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Valve's Gabe Newell confirms the Steam Box project

Valve's Gabe Newell confirms the Steam Box project

Valve's Gabe Newell has confirmed that his company is looking to launch a hybrid PC and games console device designed to bring Steam to the living room.

Valve's Gabe Newell has all-but confirmed the existence of the Steam Box, a PC-based console designed to bring 'proper' gaming into the living room.

Hints that Valve has been working on a console product have been around for quite some time: recently, the company has been hiring hardware specialists including noted hacker Jeri Ellsworth, who designed the C-One single-board computer. The company has also been porting its Steam digital distribution platform to the open-source Linux operating system, a move which would allow the company to create a games console without having to pay Microsoft a licensing fee for Windows 8 - an operating system Gabe Newell has described as 'a catastrophe.'

Up to now, however, Valve's staff have been tight-lipped on whether all this work will lead to an actual shipping product. While Newell has commented on his company's hardware goals, he has concentrated on a biofeedback peripheral device, not mentioning anything that could be taken to suggest a Steam Box console launch.

Until now.

Speaking to Kotaku's Jason Schreier following the Video Game Awards, Valve boss Newell confirmed in so many words that the Steam Box is real. 'I think in general that most customers and most developers are gonna find that [the PC is] a better environment for them,' Newell explained. ''Cause they won't have to split the world into thinking about 'why are my friends in the living room, why are my video sources in the living room different from everyone else?' So in a sense we hopefully are gonna unify those environments.

'We'll do it [release a living-room gaming console,] but we also think other people will as well,
' Newell reportedly told Schreier at the event.

Although hardware specifications weren't up for discussion, Newell did confirm one unsurprising fact: the Valve Box will be a significantly more locked-down experience than a 'real' gaming PC. 'Well certainly our hardware will be a very controlled environment. If you want more flexibility, you can always buy a more general purpose PC. For people who want a more turnkey solution, that's what some people are really gonna want for their living room.'

From Newell's comments, and work already released by Valve, it's easy to guess what form the Steam Box will take: a small form factor computer with a reasonable graphics card, running a customised variant of Canonical's Ubuntu Linux distribution - the version of Linux already chosen for the Steam for Linux Beta programme - that likely boots directly into a version of Steam running in the living-room friendly Big Picture Mode.

All that remains to be discussed: a release date and a price.

50 Comments

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damien c 10th December 2012, 12:25 Quote
Could be very interesting, especially if they can get the pricing just right for the hardware.

Would be interesting to see what spec's they offer and if they will offer more than 1 version, and whether it will allow the use of a wireless or wired keyboard and mouse rather than just a controller.

This could be where we see Linux take off as a real opponent to Windows for gaming systems, rather than having to struggle to get games working on it using emulators etc.
Gareth Halfacree 10th December 2012, 12:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by damien c
This could be where we see Linux take off as a real opponent to Windows for gaming systems, rather than having to struggle to get games working on it using emulators etc.
Funny you should say that: I've got a four-page feature in the next Linux User & Developer Magazine discussing gaming on Linux, based on interviews with numerous individuals and companies including Valve - and the upshot is that increasing numbers of developers are creating native Linux titles. A lot of it is down to how much money the Humble Bundle has made: every bundle, with the exception of the newest THQ Bundle, has been cross-platform on Windows, Mac and Linux - no Linux version, no entry in the Humble. With a quarter of purchases of each bundle coming from Linux users - roughly the same as the number of Mac customers - it's a market not worth ignoring any more.

Valve also told me that it will likely launch all first-party titles across all three platforms - Windows, Mac and Linux - simultaneously once the Steam for Linux client leaves beta.

As a Linux user and a gamer, I've never been happier.
Parge 10th December 2012, 12:42 Quote
Until almost every steam game is on Linux, this won't work.

PC Gamers will want a PC - it has windows on, thus every game works and you can do other things and custom build your own

Console gamers will want a next gen console, and all the console exclusives etc that come with it.

Who is their target market? Casual PC gamers who just happen to want to play a very limited selection of Steam games, in their living room? If that is the case, they will sell, erm, about 6.
faugusztin 10th December 2012, 12:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parge
Who is their target market? Casual PC gamers who just happen to want to play a very limited selection of Steam games, in their living room? If that is the case, they will sell, erm, about 6.

