Steam Deck gamer swaps controllers for iPods to game like a rockstar

A PoV shot of someone playing Skyrim on a Steam Deck using two iPods as controllers

A PoV shot of someone playing Skyrim on a Steam Deck using two iPods as controllers

Out of every gaming challenge we’ve ever seen, we never expected to see one involving dual-wielding iPods. Nevertheless, one Steam Deck gamer opted to move on from traditional controls and play actual games with Apple’s aging music device.

While the Steam Deck OLED specs offer great controls, even compared to alternatives like the underwhelming ROG Ally, this player decided they just weren’t funky enough. Hence the introduction of akimbo iPods.

Reddit user Nekomichi shared their inventive new control scheme on the social media website’s Steam Deck subreddit.

“Tired of playing on your deck with proper controls?” the gamer asked. “Why not play Skyrim with a pair of iPods as controllers instead? Guaranteed to spice up your gameplay.”

Using a custom firmware called RockBox, the Steam Deck gamer was able to map two different iPods as controllers. Using an iPod Mini and an iPod Classic, the user is able to use the first model’s controls to move around and the second model’s capacitive clickwheel to aim. The two music players’ buttons can be pressed to attack, interact, jump and more.

In another post, the wacky gamer also used iPods to play Sleeping Dogs, an even more frantic game in comparison to Skyrim. What an absolute mad lad.

Reactions to the inventive control scheme were mixed in the Steam Deck community. One user asked: “So this is what psychopaths do with their spare time?” However, most fans want to see more games played this way, mostly Dark Souls.

“People were asking if there was anything people hadn't yet used to beat Dark Souls,” one fan said. “We have our answer. Now we just gotta wait for the NoHit speedruns with iPods.”

The Steam Deck community has been one of the more inventive ones in recent memory. For example, the community has managed to pair the Steam Deck with the Meta Quest 3 for perfect big-screen gaming, and many users frequently upgrade their devices.

At the time of writing, the Steam Deck 2 is currently years away, but there’s also a tonne of competitors. The MSI Claw is almost here, as well as the bizarre Ayaneo Flip, a 3DS-like dual screen PC. There’s also the upgraded GPD Win 4 with a sliding keyboard - now that’s cool.

The Steam Deck and Steam Deck OLED is available right now via Steam.

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