Steam Deck Weekly: Arctic Eggs and Mullet Madjack Reviews, The Tower on the Borderland Impressions, and More

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Steam Deck Weekly. Like I said last week, there are just too many interesting games releasing these days, and I’m trying to cover as much as I can. If you missed our coverage from earlier in the week, read about how awesome Final Fantasy XIV is on Steam Deck here and my thoughts on the early hours of Monster Hunter Stories’ remaster here. In addition to the games I’ve reviewed, there’s some interesting news across fighting games, Steam sales, and more today. Let’s get into the reviews and impressions first.

Steam Deck Game Reviews & Impressions

Arctic Eggs Steam Deck Review

I love cooking and fishing mini-games. I almost always spend too much time fishing in any game or getting obsessed with whatever recipes a game includes. When it launched, my friend gifted me Arctic Eggs on Steam, and I thought it was going to be one of those joke games that people buy to stream, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. It is an incredible, short, and challenging experience that has been on my mind ever since I played the opening few minutes. Arctic Eggs has a few issues on Steam Deck, but it is equal parts thought provoking and funny, and is one of the most interesting games I’ve played in a while.

Arctic Eggs from The Water Museum hit Steam a few days ago, and it is a sci-fi cooking game about being stuck in Antarctica and trying to find a way out while cooking eggs for colorful people. The eggs you cook and the requirements are basically different types of puzzles with modifiers through over the top combinations you need to cook. After a basic tutorial to get used to the controls and fry a single egg, you start getting more varied requests involving other items and even multiple eggs. You can keep trying and failing as well, and the game lets you avoid some requests while tackling things in a different order if you’re ever stuck. There are also three difficulty options. I stuck to normal for the most part. Hard mode on the Steam Deck seems like a good challenge for me this weekend, especially for some of the later requests.

The reason I haven’t said much about the story here, is that just like Umurangi Generation, I want more people to try this without knowing much about the world. If the concept of a sci-fi cooking game about frying eggs, cigarettes, and other things together sounds good to you, just get Arctic Eggs.

I love the vibe Arctic Eggs has, but the real highlights barring the actual egg requests and NPCs, are the visuals and music. Arctic Eggs has an incredible soundtrack that I’ve been listening to for about a week now. Just like the eggs you need to fry for many people, the way the music brings together different instruments you’d not expect is commendable. I also love how the aesthetic carries into every animation, particle effect, and even the UI. Finishing the game completely also unlocks sandbox mode.

Arctic Eggs is a game clearly built for playing with a mouse, but that has never stopped me from playing something on Steam Deck. After a bit of tweaking, I found myself enjoying it quite a bit on Valve’s handheld. I then ended up using the community layout mentioned here, and it basically felt perfect with the trackpads. I haven’t run into any performance issues either. It runs perfectly on Steam Deck OLED aside from some instances of camera panning or cutting where it drops frames for a few seconds.

Arctic Eggs is currently unrated for Steam Deck by Valve, but the only thing I’d love to see fixed soon is adding Steam Cloud support. I also hope improved controller support is added at some point. The community layout basically elevated my experience quite a bit here.

Arctic Eggs. What a game. What an experience. In this super busy month of quality indie games hitting non stop, I think Arctic Eggs will stick with me for a long time. While it isn’t ideal on Steam Deck out of the box, the community control layout made it my favorite way to experience Arctic Eggs. The soundtrack, aesthetic, and vibe are superb here. It’s time to fry eggs and change lives.

Arctic Eggs Steam Deck Review Score: 4.5/5

Mullet Madjack Steam Deck Review

When I first saw the trailer for Mullet Madjack, I thought it looked brilliant, but wasn’t sure how it would feel to play. It was a different take on a boomer shooter from what I’m used to, but the 90s anime aesthetic and synthwave soundtrack were enough to get me to play it. I have bad news for everyone reading this because Mullet Madjack is another Banger Indie Release from May 2024. Hammer95 and Epopeia Games have something special here, and it is immediately in my top 10 games of 2024, and excellent on Steam Deck with one caveat.

Mullet Madjack ships with its main campaign, endless mode, leaderboards, a manual, and options. Before getting into the game, I want to highlight just how good the manual is. The developers put more effort into just the manual being interactive with its own interface than I’ve seen from almost every other game.

