Tomb Raider Remastered Trilogy is the only reason you need to buy a Steam Deck dock right now

Tomb Raider 2 Remastered running on Steam Deck sitting on wood table
(Image credit: Future / Phil Hayton)

I’ve been playing the new Tomb Raider Remastered Trilogy using a Steam Deck dock setup, and I’m genuinely shocked at how well it runs. For context, I normally take most new releases for a spin using Valve’s portable powerhouse and a docking station, which typically results in woeful performance and loud blazing fans. Yet, Lara’s revamped retro romp runs at 4K 60fps on the Deck without really breaking a sweat, making it a prime reason for picking up the handheld accessory.

Just like every other new release, playing Tomb Raider Remastered Trilogy using the best Steam Deck dock isn’t going to boost performance. In fact, using the accessory can make Valve’s portable and every other best gaming handheld contender work even harder, especially if you hook one up to a 4K screen. That’s largely due to the fact these devices feature an APU picked specifically to drive a smaller, lower resolution built-in display, rather than something with more pixels and a faster refresh rate.

That reality might put some of you off actually picking up a Steam Deck dock, as unless you’re playing a specific calibre of older game, or perhaps a lighter indie experience, playing at 1080p will come with caveats. However, the Tomb Raider Remastered Trilogy feels like a perfect fit for a handheld hybrid setup, and if we continue to get re-released classics like this, then I’ll consider owning a docking station a necessity. 

Tomb Raider Remastered on Steam Deck connected to Samsung TV

(Image credit: Future / Phil Hayton)

Before I dive into the experience of playing Tomb Raider Remastered Trilogy on Steam Deck using a dock, it’s worth explaining what sort of remaster it actually is. Rather than being closer to a remake, like the Spyro Reignited Trilogy or Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, this new collection is more like a textural glow up with slight mechanical tweaks thrown in. You can even instantly switch back to the original game by hitting the start button during gameplay, hammering home that it’s not a complete re-do. 

As a result, the new Tomb Raider trio isn’t that taxing, despite looking like it’s at least 20 years younger than it is. The result is a game that the new Steam Deck OLED will happily run at 4K 60fps when plugged into a gaming TV, meaning the experience is pretty much the same as if you were to play on a PS5 or Xbox Series X.

Weirdly, Tomb Raider Remastered Trilogy doesn’t have a graphics settings menu, and this is something that originally had me worried. However, it seems that the game simply runs at whatever resolution you've set natively while locking frame rates to match your display's refresh rate up to 120fps. 

Tomb Raider Remastered running on Steam Deck OLED

(Image credit: Future / Phil Hayton)

For example, if you play at 800p using the Steam Deck OLED screen, you’ll be able to hit 90fps by default. I would rather have access to settings so I could tweak things to my liking, but if you’re looking to use a Steam Deck dock setup as a stand-in for a console, the fact everything will automatically adjust is sort of ideal. 

As for which Steam Deck dock I’d recommend picking up, I personally use the Baseus 6-in-1, as it’s got plenty of ports for hooking up a wired controller and other peripherals like a gaming keyboard and mouse. You'll currently find it for $35.99 at Amazon, which isn't too bad considering the official version is $80. It’s also got an adjustable cradle, so even if you decide to pick up an Asus ROG Ally or Lenovo Legion GO further down the road, you’ll still be able to make full use of the accessory.

Of course, there are tons of Steam Deck dock options floating around out there, and you’ll be able to browse for deals on a range of them below. 

Looking for desktop performance? Check out the best gaming PC builds and play using a high spec system. Alternatively, swing by the best gaming laptops for ways to play Steam games on the go. If it's a new screen you're after, take a peek at the best gaming monitors for a wide selection of panels.

Phil Hayton
Hardware Editor

I’ve been messing around with PCs, video game consoles, and tech since before I could speak. Don’t get me wrong, I kickstarted my relationship with technology by jamming a Hot Wheels double-decker bus into my parent’s VCR, but we all have to start somewhere. I even somehow managed to become a walking, talking buyer’s guide at my teenage supermarket job, which helped me accept my career fate. So, rather than try to realise my musician dreams, or see out my University degree, I started running my own retro pop culture site and writing about video games and tech for the likes of TechRadar, The Daily Star, and the BBC before eventually ending up with a job covering graphics card shenanigans at PCGamesN. Now, I’m your friendly neighbourhood Hardware Editor at GamesRadar, and it’s my job to make sure you can kick butt in all your favourite games using the best gaming hardware, whether you’re a sucker for handhelds like the Steam Deck and Nintendo Switch or a hardcore gaming PC enthusiast.