Steam Deck Not Intended as a Gateway to PC Gaming

Seems Like Valve has Different Plans for Their Latest Venture

Valve’s Steam Deck, the upcoming portable gaming platform that markets itself as a PC-on-the-go, apparently has a different audience in mind than what was first assumed.

As a powerful, pre-built PC system, one may expect that its buyers wouldn’t have access to the needed parts to play PC games. Evidently, assumptions like these should always be questioned. In an interview, one of the Steam Deck’s designers had this to say:

“We don’t have a strong prediction that a bunch of people are going to choose it as their first PC, but as a lot of people choose to upgrade their existing PCs, we feel fairly confident that Steam Deck will be a choice that they make,”

Steam Deck console

It’s not an unreasonable direction, if you think about it. The Steam Deck acts as a way for you to take existing PC games (and not just ones downloaded from Steam – as mentioned here) and play them in a new environment. If you consider the Steam Deck to be an extension for an existing PC setup – rather than an independent console – things start to make a lot more sense.

One of the most common concerns people had about the Steam Deck was an apparent lack of storage space. And now it’s easy to see why: storage space isn’t a concern when you’re assuming that the buyer already owns a decent PC setup. You can’t store all your games on the Steam Deck because you’re not meant to. You keep them stored elsewhere, and when you want to take them on a trip, you move the files into the Steam Deck.

It might take some getting used to – comparisons to the Nintendo Switch feel so intuitive – but that intuition can be misleading. The right mental framing can make-or-break how enjoyable a product feels, and considering the Steam Deck to be an extension of an existing PC setup might better help future buyers feel satisfied with their purchase.