Steam Deck 30 FPS Concerns Addressed by Valve

This past week a small controversy has grown within the PC gaming community over one of the Steam Deck's listed features. Headlines across the internet referred to Valve "targeting" 30 FPS on the upcoming handheld PC platform, following an interview with Valve coder Pierre-Loup Griffais in which he said exactly that. Now Valve is trying to cut that narrative short, clarifying what "targeting" means and confirming that 30 FPS is just the minimum that Steam Deck users should expect.

The clarifying remarks once again come from Pierre-Loup Griffais, who has become a public face for the forthcoming platform. Griffais addressed the topic on Twitter, first acknowledging his comments regarding the Steam Deck targeting 30 FPS. What that means is that 30 FPS is the minimum floor that Valve considers "playable." It's not a cap or a limit of any kind. The Steam Deck is "targeting" that every game played on it exceeds 30 FPS.

Further, Griffais says that Valve's performance testing on the Steam Deck has gone very well. That's why it chose this hardware configuration for the Steam Deck, after all. Griffais says that games tested on the Steam Deck have "consistently met and exceeded" that 30 FPS target. Note that he said "and exceeded" and not "or exceeded." In other words, the games that Valve has been testing have pulled in more than 30 FPS consistently.

Those comments are all the more significant given some of Griffais' previous comments on what the Steam Deck's been tested on. He's previously said that Valve hasn't found a single game that doesn't run on Steam Deck. Further, he says that he's confident that the entire Steam library will run on the Steam Deck. With Griffais' latest comments, that Valve is targeting 30 FPS and better for every game running on the Steam Deck, should mean Griffais is confident every game on Steam will be a stable 30 FPS or higher.

Griffais does confirm one other thing as part of his latest tweet. Steam Deck will have a built-in FPS limiter. That may seem like an odd announcement after confirming that Steam Deck will be plenty capable of reaching above 30 FPS, but it makes sense in that users will be able to customize their experience. If they're on the road and need to preserve battery life, they'll be able to cap FPS so that it lasts longer. If not, they can turn off the cap and let the Steam Deck hardware do its best.

Obviously, PC gamers and Steam Deck pre-orderers will have to take Griffais at his word for the time being. Full testing of the Steam Deck will have to wait until media outlets have broad access to the hardware, which may be some time yet. Of course, if the Steam Deck doesn't perform, then pre-orderers can easily not follow through on their reservation, so Valve must be confident.

The Steam Deck releases in December 2021.

Related Forum: PC Gaming Forum



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