I have really been loving my steam deck lately. I’ve now played through Fallout 3, New Vegas, all of their respective DLCs, and am about 100hrs into 4 right now.

Normally I play indie games since that’s where my interests are and I grow tired of the AAA jackassery.

I mention that to illustrate that I do use and live the deck. But I guess I’m not creative enough to use the back buttons at all. So to the title question:

  • What games do you play that make the most use of the back buttons?

  • What functions are mapped to those buttons?

  • Or are you like me and just never use them?

  • WerDei@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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    1 month ago

    In first-person games, I always rebind the jump to one of the back buttons. Coming from kbm, it weels weird that looking around and jumping at the same time is not possible.

    • smeg@feddit.uk
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      1 month ago

      Yeah, ideal for any games where you don’t want to take your thumb off the right stick to press A/B/X/Y

      • MentalEdge@sopuli.xyz
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        1 month ago

        Or games where you don’t want to take your finger off the left stick to hit a direction bound to some action on the D-Pad.

  • sevan@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    In games that don’t have good auto-save (like Skyrim), I’ll map one of the back buttons to quick save.

  • MentalEdge@sopuli.xyz
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    1 month ago

    Some games have button layouts that make certain actions a pain. Two examples.

    Horizon Zero Dawn - Healing is by default done by hitting dpad up. You generally want to press this button whenever you take damage to essentially trigger health regen, but doing so requires taking your thumb off the left stick, which means you can’t simultaneously avoid even more damage. Bind to back button, problem solved.

    BallisticNG - Weapons are bound to X, discard weapons is bound to B, and accelerate is on A. So when you pick up a weapon, to discard/use it you either have to drop thrust (bad, never do that) or awkwardly shimmy your thumb to either hit X or B without letting go of A. Bind X and B to back buttons, problems solved.

  • stardust@lemmy.ca
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    1 month ago

    I use them in place of the bumpers so my fingers can stay on the triggers.

    • smeg@feddit.uk
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      1 month ago

      I initially tried pressing the bit that’s not flat against the back by squeezing it and it really wasn’t comfortable for my hand, but pressing the bit that is flat against the back is way easier

    • Domiku@beehaw.org
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      1 month ago

      Yeah, I turn them off in a lot of games. Otherwise I accidentally hit them and trigger some weird effect.

    • diannetea@lemmy.ml
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      1 month ago

      I get a lot of joint pain from specific or repetitive movements (especially in my hands) and these are just slightly too stiff and in a hard enough to press place that using them for more than very occasional use will hurt. I bought some rubber things that make them a bit easier to press, but they still are difficult for me.

  • SacralPlexus@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    I use the back buttons in Deep Rock Galactic to mirror the A B X Y functions. This allows me to jump for instance without taking my right thumb off of the stick. I have found this is super useful as I can be steering my POV while jumping. Took a minute to get used to but now I absolutely love it.

    Rock and Stone, miners!

    • Father_Redbeard@lemmy.mlOP
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      1 month ago

      Oh that’s a great idea. I’ll have to try that. I did notice that I need to use the tall buttons that come with the Jsaux brand clear back shell. I have long fingers so they rest on the back of the deck, past the buttons. Tried the mediums and same issue, couldn’t trigger the buttons easily. And the stock ones are really difficult for me to activate at all.

  • 8osm3rka@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    I mostly play modded minecraft on my deck, and they’re really handy for modifier keys or macros that you need to keep active while pressing something else using the front controls

  • Nima@leminal.space
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    1 month ago

    I use them in WoW for tricky keybinds. and in terraria they’re pretty useful as well

    • Daxtron2@startrek.website
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      1 month ago

      I’ve been thinking about playing WoW with a controller recently. How well do you find it works on the deck? Last time I tried was a decade ago and that was a less-than-good experience but it worked. I know there have been a lot of improvements since then though. Is it fully playable without KB+m?

