Steam Deck 30 FPS Comment Clarified; Valve Demonstrates ‘Unique Trackpad and Gyroscopic Controls’


A few days ago, we reported on Valve's offhanded comment that the Steam Deck was targeting 30 frames per second. Predictably enough, this stirred some controversy among PC fans who were looking to get on board with the handheld gaming system.

Yesterday, Valve's Pierre-Loup Griffais took to Twitter to clarify what he originally meant.

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The "30 FPS target" refers to the floor of what we consider playable in our performance testing; games we've tested and shown have consistently met and exceeded that bar so far. There will also be an optional built-in FPS limiter to fine-tune perf vs. battery life.

Ultimately, it'll depend on the game, as well as the graphics settings picked by the user. Older or less complex games should have no trouble hitting the 60Hz limit of the screen, though.

In other Steam Deck news, Valve demonstrated the hardware's unique trackpad and gyroscopic controls in a video published today by IGN. Scott Dalton, Designer at Valve, explained:

We have capacitive joysticks and one of the really cool things about that is we can use that in tandem with our gyroscope to sort of turn on or turn off gyroscopic aiming and motion controls in games. If I'm not touching the stick, I can kind of move this around freely and nothing happens. If I put my thumb on the controller, I can look around with stick controls like I normally would, but while my thumb's on this controller even if I'm not pushing any direction I can now control motion controls. I can look around and have this really one-to-one, exact, super precise way of aiming. You can do both at the same time, looking at some direction and look down while I'm turning. It just makes it so things that before would be hard to do, like if you have to make these minutes movements or if a target is running across your screen while you're trying to get a headshot, it's super easy to use your whole arm to get that precise movement.

The Steam Deck will launch this December for those few who were able to pre-order the device in the first wave.