Pretty much the same as the Mac target. And unlike Mac, Linux users can have a pretty good hardware. Mac is Intel HD4000 only right now (in 2012 generation). For example there is a Mac version of Borderlands 2. Do you really think they won't make a Linux version if Valve help them a bit ?
ShinyAli 10th December 2012, 13:00 Quote
Forget the unnecessary middleman garbage that is steam and just make games that easily play on stand alone Linux OS's >:(
Parge 10th December 2012, 13:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parge
Who is their target market? Casual PC gamers who just happen to want to play a very limited selection of Steam games, in their living room? If that is the case, they will sell, erm, about 6.

Pretty much the same as the Mac target. And unlike Mac, Linux users can have a pretty good hardware. Mac is Intel HD4000 only right now (in 2012 generation). For example there is a Mac version of Borderlands 2. Do you really think they won't make a Linux version if Valve help them a bit ?

So its a case of 'if we build it, they will come'?

I just can't see who is going to buy one, outside of Linux lovers. People buy a platform because of the games on that platform. Publishers develop games on a platform because they can sell a lot of copies on that platform. A platform like this, with very few games, isn't going to be attractive to PC gamers, or console gamers, and thus isn't going to be attractive to developers.

One thing I would bet on though, is that the launch title for the Steambox will be Half Life 3.
Yslen 10th December 2012, 13:09 Quote
I don't see how this is going to work. The attraction of Steam is that it's a store and backup service for your PC games. If they create a Linux version that can run less than 5% of the catalogue because most games use DirectX, who the heck is going to buy that?
lacuna 10th December 2012, 13:18 Quote
How many games do consoles usually have on sale before they are released?

None, obviously.

The steambox has a running start over the new MS and Sony consoles as I see it. If it undercuts them on price then I think it stands a pretty good chance
Guinevere 10th December 2012, 13:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
Mac is Intel HD4000 only right now (in 2012 generation).

Not true.

My MBP has HD4000 AND a 650m. The desktop Macs go up to a 2GB GTX 680MX.

Not as top of the line as you can get on a PC if money is no object but easily enough for most people to be happy with. The hardened gamers are always going to want to build and tweak a bespoke machine rather than buying an off-the-shelf all in one but that doesn't mean a Mac is totally useless for gaming... but you will want to bootcamp into windows though!
damien c 10th December 2012, 13:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yslen
I don't see how this is going to work. The attraction of Steam is that it's a store and backup service for your PC games. If they create a Linux version that can run less than 5% of the catalogue because most games use DirectX, who the heck is going to buy that?

What you have to think about is, that Valve are I think converting all there games to work on Linux as well as Windows which means there will be quite a few games ready for when it releases.

Then all the games that currently in development phase, that are due for release towards the end of next year and the year after could be developed for use on a Linux based gaming system rather than just for Windows, considering they are all mainly ported from a console anyway it would just mean a new utillity being developed that would port them from the console to Linux.

If they could say get the Call Of Duty, Battlefield, Crysis, Need For Speed and a few other games working on this and allowing you to game using a keyboard and mouse as well as gaming, against people on Windows or Mac versions of the games then I would buy one, simply for use as a media pc but then for gaming when I go to lans, as it would save me from dragging my main rig around and risk damaging it in transport, and also because of that I could build the stupidly sized rig I have wanted to for along time now.

What they would have to do though is fill it with a decent spec something like:

Intel 3570/3770 non K version
8Gb DDR3 1600mhz ram
AMD 7870/7950 or Nvidia GTX 660ti/670
2Tb 7200rpm hdd
impar 10th December 2012, 13:30 Quote
Greetings!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parge
One thing I would bet on though, is that the launch title for the Steambox will be Half Life 3.
In 2033? :D
johnnyboy700 10th December 2012, 13:31 Quote
My question is will it be keyboard and mouse or game pad?
faugusztin 10th December 2012, 13:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guinevere
My MBP has HD4000 AND a 650m. The desktop Macs go up to a 2GB GTX 680MX.

