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Old 10-12-2012, 11:39
one2escape
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And is coming next year. That will stop me buying the new xbox / ps for a while. With there steam game sales that is going to very expensive for me!

http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/...alve-steam-box

Valve head honcho Gabe Newell has confirmed to Kotaku that the company is working on its own gaming hardware.

The box would run the company's Steam digital distribution software, and be "a very controlled environment", Newell said on the red carpet at an industry awards event.

Newell added that it was a response to the better-than-expected popularity of the company's recently-launched "big picture mode", which is a version of Steam designed for browsing on large displays, such as a living room television.

Combining "big picture mode" with the company's push into Linux means that Valve has a lot of options when it comes to designing its own hardware. However, Newell cautioned that Valve's offering isn't likely to be too hackable. "If you want more flexibility, you can always buy a more general purpose PC," he said.

Newell said that he expects living-room gaming PCs running Steam to arrive in 2013. "We'll do it but we also think other people will as well," he said.
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Old 10-12-2012, 11:50
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Newell said that he expects living-room gaming PCs running Steam to arrive in 2013.
Now this confuses me. Is it just a gaming PC coming with Steam pre-installed?

Or is it actually a console that runs Steam? By console I mean like a Xbox or PS3 except it's just Steam?

Having a hard time explaining what I mean so I will just leave it lol.

If it's just a PC coming pre-installed with Steam then i have no interest, I already have that.
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Old 10-12-2012, 11:59
Flawed-Tactics
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"a very controlled environment" would suggest a console in the proper console sense.

I'm very interested in this as it would free up space from a hefty desktop that can't easily be moved from room to room and isn't very 'under the TV' friendly.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:03
one2escape
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Its a steam / valve console. Wont be upgradable. This for me is the must buy console of next year. Its trying to pull in the positives of PC Gaming and Console gaming.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:13
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If it is a console then I have great interest, because I think this could be a big thing, better for PC gamers/gaming with devs having a standard that they could work for.

It could also mean that PC will see better ports of games, more multi-platform games etc.

It could be a very good rival to the traditional consoles if done properly (and I have great faith in Valve).

I will be watching this very closely.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:24
Gormond
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One word.... "Awesome"
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:24
OMTT
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I'll be watching this with interest. If it can run games at max settings then I'll be almost certain to buy this if the price is right.

I'm not a PC gamer so not sure about this bit if it isn't upgradeable, how often do higher spec graphics cards etc get released? Wouldn't want to spend a lot of money on something that will quickly become old hat.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:25
steven123
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Very interesting development. Though does raise a few questions for people who already use Steam on PCs and have a significant Steam game library already such as can we play the games we already bought (on PC) on the console or indeed would our existing account be transferable at all? If the answer to either of them is no then that would probably put me off the idea for good.

Plus if it isn't based on existing PC hardware then presumably all the existing games (on PC Steam right now) would have to be ported to work on the Steam console which might equal the usual software drought at launch despite Steam having a massive software library (on PC).

Still as I think Steam on PC is a fantastic service and great value I would like to see them get it right and make a great home console, who knows might be the system that finishes off traditional disc based games on console altogether. Not a bad thing for me personally as I love the convenience factor, though I appreciate it would be hard for people who still have lousy internet connections.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:27
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Very interesting development. Though does raise a few questions for people who already use Steam on PCs and have a significant Steam game library already such as can we play the games we already bought (on PC) on the console or indeed would our existing account be transferable at all? If the answer to either of them is no then that would probably put me off the idea for good.

Plus if it isn't based on existing PC hardware then presumably all the existing games (on PC Steam right now) would have to be ported to work on the Steam console which might equal the usual software drought at launch despite Steam having a massive software library (on PC).

Still as I think Steam on PC is a fantastic service and great value I would like to see them get it right and make a great home console, who knows might be the system that finishes off traditional disc based games on console altogether.
No need to worry about that. You can use your Steam account on any PC and have it installed on several PCs without a problem. I would bet my life that you will use the same account on the "steambox". Would seem stupid otherwise.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:30
Gormond
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Now this confuses me. Is it just a gaming PC coming with Steam pre-installed?

Or is it actually a console that runs Steam? By console I mean like a Xbox or PS3 except it's just Steam?

Having a hard time explaining what I mean so I will just leave it lol.

If it's just a PC coming pre-installed with Steam then i have no interest, I already have that.
Sounds to me like it will be a sort of Steam OS running from a linux kernal (like Android) on PC hardware, so games made for this will also work on PCs but you will get a more reliable experience on the steam box.

The great thing about this is that games can be made to work for it like they are on consoles so no recommend requirements, configuring settings, updating drivers, compatibility issues...
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:36
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Sounds to me like it will be a sort of Steam OS running from a linux kernal on PC hardware, so games made for this will also work on PCs but you will get a more reliable experience on the steam box.

The great thing about this is that games can be made to work for it like they are on consoles so no recommend requirements, configuring settings, updating drivers, compatibility issues...
Ah, you explained it much better than me.

I would put purchasing one of these bad boys before a next gen Xbox or PS. Will come in very handy for the livingroom.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:37
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I don't get it.

