This Week’s PC News, New Steam Deck Verified Games, and Reviews of TopSpin 2K25, Foundry, Footgun, and More – TouchArcade

By admin May10,2024

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Steam Deck Weekly. I’m surprised at how many great games have been released lately, with more to come this month that I’m excited to cover. This week already saw four anticipated indies released and most have delivered. I’ll be covering a game I was waiting to see patched and more that I’ve been playing today across reviews and impressions with a bonus from Shaun. In addition to that, there’s been a lot of interesting games news and Steam Deck Playable & Verified titles from Valve in addition to an update for Steam Deck that I’d been waiting for. Let’s get into the reviews and impressions first.

Steam Deck Game Reviews & Impressions

TopSpin 2K25 Steam Deck Review

TopSpin 2K25, the first game in the series in over a decade, launched about two weeks ago on PC and console platforms. I was excited to play it and see how 2K and Hangar 13’s modern take on the series would feel. At launch, there was good and bad news for the game, but as of today’s update, one of the major issues I ran into on Steam Deck has been addressed. I also was playing TopSpin 2K25 on PS5 to compare with the Steam Deck experience.

TopSpin 2K25’s gameplay is excellent, but the visuals are a bit inconsistent. I didn’t expect TopSpin 2K25 to look as good as the NBA games, but this feels a bit lacking on some fronts visually. Aside from that, the presentation of the UI and modes is very good. The modes themselves like career or the online modes in addition to the tutorial are well done. Expect a push for microtransactions though. Whenever I play a sports game that has that in a certain mode, I just avoid that mode. I wanted to get TopSpin 2K25 for its core gameplay and to play against friends online, and it delivers on that front. It even supports cross platform play which is good to see since it includes PC in that pool unlike most sports games.

On Steam Deck, TopSpin 2K25 right now runs online and offline. I waited for the crashing issue to be resolved, and was sticking to it on PS5 more or less since launch because of that. It now plays fine even against others with the internet connectivity indicator during the match telling you whether you or the opponent has connection issues. When it comes to the Steam graphics options, TopSpin 2K25 lets you adjust quality preset, or change shadow quality, geometry detail, reflections quality, indirect lighting quality, and volumetric effects quality. There is no other option.

As I said above, I had to wait a bit to review TopSpin 2K25 because it had an issue relating to AMD GPUs that caused it to regularly crash on Steam Deck. This has been fixed, but the issue relating to player bodies vanishing while only retaining clothes is still present. I tested this across three different Proton versions (make sure to not keep swapping as you might get locked out by the DRM), with no luck. Aside from that, TopSpin 2K25 can do 60fps on Steam Deck during gameplay at the low preset with resolution scaling at around 80. I managed to get it to 60fps at 100% scaling, but still saw some drops in gameplay. To be safe, I set it to 80% and had zero issues during gameplay aside from the opponent body only displaying clothes. I recommend setting your screen to 60hz if you play on a Steam Deck OLED like I did. The game currently has no rating from Valve for Steam Deck.

TopSpin 2K25 on PS5 feels very polished, and it has great DualSense functionality included. Given the option between playing TopSpin 2K25 on Steam Deck or PS5, once the transparency issue is fixed on the former, I will be playing it more there, but the PS5 version is just a lot better right now, and I always enjoy good DualSense features in games.

One thing I want to make clear is that a lot of modes are online even if singleplayer, and you need a 2K account to play TopSpin 2K25. This is important to note since you’re playing on a portable with the Steam Deck version, and I don’t think many people have a 2K account unless you play NBA games yearly like I do.

In its current state with the visual issue caveat, I recommend TopSpin 2K25 if you really like tennis. It could’ve been better, but I’ve enjoyed the time I’ve put into it. I’m not sure if this will become a yearly series for 2K, but I’m glad to see TopSpin return. I look forward to seeing what future updates bring for the game.

TopSpin 2K25 Steam Deck Review Score: 3.5/5

Footgun: Underground Steam Deck Review

It’s always fun when a genre gets so thoroughly saturated that people start trying out some really wild ideas, and I believe we might be there with roguelite action games. Or at least, we’re there with this game. Footgun: Underground is a roguelite action game built around soccer mechanics. And I don’t mean it’s soccer with roguelite elements. No, you’ve got a cybernetic leg and you’re traveling from station to station using soccer balls to kill mutant creatures for fun and profit. Good ball control is essential, and so is understanding angles. It’s weird, and I kind of dig it.

