Valve said to be working on 'Steam Box' gaming console with partners

Discussion in 'Frontpage news' started by BetA, Mar 3, 2012.

  1. BetA

    BetA Ancient Guru

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    I didnt found the News anywhere, so i thought im gonna post it...
    Greetz BetA

    Exclusive: Valve said to be working on 'Steam Box' gaming console with partners, could announce at GDC

    Recently there's been chatter that Valve — the company behind the massively popular gaming service Steam — has been considering getting into the hardware business. Specifically, there have been rumors that the company has been toying with the idea of creating a proper set-top console which could potentially pose a threat to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Valve co-founder Gabe Newell even recently told Penny Arcade: "Well, if we have to sell hardware we will."

    At a glance that would simply be interesting fodder for a gaming forum debate, but we've uncovered information that suggests that not only has Valve been secretly working on gaming hardware for the living room, but that the company is actively pursuing a strategy which would place Steam at the center of an open gaming universe that mirrors what Google has done with Android. Backing up that concept, in the same interview we quote above, Newell says that Valve doesn't really want to do hardware on its own, stating, "We'd rather hardware people that are good at manufacturing and distributing hardware do [hardware]. We think it's important enough that if that's what we end up having to do, then that's what we end up having to do."

    That jibes pretty well with this rumored arrangement.

    According to sources, the company has been working on a hardware spec and associated software which would make up the backbone of a "Steam Box." The actual devices may be made by a variety of partners, and the software would be readily available to any company that wants to get in the game.

    Adding fuel to that fire is a rumor that the Alienware X51 may have been designed with an early spec of the system in mind, and will be retroactively upgradable to the software.

    Apparently meetings were held during CES to demo a hand-built version of the device to potential partners. We're told that the basic specs of the Steam Box include a Core i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and an NVIDIA GPU. The devices will be able to run any standard PC titles, and will also allow for rival gaming services (like EA's Origin) to be loaded up.

    Part of the goal of establishing a baseline for hardware, we're told, is that it will give developers a clear lifecycle for their products, with changes possibly coming every three to four years. Additionally, there won't be a required devkit, and there will be no licensing fees to create software for the platform.

    We're hearing that a wide variety of USB peripherals will be compatible with the boxes, though it will likely ship with a proprietary controller. It's possible that the controller will even allow for swappable components, meaning that it can be reconfigured depending on the type of game you're playing. Think that sounds odd? Well Valve filed a patent for such a device last year.

    Valvepatent

    [​IMG]

    Additionally, we're told that the kind of biometrics Valve uses in game testing will somehow be incorporated into these devices. Sources of ours say that the realtime biometric feedback in games will be a sea-change for users. To put it more succinctly, the sentiment we've heard is: "You won't ever look back." These biometric devices could come in the form of a bracelet, or be part of the standard controller.

    The consoles will also take advantage of Steam's "Big Picture" mode, a feature Valve touted last year at GDC, but has yet to release to the public. According to the company's press release in 2011 "With big picture mode, gaming opportunities for Steam partners and customers become possible via PCs and Macs on any TV or computer display in the house."

    The most interesting piece of this puzzle may be related to that statement. According to sources, the Steam Box isn't intended to just clash with current gaming consoles. Rather, Valve wants to take Apple and its forthcoming new Apple TV products head-on. Newell has clear questions about Apple's strategy, telling the The Seattle Times "On the platform side, it's sort of ominous that the world seems to be moving away from open platforms," adding that "They build a shiny sparkling thing that attracts users and then they control people's access to those things."

    The Steam Box could be unveiled at GDC, though we're also hearing that the company may wait until E3 this year to show off what it's been working on.

    One thing is for sure, however: if these rumors turn out to be correct, there could be a whole new kind of battle for control of your living room happening in the near future. Of course, much of this is pieced together from a variety of sources, and there could be moving parts which we can't see. Some of this information could change.

    We've reached out to Valve for comment, and will update the post with any new information we receive


    source: theVerge.com


     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2012
  2. dchalf10

    dchalf10 Banned

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    I hope it's true because if anything can push PC gaming forward it's mainstream marketed PC hardware...discrete GPUs etc are all for the minority who build their own at the moment.

    But my main hope is that this is the catalyst for gamepad support in PC games becoming a hard standard.

