How to use your Steam Deck as a PC controller

Steam Deck is also a great controller, and you can set it up as a controller on your PC. This is how it is.

Steam Deck is a great console, and part of its greatness is its amazing controller. Inspired by the original Steam Controller, it has haptic touch pads, four buttons on the back, gyro support, all in addition to the buttons you find on a controller. The quality of the Deck controls is great, and it’s a shame they’re limited to the Deck itself.

Except it isn’t. There are two good ways to get Steam Deck to work as a manager on your PC, and one of them is not difficult. Here’s how to turn Steam Deck into a regular PC controller.

Using Steam Remote Play

While Remote Play is designed to stream gameplay from one PC to another, such as from your main PC to your Steam Deck, it’s a way to use the Deck as a controller for your PC. This is the easier of the two methods and the one that will work best for most users.

  1. Make sure the game you want to play is installed on your main PC. If you’re trying to play a game that isn’t on Steam, go ahead and add your game to Steam.
  2. Connect your PC and Steam Deck to the same network. Your PC can be connected via Ethernet instead of Wi-Fi for better performance.
  3. On your PC, click the Steam icon in the upper right corner, scroll down to Settings, and the Steam window should open.
  4. Go to the Remote Play tab. Make sure Remote Play is turned on.
  5. Enable Advanced Host Options, and then enable Play music on the host.
  6. On your Station, find the game you want to download from your library, and select Scan.
  7. If Play is what you see instead of Stream, click the arrow button next to Play and choose to stream from your PC.
Also Read:  Tradeviz Review: Technical Analysis Being Superior to Fundamental Analysis

And that’s all there is to it. By using this method, you will be playing games in your Deck but instead of looking at your Deck’s screen, you will be looking at your PC screen. This method is not 100% perfect however, because you can’t drag over Steam on your PC, your images will be created on your Deck, and you don’t have much power on your PC.

In addition, this method requires a good Wi-Fi to have a good latency, and to be successful in bad connections you may need to reduce the resolution of your remote Deck game (which can be found by clicking on the Steam button, then go to Settings, and go to the Remote Play tab) .

Using VirtualHere to make your Deck a controller

Although Remote Play is simple and works almost out of the box, it is an incomplete way to use the controller and can be weak or ineffective for users. However, there is a way to make your Deck a real controller, although Valve has never designed a Steam Deck to be used that way. A very clever Reddit user figured out how to do the same in a way that’s a little tedious but overall not too difficult, and the result works well for something that even Valve probably didn’t think of.

Creating a Steam Deck

  1. Click the Steam button on the Dock.
  2. Go to Power and select Desktop Mode.
  3. First, we need to download VirtualHere Linux Server. Go to the VirtualHere website and download VirtualHere USB Server for Linux (x86_64).
  4. Open System Settings, go to the Users tab and change your password, which by default does not exist. I recommend setting it to something simple.
  5. Then open the file manager and in the Documents folder create a folder called virtualhere. Make sure all letters are lowercase.
  6. Take the VirtualHere file you downloaded and place it in a folder.
  7. Right-click the file, click Properties, and on the Permissions tab click Checkbox.
  8. Next, open Steam and click Add Games in the top left corner, then click Add Steam Games, and click Browse.
  9. Go to the folder here and change the file type to All Files, then select the VirtualHere file and click open.
  10. Click Add Selected Programs.
  11. Find the local file’s entry here in your Steam library and right-click on the background panel, then click Properties.
  12. In the Shortcut tab change the text in Target to: env
  13. Change the Start Section to: “./”
  14. In Startup Options put this: -u LD_PRELOAD konsole –fullscreen –notransparency –hold -e sudo /home/deck/Documents/virtualhere/vhusbdx86_64
  15. Name the app as Controller and maybe add an icon if you want.
Also Read:  Razer Blade 15 2018 h2 Specs, Features, Price, and Reviews 2023

And that’s all you need to do on your Deck. Now let’s move on to what you need to do on your PC.

Setting up your PC

  1. First, go to your Wi-Fi settings on your Steam Deck, press A on or touch the network you are currently connected to, and enter your Steam Deck IP address. It must start with 192.
  2. Next, open the Controller app you installed on your Deck. You need to enter your password, and you can drag the actual keyboard with the button Steam + X. Don’t worry if your password doesn’t come out of the window, which is expected.
  3. Download the VirtualHere Client on your PC’s operating system.
  4. Open the VirtualHere Client. At this point, you can see things appear under USB Hubs but you’re not done.
  5. Right-click USB Hubs and click Specify Hubs.
  6. Click Add and enter your Deck’s IP address and add :7575 to the end of it.
  7. You should now see something that says Steam Controller. Double-click it, and now your Steam Deck will act as a Steam controller.

When you want to connect your Deck to your PC, right-click on USB Hubs and click Eject. Then, on your Steam Deck, you can press the Steam button and click Exit Game. If the Station stops responding even after disconnecting, you need to restart the Station by holding down the power button and clicking Restart.

Overall, this method works well all things considered, although it’s not the best, and most of the problems come from the Deck itself. Having to enter a password every time you open the admin app is annoying, and exiting the admin app can force a restart, which is really annoying. However, it has advantages over Remote Play and is better for people who want to play games on Steam.

Also Read:  LG Gram 14 (2023) vs Lenovo Yoga 9i (2023): More ports or versatility?

Using the Steam Deck as a controller is fine, but don’t mess it up

No matter which method you choose, you will have a positive but negative experience. Remote Play is difficult to use on weak networks, and VirtualHere is just plain janky. Additionally, since using the Deck as a controller has the same problems that the Wii U GamePad had; it’s not worth using such a large device as a controller, and its high power consumption means you’ll need a good charger.

However, this information is still good either way, and if you want to use a large controller on PC, this is a good way to do it if you have a Steam Deck. If you’re planning on using your Deck as a controller, then you’ll want a good case if you’re going to leave it.

Categories: Reviews