Playing around with a Steam Deck

Lea Spectral
23 min readFeb 19, 2023

So… Yeah, Steam Deck.

Everyone and their dog already made a video or published a text guide on Steam Deck, and for me it took more than half a year to write one, w̵a̵s̵ ̵t̵o̵o̵ ̵b̵u̵s̵y̵ ̵p̵l̵a̵y̵i̵n̵g̵ ̵a̵r̵o̵u̵n̵d̵ ̵w̵i̵t̵h̵ ̵i̵t̵ ̵(̵a̵h̵e̵m̵)̵.

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All the most important games

This blog post consists of two parts. The first one (this) is about the gaming part, my general impressions and some curious cases where I tried to make some games run. It also acts like a collection of recipes for other people and foe my future self.

The second part will be more about using Deck as a portable computer, so naturally I won’t focus on such things here. This kind of text won’t be as interesting to the most people (I imagine most people see Deck mostly as a gaming device, there aren’t as many insane people to use it for something else). Link to the second part will be there.

The thing is — there aren’t many things that need “setting up”. Here’s a quick guide to using Steam Deck:

  • Will it run my favorite games? — Most likely yes, if they are on Steam. If not, you can try to google them (“Game Name Steam Deck”) and there will be either instructions on how to get it working or why it doesn’t work. Most Steam games should work without any issues, some might require a little bit of tinkering. The biggest issues are games with anti-cheat systems, which don’t (yet) support linux.
  • Wait, Linux? — Yes, Linux. Steam Deck runs a Linux-based operating system. So it runs linux versions of the games OR windows versions through tbe Proton compatibility layer (or any other if you with so). What usually works on Linux should also work on Deck.
  • How do I play the games? — You install them and then play them.

That’s all you need to know.

And now I’m going to write a lot about my personal experiences with Steam Deck and exactly how deep into it I am.

Why Deck

I was waiting for Steam Deck for a very long time. There were rumors about it back in 2012, then there were Steam Machines (the first attempt at console-like gaming from Valve) and Steam for Linux. It didn’t really work out, but things didn’t stop there. Linux version of Steam was still getting improvements, Valve was contributing to Wine (compatibility layer) and made their own version of it (Proton).

So naturally once the announcement happened, it wasn’t a bit surprise to me, but I was still rather excited to finally see the device in action. And once the reservations opened, I made one immediately.

But it wasn’t just about Valve and portable gaming to me.

The thing is — I was using Linux as my primary OS for a very long time, and also I was also looking into a portable PC to use both as a gaming machine (well, it’s a stretch as initially I was just hoping it could run Dota) and a portable work station.

My searches led me do a couple of different devices with different purposes, but the two I was seriously considering were Surface and GPD Win 2 at the time.

Yes, it’s kind of a weird selection of devices, but bear with me. The initial idea was to get a “lightweight and portable” laptop, but then I thought that something like Surface would be better since it can turn into a tablet and I can play Artifact from my couch after the work. But I wasn’t so sure about buying it, and started to consider other options: to have a portable PC with me, but also capable of being a “game machine”. Still want to get a Surface at some point, but for now I don’t think it has any proper use for me anyway.

In the end I scraped the idea of buying a tablet-transformer, but the idea of getting something similar to GPD stuck with me. I still wanted something portable enough, but it should’ve been a device that would allow me to play Dota on the road and generally give me a freedom in terms of what I can do with it.

Surface, Aya Neo and GPD Win Max 2 (and Steam Deck, of course)

And Steam Deck was not only a device from the same category, but it’s also a great value for its price. And the best part: it would actually be able to act as a workstation during travels with ease. Having a full blown Linux onboard creates so many possibilities. Sure, you can do the same with GPD or Aya Neo, but it won’t be this level of polish and it would be much more expensive.


Deck is incredible. The possibilities are indeed endless. Well, almost unlimited, but we’ll get to that.

It looks kinda “geeky” kind of ugly, but I like it. It’s massive (so it’s not as portable as I’d imagine), but it’s surprisingly comfortable to hold in hands. The screen is… suboptimal, but you hardly notice it in day-to-day use. In a way Deck is a case of many paradoxes. Everything about it should not work. But it works, and it works great.

One of such things is Linux gaming. For a very long time gaming on Linux was like a legend. Nobody expected serious gaming on it to become a reality, but after Valve started showing their interest in it, the ecosystem started growing rapidly. And now, with Vulkan, VKD3D, decent video drivers and Proton most games actually work without any problems. And for all the non-gaming stuff there are many things to suit most of the needs.

