Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 26th Nov 2013 18:31 UTC
Games

Valve's official Steam Machine prototype isn't cheap, but it won't be the only Steam-powered video-game console available come 2014. This morning, iBuyPower revealed a prototype of its own upcoming Steam Machine, which will go on sale for just $499 next year. For the price of an Xbox One, the computer will offer a multicore AMD CPU and a discrete AMD Radeon R9 270 graphics card - that's a $180 GPU all by itself - and come with Valve's Steam Controller as part of the package deal.

That's an absolute steal. This is exactly what Valve is betting on: for the same price, an x86 SteamBox will be more powerful than the new consoles. with SteamOS, it has all the convenience of a console, too. With the launch titles for the two new consoles being total and utter garbage, the argument "but SteamOS has no games!" is moot.

I can't wait until CES coming January when Valve will unveil its publishing partners. That's the make-or-break moment. If SteamOS will get all the same major titles as the consoles, why on earth would anyone want a limited, locked-down, proprietary, slower console?

Order by: Score:
Because that's what they know
by jasutton on Tue 26th Nov 2013 18:44 UTC
jasutton
Member since:
2006-03-28

In the nerd population, there's likely to be a great response to Valve's initiative, but I'm not holding out for the unwashed masses of the general populace.

Reply Score: 5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Steam has more active subscribers than XBL, so I'm not so sure about that.

Reply Score: 4

robmv Member since:
2006-08-12

After the XBox One digital only policies backlash, I can't see console users going in masses for a Steam Box, at least not yet. If that happen that will be hypocrisy

Reply Score: 3

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

After the XBox One digital only policies backlash, I can't see console users going in masses for a Steam Box, at least not yet. If that happen that will be hypocrisy


This. One thing that has kept me from putting a PC in the living room is wanting something with a form factor that is suitable for the living room, in a package that I wouldn't have to build myself, and at an affordable price. Seems like these Steam Machines are right up my alley, esp if I can side-load emulators on them and watch whatever local videos I want.

But the other thing is being able to actually OWN my games, instead of renting them from Steam. As soon as they offer games that are guaranteed to always work, whether Steam continues to exist or not, I'll be on board. I don't really care if it requires an online check every now and then, as long as there is a contract somewhere that is LEGALLY BINDING (meaning, people go to jail if it's broken), that guarantees consumers that the games will be fullly unlocked once there are no servers to authenticate them anymore.

One day in the future, when (NOT if) Steam goes offline, some of you are going to be out hundreds of dollars, or else scouring the Internet looking for cracked versions of games you bought. Me? I say no thanks.

Reply Score: 2

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Its not exactly renting as its one flat fee up front for as long as steam is around. If you aren't paying a recurring charge for an item, I don't think you can call it rent.

I was very against steam as well in the beginning for the same reasons. Well, Its been around for a while now ( 10 years). Its not quite fly by night. I can still play those games I bought 10 years ago on any modern system. So there isn't any possibility of reselling games, but its kind of like being able to bring all of your 360 games along for the xbox one. or what Sony did with PS/PS2.

The outrage against the xbox one, was the idea that you had a physical disk that you couldn't resell, without permission. That's counter-intuitive based on our experience and just greedy.

Reply Score: 4

jebb Member since:
2006-07-06

Ordinarily I'd agree with you on owning the games, but Valve's trojan horse here is pricing (think Steam sales). Below a certain psychological threshold, I tend not to care too much about those issues, to be honest. Heck, I know people who will go and buy games during the Steam sales because of the low price, and not even make the time to play them...

Reply Score: 3

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Well, yeah... I might buy one for $10, but this is not a real contender to consoles, IMO.

Reply Score: 2

Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

This.

Really difficult to take you serious after that.
One day in the future, when (NOT if) Steam goes offline, some of you are going to be out hundreds of dollars, or else scouring the Internet looking for cracked versions of games you bought. Me? I say no thanks.

I have thought about that and if I have the choice I buy from GOG or Humble. But if steam disappears I would maybe miss 5 games tops. I spent those hundreds of dollars to play the game and I did. Now that I have played them... Maybe I want to revisit 1% of those games after 5 years.
I have bought a lot of games from GOG that I already had bought when they came out years ago.