Please accept my appologies, i forgot the 15" non-retina mid-2012 Macbook Pro and the iMacs. Still, most of the user base have HD4000 or worse.
BLC 10th December 2012, 13:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyboy700
My question is will it be keyboard and mouse or game pad?

I'd imagine the primary interface will be a game controller of some sort. They are bound to support keyboard and mouse; it'd be pretty hard not to with Ubuntu under the bonnet.

As for the naysayers, I'll address that when I've got a bit more time than a quick lunch-hour catch up on tech news.
bowman 10th December 2012, 13:46 Quote
I really doubt this box will be running Linux. It's way too soon, way too few games are available.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lacuna
How many games do consoles usually have on sale before they are released?

None, obviously.

The steambox has a running start over the new MS and Sony consoles as I see it. If it undercuts them on price then I think it stands a pretty good chance

Nonsense, all consoles have launch titles. Who would buy one without launch titles?

Right now the only games for Linux on Steam are Valve's source games, and those are all old. You can't launch a new box with games that are half a decade old.
theshadow2001 10th December 2012, 13:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by damien c
What you have to think about is, that Valve are I think converting all there games to work on Linux as well as Windows which means there will be quite a few games ready for when it releases.

Then all the games that currently in development phase, that are due for release towards the end of next year and the year after could be developed for use on a Linux based gaming system rather than just for Windows, considering they are all mainly ported from a console anyway it would just mean a new utillity being developed that would port them from the console to Linux.

If they could say get the Call Of Duty, Battlefield, Crysis, Need For Speed and a few other games working on this and allowing you to game using a keyboard and mouse as well as gaming, against people on Windows or Mac versions of the games then I would buy one, simply for use as a media pc but then for gaming when I go to lans, as it would save me from dragging my main rig around and risk damaging it in transport, and also because of that I could build the stupidly sized rig I have wanted to for along time now.

What they would have to do though is fill it with a decent spec something like:

Intel 3570/3770 non K version
8Gb DDR3 1600mhz ram
AMD 7870/7950 or Nvidia GTX 660ti/670
2Tb 7200rpm hdd

Valve can't convert any of those without the source code, which they won't be given. Anything that doesn't use opengl will have to undergo a significant rewrite in order to work with non microsoft O/S. I dont see many developers doing this with existing games. I reckon initially this will be a mostly indie developer platform. If the popularity grows enough it may eventually garner the attention of some publishers of some triple A titles.

As for the spec, I hope I'm wrong but I doubt you would get much more than an AMD apu in order to keep the costs competitive with consoles.
Snips 10th December 2012, 13:49 Quote
Anyone else know why Steam on Windows 8 is 'a catastrophe.' ?

It works fine to me and the new Steam Launcher app is ok as well.
tonyd223 10th December 2012, 13:51 Quote
Steambox - nice idea - I want to contrast to the Raspberry Pi - an open platform that people can write software for, a delivery mechanism in Steam to promote what you wrote, and needs to be around £150?

I say good luck to them, and the Ubuntu people (Canonical?) must be very happy...
faugusztin 10th December 2012, 13:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
Anyone else know why Steam on Windows 8 is 'a catastrophe.' ?

It works fine to me and the new Steam Launcher app is ok as well.

Steam on Windows 8 is not a 'catastrophe'. Windows 8 is a 'catastrophe' to Valve, because MS pushes sales through their own store, and that means less sales for Valve.
Corky42 10th December 2012, 14:00 Quote
Given there is no time frame for when this will happen they have plenty of time to get things right, this is probably the best news for gaming on the PC for a long time.
Having competition in the market is always a good thing, we have been locked into using M$ for to long. And i for one don't like the way M$ is taking things.
theshadow2001 10th December 2012, 14:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
Steam on Windows 8 is not a 'catastrophe'. Windows 8 is a 'catastrophe' to Valve, because MS pushes sales through their own store, and that means less sales for Valve.

I was of this thinking. But reflecting on what you have wrote in the above, I can't help but think that steam and microsoft are selling very different software. One is pretty much a mobile/app store for the metro front end and the other is a windows desktop games distributor with a small amount of other desktop software. Perhaps I'm missing something.
damien c 10th December 2012, 14:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
Anyone else know why Steam on Windows 8 is 'a catastrophe.' ?

