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Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection on Steam Deck gives me deep PS Vita nostalgia

PS Vita, you deserved a lot better my friend.

2012’s Uncharted: Golden Abyss wasn’t the best Uncharted game. It wasn’t even the best game on Vita at the time, but that didn’t really matter. It was an Uncharted game that looked great, running on a handheld. Those of you who can’t really remember handhelds before the Switch might not understand, but there was something properly magical about seeing games that looked like this on a portable device. The future for the Vita looked exciting... until it wasn’t. RIP, PS Vita – you deserved a lot better.

This is actually Uncharted running on the Steam Deck.

Anyway, cut to now, and we have another Uncharted game – two in fact – running on a handheld, and once again I’ve got that magical feeling. A sense that I’m living the future right now. The Steam Deck, Valve’s superb handheld Linux PC, packs quite the punch (especially when you look at how it’s priced not far from a Switch OLED – a machine way, way less powerful). The Legacy of Thieves Collection combines PS4 hits, Uncharted 4 and The Lost Legacy, and while I’m sure it runs great on a proper desktop PC, I have played it exclusively “on deck” so to speak. I love it.

I’m no longer a tech wizard, mainly because I just don’t have the time to keep up on all the latest happenings in the GPU space, but I can tell you this. Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves looks absolutely smashing on the Steam Deck. I messed around a little with the graphical settings, and by using AMD’s Fidelity FX Super Resolution 2 on “Balanced” I was able to run on the “high” graphical pre-set at a frame rate that mostly hit 35-40 FPS.

I can hear PC fanatics clutching their chests as pain strikes. A locked 40 FPS to go with setting the Deck’s refresh set to 40 would have been better, but I chose more graphical loveliness. Old me hates me, too, but new me just enjoys a perfectly playable game that dazzles on the Deck’s screen. If you’ve got the hardware you can play in 4K, Ultra-wide, but would that have impressed me more? I don’t think so.

Uncharted legacy of thieves on PC screenshot
This, shrunk down to the Deck's screen, looks smashing.

Handhelds always tend to be a step or two behind what home consoles can do, and although the Steam Deck isn’t as powerful as PS5 or Xbox Series X, the gap feels closer than ever before. This is a “proper” console game, one I played on PS5 not that long ago, and shrunk down it looks and feels just as good. Pick it apart and the FSR2 might make it look a bit rougher than ideal, the frame rate isn’t a smooth 60, and the install size will make your built-in storage wince, but my word, child me is in awe.

For a long time, I wanted Sony and Microsoft to launch new handhelds. I like the Switch for its library of Nintendo titles, but outside of those it feels somewhat lacking to my tastes. With the Deck there’s no need for either company to enter the handheld market. Load it up with Uncharted, Spider-Man, God of War, Days Gone, and Horizon, and you might as well have Vita 2 – albeit a rather chunky one.

In short, if you want Uncharted on a handheld, this is it. It’s not a cutdown version, made to fit – it’s the console version, and it’s brilliant.

A Steam code of Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection was provided by Sony.

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