I think the key to the enjoyment here comes from the unusual mechanic and how much practice it takes to master it. You can just kick the ball around like a mad lad if you want, and that will get you places at times. But eventually you’re going to have to learn how to juggle it to aim your shots better, take advantage of the walls for rebound attacks, and figure out when it’s best to build up power and when it’s better to just hoof it. As you play through and earn more moves, balls, and modifiers, things get more chaotic. You’ll have multiple balls in play, each often with its own effects, and they can bounce off pretty much everything including each other. Visually it can get a bit hard to read, but such is the price for seeing all heck break loose.

Despite the abnormal combat mechanics, the rest of Footgun: Underground follows a very familiar structure. You’re choosing your route on a big map with multiple branches, with various points of interest sprinkled in amongst the arena battles. Each map culminates in a big boss battle, of course. If you run out of hit points, that’s a full-stop game over. You will earn gold coins during each run that you can then put into a gatchapon machine to unlock new abilities, balls, and so on that will appear in subsequent runs. You can also unlock new characters. The drip-feed of these new things is a little slower than I’d ideally prefer, as the game starts out a little too basic and some of those unlockable abilities really bring it to life.

With all that said, Footgun: Underground is a clever spin on a formula that is getting to be very well-worn indeed. Even setting the sheer novelty of blending soccer moves with the roguelite action genre aside, the actual mechanics are fun to learn and take some technique to apply well. It’s not as immediately enjoyable as some games in the genre, but take some time to learn the nuances and unlock some of the more interesting abilities and you’ll be well rewarded. -Shaun Musgrave

Footgun: Underground Steam Deck Review Score: 4/5

Foundry Steam Deck Early Access Review

An old friend of mine texted me asking why I wasn’t playing Foundry from Paradox Interactive and Channel 3 Entertainment a few days before I got access to the Steam release, and at the time I was wondering why he specifically wanted me to play it. You see, I didn’t know much about it then, but slowly discovering that Foundry is a mix of Minecraft and some Satisfactory was enough to get me excited to check it out. It also helps that he told me “it feels built for Steam Deck”. That’s the key here, and having now spent a few days with the early access release exclusively on Steam Deck, I think Foundry has the potential to be incredible.

Foundry right now feels like a game that’s in between the complexities of something like Factorio and a simple automation experience. If you’re new to the genre, it has an excellent tutorial that goes over the absolute basics, and you can expect to spend at least a few dozen hours here before reaching the ends of the early access content in a save file. Usually, games like this struggle on Steam Deck for controls, but this one ships with a lovely default controller configuration that actually reminds me of my recent article about how community config layouts make Paradox Interactive’s more complex games playable on Valve’s handheld. It lets you use the left touchpad to access various keyboard buttons with glyphs from the get go.

Foundry lets you adjust resolution with 16:10 support, window mode, v-sync, frame rate target (30fps to 240fps and unlimited), and more for display settings. For graphics, you can adjust the quality of terrain, models, clouds, shadows, shadow resolution (and distance), textures, vegetation shadows, render distance for a few notable items, FOV, and enable soft particles. On Steam Deck OLED, I turned the shadow-related settings to low as I usually do, and could play Foundry’s early hours at between 30 and 40hz (I capped the screen to 40). I was happy with this after turning the FOV up a bit.

Right now, Foundry only has keyboard and mouse button prompts. While you can play it comfortably on Steam Deck, expect to use both trackpads and the paddles often. This shows the strength of the hardware and Steam Input, but Foundry isn’t much fun to play with a DualSense or Xbox controller right now. I’m curious to see if it does get controller support for PS5 and Xbox controllers in the future.

Before concluding this early access review of Foundry, I want to highlight the soundtrack. I’ve left the game running while I write this because of how much I like it. I can’t wait to see if more is added to the score through the early access period.

Right now, I can see myself playing Foundry daily for a session or two solo or with others as a nice way to chill. It has a solid base already, and I hope to see it improve even on Steam Deck support with the many patches and content updates planned to arrive in the future. If you’ve wanted a solid base building and automation experience that is a lot of fun even early on, Foundry is worth checking out.