It works fine to me and the new Steam Launcher app is ok as well.

Have not tried Window's 8 after updating my motherboard, because I tried to install the drivers for the motherboard and wouldn't accept any of them without giving a blue screen and this on a Z77 board that apparently support's Windows 8.

Switch it to Linux or Windows 7 and everything is fine, no BSOD's whilst installing or after installing Mobo drivers.
Guinevere 10th December 2012, 14:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by theshadow2001
Valve can't convert any of those without the source code, which they won't be given. Anything that doesn't use opengl will have to undergo a significant rewrite in order to work with non microsoft O/S.

Not quite correct, but I doubt Valve will go with a middleware based solution.

On the Mac you can use products like wine or crossover to run PC games & software within OSX without needing windows, but the results can be erratic and it's by far easier to just dual boot into windows.

Valve could go down a similar route but I think it's unlikely. They'll want devs to handle their own games rather than try and handle all the compatibility issues themselves.
sotu1 10th December 2012, 14:14 Quote
I guess Steambox will launch with it's 'launch titles', HL3, Portal 3, L4D3, CS whatever....and probably all of the previous titles will be free or dirty cheap.

Maybe they have streaming tech lined up? I'm fairly certain they'll move to linux and just undercut whatever % of sales goes to Microsoft and make it worthwhile for developers.

I don't know. I'm more curious as to how Steam box models will be released. Xbox and Ps3 have a 10 year console cycle, PC iterates much more rapidly, with a new significant bar set every couple of years.
steveo_mcg 10th December 2012, 14:19 Quote
Ah the professional nay sayers, the internet seems full of them. Every time a company tries something different all you hear is it won't work! Do you not think the guys at Valve sat down and had very similar conversations?

Either they're confident the machine will sell on the back of Valve games or they've worked something out with developers, after all PS3 games don't run DX either...
theshadow2001 10th December 2012, 14:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guinevere
Not quite correct, but I doubt Valve will go with a middleware based solution.

On the Mac you can use products like wine or crossover to run PC games & software within OSX without needing windows, but the results can be erratic and it's by far easier to just dual boot into windows.

Valve could go down a similar route but I think it's unlikely. They'll want devs to handle their own games rather than try and handle all the compatibility issues themselves.

close enough for me.

wine like things can be a nightmare. I'd rather just have a virtualised windows for most desktop software. Obviously thats not all encompassing especially for games.
faugusztin 10th December 2012, 14:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by theshadow2001
I was of this thinking. But reflecting on what you have wrote in the above, I can't help but think that steam and microsoft are selling very different software. One is pretty much a mobile/app store for the metro front end and the other is a windows desktop games distributor with a small amount of other desktop software. Perhaps I'm missing something.

Nope. Windows store "sells" desktop apps and games as well. "Sells" is in quotes because for now, they redirect you to publisher site, but i don't think it will take too much time for them to sell the apps for real.
Gareth Halfacree 10th December 2012, 15:12 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by bowman
Right now the only games for Linux on Steam are Valve's source games, and those are all old. You can't launch a new box with games that are half a decade old.
Bzzt. Here's a list of all Linux-compatible games available on Steam right now. Note that these are only titles where a Linux version has been uploaded to Steam; there are other games where a Linux port has been created (often for inclusion in a Humble Bundle) but is not available through Steam and as a result does not appear.

Note how there are far more games there than just Valve's own Source-based titles. Far fewer than for Windows gamers, I'll grant you, but it is a closed beta. Give it time.
BLC 10th December 2012, 15:36 Quote
The icing on the cake for this would be if the Steam and/or game code was not specific to the x86 architecture; Steam & Steam games on capable ARM hardware would be everything that the Ouya should be. Of course you'd need an ARM SBC/core which supports full-fat OpenGL 4.x, not just OpenGL ES... but Nvidia's "Wayne" variant of the Tegra platform does supposedly have such support (as well as the new Cortex-A15 core design).

