaking, except the Puyo Puyo Minigame.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

This game was tested with a Steam Deck LCD. OLED testing is coming soon.

After reviewing Yakuza 4 Remastered, I went right into Yakuza 5 Remastered. Initially released for the PS3 in 2012, this is an updated version of the game, released in 2021 for PCs. Even though visually it doesn't quite hold up to newer titles, it still passes by, and to be honest, the game not having all the visual features of a newer AAA game does benefit the Steam Deck's limited hardware.

Before getting into this, I highly recommend playing the earlier games in this series, starting with Yakuza 0. The games constantly reference past events, and all play into each other, so to get the most out of the game, I would go back and start from the beginning. It's a heavy time investment, but if you're looking for a franchise that can be both serious and humorous and provide you with an emotional rollercoaster, then this series is the one you want.

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Yakuza 5 takes place across multiple locations and protagonists, with the first being Kazuma Kiryu.

The story again begins with our lovable protagonist, Kazuma Kiryu, desperately trying to keep his nose clean since leaving the Yakuza behind. It seems that trouble follows him everywhere, and through a series of circumstances, he's soon back into the Japanese criminal underworld. I won't spoil the storyline, but you're in for some of the usual Yakuza drama here, much like previous entries in the series.

Dotted between the serious story missions, we have Yakuza's famous minigames and sub-stories that often find their way onto the internet in funny clips. One of my favorites in Yakuza 5 Remastered is the Taxi Driving minigame. In his bid to escape the criminal life, Kiryu is working as a Taxi Driver. You get a neat little minigame to play, essentially a Taxi Driving Simulator, and I love these mundane simulator-style games! It was quite a surprise to see such a game in Yakuza, but I quite enjoyed driving for a change.

Like Yakuza 4, which featured four playable protagonists, Yakuza 5 features five playable protagonists. Wow, I wonder if there's a theme building here? Regardless, Yakuza 5 gets split into fairly evenly-paced parts, each representing a different protagonist in a different area of Japan. This helps keep the game from feeling stale and opens up new areas and opportunities as you play through the game's storyline.

Combat is, as always, a staple of the Yakuza series. Yakuza 5 Remastered has identical combat to Yakuza 4 Remastered. It's fluid and satisfying, giving you that sense of power without feeling too powerful. Building up your heat gauge and unleashing a powerful, sometimes comical, attack on your foes is one of the most satisfying moments in a Yakuza game. The combat system hasn't quite reached the heights of what it had before Yakuza became a turn-based game (Like a Dragon), but it's still a solid system nonetheless.

I love the series, so this game continues that trend and feels extremely satisfying. Now, if you've read the Yakuza 4 Remastered review, you'll know how it runs on the Steam Deck, but Yakuza 5 Remastered does differ in a couple of ways.

Yakuza 5 Remastered - Steam Deck Performance

Please Note: While the game does run fine using the default Proton, cutscene audio and some cutscenes themselves won't play correctly. You should use Proton GE 8-24 or later to play this game. You can follow our guide to get Proton GE on your Steam Deck.

Like Yakuza 4 Remastered, when booting Yakuza 5 Remastered, you're greeted with 16:9 menus. And just like Yakuza 4, you can select 1280x800 as a resolution in the graphics menu. But unlike Yakuza 4, you do not get a 16:10 playing area when you're in gameplay. For whatever reason, Yakuza 5 is permanently 16:9 with border art, even though the previous game in the series did support 16:10 when in the game.

We do, however, have full controller support, with the game even recommending that "Real Yakuza Use Gamepads." I can't interview one to find out if that's true, though...

We have some graphical options to choose from, much like its predecessor. This allows us to create a quality and battery life preset for you today!

The same as Yakuza 4, there's a basic graphics menu, but I will only be changing things in the "Advanced" menu for the two builds I will discuss. Here is what the basic menu looks like:

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The basic graphics settings used by both of our presets.

Much like Yakuza 4 Remastered, if you wish to lock your frame rate in SteamOS to 30 FPS, you must change the FPS Cap in-game to 30. If you keep it at 60 or Auto and lock it to 30 FPS, you'll play at 50% speed.

Recommended Settings - 60 FPS Battery Life

First, we'll set a 60 FPS/Hz lock in our SteamOS settings, we can set a 7W TDP Limit here and still maintain an almost constant 60 FPS. For the in-game graphics settings, choose the "Low" preset and apply it, then go into the "Advanced" menu and set the Texture Quality to "High," Texture Filtering to "16x", and the LOD Distance to "Mid."

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With this TDP limit, we get a power draw of around 12W - 14W, translating roughly into two and a half hours of battery from a full charge. You can expect an almost constant 60 FPS from these settings, other than occasional drops from scene transitions and camera cuts. Even in a huge battle, as shown in the 1st screenshot below, the game holds 60 FPS pretty well.

Much like Yakuza 4 Remastered, you can't just save whenever you want in Yakuza 5 Remastered, so having a decent battery life is essential. Getting caught in a cutscene or a story sequence is deadly, and if you can't get to a place to charge, say goodbye to any recent progress you've made. So, just a friendly reminder to keep your battery level topped up when playing Yakuza 5 Remastered.

Quality Settings - 60 FPS

For those of you wanting the best experience on the Steam Deck, these settings are for you.

In SteamOS, make sure your FPS Lock is set to 60 FPS/Hz and disable your TDP Limit; go to your in-game settings, select the "Ultra" preset and apply it, then go into the "Advanced" menu, lower Shadow Quality down to "High" and turn Anti-Aliasing to "Off."

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Running with these settings costs us a lot of battery life, sadly. We are now drawing around 21W - 24W from the battery, meaning you can't expect more than 90 minutes from a full charge. Much like Yakuza 4 Remastered, you could lose progress if you get into a story sequence where you can't save and your battery is running low. Your best bet, then, is to suspend your game and try to find a place to charge before resuming.

Accessibility:

Accessibility isn't Yakuza 5 Remastered's strong point. Just like Yakuza 4 Remastered, your only real accessibility option is subtitles. The game again features QTEs, which are mandatory to succeed, and the combat system is the same, meaning you will need to pull off combo attacks to be effective in combat. However, lower-difficulty choices are available to make combat winnable mostly by button mashing.

Conclusion:

Yakuza 5 Remastered continues the run of solid but not exceptional Yakuza games. It progresses the drama unfolding from the beginning, and it does it reasonably well. The graphics on the Steam Deck are still pleasant, and it controls beautifully. Aside from the disappointing lack of true 16:10 aspect ratio support, I couldn't ask for this game to run better on the Deck than it already does.

Performance-wise, regardless of which of the above presets you use, you should expect a fairly locked 60 FPS experience, with the quality settings allowing us almost to max out graphical settings and the battery settings sacrificing some visual quality to get a reasonable battery life.

Yakuza 5 Remastered holds a "Very Positive" rating on Steam and is currently graded as "Unsupported" on the Steam Deck compatibility rating, but, like Yakuza 4 Remastered, the game runs perfectly fine as long as you're using a new version of Proton GE.

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out the rest of the content on SteamDeckHQ! We have a wide variety of game reviews and news that are sure to help your gaming experience. Whether you're looking for newstips and tutorialsgame settings and reviews, or just want to stay up-to-date on the latest trends, we've got your back.

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