Counter-Strike 2 on the Steam Deck: An Unacceptable State
Valve’s highly anticipated release, Counter-Strike 2, seems to have hit a roadblock when it comes to compatibility with the Steam Deck. While the game’s store page touts support for the handheld device, our testing indicates that this may not be the case.
From the moment we entered a game of Deathmatch on Dust 2, problems started to arise. The game froze for about three seconds when I fired my MAG-7 shotgun, as CS2 struggled to compile the necessary shaders. This issue persisted with every weapon I fired for the first time, significantly impacting the gameplay experience.
To make matters worse, the performance of CS2 on the Steam Deck was far from satisfactory. Despite having a system that meets the game’s requirements, the handheld device only managed to push out 25-35fps at its native resolution of 800p. GPU usage hovered at around 50-70%, indicating subpar optimization.
It’s surprising to see Valve’s flagship game launch in such a state on their own device. The Steam Deck has been praised for its ability to handle demanding games, making CS2’s performance issues all the more disappointing. However, there is hope that these problems will be addressed promptly, as Valve coder Pierre-Loup Griffais has already mentioned some fixes being deployed.
Once these issues are ironed out, Counter-Strike 2 has the potential to become one of the best games on the Steam Deck. Its addition would strengthen the handheld device’s catalog of first-person shooters. However, for now, it’s clear that there is work to be done before CS2 can live up to its potential on the Steam Deck.
Valve has a solid track record of supporting its library on the Steam Deck, so it’s reasonable to assume that they will address these issues promptly. With their attention to detail and commitment to improving user experience, we can expect Counter-Strike 2 to join the ranks of the best games available on the Steam Deck in the near future.
In the meantime, gamers eager to experience CS2 on the go will have to exercise patience until the necessary fixes are implemented. With Valve’s dedicated team of developers working on the issue, it won’t be long before Counter-Strike 2 is fully optimized for the Steam Deck and ready to provide an exceptional gaming experience.