Best Steam Deck Games You Can’t Play on Console – PC Exclusives and More

For a lot of people, the Steam Deck lets you carry your Steam library with you everywhere thanks to native releases, Proton letting you play Windows games on it, and also emulation. There’s a big group of people who only play on console, so the Steam Deck is the most convenient way to access games that aren’t on console with some that likely will not ever come to console. I try and own every gaming platform (with the Playdate being what I want to get next), and having played many ports and PC-only games on Steam Deck over the last few weeks, it has been great to see how many games adapt or how the Steam Deck allows me to play games I would’ve skipped before.

I just did a guide on the best fighting games to play on Steam Deck and one for JRPGs, and those two showed me how some older games are plain inaccessible on modern consoles, and how some might not ever come to console or even mobile. That gave me an idea for a new feature. I’ve been playing and picking up some PC-only games on Steam to see how robust Valve’s Steam Input and community controller layouts are for making games designed for mouse and keyboard work on Steam Deck with as few issues as possible. I’ve also been trying out some of the indie games that don’t have console ports yet. Some will likely come in the future, but right now, the games below are not available on consoles. It was difficult narrowing this selection to just 10, but here we are. Hopefully this helps you find some great PC-only gmaes to play on your Steam Deck.

Vampire Survivors ($2.99)

vampire survivors

I wasn’t initially sold on Vampire Survivors when a lot of my friends were obsessed with it a few months ago. I recently got it to try on Steam Deck, and have been hooked ever since. The pickup and play nature of the gothic horror casual roguelite experience and the Steam Deck are a perfect match. It plays great on Deck, and I make sure to get a few runs into the game daily as a break from work. Vampire Survivors at $2.99 even in early access is the best 3 bucks you can spend if you have a Steam Deck. I’m baffled it isn’t on more platforms yet, and can see it doing amazing on mobile at least whenever it does show up.

Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters I – VI Bundle ($11.99 to $75)

I already featured the Pixel Remasters in the best games you can play on Steam Deck and the best JRPGs for Steam Deck, and they are still not on any console. The Steam versions let you fix the font through mods and even go beyond that to mod in different portraits. There’s a lot you can do with them including fixing any performance issues, but the real draw for me with the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters on Steam Deck is being able to fix the font, fix the judder, and have controller support natively. If you’ve not paid attention to how these games improve on the originals or prior releases, read Shaun’s reviews of Final Fantasy here, Final Fantasy II here, Final Fantasy III here, Final Fantasy IV here, Final Fantasy V here, and Final Fantasy VI here.

ff6 pixel remaster gameplay opera

The first four games are verified on Steam Deck by Valve, but Final Fantasy V and VI run fine with a few quirks and nothing game-breaking. The Steam versions are even available as a discounted bundle with some extras included making it an even better package than mobile. Check the bundle out here on Steam.

RimWorld ($34.99)


RimWorld is a game I was constantly recommended over the years, but one I never really bothered checking out until I got the Steam Deck. I almost regret that because RimWorld is a fantastic colony simulation strategy experience that plays surprisingly well on Steam Deck with its new control options thanks to a recent update from the developer. I can definitely see why people spend hundreds of hours in RimWorld, and I look forward to hopefully hitting that through the rest of the year. I don’t even plan to venture into the mods or expansions available until I’ve had my fill of the base game which more than justifies its asking price. RimWorld looks unlikely to hit console anytime soon as well despite the rating issue, but I think an iPad version would be fun to experience eventually.

Stephen’s Sausage Roll ($29.99)

stephens sausage roll steam deck

The Witness, Baba is You, and A Monster’s Expedition were the best puzzle games ever, and Stephen’s Sausage Roll joins them. It is brilliantly designed with intuitive controls and mechanics introduced slowly making you feel smart at a regular pace. It isn’t easy, but the payoff is great as you make your way through the various levels on islands with multiple sausages getting burned or lost in the process. Stephen’s Sausage Roll is another game I’m surprised hasn’t come to mobile or console yet, but until then, it is an essential on Steam Deck and PC in general if you like puzzle games.

Opus Magnum ($19.99)

opus magnum

Just like with RimWorld, this is a little hard to control initially on Steam Deck if you haven’t played it before. With a lot of games designed for keyboard and mouse controls, it takes a bit of getting used to for finding your own intuitive controls on Steam Deck through community layouts or your own customizations. Zachtronics’ games are excellent, and Opus Magnum is another must-play puzzle game from the developer. It will also help teach you programming logic across its many open-ended puzzles and story. Given the controls, it feels unlikely to get a console port, but an iPad version might be possible. Until then, Opus Magnum is another amazing game to play on Steam Deck if you enjoy puzzle games, programming, and are willing to play around with the controls to tweak them to your liking.

Euro Truck Simulator 2 ($19.99)

euro truck simulator 2 ets2

Chances are, you own Euro Truck Simulator 2 already if you’ve had a Steam account for more than a few years. It is nearly 10 years old, and I’ve owned it for almost that long. You travel across Europe delivering cargo and run your business. This simulator is one of the best PC-only games out there, and I’m shocked it hasn’t come to consoles yet. Either way, if you have a Steam Deck, this one is officially verified on Steam Deck by Valve. It is a relaxing experience that will likely consume you for over a 100 hours, and it even has a demo you can check out if you don’t want to risk a purchase.

