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Steam Deck looks great, but Valve’s hardware track record doesn’t

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Last week, Valve revealed Steam Deck: a handheld PC that looks like a NIntendo Switch, but packs as much power as a decent gaming laptop. Pre-orders for the Steam Deck went live on Friday (July 16), and hordes of eager fans nearly crashed Valve’s servers. This December, PC gamers will have a chance to play their favorite titles in a handheld format — no cloud gaming, local streaming or compromised console ports required.

While Steam Deck sounds interesting, I’ve adopted a wait-and-see approach regarding Valve’s inventive new device. Part of the reason is that I think there’s still a pretty clear separation between games that are optimized for a handheld, and games that are optimized for a big screen, the Nintendo Switch notwithstanding.

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