When I first tried Mullet Madjack, it felt like an anime roguelike take on Ghostrunner. It has a lot of weapon variety, never feels one note, and had me captivated for over a week on Steam Deck. The combat is smooth, and Mullet Madjack succeeds at making the player feel like an absolute badass nonstop. Even death is accompanied by excellent dialog and effects work. The developers nailed the VHS and retro anime aesthetic in every category. If you aren’t a fan of all the post-processing, you can disable the VHS filter, flashing, and more.

In Mullet Madjack, health is time. You get more time by killing. There’s not much of a story here, and I didn’t expect one, but it is carried by the awesome narration in between levels and when you choose upgrades, or even die. You play as a moderator, Mullet Mad Jack, and you need to keep killing to refill the 10 seconds of life you have. This 10 seconds is on the normal mode, and there are many options to tweak difficulty, including one that removes the timer letting you play as a traditional boomer shooter. It features custom stages at random across different chapters, and is one of the best arcade experiences of 2024.

Mullet Madjack is another game that is a stunner on the Steam Deck OLED screen. Every cut-scene, particle effect, and animation feel made for the display. I just wish it had HDR support. It isn’t Steam Deck Verified by Valve yet, but it may as well be with how good it plays on the handheld. I recommend disabling the screenshake and tilt if you’re sensitive to them like I am with motion sickness. Aside from that, I didn’t really bother changing anything from the default settings.

On Steam Deck, without changing any settings, Mullet Madjack targets 90fps, but it can’t really hold that frame rate with drops to the high 40s pretty often during the very visually busy sections. I recommend playing at medium settings and capping the game to 45hz from the Steam Deck’s menu for the most consistent experience. It isn’t possible to play at a locked 60fps at native resolution with it dropping below that often. If you’re ok with that, I would stick to the native resolution and play it uncapped as it doesn’t drop noticeably below 50fps for too long.

Aside from the visuals, the main thing to keep in mind is controls. Mullet Madjack is a very fast-paced game, and I recommend using gyro to help with aiming. I set it to “Gyro to Joystick Camera (beta)” and had a much better time when playing on the Steam Deck OLED itself.

Mullet Madjack is plain fantastic. It looks gorgeous, feels amazing, and is a sublime boomer shooter with an aesthetic we don’t usually see in the genre. If you have even the smallest interest in boomer shooters and like the 90s anime aesthetic, this one is worth getting. I recommend downloading the demo on Steam Deck and enabling gyro controls to see how you find the controls though as that’s the only aspect that might not work for everyone.

Steam Deck Review Score: 4.5/5

The Tower on the Borderland Steam Deck Impressions

The Tower on the Borderland is a game I had on my wishlist thanks to a friend of mine who posted about it. I decided to buy it because it looked interesting, and really like what I’ve played so far on Steam Deck. I’ve not had time to finish it yet, but wanted to write some brief impressions on the game and how it feels on Steam Deck right now in what feels like a great month for PS1-inspired horror experiences.

In The Tower on the Borderland, you play as Erin who finds herself trapped with no way out. Your aim is to escape, but it is full of various things of all sizes that want you dead. Combat is likely the area some might struggle with here, but I’ve learned that avoiding combat seems like the best solution at least early on. When you hear of PS1-inspired horror games, you probably think of Crow Country or Signalis now. While those are more traditional horror experiences, everything outside the horror elements in The Tower on the Borderland stood out to me more.

The Tower on the Borderland is set in a huge labyrinth, and I’m nowhere near the end, but the aesthetic and intrigue keep me going. I’m a sucker for this visual style as you can tell, but I am surprised at how well The Tower on the Borderland manages to bring in elements from the games it’s inspired by, well beyond what’s listed on the Steam store page. It is equal parts unsettling, mysterious, and gorgeous.

On Steam Deck, The Tower on the Borderland boots up and seems to run at about 40fps, but the actual game hits 60fps without issue in the parts I’ve played. It has full controller support as well and basically runs out of the box on Steam Deck with no tweaking required. I had one small UI issue when playing on my 1440p display, but I haven’t been able to reproduce it.

