This week, a lot happened in the world of Steam Deck with new Verified games, demo releases, and more. Apologies for this week’s feature being a bit shorter than expected. I was unwell, and I’m just getting back to catching up with the news and things. Let’s get into this week’s feature then with three reviews including two early access releases and one puzzler I’ve been obsessed with, an upcoming survival horror game with a free demo out now, a super hilarious new trailer for Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth, new PowerWash Simulator DLC details, and more.
SEGA’s newest trailer for the upcoming eighth mainline entry in the Like a Dragon series shows off a mode that might be dangerously addictive if you enjoy Animal Crossing. Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth launches in January 2024 on Steam and consoles, and the trailer above makes me wish the game was out sooner. Thankfully, Like a Dragon Gaiden, out early November, has a demo for Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth.
PowerWash Simulator’s Back to the Future Special Pack DLC launches on November 16th. Readers know how much Shaun and myself love PowerWash Simulator, and both of us are looking forward to this DLC. I love Back to the Future as well so this feels like a match made in heaven. Remember Anodyne? It has been remastered and launched on Steam for free. Details for the remaster are here. Treasure also announced that Radiant Silvergun is finally coming to Steam next week on November 3rd following its debut from porting house Live Wire on Switch. I’ll be getting this for sure for my Steam Deck shoot ’em up collection.
The final notable news story of the week barring Valve pushing out an update for the Steam Deck client is the demo for Crow Country which is available now. Crow Country is a survival horror adventure that aims to feel like an older game, and it succeeds quite well. This demo is worth trying.
New Steam Deck Verified & Playable games for the week
This week’s most notable Steam Deck Verified game is Lords of the Fallen from CI Games. Thanks to TouchArcade reader Mor for spotting this and letting me know about it. It happened while I was playing the game on Deck as well. I’ve been enjoying this one on both Steam Deck and PS5 quite a bit over the last few weeks. I’ll have a full review of it on Steam Deck soon, but it has been very impressive for a next-gen game on Steam Deck given how Unreal Engine 5 titles can be.
Steam Deck Game Impressions & Reviews
Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord Steam Deck Early Access Review
When Digital Eclipse announced and released Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord into Steam Early Access, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit disappointed. I say that, because I was hoping a game as important as this would get the same treatment we saw with The Making of Karateka. Well, this was clearly aimed to be something else, and having spent a good amount of time with the current build, I’m very impressed with the release. I’ll be focusing more on how it plays on Steam Deck in this Early Access Review, with more of my thoughts on the game and its visuals once it is at 1.0.
Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is a full 3D remake of the original Wizardry, and it has been built on top of the original 1981 game code. To be as faithful as possible, you can even have the original game visuals as an overlay window while you play the remake. Thanks to being faithful, this is quite challenging, but Digital Eclipse has done a lot to make it more playable by modern standards, including it being great on Steam Deck. Since the team pushed out a big update this week, I decided to write up my early access thoughts in today’s feature.
Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord on PC has a few basic options like resolution and display mode right now. You can also adjust what button prompts to display. I set mine to PlayStation or Steam Deck while testing. There are also some “Old School Options” that let you enable or disable some of the new features like random starting attribute points, hints, and more. One thing to note is the 800p or 16:10 support isn’t fully implemented right now, so I’d recommend playing this at 720p on Steam Deck to avoid having some parts of the screen cut off.
Despite the PC settings being a bit bare-bones, it runs great on Steam Deck. Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord on Steam Deck is marked as Playable by Valve for sometimes showing keyboard and mouse icons, some text being small, and having to invoke the keyboard manually sometimes. If you were hoping to play this on a portable like I always am with dungeon crawlers, you can safely do so. Just be prepared to sometimes have to use touch or the virtual cursor.
Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is an essential for fans of dungeon crawlers even in its current state. Those looking to sample a true classic will also find a lot to love here. This release was my first taste of the original Wizardry, and I think Digital Eclipse has done a great job even in its initial Early Access version. I can’t wait to see how it evolves over time.
Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord Steam Deck Early Access review score: TBA
Station to Station Steam Deck Review
Station to Station was always on my radar since the demo hit Steam back in June. PRISMATIKA and Galaxy Drove’s blend of a minimalist puzzler and train simulation game Station to Station has absolutely lived up to my expectations, and I’ve enjoyed it a ton on Steam Deck over the last few weeks.
When I first tried Station to Station, it felt like a nice mix of games like Mini Metro and Dorfromantik. I enjoy relaxing puzzle and simulation games, and Station to Station does that while being a train game as well. The gorgeous voxel aesthetic and lovely soundtrack come together to make it really memorable in a super-busy year of great games.