Sadly I think that support for non-x86 architectures is a little too much to hope for; baby steps and all that! :)

As for the nay-sayers... This doesn't mean that you can't still use Steam on a "proper" PC, so where's your problem? You can still have your full-fat custom desktop gaming rigs, and people who want a better experience in their living rooms can have a Steambox/Valvebox under their TV.

Valve supporting Linux is one step on the road towards shedding the dependance on DirectX and Windows; not that this should be the goal, but it is one of the things tying Steam to the "traditional" PC. Sure not every PC game is going to switch to OpenGL, and not every Steam game is going to be compatible with Steam Linux, but any step forward is a bonus for all of us. Right now DirectX does pretty much rule the roost, but there needs to be competition. How do we know that graphics APIs aren't capable of so much more if there's only one player in the market? Or for that matter whether or not manufacturers actually bother putting in any effort into their drivers when it comes to OpenGL? Someone has to put their family jewels on the line and lead the charge; I'm glad that it's Valve waving that banner. Much as people may lament some of their business practices, it would be hard to argue that Steam has not been a Good Thing (tm) for PC games.
BLC 10th December 2012, 15:58 Quote
Oh, and it seems I was right all allong about a Valve/Steam box :D (sorry to double-post but this seemed to warrant a post in it's own right, rather than an edit :)).
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLC
Somewhat on topic, before I come to the subject of Richard "Saviour of Software" Stallman, it's interesting to see the direction that Valve is moving in recently. They've been hiring hardware engineers for a while now and while they may be tight-lipped on what's happening, you can bet that those engineers aren't sitting round with their thumbs up their backsides; even if it's only skunkworks-style research projects, they must be doing something. Now we learn that they're putting a lot of effort into improving the performance of their games under Linux. I'm willing to bet money on Valve releasing some kind of console or dedicated gaming hardware.

As long as I can plug in a mouse and keyboard, and there's a proper OS behind it (even if it is stripped down and heavily customised), I could really get behind the idea of a Valve console. Didn't they announce a while back that future versions of the Steam client would support joystick/joypad navigation? I'm pretty sure that was mentioned around the time that the overhauled client UI was released...
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLC
And regarding the original topic of this thread, if Valve aren't working on some sort of box-that-goes-under-the-TV, then why make all the effort in improving Linux performance? Surely it's not just to release their own "Steam OS" - bear in mind that their Linux efforts so far have concerned the Source engine, so it doesn't make much sense to put so much effort into something that will ultimately limit you (the limiting factor being that Linux doesn't support DirectX and lots of Steam games use DirectX). Of course you could level the same argument at a "Valvebox", but then you're talking about releasing your own consumer electronics product; that opens up an awful lot of doors for more cash to flow in through.

It doesn't have to have the latest and greatest graphics to look good or compete with current (or next gen) consoles and, if we're talking about Linux here, it doesn't even have to have an x86 processor. Once you get away from x86, hardware cost doesn't need to be such an issue; look what the Raspberry Pi can do with ~£25, and they still make profit on each unit. Granted that uses an older ARM core and only OpenGL ES graphics, but who's to say that there isn't some version of Tegra on the way which supports full-fat OpenGL?

Someone else already mentioned it, but all they need to do in order to make it a success is to release Half-Life 3 only on Valve hardware :). I doubt that's something that they'd ever do though... That would make me a very angry bunny indeed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLC
It just doesn't make that much sense for Valve to put all this effort into Linux and not take it any further than a custom distro or a Linux version of Steam. Like it or not, Linux is still a tiny tiny percentage of overall desktop OS's, so there really isn't that much of a market for it... Which is why I'm convinced that their plans are more than just a snazzy hardware controller and a Linux version of Steam.
flibblesan 10th December 2012, 16:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gareth Halfacree
Quote:
Originally Posted by bowman
Right now the only games for Linux on Steam are Valve's source games, and those are all old. You can't launch a new box with games that are half a decade old.
Bzzt. Here's a list of all Linux-compatible games available on Steam right now. Note that these are only titles where a Linux version has been uploaded to Steam; there are other games where a Linux port has been created (often for inclusion in a Humble Bundle) but is not available through Steam and as a result does not appear.

Note how there are far more games there than just Valve's own Source-based titles. Far fewer than for Windows gamers, I'll grant you, but it is a closed beta. Give it time.

