Steam Updated Its Big Picture Mode With the Steam Deck UI

Steam’s Big Picture mode on PC will now adopt the specially designed Steam Deck UI.

Valve has announced that its newest update to Big Picture mode will bring the Steam Deck’s UI to PC and is available now for testing.

“We are preparing to update Big Picture mode with the new interface we designed for Steam Deck, and today we’re making it available for testing,” they revealed. “This update has been a long time coming, and we’re very excited to start gathering community feedback.”

The controller-first interface was designed especially for the Steam Deck, but its integration into Steam makes sense – providing greater brand recognition between the Steam Deck and the Steam library on PC.

And it happens to be a pretty decent interface, too.

“This controller-first interface was designed for Steam Deck in handheld and docked mode, and is perfect for all the scenarios Big Picture mode currently handles,” they confirmed.

The new Big Picture mode includes:

  • New Home Screen that highlights recent games and what’s news in your library.
  • New Universal Search that lets you search through your Library, Store, and Friends list.
  • New Controller Configurator that’s designed to let you choose new configurations and layouts with ease.
  • Optimised Stead Store for controller navigation.
  • Updated in-game overlay giving access to achievements and guides.
  • New System menu for quick navigation to different parts of the new UI.
  • New Quick Access Menu that lets you access notifications. Friends list, quick settings, and more.

According to Valve, the team is “still polishing rough edges” so the new version of Big Picture is currently offered through Steam’s beta program.

Instructions for trying out the new Big Picture mode can be found here.

IGN’S Steam Deck review gave it 7/10 and said: “When the Steam Deck is living up to its promises, it’s absolutely incredible. Playing GTA 5, God of War, and other modern games on the go is an absolute joy, and the hardware and controls feel good to hold even though it’s a big chubby boy of a handheld. It seriously impressed me with how nice some demanding modern games look on its 7-inch screen. But those dizzying highs are all too often snapped away by insurmountable compatibility issues with SteamOS and installing Windows to get around those comes with its own set of problems. I’ve lost count of how often I’ve been left frustrated and annoyed to have to troubleshoot issues when trying to play a game for the first time.”

Want to read more about the Steam Deck? Check out the record-breaking number of Steam users last weekend as well as how to skip the Steam Deck’s opening movie.

Ryan Leston is an entertainment journalist and film critic for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.