In Word: Details about Valve’s recently announced Steam Deck portable gaming system continue to emerge, and it’s mostly good news. In a recent meeting with IGN, Valve’s hardware team said they believe that the entire Steam library, even the latest games released last year, will quietly downsize to meet its 800p, 30Hz target.
“We really haven’t found anything that we can throw at this device that it can’t handle, at least not yet,” said Valve developer Pierre-Loup Griffais.
The team said they also intended not to integrate local storage directly onto the motherboard for repair reasons. As such, the standard M.2 NVMe SSD can be swapped out in case yours breaks down or if you want to upgrade to a higher capacity drive. However, it is a task that is not really intended for inexperienced users and it is not clear how it could affect the warranty of the device.
Steam Deck can be configured with up to 512GB of fast internal storage, and all models include a microSD expansion slot. Games will load faster from internal storage, but will still be perfectly playable directly from a memory card.
Valve is currently accepting pre-orders for the Steam Deck, but it will wait a while before getting it if you just got in line. The mid-tier and high-end models have an expected order availability date of Q2 2022, while the more affordable variant is listed as “after Q2 2022.”