Jacob Ridley, Steam Deck enjoyer

Jacob Ridley headshot with pink background

(Image credit: Future)

This month I’ve been playing: Alan Wake 2. Good lord this game is pretty. A proper glimpse at the future of videogame visuals, though you need some beefy Nvidia hardware to get it looking its best. Not only that, it’s an absolute blast to play.

This week I’ve been testing: This year’s Zephyrus G14 from Asus. The new gaming laptop packs fresh silicon from Nvidia and AMD, though the exact model I tested was surprisingly overpowered for my liking.

It’s a dog-eat-dog world out there for PC hardware. For a brief moment, a new product is all anyone can talk about. Then something else arrives and boots it out of the limelight. With the arrival of more powerful handheld gaming PCs—such as the ROG Ally, OneXFly, and Air 1S—you’d think we’d have forgotten about the lil’ Steam Deck that brought these devices into the public eye. But no, it’s stuck around as a great pick. And for good reason.

The Steam Deck may be the slowest, and the lowest resolution, PC handheld available today. It might even be the ugliest—I say that as the owner of a minutely modded Steam Deck that I very much enjoy. But I’ll be damned if it isn’t the cheapest handheld gaming PC going, and that is a strength that no other handheld has been able to match, or ever even attempted to match.

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