Depending on whether you’re aiming to just finish levels or go for the optional challenges, expect to take about 8 hours to see what Station to Station has to offer right now in its main campaign with the time increasing a lot if you also do said challenges. There is a lot you can also do with the custom game mode right now. For its asking price, Station to Station delivers as long as you click with the gameplay.
Initially it feels a bit simple, but I’m glad Station to Station took its time introducing new mechanics gradually, because you will feel like a puppet master by the end of the campaign linking different complex parts of the maps together to see your little voxel world come to life.
The one issue I have with Station to Station, is that you can’t delete or demolish things. You need to either reload a part or the complete level. As a design decision, this makes things more strategic, but I felt like I wasted time in some of the levels thanks to not being able to demolish things.
On Steam Deck, I had no issues with Station to Station. I ended up playing at at native resolution and using the auto-detect settings. I played at 30 or 40fps during my testing. 60fps is not doable at native resolution right now without drops as you zoom in and out of levels and during other animations. It uses the Steam Deck’s display correctly and looks great. Station to Station feels perfect on a portable, and I’m glad it plays this well on Steam Deck from the start while looking very good. As of now, it isn’t marked Verified or Playable by Valve, but I haven’t run into any issues with the game on Steam Deck.
Station to Station supports uncapped frame rates, and while I did test this a bit, it really isn’t feasible on Steam Deck (as expected) unless you really turn the resolution well below. The graphics settings let you adjust resolution scaling, level of detail, anti-aliasing, shadow quality, visual effects quality, post processing, DOF, motion blur, grass & flowers, and the number of props.
If you don’t want to play the game right now or don’t care about trains, I still recommend checking out the soundtrack. It is excellent and worth listening to while you’re working.
In its current state, Station to Station is just lovely. I love the aesthetic, soundtrack, and puzzles, and it has been a joy to sink into daily over the last few weeks on Steam Deck. I hope a future update adds the ability to go a step back or destroy a part rather than reloading. With a lot planned for the game already, Station to Station is worth your time, and I can’t wait to play the new content when the updates arrive.
Station to Station Steam Deck review score: 4/5
Cyber Knights: Flashpoint Steam Deck Early Access Review
When I saw an email about Cyber Knights: Flashpoint, a new turn-based strategy RPG with a cyberpunk setting, I was interested. Then while discussing the game with Shaun, I realized it was developed by THE Trese Brothers and was actually Kickstarted a while ago. I’ve been playing it on Steam Deck through its early access release on Steam, and it is really great even in its current state. There are some rough edges as expected with an early access release, but Cyber Knights: Flashpoint has the potential to be amazing.
Since a lot of the game is going to improve and change over the course of its early access period while it also eventually makes its way to iOS, Android, and consoles, I will be focusing more on how Cyber Knights: Flashpoint feels on Steam Deck in this early access review.
Cyber Knights: Flashpoint excels with how it blends heists, turn-based strategy, and builds. You remember when Shadowrun hit the iPad a while ago before seeing a recent release on consoles? Cyber Knights: Flashpoint feels like the perfect game to play if you miss the likes of Shadowrun Returns. It also has multiple difficulty options which is always good to see in games like this. I’m still playing through the game a few times while testing different things and settings on Steam Deck, but I’m enjoying it a lot.
On Steam Deck, Cyber Knights: Flashpoint has no rating from Valve, but it plays brilliantly. There are some interface issues with scaling right now, but it runs a lot better than I expected while looking great. It even has 800p support. The interface issues are to do with the screen scaling. I wanted to increase the size of the text and menus, so I scaled it higher, but there’s overlapping and cropping of important parts. Right now, if you want to play Cyber Knights: Flashpoint on Steam Deck, be prepared for some small text sizes as the only real issue.
Just like Shaun told me, a Trese Brothers game means it starts out with a lot of potential, but will bloom into something special if the many releases by the developers are anything to go by. In its current state, Cyber Knights: Flashpoint plays and looks great, and it just has a few quirks with its interface on Steam Deck. This is well worth keeping an eye on through its early access period.
Cyber Knights: Flashpoint Steam Deck Early Access review score: TBA
Steam Deck Game Sales & Discounts
This week, there are notable discounts on the Marvel’s Spider-Man games from Sony, Monster Hunter games from Capcom, and more. Check out all the Steam deals on the link above.
That’s all for this week. As usual, you can read all our Steam Deck coverage here. If you have any feedback for this feature or what else you’d like to see us do around the Steam Deck, let us know in the comments below. I hope you all have a great weekend, and thanks for reading.