      • jemikwa@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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        1 month ago

        There’s good controller support in the game itself, and the add-on ConsolePort makes it more like FFXIV (a model all controller MMOs should take after). The movement scheme being forced backpedal is less great for controller use, but that can be overcome with muscle memory.

    • Father_Redbeard@lemmy.mlOP
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      1 month ago

      Yeah, this was the only thing I could think of as well. But I haven’t played an MMO since City of Heroes, or SW: Galaxies, whichever was most recent. Don’t recall atm.

  • ducklingone@lemmy.today
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    1 month ago

    I use the back buttons for all sorts of stuff. But the most common use is remapping ABXY to them. That way, I dont have to lift my thumb off the joysticks as much.

    Also some games have easier menu navigation with a mouse, so I’ll map left and right click to r1 and l1 and use a track pad to navigate menus.

  • CarlosCheddar@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    In games where combat uses the bumpers a lot I bind the back buttons to that. For the rest of the games it depends on the what I find annoying to do repeatedly and end up mapping that to a back paddle.

    For example on Breath of the Wild the back paddle was run which allowed me to run with one hand.

    • Father_Redbeard@lemmy.mlOP
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      1 month ago

      I’m trying that on FO4 right now. Instead of clicking in left stick, I mapped it to R4. Seems more natural than holding down the click on stick that you’re also using to move directionally.

  • Scio@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    Often as a lazier way to press the face buttons for slow games. But also custom turbo patterns for fast games. E.g.:

    • In Genshin Impact, the back buttons are all face buttons, but with select ones set to turbo for automatic item pickup, or dialog skipping, etc.
      • Also very comfy to use them while swimming
    • In Hades II:
      • L/R4 are the two shoulder buttons for comfier portal/character interaction
      • L/R5 do autoattack and autospecial on turbo
    • In Valheim, one lets me Dodge with a single button press instead of the chord the game demands you use
    • In Balatro
      • L/R4 switches hand sorting modes, which has no in-game shortcuts, still
      • L5 restarts a run on long press
      • R5 quits to main menu and resumes with a multi button sequence, to “soft reset”
    • In Tabletop Simulator, the most common actions like clicking, selecting, flipping a card, and drawing, are all mapped to the back buttons for ergonomics, freeing face/shoulder buttons for more advanced stuff
    • In Minecraft, various back buttons are used to enable different overlaid controls when clicked/pressed based on the modpack.

    Etc etc!

  • ShittyBeatlesFCPres@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    My default move is to map the L3 and R3 clicks to two of them. (I even unmap the actual stick clicks sometimes because I click them by accident a lot.)

    I also find it useful in games where the situation changes and A B X & Y completely change what they do. Like if a game is mostly exploring but sometimes in a car/plane/spaceship/whatever, I’ll map the back buttons and use them when I’m in the secondary situation. (There’s lots of other examples of games that temporarily switch genres on you here and there and using the back buttons helps me remember the controls.)

  • NOFF@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    It varies per game, but my most common use is to replace the thumbstick clicks. I don’t like how it feels to click in the thumb sticks, feels like I’m adding extra wear and tear to them.

    In first person games, I’ll often bind jump, sprint, reload, and melee to the back buttons so I can move and aim while performing those actions.

  • Darkard@lemmy.world
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    1 month ago

    When I’m going from my desktop to the deck I miss being able to do things like press I for inventory or M for map, things like that. So usually I set them up to replace those little shortcuts to get me though games that need me to flick about a few menus to get to them.

    • Klanky@sopuli.xyz
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      1 month ago

      Yeah I have a game that pause is space, so I mapped one of the back buttons to that and it’s perfect.

  • BadlyDrawnRhino @aussie.zone
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    1 month ago

    I’m playing through New Vegas right now. I have one of the back buttons assigned to quicksave. I also changed the default camera button to one of the back buttons, because I don’t use it often enough to warrant it being on the bumpers. And I have just assigned one to toggle collision, because sometimes you need that when playing something built in the Gamebryo engine.