It doesn't matter about the old games. What matters are new releases and Valve will be releasing them for Linux as well as OS X and Windows. Console users (and the Steam box will effectively be a console) usually want to play the latest stuff so it doesn't matter if your Saints Row or your Bioshock doesn't have a Linux version - because the target market for the Steam box won't actually care.

I see the Steam box being extremely good for Linux gaming.. assuming it does run Linux.
Hustler 10th December 2012, 18:57 Quote
In Gabe we trust....

Seems to have worked out pretty well for him so far.
AmEv 10th December 2012, 19:47 Quote
http://steamlinux.flibitijibibo.com/index.php?title=Main_Page

That link is going dead at the end of the year, so read it while you can.
Just adding onto what Gareth said.

And, from what I've gathered, the direction that Win8 is showing, eventually you can only run apps from the MS store. No side-loading. Which means Valve will get no chunk of the change.
rocknroll237 10th December 2012, 20:28 Quote
I reckon they should release 3 different models - one budget machine that will only run games on lower settings, a mid-range machine that will give better quality/smoother visuals and a high-end machine for those that want all the advanced graphics features and a smoother experience overall.
Snips 10th December 2012, 21:32 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by damien c
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
Anyone else know why Steam on Windows 8 is 'a catastrophe.' ?

It works fine to me and the new Steam Launcher app is ok as well.

Have not tried Window's 8 after updating my motherboard, because I tried to install the drivers for the motherboard and wouldn't accept any of them without giving a blue screen and this on a Z77 board that apparently support's Windows 8.

Switch it to Linux or Windows 7 and everything is fine, no BSOD's whilst installing or after installing Mobo drivers.

I've installed it on 7 different machines, some new builds others a few months to a few years old. I can hand on heart say I've not had a problem and on each machine Steam appears to be working just fine.

The only thing Steam hits a bum note is on WindowsRT, so is this the "catastrophe" they are talking about as I can't see where else it's a problem. In fact, it works no different than it does on Windows 7.
XXAOSICXX 10th December 2012, 21:33 Quote
You know all that consolification us PC users hate so much? You can expect more of that if this takes off.

Right now we're getting piss-poor ports from consoles featuring lousy KB&M controls to PCs because consoles form the larger part of the market. When there's a "PC console" i.e. an x86 console (that's succesful), all we'll get is the ports _without_ the consideration for KB&M users, because even the PC market will largely be using controllers too....something which I, personally, don't welcome.

We all want to support Steam because they bring us amazing sales - but let's not forget they also bring us DRM, accessibility issues (when their service isn't available) and, potentially, a departure from traditional PC gaming.

I don't want to be a nay-sayer, but I do not see this being a positive move for PC gamers. I see it purely as a way for Valve to increase their market share. Fine for them...but may not be so great for us in the long term.
greigaitken 10th December 2012, 23:36 Quote
its gotta be <£400
it's gonna have mid gpu
it's possible to update cpu & gpu every year
its probable amd will have a nice package that meets all those
greigaitken 10th December 2012, 23:38 Quote
"it's possible to update cpu & gpu every year"
to clarify: i meant they could realse a better model every xmas
SexyHyde 11th December 2012, 02:02 Quote
There is a very strong chance I will buy this. Will have to wait and see the confirmed details but I suspect I will have a valve/steam box in my living room at/around release.
Griffter 11th December 2012, 08:49 Quote
this is the first time in my life i will call myself a fanboy!
SpAceman 11th December 2012, 09:25 Quote
Cool. Not that I would likely buy a premade one. I would rather build my own. Would be cool if they sold them as partial kits.
V3ctor 11th December 2012, 09:46 Quote
Take my money Valve... Just do it!! Just like you do when Christmas comes...
Burnout21 11th December 2012, 11:14 Quote
I think bigger plans are in action here.

Work has been done to allow steam on linux to log in as big picture mode, Its also been confirmed that Ubuntu TV will be coming to us in the "near future". A combination of the two could be a extremely attractive option for many.

I also believe valve recently "hired" some industrial designers to work on "peripherals", I seem to remember seeing the job advert too late for myself but screamed when I found out.