PC games don't run on Linux, never have. Not even close to running on Linux. Are we to assume now that game developers are going to abandon Windows in favour of developing for a Linux platform? I can't see it happening. I don't see why it needs to happen.

Yeah I get the point of minimum requirements for games.. but the problem with that is you limit development. If everyone buys this 'Steam Box' and games are developed for that spec.. you stop moving forward at the same pace as hardware is changing. Unless Valve feel PC gaming hardware has plateaued now and won't see any huge leaps for a long time.

Maybe i'm missing something here.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:39
Gormond
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Ah, you explained it much better than me.

I would put purchasing one of these bad boys before a next gen Xbox or PS. Will come in very handy for the livingroom.
I'm the same, if this comes out next year it will be my next console as long as it's under the 400 mark.

This could be the boost the PC gaming market has needed.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:39
steven123
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No need to worry about that. You can use your Steam account on any PC and have it installed on several PCs without a problem. I would bet my life that you will use the same account on the "steambox". Would seem stupid otherwise.
Yes, I agree otherwise they would surely annoy a lot of existing users who fancy one for the living room but already have a PC.

I actually use a PC in the living room so I can play my Steam games on the 'big telly' and it works well enough and it's always awesome to see games on a big TV rather than a little monitor, plus HDMI standardising the AV connections makes things a lot easier than they were. Yet trying to balance a keyboard and mouse on your knee or the sofa arm is still a right faff, lost count of how many times I've dropped the mouse, thankfully it still works

I'm sure the existing big picture mode will help in the short term but in the long term I would gladly swap the living room PC for the 'Steam Box' providing it turns out to have a decent specification and comes in for sensible money, IMHO they need to hit a ~250 sweet spot, much more and they will struggle.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:45
Gormond
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I don't get it.

PC games don't run on Linux, never have. Not even close to running on Linux. Are we to assume now that game developers are going to abandon Windows in favour of developing for a Linux platform? I can't see it happening. I don't see why it needs to happen.

Yeah I get the point of minimum requirements for games.. but the problem with that is you limit development. If everyone buys this 'Steam Box' and games are developed for that spec.. you stop moving forward at the same pace as hardware is changing. Unless Valve feel PC gaming hardware has plateaued now and won't see any huge leaps for a long time.

Maybe i'm missing something here.
Valve haven't had any issue porting their games to run on Linux using OpenGL so I don't see an issue here, they even have a higher FPS than the Windows version.

It will certainly be a lot easier than porting it to the PS3 or Wii U which is what they are currently doing anyway.

I don't think this will limit development at all, if anything it will make developers get more out of the hardware by making the software more efficient like they do for consoles which will benefit everyone.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:45
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I will be interested to see how this developers and how it will stack up against the PS4 and NextBox, it could be a serious new player in the console market.

Its going to be a very interesting year for gaming next year if all three of these systems are revealed and then release in the next 18months.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:50
Gormond
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I'm sure the existing big picture mode will help in the short term but in the long term I would gladly swap the living room PC for the 'Steam Box' providing it turns out to have a decent specification and comes in for sensible money, IMHO they need to hit a ~250 sweet spot, much more and they will struggle.
I could see them doing a deal with AMD for both the CPU and GPU, something like a Athlon X4 750K 3.4 GHz and a Radeon HD 7850 1GB would be ideal IMO.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:53
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Valve haven't had any issue porting their games to run on Linux using OpenGL so I don't see an issue here, they even have a higher FPS than the Windows version.

It will certainly be a lot easier than porting it to the PS3 or Wii U which is what they are currently doing anyway.

I don't think this will limit development at all, if anything it will make developers get more out of the hardware by making the software more efficient like they do for consoles which will benefit everyone.
It's not easy at all. That's why major game titles aren't available for Linux. They have enough trouble bringing out Mac OS versions of top games. Yes I get Valve port some games but that's probably because they all run the same or a similar graphics engine, ie, the source engine, so it's easier for them to pull it off. But all games run different engines and have different architectures.

Take World of Warcraft.. are they going to suddenly put that on Steam and develop it for Linux? Why would they. They have their own Battlenet platform.

The problem with buying a box like this is you're limiting your options. If a top game comes out that isn't compatible you're screwed. At least now you can play the game, although you may not get top end performance due to your spec being lacking. With this new box you're stuck with a limited selection of content and hardware you can't upgrade yourself.

Feels a little wrong to me. But hey.. perhaps i'm not seeing the bigger picture. I'd be interested to hear what folks like John Carmack make of the idea.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:54
Inspiration
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I could see them doing a deal with AMD for both the CPU and GPU, something like a Athlon X4 750K 3.4 GHz and a Radeon HD 7850 1GB would be ideal IMO.
And then what happens if Nvidia do a deal with another company and you end up with games that only work on certain systems. Like I said above.. feels wrong to me. I can't see Nvidia just sitting idle and watching their entire PC gaming market blown away by Valve and AMD. Or vice versa.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:55
Gormond
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It's not easy at all. That's why major game titles aren't available for Linux. They have enough trouble bringing out Mac OS versions of top games. Yes I get Valve port some games but that's probably because they all run the same or a similar graphics engine, ie, the source engine, so it's easier for them to pull it off. But all games run different engines and have different architectures.