Bunch of FUD if you ask me.

Reply Score: 0

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

The XBox One isn't digital only, where did you get that idea? It was planned, and those plans were changed when people didn't like it. Changed like 8 months ago. The xbox one works the same way as the xbox 360.

Reply Score: 2

Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

After the XBox One digital only policies backlash, I can't see console users going in masses for a Steam Box, at least not yet. If that happen that will be hypocrisy

The difference is the sales and the 4 packs and the dozen or so Bundle sites and the all the shops that sell Steam keys and all the developers that sell them directly and so on and so fourth. I can wait for an official Steam sale or I can keep an eye on Dealzon, ShinyLoot, Amazon etc. to find games for 80% off or 5 for a dollar.

Compared to $60 up front cost for a game with another $10-30 in DLC thats on the damn disc for a regular console title.

The other huge factor is that PC games once ported have backwards compatibility forever, theres no wondering if the next console will allow me to play my current games, especially when Steam even supports ancient DOS games in a DOSBox wrapper.

All in Steam, even with it being digital distribution only and limited to only games that have been ported to Linux the SteamBox is by far and away the best option.

Add to this that you can wipe the OS and install Linux and XBMC or MythTV and other game loaders like Desura and Gameolith as well as access DRM free and freeware games all with HTPC capabilities.

The only thing the consoles have are first party exclusives. Everything else can and probably will get ported to SteamBox/Linux since the game engine and middleware houses are lining up to do so already which will allow many devs to make ports of existing games relatively cheaply.

Why do game devs want to port to SteamBox? Simple, they get a much higher percentage of the sale then they do after coughing up for the Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo dev kits and licensing and the disc production and store shelf space etc. Valve lets them keep all of that making it far more lucrative then the standard consoles.

Reply Score: 3

smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

Steam has more active subscribers than XBL

but not by a huge margin

with 65 million free steam accounts and 48 million XBL accounts (half of them gold) i'd say ms is in the better position
and let's better not look at PSNs 110 million accounts...

Reply Score: 4

Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 26th Nov 2013 18:49 UTC
shmerl
Member since:
2010-06-08

How will AMD GPU driver fare on Linux?

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by shmerl
by _txf_ on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:36 UTC in reply to "Comment by shmerl"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

How will AMD GPU driver fare on Linux?


badly. Not only is it less stable, it also is less performant...

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:01 UTC in reply to "Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Easily fixed by installing Windows ;-)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:22 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

That may be, but it's not relevant for Steam OS really. I'd say, Nvidia based Steam Machine would be a better option.

Edited 2013-11-26 21:22 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

That may be, but it's not relevant for Steam OS really. I'd say, Nvidia based Steam Machine would be a better option.


Well it is, because they could have used a proven gaming platform (Windows) that had decent 3D drivers for all 3 of the major GPU manufacturers or they use Linux which only really has one GPU manufacturer that provides good drivers.

Edited 2013-11-26 21:40 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:41 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

With that attitude, we'd all still be using DOS.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:43 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Errr no.

Windows is still the better technical choice for playing PC games (which is what a Steambox is, with a controller).

Valve could just made the haptic games controller and the box and have sold that and it would have been just as effective. No having to port games or anything else in the short term.

Sorry you really have to do a better argument than that Thom ... because your comment doesn't make any sense.

Edited 2013-11-26 21:47 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:46 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Yes, and for a long, long time DOS was a far better option for gaming than Windows.

With your attitude, nobody would have ever moved to Windows, and nobody would have ever tried to improve the gaming situation on Windows. However, because there were people who wanted to improve gaming on Windows (in this case, Microsoft itself; in the case of SteamBox, Valve+hardware manufacturers), Windows eventually turned into the better option.

That's what's happening right now. SteamOS will make Linux (or, at least, Valve's Linux) a viable option for gaming. Because, you know, there's no reason why it can't.

Reply Score: 6

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:52 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Yes, and for a long, long time DOS was a far better option for gaming than Windows.


We aren't talking about the ancient past.