Also to note about the hardware, it's a single screen set-up operating at 1080p which is hardly taxing on any modern graphics card, coupled with the fact that the Linux base allows for system level updates "that work" on a weekly release could see better optimisation of drivers for games supported in Steam.

This null and voids a requirement for CPU and GPU upgrades which frankly is ridiculous. How many of us are still rocking Intel 775 Quads and X58 i7 perfectly fine, hell the 8800GT got re-branded so many times it got comical but it still performed extremely well because devs were coding for multi platform specs, ergo Xbox 360.

The hardware industry has been covering up bad drivers by convincing everybody needs a bigger stick to hammer the code with. Driver optimisation can improve performance beyond your wildest dreams. So by narrowing the target, performance can be increased. Currently Nvidia drivers are akin to a family saloon, its fast enough but not designed to be an F1 car, but if you use the same engine in a light vehicle you'll soon zip along.

So if Steam and Canonical were to release a TV like a giant Imac with laptop grade hardward or something akin to the HP Z1, which is upgradable and faptastic! I would be perfectly happy.

On a side note, cost is merely a function of demand, the HP Z1 is seriously expensive as the market yield is fairly low. Something marketed well over a platform like steam (insert banner ad hate here), then such a device will do extremely well.

Steam hasn't turned its back on the PC market, its merely looking to expand and that's something I would love to see.

I am personal sick of seeing nintendo re-hash the same sh*t they been throwing at us for the best part of 20 years, there is only so many Mario Kart's one can buy before thinking, its the same game new platform. And the same goes for Sony tbh.

Fanboy's kill all that is new and awesome, cough cough dreamcast. And the Wii only did so well because of overweight stay at home mum's, and the hipsters who like to "trend".

Something else worthy of noting, if Canonical are planning Ubuntu for Tablet's (which they've proved), then considering its the same OS and not a bastar*isation that is WinRT/8, does that not mean Steam will come to tablets...
theshadow2001 11th December 2012, 13:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnout21
I think bigger plans are in action here.

Work has been done to allow steam on linux to log in as big picture mode, Its also been confirmed that Ubuntu TV will be coming to us in the "near future". A combination of the two could be a extremely attractive option for many.

I also believe valve recently "hired" some industrial designers to work on ...

are you implying they didn't actually hire these designers. They just rounded them up and forced them to start working at gun point or something?
Burnout21 11th December 2012, 14:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by theshadow2001
are you implying they didn't actually hire these designers. They just rounded them up and forced them to start working at gun point or something?

They tried paying the designers, but Valves so awesome there working for the greater good.
steveo_mcg 11th December 2012, 16:02 Quote
Why do you think HL3 is taking so long. Rounding up people at random and trying to get them to write and code the game is akin to monkeys writing Shakespeare...
BLC 11th December 2012, 17:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnout21
I also believe valve recently "hired" some industrial designers to work on "peripherals", I seem to remember seeing the job advert too late for myself but screamed when I found out.

The Amp Hour interviewed one of them earlier this year. Obviously he didn't reveal anything about what he was working on, as he hadn't started the job yet (the linked podcast was out in April).
Xir 12th December 2012, 12:48 Quote
If they keep up their current pricing, it may well be an alternative to current consoles.
Console game prices has withheld me from buying a PS3 instead of a stand-alone blurayplayer.

(as for some reason PC-games are a lot cheaper than their console counterparts*)

*no, not for new releases maybe, but after half a year or so.
BLC 12th December 2012, 18:23 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
(as for some reason PC-games are a lot cheaper than their console counterparts*)

*no, not for new releases maybe, but after half a year or so.

Even new releases...

Lego Lord of the Rings - PC: £17.99
Lego Lord of the Rings - Xbox 360: £25

Okay Lego games aren't exactly wildly popular games that sell out on release day or generate the same hype as the latest Halo, CODBLOPS/CODwhatever or Mass Effect 29 - and Lego LotR isn't available on Steam :p - but my point stands :D.
Xir 13th December 2012, 08:00 Quote

I actually had the Lego games in mind, as they run like a dog on PC and for some reason never get bugfixes so I'd like to buy them for Wii instead ;)
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