Take World of Warcraft.. are they going to suddenly put that on Steam and develop it for Linux? Why would they. They have their own Battlenet platform.

The problem with buying a box like this is you're limiting your options. If a top game comes out that isn't compatible you're screwed. At least now you can play the game, although you may not get top end performance due to your spec being lacking. With this new box you're stuck with a limited selection of content and hardware you can't upgrade yourself.

Feels a little wrong to me. But hey.. perhaps i'm not seeing the bigger picture. I'd be interested to hear what folks like John Carmack make of the idea.
They currently port the vast majority of games to the PS3 which is much tougher task as it runs on totally different hardware, if they can do that they can make it work on Linux using PC hardware and OpenGL.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:56
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Great news.

Steam have single handedly saved PC gaming and put money back into developers hands from titles long thought non-profitable. They seem to care about both the consumer, and the developer which is basically a win-win for all involved.

I've said the Steam model will be on consoles eventually. Second hand console games do nothing for the developers, and what with the mass availabilty of high speed broadband it seems silly not to embrace a digital delivery service and put the money to the developers where it should go, instead of lining GAME's pockets.

I'd imagine the Steam Box will be a fairly powerful, mass produced PC which requires a Steam account to access games. I'd also hazard a guess that you will be able to play your entire library of games on the Box, otherwise people won't buy it. My only concern is the control systems. Take the GTA series, GTAIV is compatible with gamepads and works from the getgo, but GTA3, VC and SA require some tweaking to work with pads (I use Xpadder). This would mean a lot of the older games would need to be configured to work with a pad from the getgo. Likewise some games require a keyboard and mouse, how this will transfer to a console environment from what is essentially a PC game would be tricky.

All good news though.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:59
Gormond
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And then what happens if Nvidia do a deal with another company and you end up with games that only work on certain systems. Like I said above.. feels wrong to me. I can't see Nvidia just sitting idle and watching their entire PC gaming market blown away by Valve and AMD. Or vice versa.
Your thinking of this like a PC though, think of it more like a games console like the PS3 or Xbox, if people buy it then developers will make games for it.
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Old 10-12-2012, 12:59
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Great news.

Steam have single handedly saved PC gaming and put money back into developers hands from titles long thought non-profitable. They seem to care about both the consumer, and the developer which is basically a win-win for all involved.

I've said the Steam model will be on consoles eventually. Second hand console games do nothing for the developers, and what with the mass availabilty of high speed broadband it seems silly not to embrace a digital delivery service and put the money to the developers where it should go, instead of lining GAME's pockets.

I'd imagine the Steam Box will be a fairly powerful, mass produced PC which requires a Steam account to access games. I'd also hazard a guess that you will be able to play your entire library of games on the Box, otherwise people won't buy it. My only concern is the control systems. Take the GTA series, GTAIV is compatible with gamepads and works from the getgo, but GTA3, VC and SA require some tweaking to work with pads (I use Xpadder). This would mean a lot of the older games would need to be configured to work with a pad from the getgo. Likewise some games require a keyboard and mouse, how this will transfer to a console environment from what is essentially a PC game would be tricky.

All good news though.
Or it could be made perfectly clear that they won't work with a pad, at least officially. And from launch on, any games that will work on the Steambox will require pads to work.
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Old 10-12-2012, 13:01
Gormond
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I'd also hazard a guess that you will be able to play your entire library of games on the Box, otherwise people won't buy it.
I don't think this will be the case, I think just like the PS4 and NextBox, games will have to be individually ported to it which will also mean having gamepad support and so forth.
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Old 10-12-2012, 13:02
cat666
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It's not easy at all. That's why major game titles aren't available for Linux. They have enough trouble bringing out Mac OS versions of top games. Yes I get Valve port some games but that's probably because they all run the same or a similar graphics engine, ie, the source engine, so it's easier for them to pull it off. But all games run different engines and have different architectures.

Take World of Warcraft.. are they going to suddenly put that on Steam and develop it for Linux? Why would they. They have their own Battlenet platform.

The problem with buying a box like this is you're limiting your options. If a top game comes out that isn't compatible you're screwed. At least now you can play the game, although you may not get top end performance due to your spec being lacking. With this new box you're stuck with a limited selection of content and hardware you can't upgrade yourself.

Feels a little wrong to me. But hey.. perhaps i'm not seeing the bigger picture. I'd be interested to hear what folks like John Carmack make of the idea.
It won't replace PC gaming, it will work alongside it, like the XboX and PS3 do now. At the end of the day Steam have a massive library of games which are only playable by PC users. Therefore there is a huge market for these games which Steam currently cannot reach. The console users have to buy second hand copies, which gives no money to anyone who has made the game. Plus these copies are still likely to be more expensive than the Steam sales.

Anyway, SteamBox will not replace PC's, it isn't intended too.
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