The Steam Deck is much more powerful than a Nintendo Switch but that doesn’t mean it can compare to a current-gen console. While Valve’s handheld computer can play AAA games, most fans can’t get the most out of them and limit their system to 40fps, usually at low or medium settings.
One fan on the system’s subreddit asked others what’s on their list of 40fps/40hz games for the Deck. Unsurprisingly, most of them named AAA titles like Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade, Marvel’s Spider-Man Remastered, and Red Dead Redemption 2. Some of them even said that 40hz and 40fps are their default settings for most games in general.
A few players also said that they stick with 30fps so they can enjoy the visuals on their Steam Deck more. Going 40hz and 40fps can sometimes affect how these games look, leading to blurry character models or poorly detailed backgrounds. However, others have also said that they don’t mind sacrificing some visual fidelity so the game can play better.
It’s also worth noting that some games are so demanding that the Deck can only handle them at 30fps. Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty is a clear example of that, as it looks great on the Deck but still dips to 20-ish frames or lower, even at 30fps.
Now, it’s not all doom and gloom for players that want to enjoy that 60fps experience. Most indie games can run on max settings, like Cult of the Lamb or Hades, as they tend to lack the demanding graphics of AAA titles. Plenty of 'verified' multiplayer games can also run at 60fps, including Apex Legends and Warframe.
Due to the Deck’s limitations, it’s easy to see why a lot of Steam Deck owners tend to gravitate towards indie titles or emulation. Then again, most Deck owners also don’t pay attention to the ‘verified’ status of these products, due to ProtonGE making things a lot easier.
Fans can purchase a Steam Deck from most gaming stores these days. It’s not the hottest gadget to own right now, as it dropped from Steam’s own Top 10 overall sales.