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Thursday, December 7, 2023

Valve shows off the Steam Deck’s low-key packaging

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Most PC gamers who ordered a Steam Deck won’t actually be getting one until mid- or even late-2022, but Valve’s making it a bit easier to imagine cradling one in your hands. In a short post today, Valve showed off a “sneak peek of the final packaging” that will ship out with Steam Decks beginning next February.

On the outside it’s about as nondescript as cardboard packaging gets, though you can spot a Portal Companion Cube among the iconography if you zoom in. The inside packaging, meanwhile, tells you all the places you’ll be able to play games with the Steam Deck in a variety of languages. “On the toilet” is, conspicuously, one of the first options.

Underneath a setup instructions card is the Steam Deck itself nestled in a carrying case, though Valve’s caption notes that it’s the case for the 64GB and 256GB models. The most expensive 512GB Steam Deck model, which comes with an anti-glare etched glass screen, also gets a special case not pictured here.

The pictured Steam Deck looks the same as the one I used at Valve’s offices back in August, but it’s actually a newer iteration with some small tweaks. “We’ve recently completed our DV (Design Validation) manufacturing build of Steam Deck, and we’ll be using these units for additional testing and developer kits,” the post says. “DV is the final prototype build before production, and it includes improvements from the EV2 build. After this build, there will be additional minor changes in the final product.”

In an FAQ earlier this week Valve made the point that there will be no Steam Deck exclusive games, while also noting some of the improvements it’s made since those EV2 units. “Issues like the sticky B button some developers have reported have been addressed and won’t be an issue for customers,” the FAQ says.

Today’s post says that Steam Deck dev kits will begin going out to developers “very soon.”

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