Foundry Steam Deck Review Score: TBA/Early Access

Tales of Kenzera: ZAU Steam Deck Impressions

Since I will be doing a full review of Tales of Kenzera: ZAU on Switch next week, I wanted to briefly cover how it feels on Steam Deck in this week’s Steam Deck Weekly. If you’ve not followed Tales of Kenzera: ZAU at all, it is a stunning and heartfelt metroidvania adventure game with one of the best stories of 2024 so far. I absolutely love most things Surgent Studios pulled off here in the newest EA Originals title, but I feel like certain things could’ve been better.

I’ll save those details for the full review, but if you’re wondering whether Tales of Kenzera: ZAU is good on Steam Deck, I can safely say yes. Out of the box, the only setting I recommend changing is the letterbox artwork to fill up the black bars on the Deck’s screen. I found them quite distracting and think a pattern based on the game’s interface would’ve been a better fit.

Playing Tales of Kenzera: ZAU at 60fps is easy with no tweaking required (it defaults to the LOW preset) on my Steam Deck OLED. Trying to get it above 60 to 90 will require visual cutbacks and using AMD FSR. You can get it to 90fps during a lot of early gameplay portions including combat, but the game doesn’t hold that well. If you use XeSS performance, it can run at around 70fps during combat. I ended up sticking to 60fps with minor changes to the settings.

While I’ll save my full thoughts on Tales of Kenzera: ZAU for my Switch review next week, it is one of the nicest and most heartfelt surprises of 2024 so far, and one I think we will be talking about for a long time when it comes to its narrative.

PuzzMix Steam Deck Impressions

Shaun already reviewed PuzzMix on Nintendo Switch, so I’m covering how it plays on Steam Deck. Inti Creates has been one of the best developers for the platform since every game works and feels great, but I want to take this chance to say I’m still annoyed that Dragon Marked for Death does not have Steam Cloud support. Back to PuzzMix, it is still a solid albeit safe take on Suika Game.

On Steam Deck, PuzzMix defaulted to a lower resolution than 720p for me. I forced 1080p and it looked great. It seems capped to 60fps, but otherwise runs fine out of the box despite no Steam Deck rating from Valve. It has touch support and full controller support with Steam Cloud support (Inti Creates I need you to fix this in Dragon Marked for Death). It defaults to Steam Deck / Xbox button prompts, but will display PlayStation symbols if you use a DualSense controller like I did to test.

While it costs just a few dollars and has great music, I was hoping to see more from Inti Creates in its take on this style of games. I’m curious to see if we get any DLC or free updates for it in the future. Right now, it is easy to recommend at that price if you enjoy Inti Creates game music and Lola, The Muse.

News and Trailers

Let’s start the news with Shin Megami Tensei V: Vengeance’s newest reveal during its Complete Guide stream. This stream, which you can watch below, showcased the return of the Demi-Fiend, tons of quality of life improvements, enhancements, new content, new dungeon, music, and more for the upcoming RPG ahead of its worldwide multi-platform launch next month for Steam and all consoles. I’m looking forward to playing it on Steam Deck and PS5. Watch the full video below:

Spike Chunsoft is bringing the Switch exclusive Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE to Steam, Xbox Series X, and PS5 this October following its debut last year. Read Shaun’s review of it here. The new platform launch will be called Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE Plus when it arrives on October 1st for Steam and both current consoles. It will feature 4K visuals, faster loading, all DLC included, and a new gallery mode. I found Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE pretty rough on Switch so I’m looking forward to playing it on better hardware this year. I hope the digital novel is brought over to Steam in some form since the announcement mentions it being for PS5 only. Watch the Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE Plus trailer below:

NIS America announced that magical RPG Reynatis from FURYU will be seeing its international release on September 27th for Steam, PS5, PS4, and Switch. This one features a special crossover from Square Enix’s NEO: The World Ends With You as well bringing in characters, locations, and enemies from there. Watch the Reynatis English trailer below:

Bandai Namco Entertainment finally announced the release date for Gundam Breaker 4 globally. There will be three different editions with pre-orders now live on Steam here. I played and enjoyed Gundam Breaker 1,2, and 3 (on both PS4 and Vita) so I hope this one delivers. Gundam Breaker 4 launches for $59.99 for the standard edition on August 29th. Check out the contents of the ultimate edition on the Steam page and the release date trailer below:

EA Sports revealed the final gameplay deep dive video for F1 24 ahead of its launch on May 31st worldwide, and also revealed new features coming. Check out the official website post for the new features including track updates, career updates, MyTeam icon, and more here. Watch the final gameplay deep dive for F1 24 below:

