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Deliver Us Mars Steam Deck Performance
Left: Deliver Us Mars on low settings. Right: Deliver Us Mars on high settings.
This is a hard one to write. Although Deliver Us Mars on Steam Deck is playable, the performance just isn’t there yet. And with internal temperatures rising to 75 degrees due to the 99 percent GPU usage, work is most definitely needed to get this game under control.
If you come into Deliver Us Mars expecting a smooth experience you’re going to be disappointed. Frames average between 29 and 60 frames per second during gameplay. Some areas handle better than others but on the whole, Deliver Us Mars can’t maintain fluidity.
In a similar vein, cutscenes can slow to an even larger crawl, with framerates as low as 15 to 19 for a handful of seconds before getting back to around 30, then 45, then back down to the 20s.
Normally this is where I’d suggest turning everything down, but all of the above is with the settings turned as low as they can go. You can gain an extra few frames by jacking up the TDP, but the trade-off then is that fan will surely constantly be singing its annoying song.
It’s a shame as well because the game – even on the lowest settings – visually stuns for the most part. Clothing and scenery are a delight, and the lighting really brings the mundane landscapes of Mars to life.
As I say, it’s playable and mostly enjoyable, but it needs more polish before it’s worth considering.
Deliver Us Mars on Steam Deck Settings
The settings below are your best bet to maximize frame efficiency. When hooked up to a TV you can turn on upscaling, but there’s not really a need for it while playing the Steam Deck in handheld mode.
I’d also consider setting a framerate limit if you so desire to 30 frames. Just keep in mind because the framerate will drop below 30 occasionally, limiting it doesn’t mean you’ll be in for a completely smooth journey. The option’s there if you want to, though.
When it comes to antialiasing, I went with high and there were still plenty of jagged edges. You could save a couple of frames by dropping it down, but it’s not worth it in my opinion.
One area I’m confident to recommend to everyone is to turn the Grooms function off straight away. Hair doesn’t look great on the Steam Deck at the best of times, and Grooms simply doesn’t render correctly on the Deck. So much so, I had a bug where my character’s hair kept launching itself vertically. Sure it was comical, but it’s a sign of the Steam Deck’s limitations.
|Deliver Us Mars (In-game Settings)|
|Anti Alisaing||TAA – High|
|Post Processing Quality||Low|
|Steam Deck Settings (Quick Access Menu)|
|TDP: 12 (19-60 frames)||Estimated Battery Life: 2 Hours|
|Docked Mode Resolution: 1280×720||FSR: On (Docked Mode)|
|GPU Usage: 99%||Temperature: 75 degrees|
|Fills the Entire Steam Deck Screen||Yes|
|Battery Discharge||21.4 Watts|
|Performance Rating: 2/5|
Bugs and Issues
Aside from the issues with Grooms, I’m yet to find any major bugs or glitches during my time with Deliver Us Mars.
The only thing I did find troublesome is an element of the climbing. By slamming both triggers down, the character can hook two picks into a wall. There’s a mechanic where you need to let go of a wall and then re-slam the triggers to pick back into the wall at a lower position.
This doesn’t always register, and it’s hard to tell if that’s an issue with the Steam Deck’s chunky triggers, the game, or some sort of rule regarding how far you can fall before you slam back in. Either way, it’s not as consistent as it needs to be.
Reviewing Deliver Us Mars has been such a weird one. On one hand, you can play the game on the Steam Deck and it works, mostly. As an alternative to playing on a TV or monitor, it’s worth your time.
But on the other hand, it’s not good enough. I understand the Steam Deck isn’t a high-end gaming PC, so of course a smooth 60 isn’t always going to be possible. But a smooth 30 for a game with Verified status is what most would have been expecting.
Deliver Us Mars was so, so close to being Recommended, and it could get there in time. But as of right now, if you care about a fluid experience, it’s still got some growing to do.