How to Install and Use Discord on Steam Deck

Steam Deck is a handheld gaming console that lets you game wherever you go. However, if you want to stay connected with your friends and engage in multiplayer games on the move, you’ll need Discord. While Discord is not natively available on Steam Deck, there is an easy workaround to install it. In this guide, we’ll detail how to add and use Discord on your Steam Deck, including accessing it from Game Mode and remapping buttons for easy use.

How to Install Discord on Your Steam Deck

Installing Discord on your Steam Deck is as simple as downloading and installing the software from the software center. Because Steam Deck runs a fork of Arch Linux, you’ll need to download the Discord Linux app. Follow these steps:

  • Switch to Desktop mode on Steam Deck, then open the software center using the shopping bag icon in the taskbar.
  • Search for Discord in the top-left, and click the “Install” button to download the app. Once installed, click the “Launch” icon on the app page and log in to your Discord account.
  • In the bottom-left corner of the app, click the settings icon. From here, navigate to the “Voice & Video” settings on the left sidebar, and select your input and output devices.

How to Add and Use Discord in Game Mode

To avoid switching to Desktop mode every time you want to use Discord, you can add it to Game Mode:

  • In Desktop mode, click the Steam Deck icon in the bottom-left of the taskbar to open the application launcher.
  • Go to the “Internet” section in the left sidebar and right-click the Discord icon. From the context menu, select “Add to Steam” to send Discord to Game Mode.
  • Switch to Game mode via the Desktop icon, then go to Library (Steam button → Library) and move to the “Non-Steam” tab to find and launch Discord.

How to Remap Buttons to Use Discord

When you first launch Discord in Game mode on Steam Deck, you may not be able to navigate the software at all. You’ll need to remap buttons on the Steam Deck to assign commands to each button. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Press the Steam button after launching Discord in Game mode and select “Controller settings”.
  • You can then download community-shared control settings, or fully customize the controls yourself.
  • To fully customize the controller settings, move to the “Right Trackpad” and set “As Mouse” as the right trackpad behavior, then scroll down to the left trackpad behavior and select “Scroll Wheel”. This will allow you to scroll in Discord servers, using the Page Down key for Clockwise Command and the Page Up key for Counter Clockwise Command to scroll up.
  • Move to the “Triggers” section, and assign Left Mouse Click for Full Pull and Soft Pull for the Right trigger. This will enable you to join and leave voice channels or text channels, and you can assign Right Mouse Click to the Left trigger.

Discord on Steam Deck: First Impressions

The Discord experience on Steam Deck is surprisingly pleasant, but there are some issues that users may face. For example, noise leaks through the microphone when navigating or pressing buttons. Voice chat functionality works as intended, however, even during gaming sessions. You can also use TWS earbuds or Bluetooth headphones to talk in voice channels. Typing will require you to bring up the on-screen keyboard, but joining Discord servers via browser links can only be done via Desktop mode.

Easiest Way to Download Discord on Steam Deck

If you’re a Steam Deck owner, you’re now armed with all the knowledge you need to install and use Discord. Unlike Xbox and PS5’s implementation, Steam Deck users have an upper hand in this case, as they have access to all of Discord’s functionality. Have you tried installing Discord on your Steam Deck? Let us know in the comments below!


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