Atlus revealed new details for Metaphor: ReFantazio’s combat system with some gameplay screenshots this week. The combat system is a hybrid “Fast & Squad” battle system that lets you use either “Fast” or “Squad” turn-based combat during the game. This feels inspired by Falcom’s 2021-released (in Japan) The Legend of Heroes: Trails Through Daybreak (releasing this July in the West). Check out a new gameplay screenshot from Metaphor: ReFantazio below:

The Rogue Prince of Persia from Evil Empire and Ubisoft has been delayed to sometime later this month from May 14th because everyone is playing Hades II. This also lets the team polish the game more for its launch. I’m still very excited to play the early access release whenever it arrives on Steam later this month.

This week, Humble Games and Summerfall Studios revealed Stray Gods: Orpheus DLC coming to the game on Steam next month on June 27th and to consoles soon after. Stray Gods: Orpheus is a brand-new story for Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical letting you play as Orpheus. I liked the game quite a bit on Steam Deck and will definitely be playing this DLC. Watch the Stray Gods: Orpheus DLC teaser trailer below:

Bulwark: Falconeer Chronicles has gotten its first free update on Steam since launching about a month ago. This update, dubbed the “Tribute, Trade, and Splinters” update, brings in three new captains, three new diplomacy events, spoils from combat and world events. Watch the trailer for the game below:

Nightdive Studio just announced that PO’ed: Definitive Edition will launch next week on May 16th bringing its DOOM and QUAKE-inspired chef boomer shooter to Steam and consoles. Check out the trailer for the game below and wishlist it on Steam here:

Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Cut has been delisted (via TouchArcade reader Mor and SteamDB) in many countries across the world ahead of its launch next week. This is likely because a PSN account is required for the Legends multiplayer mode. I’ve played Ghost of Tsushima more than twice, and have not spent more than 10 minutes with this mode. This delisting is super disappointing for those who were looking forward to the main game after a few years of rumors of it hitting PC, and the eventual announcement with pre-orders going live on Steam. I hope Sony can decouple the Legends mode in the future so everyone can at least enjoy the main part of the game.

The final bit of news is SteamOS 3.6.0 is now available in preview (not beta yet). This one features a VRR display fix for playing docked that I’ve been hoping is addressed for many months. Check out all the patch notes including new Arch, new Mesa, new kernel, CEC support, and more here.

New Steam Deck Verified & Playable games for the week

Some notable updates here with Homeworld 3 getting Playable, Animal Well getting Verified, recent releases like Snufkin and Summerhouse also seeing new ratings.

  • Akka Arrh – Playable
  • ANIMAL WELL – Verified
  • Armed and Gelatinous: Couch Edition – Verified (hours after my review last week)
  • Berserk Boy – Playable
  • Buckshot Roulette – Playable
  • Bulwark: Falconeer Chronicles – Playable
  • Capes – Verified
  • Homeworld 3 – Playable
  • NUKITASHI 2 – Playable
  • PAKO 2 – Verified
  • Populous The Beginning – Playable (via TouchArcade reader Mor)
  • Rusty’s Retirement – Playable
  • Snufkin: Melody of Moominvalley – Verified
  • SUMMERHOUSE – Playable
  • Super Animal Royale – Playable (updated)
  • The Thaumaturge – Verified
  • UFO ROBOT GRENDIZER – The Feast of the Wolves – Playable
  • Ufouria: The Saga 2 – Playable (via TouchArcade reader Mor)
  • Vigil: The Longest Night – Verified
  • Withering Rooms – Playable

Steam Deck Game Sales & Discounts

There are three notable Steam sales on right now. The first is Ludonarracon with some excellent narrative games featured from now until May 13th for many of the games included. The event also highlights some recent games like 1000xresist and Cryptmaster that I will be covering soon.

The second notable sale is the Dark Souls franchise sale. I feel like Bandai Namco rarely puts these games on discount for PC, so take advantage of this if you’ve been waiting for a deal. I might use this to get the original Dark Souls 2 to see how it feels after playing Scholar of the First Sin.

The final sale of the week is the Paradox Interactive publisher sale for 2024 with big discounts on games like Crusader Kings III (a free weekend is also on), DLC, and more. Check out all the games, DLC, and bundles included here.

That’s all for this week’s edition of the Steam Deck Weekly. As usual, you can read all our past and future 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 day, and thanks for reading.

By admin

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