Some impressive games stats from ProtonDB: 84% of top-1000 games run without any significant issues (or with none of them at all)

This seems even more strange in the context of Steam Deck being a console-like device first of all. Linux gaming was usually associated with a lot of problems and complicated instructions to get everything working right (and it still won’t work as intended), while console gaming was usually associated with “it just works out of the box” approach. And to everyone’s surprise Valve managed to turn Linux gaming experience in general and ESPECIALLY on Deck into something very smooth, simple and enjoyable.

You can install Windows on it (even as a second system), which should make virtually any game available at your disposal, but honestly I don’t see a point. The device is Linux-first, and the experience on the stock system is so polished, that dealing with Windows (with all the specific quirks and lost features) starts to feel like an unnecessary complication. I might consider doing it in the future, when I’m bored, but for now it’s just an available option.

In terms of storage, the microSD card, strangely enough, works pretty fast indeed, given you have a proper class for it (UHS-I U3, Class 10 usually works great), so pay attention to the card you are going to buy. And generally speaking, having a microSD 512GB and the 512GB Deck made it pretty easy to install A TON of games and have a plenty of space left for other stuff, and loading anything from both feels about the same speed.

Battery life is not as impressive, but it charges pretty quickly with a proper charger, and generally speaking one full charge is usually enough for me for one decently long play session of a “heavy” game or a couple of sessions for “smaller” games.

There is also some criticism regarding the screen resolution. But honestly, that’s kind of the point. It’s able to run so many games to well specifically because of this kind of “low” resolution. And it’s more than enough for this kind of screen size in practice.

Of course, once you get out of the steam comfort zone, you might find many problematic things (and even in Steam itself some games might not work or have some issues), but after all — it is intended to be the Steam deck, not “whatever-else” deck. Right? Well, not necessarily (but we’ll get back to it later).

The best part of the Deck I keep hearing about is actually playing on it. It is really enjoyable in this aspect and from many people I heard that they started playing much more (especially from their Steam library) after getting their Deck, destroying their backlog of games.

I can’t say it exactly applies to me though. On one hand I have some games I’d like to play with a stream on, and since I can’t stream I don’t play these games either. On the other hand I just don’t have much time to begin with, even with Deck. So my backlog wasn’t destroyed, sadly.

My Deck stats by the end of the year. Well, I guess it’s not as surprising, given my most played game is Dota, and Steam Deck got to me closer to the end of the year.

However, I absolutely agree that Deck feels great to play on. Even while I don’t have much time to play games for now, I still played more games on Deck than I would without it. I can play games on the road, I can play then while lying down on a sofa, I can walk around the house. And I can even pause my session and send Deck to sleep whenever if I have to do something else or go somewhere else.

Playing on Deck is amazing and is probably the best PC gaming experience out there. Gonna get used to playing Dota on it now.

Accessories kind of stuff

In terms of accessories I didn’t have much of a choice. I ordered them along with my reservation of the Deck (and getting the parcel to me took a long time already). I didn’t really want to wait for the official Steam Deck Dock (though I kind of want one now), but instead I wanted to get as close to it as possible.

So I ended up researching additional accessories through LTT videos and Amazon. Here are the accessories I came up with:

  • USB-C Docking Station from OKX — — Side note: I would rather buy one from JSAUX, but the version they had out was lacking DisplayPort. Though their M.2 Docking Station for Deck looks awesome (
  • Docking stand (just a plastic with rubber) —
  • Simple bumper case for Deck — — though there are better alternatives now, ModCase from JSAUX being the ultimate solution, alternatively there is a simple bumper case from JSAUX and a kickstand case, which are great too
  • Some random protective glass for Deck — it came in handy and fit perfectly in the small screen dip, but my original screen had an anti-glare glass, and the great anti-glare part was lost after attaching a genetic glass on top of it, so I would advice to look for a protective glass with similar properties
  • Portal colored decals for touchpads (didn’t use them though)

Additionally I also already had some gadgets that were either picked up while waiting for Deck reservation or just used with Deck a lot:

  • Gembird KBW-6 portable keyboard (it’s as small as a smartphone, nice to have one with me on the road)
  • Logitech MX Anywhere 2S Mouse (I’m connecting it via bluetooth, using it as a portable mouse)
  • Logitech MX Keys Mini Keyboard (another portable keyboard, but not as portable and more comfortable to use instead)
  • Choetech GaN PD8002 custom charger (compatible with Deck)
  • ASUS ROG Strix Portable Monitor — — using it a lot as an additional screen for my laptop, Deck or as an additional screen on the go
  • ASUS ROG Strix Orion M.2 SSD Steel Case

Getting a carrying case would be great, but one comes with the Deck itself anyway and it is actually pretty good. The worst part about is that it doesn’t really have anywhere to attach the charger and accessories. And, well, Deck with the protective case and carrying case starts to take more space than one would want: it literally takes a half of my backpack for itself.

