Diablo 4's leap to Steam—alongside other games like Overwatch 2—is welcome news to gamers wanting to keep their rigs launcher-slim. Adam Fletcher, the game's Global Community Development Director, has fully confirmed on Twitter that the game will be coming Steam Deck verified next Tuesday.
Regrettably, it looks like there won't be any sort of cross-platform ownership. "Yes," Fletcher said, answering a player wondering if they'd need to buy the game again. "[They're] two different storefronts run by two different companies."
That's disappointing news for anyone on the BattleNet client, which—just logistically speaking—is bound to host the vast majority of players. On the upside, your character's all wrapped up in your Blizzard account, so it's reasonable to assume your data will carry over.
Granted, judging by the responses to both the thread itself (and a little Google sleuthing) it's been possible to get the Battle.net launcher running on the Steam Deck for a while. However, the Steam version offers an officially supported variant with less fiddling.
Ultimately, Steam Deck Diablo feels like a no-brainer. Morgan Park had some glowing words for how the game felt on a controller back in July. In fact, his major gripe was inventory management: "I've adopted a healthy 90/10 split where I do almost everything on gamepad and periodically reach for my mouse when I have to compare lots of new gear or salvage stuff." Well, it turns out the Steam deck has a touchscreen, so all that inventory management's bound to be easier.
It's just a shame it's taken this long for Blizzard to ditch the launcher exclusivity—players who'd enjoy smashing demons from the comfort of their couch are now saddled with a soft early adopter's tax: stuck between playing an "unsupported" version and shelling out another wad of bucks for Steam's ease-of-use.
Diablo 4's Steam debut coincides with the release of the Season of Blood on October 17, which features vampiric powers and some powerful buffs to everyone's favourite class, the noble horse. Blizzard has neither confirmed nor denied whether your steed will also share in these vampiric abilities, but here's hoping.
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Harvey's history with games started when he first begged his parents for a World of Warcraft subscription aged 12, though he's since been cursed with Final Fantasy 14-brain and a huge crush on G'raha Tia. He made his start as a freelancer, writing for websites like Techradar, The Escapist, Dicebreaker, The Gamer, Into the Spine—and of course, PC Gamer. He'll sink his teeth into anything that looks interesting, though he has a soft spot for RPGs, soulslikes, roguelikes, deckbuilders, MMOs, and weird indie titles. He also plays a shelf load of TTRPGs in his offline time. Don't ask him what his favourite system is, he has too many.