Inscryption ($19.99)

inscryption steam deck

Inscryption is a game I keep thinking will show up in a Nintendo Indie presentation, but it hasn’t yet which is why it is on this list. The deck builder with gorgeous visuals, great sound design, and an interesting story is worth playing if you’re a fan of the genre. As of now it isn’t verified, but officially playable on Steam Deck. This one has a demo as well, and you owe it to yourself to try it if you enjoy deck builders and want to try something new with an adventure game like style. What makes it stand out from the other card games, is how it brings in other mechanics to make things fresh.

Helltaker (Free)


Vanripper’s Helltaker is a free puzzle game involving demon girls with an excellent aesthetic and great music. Your aim is to not get murdered as you solve puzzles and interact with unique demon girls and have them join you. I’m surprised this game is still fully free, but it is another lovely game to check out on Steam Deck. It works near perfectly out of the box, and I only adjusted one minor control issue I had to play it how I want on Steam Deck. If you enjoy the game, it is worth getting the artbook DLC as well to support the release. I hope Helltaker makes its way to mobile and consoles eventually, but for now, it is definitely worth playing on Steam Deck.

Drainus ($14.99)

The developers of Record of Lodoss War: Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth surprise announced and released a side-scrolling shoot ’em up last month in the form of Drainus. Drainus is currently only available on PC, but it likely will come to consoles eventually. Until then, it is a super-polished shoot ’em up with great visuals and one that pays tribute to greats in the genre in addition to adding its own unique mechanics with tons of replay value through customization. This is already one of the best shoot ’em ups released in years, and one that is accessible enough to be the best entry point for newcomers. It isn’t officially verified on Steam Deck, but I’ve played the entire game on Steam Deck with no issues both using an external display and on the Steam Deck itself.

Black Mesa ($19.99)

black mesa

Black Mesa is a reimagining of Valve’s original Half-Life with graphical improvements, gameplay improvements, and a lot more. It looks excellent and plays brilliantly on Steam Deck and is the best way to experience the original Half-Life. This one doesn’t have a demo, but if you’ve ever been interested in checking out Half-Life this is worth your time. It is not on console, and I don’t expect it to hit consoles anytime soon either. I hope the team works on reimagining more classics following Black Mesa. This one takes a bit of getting used to with the controls as well because the default setup didn’t work perfectly for me, but it isn’t too much trouble to fix. It is officially playable, but not verified on Steam Deck because it sometimes shows mouse prompts and might require manually invoking the keyboard.

Bonus games

Two of the picks below are available on PSP or PS Vita, but not playable on any current console which is why I didn’t feature them in the main top 10 list, but still wanted them to be included here. I love my PS Vitas (yes I own a few), but I know most didn’t own one, which makes the PC version of Persona 4 Golden or these older Falcom games the only way to experience them. The other pick is an early access game coming to consoles later, but still worth your time on Steam Deck.

Persona 4 Golden ($19.99)

Persona 4 Golden is in my top 3 games of all time, and it is only playable on PS Vita and Steam now. It was the first Atlus game I played all the way and a damn fine JRPG on its own. Blending in social interactions, dungeon crawling, charming characters, some annoying ones, and a top tier soundtrack, Persona 4 Golden went from being one of the best PS Vita games to one of the best games on Steam. It recently got verified on Steam Deck by Valve as well. It runs perfectly, and even has some nice features above the PS Vita original right from the start. There’s a reason Atlus has been releasing tons of spin-offs across games, manga, anime, and more relating to Persona 4 over the years. If you don’t own a PS Vita, this is a must-play game on Steam Deck.

The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky and Ys: The Oath in Felghana ($19.99)

trails in the sky steam deck

Both of these classic Falcom games are only available on PSP (and PS Vita digitally through backward compatibility) and PC platforms. If you don’t own a PSP or PS Vita, your only way to experience these masterpieces is through the PC versions that are both very good on Steam Deck. Trails in the Sky will change how you view JRPGs, and Ys: The Oath in Felghana is a robust action RPG with one of my favorite soundtracks of all time. Both games are regularly discounted, and I absolutely recommend them to everyone.

My Time at Sandrock ($24.99)

my time at sandrock

My Time at Sandrock is the followup to My Time at Portia and was a Kickstarter project that is coming to consoles eventually. The reason I’m featuring it here, is that it is only on PC right now during early access, and because My Time at Portia was a much better experience on PC compared to consoles, which I feel will be similar here. My Time at Sandrock is a sandbox simulation RPG with tons to do already in its initial early access release. I’ve only started digging into it (no pun intended) and have been enjoying it a lot on Steam Deck. I can’t wait to see how much it evolves through early access on PC leading up into the full launch.

Hopefully you discovered something interesting thanks to my feature and will end up getting sucked into Vampire Survivors or trying out the awesomeness of Drainus which too few people are playing. Either way, thanks for reading and if you have any suggestions for games I missed, I’d love to discover more myself to try out on Steam Deck.

Interested in more lists? Check out our other Steam Deckrecommendations!

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