Utilities and stuff

Using a browser on Deck in the gaming mode is pretty easy. It even prompts you to add a browser to your Steam library.

The best part of it is that you can have multiple apps running at the same time. Which means you can keep some apps running in the background while playing.

Which comes handy when you want to have a guide available at all times, listen to music or a video on YouTube.

But it is the most useful with Discord. It’s rather easy to set up. You just need to switch to Desktop mode, install Discord from Discover, add it to your Steam library as a non-steam game and log into Discord itself, of course. And in the gaming mode open controller settings and choose Web Browser template.

Discord on Deck can run in the background with other apps

And that’s pretty much it! And it also should work with alternative Discord client apps (like WebCord) or virtually any application, like Konsole (terminal), VLC player, VS Code, Telegram, LibreOffice, Thunderbird, Notion, Obsidian. One particularly useful app would be Calible to read ebooks.

The biggest downside: you need to setup the size of your window first in most cases, so it will take the whole screen in the gaming mode.

Ah, yes, I too love the unforgettable classics of gaming: Telegram, Thunderbird Mail, VLC and VS Code

Oh, and the most important thing, that applies to pretty much every application (including Discord). If the application can go to system tray after the main window was closed — DISABLE THAT, otherwise the app will stay in the background, but you won’t be able to summon it, since there is no tray in the game mode.

Cool gaming stuff — Epic Games, GOG, Emulation

Well, tinkering with different setups, installers and all this kind of stuff is what makes Deck even more fun.

First of all, there is Heroic games launcher, which now supports Deck’s game mode and Steam. The launcher is made to get Epic Games and GOG games on Linux, install and run them with Proton. I haven’t tested it much personally, aside from some GOG games, but generally it seems to work pretty well.

Aside from that, running non-steam games is rather easy and convenient. You just have to add the .exe as a non-steam game and enable specific compatibility layer for it. It can be enough in most cases, but in many cases you’ll have to install additional components and libraries required. Steam does this automatically, but when you’re doing it yourself, things get complicated and there is no one unique recipe for everything. However, you can just go to WineHQ or Lutris website and seek for answers here (or just google it).

Main window of Heroic Game Launcher (from the official website)

But the most intriguing part about the Deck is of course Emulation. The way the device looks, the way it is presented just make it an obvious idea.

And oh boy, the community did a great job there. Since the Deck came out there were some cool tools added on top of all this. And most of them can be installed using just one of them: EmuDeck.

EmuDeck is a script that can install all the emulators you would want, create the folders structure for you, automatically detect all your games (using the great utility called Steam ROM Manager) and add it to your Steam library with pretty covers from SteamGridDB. It can even install additional tweaks and plugins with Decky to add even more functionality to Steam Deck.

Steam ROM Manager (not my screenshot, but works well as a demo)

I wasn’t really into emulating, but there were some games I’d like to play, which were not ported anywhere (and pretty much all of them I own, but can’t or won’t play on the original hardware for one reason or another). In my case it came down to a couple of 3DS games, XBox games, Switch games and one specific Wii U game.

Most of these games, as one could’ve guessed, are The Legend of Zelda series. Ocarina of Time 3D and Majora’s Mask 3D feel to me like the ultimate ways to play these two games, but they are trapped on 3DS, and playing them on a small screen of my old 2DS is not that fun — but it’s fun on Deck.

And, as one would expect, Deck handles emulation pretty well. All the old platforms run without any issues, and the only problematic ones were Switch (Yuzu) and XBox (Xenia), but it gets better every day. To the point, when it’s possible to play Breath of the Wild with solid 45 FPS (or even 60, if you are willing to make some sacrifices).

Though in case of BotW the ultimate way to play it would be the WiiU version through CEMU, as it supports various adjustments and improvements, as well as numerous mods made by the community, and also can run perfectly in 60FPS (or at least 45 if you didn’t touch any settings).

