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Steam Deck Performance Roundup - Bodycam, Men of War II, Ships at Sea, Sleeping Dogs & More

After performing a lot of tests, we’re ready to share our experience of six more games on the Steam Deck.

Today we are looking at:

  • Bodycam

  • Men of War II

  • Ships at Sea

  • Rack and Slay

  • Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition

  • The Rogue Prince of Persia




Bodycam: Unreal Engine 5 Challenges



Bodycam is a new FPS game which released on June 7th, 2024, and it has received mixed reviews already. The game looks fantastic, especially if you play it on GeForceNOW (GFN). However, when you play it on Steam Deck, it doesn't work that well.

Bodycam is developed using Unreal Engine 5 and this hasn't been implemented well meaning it's not compatible with the Steam Deck at the moment out of the box. At launch you are currently presented with a file explorer and run the Win64.exe file to play the game from the Binaries and game folder. After you launch into the game, you can just get around 15 frames per second with performance drops here and there. Though the Steam Deck can run it, the game performance is definitely not playable. There is no setting that can address the issue. If you turn on the frame generation setting, things will just get even worse, especially on the input latency.

Luckily, the game is on GeForceNOW, and you can play Bodycam in max graphic settings without any issue. However, since it relies heavily on an internet connection, you definitely need a good connection to get the most out of it.

 

Men of War II: Great Updates



Men of War II, like the previous game mentioned, can also be played on GeForceNOW. However, unlike Bodycam, this war game works extremely well on Steam Deck. This means you won't have to spend any money to use the GFN service if you don't want to. The game runs great with an average of 40 to 50 frames per second. During intense battles with a bunch of action on screen, the frame rate could drop to 30 fps. However, it is more than enough to enjoy the game.

Just for information, when the game was launched, it barely reached 30 fps with awful graphics however it's received several updates and now runs greaton the Steam Deck, it can now run at medium graphics with SMAA anti-aliasing and soft self-shadowing settings. You can optimize the setting for a more stable and smoother gameplay by turning off Depth of Field and SSAO.

One thing you need to know is that the game doesn't support controllers at this moment. Still, this game is fully playable with a mouse. Regardless, you also can play without any additional peripheral, but you might want to do some remapping which can be tedious for some people.

This game performs really well on Steam Deck. Despite lacking the controller support, you can still enjoy the gameplay of the game. If you want max graphic setting, you definitely can try playing it through GFN. However, it is not worth it considering it plays really well on Steam Deck.


Ships at Sea: Balancing Performance and Beauty



Ships at Sea is currently listed with unknown status for the Steam Deck, but you definitely can play it. As this game is still in early access development, you will find occasional crashes and bugs throughout the gameplay. While it is annoying, this issue is very common and usually fixed on the day of the official release.

So, how is it performing on the Steam Deck? This game works okay. It can run at 30-40 fps, but often struggles due to having rich animation, especially for the sea movement along with the boat. It is even more challenging if you move around on land. Due to its difficulty level, it is not surprising that people consider this game as a simulation more than a game.

Luckily, there is an option for upgrades. After completing the mission and getting fish, you will be able to upgrade the boat and other supporting equipment to explore the sea. With this, you can make progress with less pain.

To achieve the best overall balance, you can set almost everything to medium settings. You can also use temporal upsampling with balanced quality. Then, disable frame generation and limit the frame rate to 30 fps. Set view distance to near, reflection to low, shader to low, and you can get a balance of performance and beauty of this game.

The game doesn't include complete controller support and occasional crashes during missions. For example, your boat can sink after unlocking it the first time. To avoid frustration, make sure to save your progress frequently. Set the autosave on every 5 or 10 minutes to avoid losing your game progression.


Rack and Slay: A Flawless Experience



Rack and Slay is a fairly chill game that you can play on the Steam Deck and it has a very positive overall rating. This game is basically a combination of pool and roguelike gameplay. You have abilities that you will be able to unlock along with items and many other extras to complete the challenges each round. Make sure you avoid potting yourself and you're good to go.

The game status for the Steam Deck is still unknown. However, you can definitely play it and it runs extremely well. On the LCD you will get a perfect 60 FPS and 90FPS on the OLED. There is no setting you can tweak, and basically, you can just play without any issue. With the max performance, it draws 10 Watts of power, which translates to 5-6 hours of gameplay on OLED and 3 to 4 hours for the LCD.


Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition: A Visual Treat



Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition was originally marked as unsupported on the Steam Deck and for quite some time, however, this recently changed despite no game updates. What's surprising is that the game stays over 60 frames per second, allowing you to enjoy the game with smooth visuals all the time out of the box. On the Steam Deck's OLED screen, Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition is a visual treat that you will instantly fall in love with.

Since it offers such a good visual and performance, you definitely don't need to consider playing it through GeForceNOW unless you want to run it at the abosolute max.

The gameplay is similar to what you have seen in the GTA series. With all the different abilities you can use for fighting and how you can explore the area with various modes of transportation, it is no wonder why this game is pretty famous. The overwhelmingly positive rating is also proof that this game has been favored by many gamers out there.

The basic setting has achieved the balance of performance and beauty. However, you definitely can tweak it more by putting the graphic level to high settings, including the anti-aliasing quality. However, you should turn down the shadow resolution to normal instead of high. You also need to turn the shadow filtering and ambient occlusion to normal. Meanwhile, turning off both V-sync and motion blur doesn’t impact the performance while maintaining the visual quality. With the above settings, you can get around 50-60 fps. It can sometimes reach up to 70 fps at some scenes, which is amazing.


The Rogue Prince of Persia: Surprising Performance



For some reason, this has been marked as Unsupported on the Steam Deck, but we don't agree. One way to play this game is through GFN. Surprisingly, playing through the cloud service is not a pleasant experience. For the most part, you can get 60 fps, but there are loads of stutters, frame drops, and jitters throughout the level. A game like this should reach up to 120 or even 240 fps, but this one is like an odd case and not the usual GeForceNOW experience.

Playing directly on Steam Deck with FPS limit set to uncapped,it's surprising to find out that the game runs perfectly well. It is possible to achieve a stable frame rate of 60 to 70 frames per second with no stuttering issues out of the box. There are no graphic settings to tweak anyway though.

What's the catch? It turns out the stutters happen in a cutscene or a transition. The performance can drop as low as 5 fps during the animation while loading the level. However, once the level is loaded, you can get a solid performance with no issue.

The reason for the status of unsupported is still unclear. It could be something related to Steam saves or the loading transitions, we don’t know for sure. However, you don't have to worry too much because the game runs flawlessly on Steam Deck and gives you a smooth gameplay experience.


Conclusion

Though some games are marked unsupported or unknown, that doesn’t mean anything because Steam Deck is powerful enough to run them. If you find a game marked similarly, you should try running it on the device and see how it performs. It is also worth noting that games developed using Unreal Engine 5 may not be optimized on the handheld. This means you may deal with performance and graphics quality issues during gameplay. Even so, you'd better find the reviews before buying the games so you can enjoy playing them without having to regret the next day.


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