Middle-earth™: Shadow of War™ Best Steam Deck Settings

Take the fight to Mordor with these settings for the best balance of visuals and performance when gaming on the go.

Middle-earth™: Shadow of War™ is the third-person fantasy adventure that continues the tale of The Gravewalker and The Bright Lord in their fight for the fate of Middle-earth. Sticklers for Tolkien lore accuracy steer clear, the game is rife with narrative details that will have you gnashing your teeth in fury. The rest of you will be delightfully surprised to learn that the game runs beautifully on Valve's handheld gaming PC.

That doesn't mean we can't make the experience better. With a few tweaks here and a couple of adjustments there, we've found a way to extend battery life without significantly sacrificing visual quality. And if you're the type who doesn't mind pretty things at the cost of performance, then our 30-fps configuration should be exactly what you're looking for. Scroll down to learn more!

Middle-earth™: Shadow of War™ Best Steam Deck Settings

Compatibility Settings
Proton Version Proton Hotfix
BIOS Settings
UMA Frame Buffer Size 4G
Swappiness Recommended
Swap File Size 16GB

Recent patches have finally tackled some of the pesky stability issues that had us tearing our hair out since launch. For the smoothest experience, you'll want to set your Proton version to Proton Hotfix in the compatibility menu. Even with the fixes, the game desperately needs a serious round of optimization. As is, the game barely gets 30fps at the lowest settings and with extreme resolution downsizing. It's doubly disappointing because the developer's previous gem, Nioh 2, runs like a dream in comparison.

Recommended — Balanced Settings (Native@40fps | ~2h)

As always, my go-to move when optimizing for the Steam Deck is to set the screen refresh rate to 40Hz. The Steam Deck doesn't maintain a stable 60 frames per second Shadow of War, and I prefer consistent frame times over faster but fluctuating performance. Since we're no longer aiming for 60 frames per second, we even have space to increase a few graphics settings.

With this configuration, the visuals look smooth and clean. Battery life is decent too at around 2 hours of playtime on a full charge.

Graphics Settings
Display Mode Fullscreen
Scaled Resolution 1280x800
Vertical Sync Off
Dynamic Resolution Off
Max FPS -
Lighting Quality Medium
Mesh Quality Medium
Motion Blur Off*
Anti-aliasing TAA
Shadow Quality High
Texture Filtering Medium
Texture Quality Medium
Ambient Occlusion medium
Vegetation Range Medium
Tessellation On*
Preload High Mips On*
Large Page Mode Off
*Set to personal preference.

Steam Deck Performance Menu Settings
Refresh Rate 40
Framerate Limit 40
Allow Tearing On
Half Rate Shading Off
Thermal Power (TDP) Limit Off
Manual GPU Clock Control Off
Scaling Filter Linear