One note: if you are having issues with pixellated grahics in the deck’s game mode while playing CEMU games, try to disable “Half-Rate Shading” option in the deck’s performance settings for the game. And, well, it applies to other games too (I had the same issue in Dota 2, for example).

And speaking of Dota 2: it was one of the first games I tried to play (along with Underlords, Artifact and Unreal), and… it’s pretty good on Deck? Well kind of, but not exactly. The thing is: I’m a big fan of Dota’s gamepad support, it’s actually pretty neat. But it takes getting used to playing this way, you basically need to learn to do all the same things with the new controls. And also the interface (main menu and stuff like that) is rather small and doesn’t navigate well with a gamepad, so you’ll have to change a preset first. Some heroes are pretty hard to play like that (usually it’s the ones who require you to move camera a lot), but they are still playable.

But other than that — it works great (and feels much more natural than… the other Dota-like game on the list, ahem). I wish Dota had more single player modes, they would feel great with these controls, but even playing some botmatches feels fine enough. Maybe eventually I’ll play some matches of turbo while on the road, once I get used to the controls. Wouldn’t recommend to play real matches this way though, unless you are going to commit and actually learn to play this way. Better to just have a portable mouse and keyboard if you are going to actually play Dota on it.

Even more cool stuff — Tinkering, modding and improving games

Anyway, since there is a possibility to add non-steam games and emulators into the mix, of course there will be even more stuff to look for. Some things might improve your experience for a specific games, other might help you to install some non-steam games and in some rare cases there are some cool tools to make the overall experience better.

First of all, let’s start with the tools. Let’s start with the components installation. There is a games launcher called Lutris, which has a wide variety of scripts, integration to different game stores and which will handle the installation of all the required things for you. The major drawback of Lutris is that it doesn’t work well with Flatpak at the moment of writing. Well, as far as I’m aware, there is a Lutris Beta, which works fine, so it’s safe to call Lutris a linux gaming swiss knife.

Main window of Lutris (from their website)

But what are Flatpaks, you might ask? Here’s the deal: the operating system has its libraries, in-built software and all sorts of stuff. Linux doesn’t really have a single kit (aside from the very basic GNU utilities), but most of the additional stuff (starting with desktop, ending with graphics drivers) are handled as “packages” from “repositories”. Basically it’s like an App Store on any other modern OS, except it was here for ages.

And all these packages have two things in common: they might “break” your system if you do something wrong and they have dependencies (other packages needed for them to work). The thing is many software packages require specific versions of some components and it might make them incompatible with other applications. And it’s not even talking about the different packaging formats! Which brings us to Flatpak.

Flatpak is basically another solution, similar to App Stores. There are two major differences, which matter to us. The first: all the flatpaks act like “containers” and only use things you allow them to, and they also have their dependencies installed for them, while also not conflicting with everything else. The second: flatpaks are installed in the user space, meaning they won’t break your system, and they also don’t need to make changes to your system at all. The second point matters for Steam Deck since the system exists separately and is usually in read-only mode. You can modify it if you want it, but it will reset after the next update. So installing flatpak applications from Discover is the best way to go.

And the nature of flatpaks means two things: (1) some otherwise cool apps, like Lutris, might act weird and (2) the apps, along with their data, will not be placed in some kind of… “usual” place. It also means you will have to deal with some additional settings here and there, so you might need an app called Flatseal.

UPDATE: Before this blog post was published, but after this bit was finished, KDE Plasma 5.27 was released (the desktop environment used by Deck). Along with many improvements it also introduced Flatpak permissions section in KDE System Settings application, which functionally replaces Flatseal. So there’s a high chance that you might not need it anymore in the future.


Flatseal helps you manage custom settings, overrides and permissions. It might come in handy when you’re tinkering with your apps or if there is a certain issue (though many issues are fixed pretty fast). One issue I had was the dark mode not working for certain flatpaks, but it was fixed pretty quickly.

The only app that wasn’t fixed was Chrome, but it’s a different case in of itself. In this specific case you need to add a special file ~/.var/app/ with launch options:

--force-dark-mode --enable-features=WebUIDarkMode

Then it should start working as intended.

Of course, Lutris is not the only thing to get non-steam applications working. Another way would be Bottles, though it’s not as convenient. While Lutris is aimed at automatic installations using specific instructions, Bottles just sets up a container for your application (“Bottle”) and can even install some required components, but you have to do more manual work and know what you’re doing.


And while adding an application in Bottles you might notice some weird versions of Wine and Proton you’ve never seen on Steam, and that’s where all the additional compatibility layers and tools come into play.

