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Valve's New Rating System Shows Which Games Play Best On Steam Deck

Players can see at a glance which games play best on the spiffy handheld

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Box art for games available on Steam are lined up in a row with ratings for their performance in the form of a green checkmark, a yellow information symbol, a grey cancel symbol, and a question mark in their bottom left corners.
Screenshot: Kotaku / Valve

Gaming on-the-go has gotten a lot of much-needed attention lately with not only the Nintendo Switch and the shiny new Nintendo Switch - OLED Model, but with the highly anticipated Steam Deck as well. The upcoming portable gaming PC enables players to take at least a decent chunk of their Steam libraries on the move, an impressive feat no matter how you slice it. But with innovation comes questions, and one question that has hung in the air since the Deck’s announcement is what games will be playable on it, and how well they’ll run. Today Valve announced their plans to provide answers to this question in the form of a video introducing Deck Verified, a rating system which will let players know at a glance how they can expect a game to run on their Steam Deck.

Read More: Everything You Need To Know About Steam Deck 

Deck Verified is a way for players to quickly get a sense of a game’s playability on the Steam Deck. The rating system breaks games down into four categories: verified, playable, unsupported, and unknown. These categories refer to games that work great “right out of the box,” game’s that’ll require some extra work to play, and games that may not be a good experience on the Steam Deck.

If a game is classified as verified, that means that it passes Valve’s checks for input, display, performance, and seamlessness on the Deck. Games marked playable require a bit of tinkering from users, possibly involving adjusting a game’s graphics manually or utilizing the onscreen keyboard or the Deck’s touch screen to navigate menus. Unsupported games are SOL when it comes to being playable on the Deck. Games in this category include VR games as well as those incompatible with the Deck’s Proton operating system. Valve gave players a bit of hope by saying that these games don’t work on the Deck “yet.” The Unknown category are games that Valve’s review team haven’t checked for compatibility yet.

Read More: Valve Says It Hasn’t Found A Game That The Steam Deck Can’t Handle

A pop up menu details Team Fortress 2's performance compatibility on the Steam Deck.
Users can click the information tab on a game to get more details on its compatibility on the Steam Deck.
Screenshot: Kotaku / Valve
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“A game’s rating can change overtime, as the developer releases updates, or the Deck’s software improves,” the disembodied voice narrating the Deck Verified trailer said.

The first tab users see when opening Steam on the Deck is the “Great On Deck” tab where verified games will be displayed. The rest of the games in the Steam store will have a section called “Steam Deck Compatibility” where Valve says players can read a detailed report of a game’s performance on the Deck.

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Knowledge is power, and Deck Verified is shaping up to be a boon for players who are excited to test the console’s limits with the deep pull of games in their library.

The Steam Deck will begin shipping in December 2021.