Is the Steam Deck worth it in 2023?

Is the Steam Deck worth it in 2023?

Is the Steam Deck worth it in 2023?

If you are contemplating investing in Valve's handheld console, it is essential to consider whether the Steam Deck is worth it in 2023.

With the ability to play your favourite titles on the go, the Steam Deck has captured the spotlight in the world of handheld gaming. However, before diving in, it's crucial to determine whether it truly lives up to the hype.

This concise guide provides a quick overview of the Steam Deck's potential benefits, and drawbacks, giving you a glimpse into whether it's the right gaming investment for you this year.

The good

Advantages: Portable gaming freedom | Versatile emulation capabilities | Tinkering and customization options

The Steam Deck emerges as a compelling contender in a gaming landscape where innovation and portability are highly sought after.

By understanding the positive aspects of this handheld device, you'll gain valuable insights into its potential and determine if it aligns with your gaming needs and preferences.


Steam Deck emulation opens up a world of gaming possibilities, allowing you to indulge in retro classics. With emulation software such as EmuDeck, you can relive the nostalgia of playing iconic Nintendo and Atari games from yesteryears.

Additionally, the Steam Deck's impressive hardware capabilities enable you to experience modern Nintendo Switch gems, including titles like Pokemon Scarlet and Violet and the beloved The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

On-the-go gaming freedom

On-the-go gaming is where the Steam Deck truly shines, providing a convenient and immersive gaming experience for players who crave the freedom to enjoy their favourite titles anytime, anywhere.

Whether you're commuting, travelling, or want to change your gaming environment, the Steam Deck offers unparalleled convenience. You can dive into intense gaming sessions during long train rides or relax with a quick match while waiting for a flight.

Tinkering and plugins

The Steam Deck's open nature allows for tinkering and customization, appealing to tech-savvy gamers who enjoy exploring and modifying their devices.

Whether it's installing custom firmware, optimizing settings, or adding plugins to enhance the gaming experience, the Steam Deck provides a platform for personalization, allowing users to tailor the device to their specific preferences.

The bad

Disadvantages: Limited battery life | Non-OLED screen | Compromises for AAA games

While the Steam Deck offers numerous advantages and exciting possibilities, it's important to acknowledge that no device is without its drawbacks.

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Understanding these potential downsides will help you make an informed decision and determine if the Steam Deck aligns with your gaming preferences and requirements.

Battery life

While the Steam Deck offers impressive gaming capabilities, one area where it falls short is battery life. Due to its powerful hardware, the device consumes a significant amount of energy, resulting in limited battery runtime.

Playing AAA games or graphically demanding titles on the Steam Deck may reduce the overall battery life compared to playing less demanding titles or indie games. You may need a power bank, especially when you're planning extended gaming sessions on the go.

Non-OLED screen

The Steam Deck's display, although capable, does not feature an OLED panel, which can affect the overall visual quality.

While the screen is still vibrant and provides an enjoyable gaming experience, some gamers may find themselves longing for the deep blacks and vibrant colours that OLED screens offer. It's worth mentioning that you can upgrade your Steam Deck screen.

Compromises for AAA gaming

While the Steam Deck is a powerful handheld gaming device, it does come with certain compromises when it comes to running AAA titles such as Starfield or Hogwarts Legacy.

Due to its compact form factor and thermal constraints, some resource-intensive games may require adjustments to graphics settings, resulting in reduced performance and picture clarity compared to playing on a dedicated gaming PC.

Is the Steam Deck worth it in 2023?

Is the Steam Deck worth it in 2023?
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The answer to whether the Steam Deck is worth it in 2023 depends on the individual gamer's preferences and priorities.

If you are primarily seeking insane FPS and cutting-edge graphics, the Steam Deck may not meet your expectations. However, if your goal is to have the best way to play your PC games on the go, the Steam Deck proves to be an excellent choice.

While it does have limitations, such as battery life and compromises with AAA games, the overall value proposition and unique features of the Steam Deck make it a compelling choice for gamers in 2023.

If the Steam Deck doesn't quite meet your expectations, several alternatives are worth exploring. Consider options such as the ASUS ROG ALLY, GPD Win 4, or even the prospect of waiting for the highly anticipated Steam Deck 2.

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