From Steam’s perspective Proton is just one of many compatibility tools, that’s just built into Steam. This means you can install your own if you wish. There are alternative versions of Proton and Wine have different adjustments and improvements (the most popular ones being GE from GloriousEggroll), which can make one version better than the other. But there are also two additional compatibility tools to look into: Luxtorpeda and SteamTinkerLaunch.

Luxtorpeda is an interesting beast. It can replace the game’s windows binaries with a native Linux version if the game supports it, or even change the game’s engine to an open source version of it. The “native version” part comes handy when playing games like Unreal Tournament, which had a native Linux release a while ago, but it was never released on Steam. In case of UT99 it even gets a better version of the game in the form of OldUnreal patch.

And when it comes down to source ports, these versions of the games might introduce many quality of life, graphics and engine improvements, while being fully compatible with the original games. Notable examples of supported games would be The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (OpenMW), Doom 3 (dhewm3), Doom and Doom-based games (GZDoom), Quake series, STALKER series.

SteamTinkerLaunch is a bit of a different thing, which makes tinkering with settings more convenient, while also adding mod managers for many supported games.

And aside from that there is Proton-GE (community version of Proton), which provides some additional fixes, which were not added to the mainline versions yet.

You can use the application ProtonUp-Qt to install all of these compatibility layers, choose proton versions and set specific compatibility layers for every game.

And on the Proton side of things specifically there is also Protontricks: an application to set up your Proton prefix (environment for a specific game) the way you need, install additional components and all sorts of stuff.

Weird stuff — The games I tinkered around myself

The thing is none of my Steam games of interest required any additional setup, they just worked out of the box. But in some cases as soon as I started trying to get more out of them, I started to get more problems. And also I wanted some non-steam games to work here as well.

One game I really wanted to get working on Deck was A Certain Anime Game. At first it looked like there is no way to get it working because of the anti-cheat, but it turns you you just need to install An Anime Game Launcher, and it should work fine. There are some nuances to be aware of, but so far nobody had negative experience with it.

Anime Game got into my head

Another game would be Sonic Robo Blast 2. I am very into Sonic Games, including fan games and mods, so naturally a lot of my “tinkering” on Deck involved Sonic in some way.

With SRB2 it was relatively simple though. You just install a Flatpak version of it and then go to /home/deck/.var/app/org.srb2.SRB2/.srb2/ to place your mods and models, and here you go.

That’s… a game library for sure

But it’s all other Sonic games that make it all so interesting. Well, most of it won’t be interesting to non-Sonic people, so I will start with two of the least complicated cases, then the most interesting for non-sonic players and then everything else.

I had a lot of Sonic fan games installed, but more importantly — a lot of mods for Unreal and Sonic games. Both of the series accumulated a huge variety of custom game mods and improvements from the communities, so naturally the modded versions of the games offer much more stuff and even turn the game into a definitive edition.

In case of Unreal games there were no complications. I just installed the games and then installed the mods. And, well, Luxtorpeda to use native Linux binaries and updated engine. The most interesting part to me being Unreal Tournament ’99 with OldSchool’d mod, which is adding support for single player campaigns, including the original Unreal and Return to Na Pali expansion. UT with this mod pretty much eliminates any need to play Unreal Gold, especially considering that it also supports cooperative multiplayer.

Unreal Tournament ’99 OldSchool’d single player campaign select

Sonic games are a bit more tricky. There were five games I really wanted to mod: Sonic Adventure DX (to test the recreated version of a certain level from an early beta), Sonic Adventure 2 with a “Modern SA2” expansion (with various graphics, sound effects and gameplay improvements), Sonic Heroes (with a mod similar to Modern SA2), Sonic Forces (with Sonic Forces reimagined mod, which turns it into a proper game) and Sonic Origins (some small adjustments to S3K).

The easiest part was getting Sonic Adventure Mod Managers to work. For these two it came down to replacing the original launcher executable with the mod loader (or use SteamTinkerLaunch to replace one executable with the other on launch) and add some additional components (I don’t remember which and nobody mentions them anywhere, so maybe they are not as needed — but it’s probably something like .NET framework kind of stuff).


The most challenging part was getting Sonic Heroes mods to work. The best way to add mods to Heroes is to use an app called Reloaded-II, which acts as a mod manager to many different games, including Persona 4 Golden, No Man’s Sky or any game really.