I haven’t even finished The Tower on the Borderland yet, but it has convinced me to get developer DascuMaru’s other games just because I think they all have an aesthetic that shines on the Steam Deck OLED screen. I recommend downloading the demo to try it out yourself.

News and Trailers

For some reason almost every fighting game developer decided to announce or release a lot of new stuff this week. In addition to that, some notable game releases, updates, and trailers round out this week’s news. Let’s get into it with the fighting games first.

Street Fighter 6 had a massive balance update arrive alongside the new jukebox mode and Akuma who is the final character of the Year 1 Pass. Check out the full patch notes here. The BGM feature is quite good, but I hope it can be tweaked to be as good as the feature is in Tekken 8 letting you change even the menu music. I immediately bought the Third Strike music on every platform, and see no reason to get any other DLC from the BGM sets right now. Watch the trailer for the update and Akuma DLC below:

Granblue Fantasy Versus: Rising version 1.40 launched yesterday alongside Beatrix, the newest DLC character. Beatrix is a lot of fun to play so far, as expected, but I’m hoping we see Ilsa added as DLC in the future. I’ll be playing more of the game this weekend and will likely have some detailed impressions on the current state of the game next week. Stay tuned for that. Watch the Granblue Fantasy Versus: Rising Beatrix character guide video below:

Arc System Works also released a new starter video for Slayer who arrives next week on May 30th for Season Pass 3 owners and also as a standalone DLC on PS5, PS4, Xbox, and PC platforms. Slayer is the final DLC of this pass with Season Pass 4 in development. Watch the Slayer Starter Guide video below:

Samurai Shodown’s long-awaited rollback update hit Steam last year, but it has finally gone live worldwide for the PS4, Xbox Series X (not Xbox One), and Epic Games Store versions of the game. This doesn’t directly affect the Steam release, but since EGS and Steam have crossplay, it was worth covering for the folks who got it on EGS and Steam. This makes the online mode finally playable for more than just folks who have people nearly to play with on consoles. Samurai Shodown was always an excellent game, and I’m glad the online is holding up with this update as well across all current platforms now. If you’re wondering what the best version of the game is today, it is Xbox Series X for sure with 120fps support.

Digital Eclipse released Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord, the 3D remaster/remake hybrid of the first Wizardry on Steam and all consoles this week. Read Shaun’s interview with Digital Eclipse and Wizardry co-creator Robert Woodhead here. I’ll be writing up some thoughts on the 1.0 build on Steam Deck next week. Watch the Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord launch trailer below:

Cicada Games launched Isles of Sea and Sky for Steam this week, and it is an excellent open world puzzle game. I’ll be reviewing this one, but I really like it so far, and it looks gorgeous on Steam Deck. Watch the launch trailer below:

Speaking of puzzle games, Animo Games and Astra Logical will be releasing Star Stuff, an automation puzzle game, for Steam on June 7th. It will ship with more than 150 levels featuring you as a part of the solution. Watch the trailer for it below:

The final bit of puzzle news of the week is Ouros from developer Michael Kamm. It is a zen-like puzzle game with more than 120 handcrafted puzzles included for you to solve by forming curves and avoiding obstacles. This looks like a game I’d play a lot on iPad so I do hope it comes there, but I am playing it on Steam Deck right now where it is lovely.

Cassette Beasts from Raw Fury hits mobile very soon, but the Steam and consoles versions were finally updated this week with multiplayer support and an in-game collaboration with Raw Fury’s other game, Moonstone Island. Multiplayer lets you explore with up to 8 people in total. Watch the update launch trailer below:

Raw Fury and developer OTA IMON Studios launched the story-based roguelike deckbuilder Zet Zillions for PC via Steam worldwide this week. I really like what I’ve played so far, and will be doing a full review of it in the near future. Watch the launch trailer below:

This week Spike Chunsoft released both The Quintessential Quintuplets games: Memories of a Quintessential Summer and Five Memories Spent With You alongside a bundle of both on Steam and console platforms including Switch and PS4. The games are out now on Steam here. Watch the launch trailer below:

Gearbox and Wabisabi Games launched RKGK / Rakugaki, the stylish 3D platformer, on Steam this week, and it looks gorgeous. This is definitely another game that shines on the Steam Deck OLED display. I’ll have a full review of this one in the near future as well. Watch the launch trailer for it below:

Disney Speedstorm from Gameloft brings in Kermit the Frog this week as a new mid-season racer. I’m still waiting for this one to hit iOS to start playing regularly again, but it is good to see it still getting supported. Watch the launch trailer for Kermit the Frog below:

Risk of Rain 2 was updated on all platforms to bring in a new map, two artifacts, and a collaboration with the amazing Dead Cells. Watch the update trailer below:

Elden Ring’s Shadow of the Erdtree expansion due in a few weeks just had its new story trailer released. I’ve watched it a few times already, and the expansion hype is rising. I have my main save on Steam Deck ready for it. The expansion launches on June 21st with pre-orders now live. Watch the expansion story trailer below:

Overwatch’s new legendary Azure Flame Hanzo skin is contributing (25% of revenue) to the esports prize pool at the DreamHack Dallas festival set to take place from May 31st to June 2nd. The Azure Flame Hanzo bundle is available until June 3rd and it includes the skin, a name card, player icon, spray, and weapon charm.

The Warhammer Skulls showcase aired this week with some big reveals. My favorites are the Boltgun horde mode coming next month on June 18th, new DLC coming for it, Rogue Trader’s first DLC: Void Shadows coming August 8th, it being Steam Deck Verified, and the new trailers for Space Marine 2 which has pre-orders now live. Watch the full Warhammer Skulls Showcase – Festival of Video Games 2024 event below:

Dating sim dungeon crawler hybrid Witch and Lilies from developer Stromatosoft is now available on PC through Steam Early Access. It is available at 15% off for just under two weeks on Steam. Stay tuned for my early access review of it in the near future. Watch the newest trailer for it below:

Inti Creates’ Card-en-Ciel roguelite deckbuilder RPG launches on October 24th for all consoles and Steam with multiple difficulty options, online PvP support, daily missions, and more. It will feature many Inti Creates characters as well. Watch the release date trailer for it below:

I’m going to end the news section with a recommendation for all readers to check out The GameDiscoverCo Newsletter. It is essential reading if you care about the current state of games and the most-recent newsletter covering Rabbit and Steel, a game I want to play as soon as I can, is worth your time. Check it out here.

New Steam Deck Verified & Playable games for the week

Some surprises, but the highlight of the week is Owlcat’s Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader getting updated and Steam Deck Verified this week. I’m surprised Valve also marked FOUNDRY as unsupported when it plays well on Deck, and is a lot better than many Verified games.

Apex Legends – Playable
Asteroid Run: No Questions Asked – Verified
Bleeding Edge – Unsupported
Command & Conquer and The Covert Operations – Playable
Command & Conquer: Red Alert, Counterstrike and The Aftermath – Playable
Dogyuun – Verified
FOUNDRY – Unsupported
Gray Zone Warfare – Unsupported
Insurgency: Sandstorm – Playable
London Detective Mysteria – Playable
Mashiroiro Symphony HD: Love is Pure White – Unsupported
No Rest for the Wicked – Unsupported
One-inch Tactics – Playable
Saviorless – Verified
Tents and Trees – Verified
THE FINALS – Playable
Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader – Verified
Wizard with a Gun – Verified

Steam Deck Game Sales & Discounts

This week, there are three notable sales on Steam. The Warhammer Skulls 2024 festival sale is on to celebrate the announcements from the showcase. If you aren’t sure what to get, grab Boltgun or Rogue Trader for sure. I love them both. Draknek & Friends’ Cerebral Puzzle Showcase 2024 is also on with amazing puzzle games discounted like Patrick’s Parabox, Baba is You, and many more. Check out all the games here and try out the demos to find some cool games for your wishlist. The final notable sale right now is Annapurna Interactive’s publisher sale for 2024. Many great indies are on sale here, and I really should grab the ones I’m missing on Steam soon.

That’s all for this week’s edition of the Steam Deck Weekly. As usual, you can read all our past and future Steam Deck coverage here. If you have any feedback for this feature or what else you’d like to see us do around the Steam Deck, let us know in the comments below. I hope you all have a great day, and thanks for reading.

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