Switch Emulator Yuzu Gets Steam Deck Upgrade

Beloved Nintendo Switch emulator Yuzu often receives a bunch of different tweaks and optimizations on the daily, but the latest early access build has a change designed with the Steam Deck in mind.

Yuzu early access build 3604 has a selection of different boosts, but one of the key focuses, for Steam Deck users anyway, falls on this one: 

  • Prevent VRAM usage from filling up in integrated devices like Steam Deck.

By default, the Steam Deck has 1GB set aside for virtual RAM (VRAM). While this can be changed in the bootloader to 2GB, 3GB, or 4GB, most people will unknowingly stick with the default option of 1GB. 

This update to Yuzu, then, should help alleviate some of the issues that come with running Switch games on Steam Deck. In theory, anyway. 

Some other highlights in Yuzu early access version 3604 include:

  • Tweaked garbage collector to be more aggressive in favor of Steam Deck
  • Automatically detect system timezone
  • Yuzu now automatically sets the system timezone based on the desktop operating system clock

At the time of writing, version 3605 isn’t up for download yet, but Yuzu dev Gidoly did reveal what’s coming on the Yuzu Discord. 

  • Add a 5ms timeout to the DPS processing wait
  • Fix audio slowdown in games. For example, audio slowdown that would occur while capturing an electric wire in Super Mario Odyssey

In other related Yuzu news, Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom is inching ever closer to being playable from start to finish on Steam Deck, and for those of us who don’t want to shell out for a new console with a slightly different dock, Dbrand has revealed a set of vinyl stickers to transform your Switch (or Steam Deck!) into a Tears of the Kingdom-ready device. 

Alternatively, if you’ve yet to decide between owning a Switch or a Steam Deck, I’ve got just the guide for you.

Wesley Copeland
Wesley Copeland

Wesley Copeland is a gaming, tech, and toys journalist with over 10 years of experience writing online. Originally starting in video games before specializing in tech and toys, you can find his bylines at IGN, VG24/7, Kotaku, Tech Radar, Games Radar, PC Gamer, Heavy, and many more. He's also highly passionate about how tech can be used to better our day-to-day lives.