I think you’re underestimating the scale of this move from Valve.
Nintendo has proven that games can be hybrids and there is a market for them. On the train, I regularly see a person swinging a key out of his bag.
However, there are many people who have spent money on Steam. If they can easily use it anywhere in the world through Steamdeck.
Now I come of course there are a lot of alternatives. But are there really any? For me, the alternative is quite expensive (+/-10%). Then you don’t have anything of Steamdeck’s caliber. During the years of Proton development, Valve (with the help of quite a few people in the community) developed a platform that currently has no competitor response.
Precisely because of SteamOS and the good integration with AMD, a lot of the overhead has been removed. Something Nintendo only has because its operating system with a good collaboration with Nvidia. The rest runs either a “standard” distro or Windows.
Steamdeck was developed as a side console on the road, to connect with friends, or just at home to quickly play a game. You have Steamdeck while you have a monster (if you can get a video card) from a PC for your AAA games. While Steamdeck can run much older AAA at slightly lower resolutions and settings, which is fine for gaming on the go. Then you just want to be entertained.
That said, it’s just the beginning. If Steamdeck holds up well (and continues to excel, I’m talking about 3 years into the future) there will definitely be good alternatives. which are in the same price range. Who can do the same or better.
I could also give this a boost for Nintendo for the Switch Pro version after all, where voice chat, for example, with Discord or just something from Nintendo itself is ingrained. I also hope that Nintendo treats the Switch as a platform every year with a new version that’s better than the previous one. As games will slowly drop the older switch. Just like you see it with phones. If I buy a Switch 2 (or Pro) tomorrow, I’ll take everything with me and not lose everything like a Wii-U to Switch.
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