    I just installed the gamepad for for ME2 a few hours ago...soooooooo much better.
     
  3. zhengzhoudave

    zhengzhoudave Master Guru

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    WTF have you been takin mate?
     
  4. Xzibit

    Xzibit Banned

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    :facepalm:
    Hope Nokia, LG, Samsung, Apple, EA, AMD, Nvidia, Intel also will make their own console.
     

  5. Xendance

    Xendance Ancient Guru

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    :|

    That is all.
     
  6. Texter

    Texter Ancient Guru

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    First impression: nice build up to an April fools joke. But it would be fun to see a SteamBox that can run PC games maxed out at 1080p.
     
  7. thatguy91

    thatguy91 Ancient Guru

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    Problem with any console is no matter how good they are to start off with, by their end of model life they are grossly outdated. Just look at Xbox 360 and PS3. Sure, developers have had time to make things look artificially better on them, but if all they had to work with was PC (open ended upgraded-ness), games would be far ahead of what they are now. Like I said before, don't mistake poor graphics and effects ported from consoles masked by the post-processing power of the PC for something which is much better than it actually is.
     
  8. DarkKnightDude

    DarkKnightDude Maha Guru

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    I dunno, looks like a possibly expensive computer to me.
     
  9. Gromuhl'Djun

    Gromuhl'Djun Ancient Guru

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    Launch title: Half-Life 3!
     
  10. AbjectBlitz

    AbjectBlitz Ancient Guru

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    I think this is an awsome idea, it would open up PC games to the masses without the usual crappy restrictions that consoles have on proprietary peripherals and control schemes etc.

    It would also be vastly more powerful than a traditional console.

    Also no devkits and the like would be a huge bonus for developers and not like it would take much additional work porting PC games to the steambox.

    Would require a huge marketing push to take on MS and Sony though and their crappy fanboys.
     

  11. AbjectBlitz

    AbjectBlitz Ancient Guru

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    Even better, saturate the console market and let the open platform win.
     
  12. zhengzhoudave

    zhengzhoudave Master Guru

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    I want valve to do this so it will outsell xbox! But I'm scared about the inevitable shift in focus from steam PC support towards a more console orientated business model! It's inevitable that they too will one day be like the big boys saying "why bother with a port, ****ing pirates" If Valve did that - PC gaming really could die!
     
  13. FULMTL

    FULMTL Ancient Guru

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    So will it have a DVD drive?
     
  14. WhiteLightning

    WhiteLightning Don Illuminati Staff Member

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    Cant beat the Ps4 though lol

    [​IMG]
     
  15. airbud7

    airbud7 Ancient Guru

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  16. Seref

    Seref Ancient Guru

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    So it's basically a PC in a console format for people of the Lesser Race (console gamers)?

    If it plays all the PC titles, does that mean it will run some kind of Steam interface over some implementation of Windows? I guess it would have to if they also claim that competitor services (like Origin) will be supported.
     
  17. S†v0r

    S†v0r Banned

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    That looks like a MediaMarket prebuild PC config with steam stamp on it, idk if i would call it a gaming console. :p
     
  18. The Laughing Ma

    The Laughing Ma Ancient Guru

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    You do know this is a joke right? That this whole topic is a joke, most likely a build up to some big April fools day gag.

    Just read what is being claimed

    A system as powerful as a high end gaming rig that is being sold to compete with more dedicated focused systems (in terms of hardware and on chip integration), a system that will not charge for people to develop and has NO SDK, a system that will play anyone else games and will allow you to install other peoples software delivery content.

    Really, is no one else seeing the joke. Valve will spend a lot of money to get a system in place that already exists in the form of ANY gaming PC that has Steam installed on it?

    Good yarn but the scent of b*ll**** is strong in this one.
     
  19. Corrupt^

    Corrupt^ Ancient Guru

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    Tbh let's just make a gaming PC, slap on some group policies so it's protected from idiots and then cash in.
     
  20. CronoGraal

    CronoGraal Ancient Guru

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    i got a better idea

    let's make a console with hardware you can upgrade. stuff like the cpu/gpu, power supply (incase you need to in the future), and maybe new drives incase we need to support new formats! maybe in the future you can download entirely different operating systems and play games comfortably with keyboard/mouse AND controllers!










    owait.

    it's a pc. :D
     

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