The loader doesn’t work out of the box, so first of all you’ll have to add Reloaded-II as a non-steam game and try to run it with a compatibility tool, so it will have its environment created. Then through Protontricks you’ll have to install .NET desktop 7.0.0 x86 and x64, then VC2019 x86 and x64. Then you need to disable a prompt from the loader so it won’t warn you about unsupported system every time — for that head to ~/.steam/steam/steamapps/compatdata/... (the game’s prefix), find config file for Reloaded and set the parameter to false (though I think this step should not be needed with the latest versions of the app, I think).

Another thing to keep in mind is the problems with ESYNC and FSYNC, so additionally you’ll need PROTON_NO_ESYNC=1 PROTON_NO_FSYNC=1 parameters in the command line to get rid of the lag. My full launch options looked like this:
PROTON_NO_ESYNC=1 PROTON_NO_FSYNC=1 WINEDLLOVERRIDES="dinput8=n,b" %command% --launch "Z:\home\deck\Games\Sonic Heroes"

For Reloaded-II there is also an official setup guide, aimed at Deck users:

Reloaded-II window

For Sonic Forces and Generations the process is much easier: there is a HedgeModManager application, which handles everything. It can be installed and launched through SteamTinkerLaunch, or you can do it manually (I did it manually because STL didn’t have HMM support yet).

I did it manually by creating a separate bottle (using, well, Bottles) with Proton 5.0 and setting everything up. First you’ll need to install dotnet48, vcrun2019, d3dx9, d3dcompiler_47, then run wine reg add "HKCU\\SOFTWARE\\Microsoft\\Avalon.Graphics" /v DisableHWAcceleration /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f command to make the HMM window actually visible. And that’s pretty much it.

Well, not entirely. I think you’ll also need to install vcrun2019 and dotnet48 to the game’s prefix, and in case of Forces you should also set PROTON_NO_ESYNC=1 PROTON_NO_FSYNC=1 %command% as launch options. And in case of Sonic Origins I wasn’t able to make it run with mods, sadly, and wasn’t able to track down the problem (though it might not be there at this point).

Sonic Generations on the other hand works great. Well, kind of. You need to install HedgeModManager and then install Direct3D 11 mod in order for it to have decent performance. Other than that — it’s great.

Oh, and League of Legends, how could I forget. Out of curiosity, after hearing Connor (from Trash Taste) saying “I wanted to get Deck, but it can’t run League”, I wanted to see, how long it would take to get the game fully working.

It wasn’t as straight forward, and it basically involves creating a separate Bottle for the game and using a specific version of Wine with fixes made specifically for League of Legends.

This specific version of Wine is made for Lutris, so you can just install League in one click through it (and it should be pretty easy now). But if you are willing to do it manually…

  1. Install Bottles and ProtonUp-Qt, install GE-Proton-7–29 and download LoL’s launcher
  2. Create a new Bottle with “Gaming” environment and name it “LoL” (specifically this name for the future steps)
  3. Click on the LoL bottle, click “Run Executable” and select the league installer
  4. Wait for League to download, then exit the game while not signing in
  5. Get Lutris-GE-LoL here:
  6. Unpack this wine version somewhere (for example folder “wine” in your Home folder)
  7. Create a launcher script with the following contents:

WINEPREFIX=/home/deck/.var/app/com.usebottles.bottles/data/bottles/bottles/LoL /home/deck/wine/lutris-ge-lol-7.14-1-x86_64/bin/wine /home/deck/.var/app/com.usebottles.bottles/data/bottles/bottles/LoL/drive_c/Riot\ Games/Riot\ Client/RiotClientServices.exe –launch-product=league_of_legends –launch-patchline=live

And that should be it. Make this launcher script executable (thorugh the file settings) and add it to Steam. After that you should be able to play the game.

While all this might seem complicated, I think installing it through Lutris should be the way to go now. And even without it the process comes down to downloading a bunch of files and that’s about it.

The Real Man’s gaming setup
LoL in-game screenshot from Steam Deck

Closing words

And that should be it.

Deck is an insanely good device, especially for its price. Linux gaming experience combined with Valve’s control and “geekiness” made it so this device offers the best PC gaming experience out there.

Is it the most powerful? No. Is it great in every aspect? Not really.

But it’s just so nice. And it offers the level of flexibility you can’t get from any other console or portable PC on the market, which makes it a great success in my eyes.

And I didn’t even start talking about the productivity-work experience on the Deck! Not sure when I’ll be done with the second part yet though.