How to Force Steam Deck Resolution

Updated on May 10, 2023
how to force steamdeck resolution

Most avid gamers will likely agree that Valve’s Steam Deck took the gaming world by storm. And while many argued back then that it was only a matter of time before Steam Deck fell behind the times, the current situation speaks volumes on how relevant Steam Deck remains as far as on-the-go gaming is concerned.

After all, who wouldn’t want to have a pocket-sized personal computer gaming console with them while they navigate their day? The simple truth of the matter remains that everything just seems to work for the Steam Deck. And, as if to top off what has been nothing short of a spectacular offering, Steam Deck now allows gamers to up the resolution and display quality of any game that they want beyond the standard 1280 x 800 resolution at 16:10!

The only catch is that you have to know just how to force Steam Deck resolution!

Like with everything else that we’ve come to expect from the staples of Steam Deck, this process is simple and direct and will take only a few moments to achieve. So, you can get this done well in time for your next gaming session!

Here’s all you need to know to get started!

How to Force Steam Deck Resolution – Getting Started

The good thing you need to know about upping the quality of your Steam Deck resolution is that you don’t have to get any special resources or pay anything extra to get this done. But having said that, it is also important to note that only devices that have been fitted with the Steam Deck June 2, 2022 update (or later) will have the privilege of accessing this feature.

The major perk of this update is that it makes it possible for gamers to tweak the graphics settings of their Steam Deck beyond what is normally allowed in a way that the resolution doesn’t revert to Desktop Mode. Anyone who has attempted to up their resolution in the past and has been slammed with the Desktop Mode view will understand just how maddening that can be when it happens.

What to Remember

Now, it’s certainly true that you’ll want to get on your way to adjusting the graphics and resolution settings of your Steam Deck right away. However, before you set about to do so, there’s one note of warning you would do well to keep in mind.

That is, by learning how to force Steam Deck resolution and implementing that knowledge, you would essentially be putting a lot of demand on the battery pack of your device. The immediate implication of this is that you can expect the battery of your Steam Deck to drain much faster than it normally would subsequently.

Due to this, anyone who intends to go ahead with maxing out the resolution of their Steam Deck has to be sure that they will either be carrying around an extra portable battery with them or be close to a power outlet wherever they might be headed.

Failure to adopt either approach will mean that you might not be getting a significant amount of game time out of your console in the future. In addition to this, you might essentially be destroying the battery of your Steam Deck as well. So, be sure to give all of this a thorough think before making a move. This will go a long way in ensuring that you properly secure your gaming experience.

Unlocking Higher Resolutions For Your Steam Deck Like a Pro

Games just seem a whole lot better when the visuals are sharper and more filling. It adds a pleasant touch to the gaming experience and offers a more comprehensive and immersive feeling on the whole. Sure, a solid argument can be made to counter this point and would be valid in its own right too. Still, it is what it is.

So, for those who are tired of the regular resolution quality of their Steam Deck and want to push the capabilities of this resource to the fullest extent, here are eight (8) simple steps you can follow to get that done with a modicum of efficiency and ease.

 Here’s everything you need to get started in a nutshell!

Step One – Make Sure You Have the Latest Steam Deck Update

As we were sure to mention earlier, making the resolution of your Steam Deck games even better than they normally are isn’t a feature that has always been around. On the contrary, it was a functionality that was only recently introduced in 2022. The implication of this is that Steam Deck operating systems that were in use prior to that time aren’t eligible to leverage this feature.

Because of this, the very first thing that you have to do is get the latest Steam Deck updates, if you haven’t already done so. This will give you the platform that you need to leverage this highly coveted capability.

Otherwise, you’ll not be able to use our guide to up the graphics resolutions of your Steam Deck (sorry!).

Step Two – Make Your Way to the Desired Game

At this point, it bears pointing out that the ability to increase the resolution of Steam Deck games is not a functionality that cuts across the board. Rather, it’s game-specific. The meaning of this is that you would have to make your way to the games that you want to get better resolutions with to implement this approach.

So, after you must’ve gotten the latest Steam Deck update, navigate to the specific game that you want to get better visuals with and implement Step Three. Again, keep in mind that you would have to do this for each game individually as the changes you make for one game will not translate to another automatically.

Step Three – Find the “Properties” Section

Once you have made your way to the game that you would like to get better-quality graphics with, the next thing that you have to do is to locate the “Properties” option for that specific game. This is a fairly simple process as all you have to do is highlight that particular game and scroll through the options that you are presented with.

Step Four – Make Your Way to the “General” Tab

After you must have accessed the advanced properties of the screen, you would be presented with another long list of options. Here, you have to find the “General” tab in your Steam Deck. This is what will give you direct access to the resolution settings of that particular game.

Step Five – Access the “Game Resolution” Settings

Following your gaining access to the “General” tab, you then need to find the “Game Resolution” option. This is where the main work is as it’s this particular setting that governs the quality and clarity of the display that your Steam Deck game offers you.

Step Six – Adjust the “Default Resolution” to Your Desired Taste

As you must be aware, every game comes with a default resolution setting. The main purpose of this is to ensure that the gamer can almost always readily access all the features of the game, no matter what.

Now that you’ve made it to the “Game Resolution” setting, you simply need to configure the “Default Resolution” that you find there to your taste. Naturally, raising the quality of the resolution is not the only option available to you here as you can drop the quality of the visuals with ease here as well.

Step Seven – Activate the “Set Resolution for Internal and External Display” Option

True, the bulk of the job gets done after you have configured the default resolution of the game to your taste. However, there’s still a little left to do afterward. Majorly, you have to ensure that you have adequately checked the “Set Resolution for Internal and External Display” box.

Making this move is essential because it is what ensures that the changes you have made are properly activated and executed across the board.

Step Eight – Enjoy Your Game

With Steps One through Seven properly carried out, you can then log out of the settings of the game and set about enjoying the most of the game with the level of graphics that you desire!

Once you follow all the above steps as recommended, you’ll immediately notice that the default resolution of 1280 x 800 will have been removed. In addition to this, you’ll also be offered an extensive range of higher-quality resolutions to choose from.

Is Increasing Your Steam Deck Resolution Safe?

Yes, for the most part, learning how to force Steam Deck resolution is a measure that is safe to employ. The one thing to note here is just the increased stress that it places on your battery. Beyond that, there really isn’t anything at all to worry about.


Learning how to force Steam Deck resolution is simple, straightforward, and safe. So, if you’re after better game quality, don’t hesitate to give this approach a shot!

See more cool things you can do to enhance your gaming experience here!

Article by:
Erwin Valles

Leave a Comment