With your attitude, nobody would have ever moved to Windows, and nobody would have ever tried to improve the gaming situation on Windows. However, because there were people who wanted to improve gaming on Windows (in this case, Microsoft itself; in the case of SteamBox, Valve+hardware manufacturers), Windows eventually turned into the better option.


Because the person that was pushing the OS was actively trying to help the game makers ... not the other way around (which is now).

Most Linux contributors aren't interested in improving the consumer experience. They are interested in improving the kernel for their own gains (server hardware and smartphones).

The driving motivation behind distros and the kernel aren't the same as those as what Microsoft wanted ... a consumer level OS.

That's what's happening right now. SteamOS will make Linux (or, at least, Valve's Linux) a viable option for gaming. Because, you know, there's no reason why it can't.


Debatable. If most of the money is being made on PS4 and Xbox One, they will do half arsed ports (PC games have suffered already from thing.

So I could get a PS4 which the game is guaranteed to work on with no problems or a Steambox with a crappy port.

Comon be realistic.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:47 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Valve could just made the synaptics games controller and the box and have sold that and it would have been just as effective. No having to port games or anything else in the short term.


No. They would have had to be dependent on Microsoft - and as history shows, Microsoft is a bad business partner. With Windows 8, the writing is on the wall where Windows is going - and there's no place for Steam where it's going.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:53 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

No. They would have had to be dependent on Microsoft - and as history shows, Microsoft is a bad business partner. With Windows 8, the writing is on the wall where Windows is going - and there's no place for Steam where it's going.


Only for a short amount of time. You aren't thinking about Migration. Migration takes time, I guarantee a lot of their library doesn't work with Linux and far few Triple A games, it is far better to use an existing known platform that works and port over slowly than try forcing people on a death march.

This will hurt their customers, this will hurt them.

It is foolish.

Edited 2013-11-26 21:54 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by leech on Tue 26th Nov 2013 23:07 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

Errr no.

Windows is still the better technical choice for playing PC games (which is what a Steambox is, with a controller).

Valve could just made the haptic games controller and the box and have sold that and it would have been just as effective. No having to port games or anything else in the short term.

Sorry you really have to do a better argument than that Thom ... because your comment doesn't make any sense.


It actually isn't (and never really has been) the TECHNICAL superiority of Windows over Linux that made it 'a better gaming platform'. It's always been due to the high volume of users that the game makers targeted Windows.

Technically, Linux is better, as Valve's own benchmarks have shown. It's a tighter kernel overall than the Windows one.

Also as Thom properly compared this too, DOS vs Windows days. Most publishers still shied away from games on Windows back then because DOS really allowed full on hardware access whereas Windows did not until DirectX came along, and even then in the early days that was extremely spotty. Most of the games started getting Windows versions simply due to demand, since most people either had issues with the DOS versions, or figured Windows wouldn't run them anymore. And after Windows ME that was true anyhow.

Reply Score: 5

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Wed 27th Nov 2013 18:51 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Technically, Linux is better, as Valve's own benchmarks have shown. It's a tighter kernel overall than the Windows one.


It was a few frames per second (I believe it was well over 200 FPS) so the percentage increased was negligible. We have no idea how the Windows box was configured.

Also they were testing it against a Direct X 9 games engine. Direct X 10 and above is faster. Valve don't have a Direct X 10 engine.

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 26th Nov 2013 23:49 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Windows is still the better technical choice for playing PC games


Not really. Windows is technically inferior to Linux. You may mean that some drivers are better on Windows than on Linux (like the AMD case above), but that's the problem of the manufacturer, not of the OS. When drivers behave properly, Linux is unquestionably better.

Reply Score: 0

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Wed 27th Nov 2013 18:46 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Superior how?

I can say "My bicycle is superior to car in terms of speed" but this only applies when there is heavy road traffic.

The criteria you are judging something by is important in defining what is superior.

Edited 2013-11-27 18:52 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by WereCatf on Wed 27th Nov 2013 06:14 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Windows is still the better technical choice for playing PC games (which is what a Steambox is, with a controller).

Valve could just made the haptic games controller and the box and have sold that and it would have been just as effective. No having to port games or anything else in the short term.


I disagree with you, but I won't argue with you about that. I will, however, point to the fact that you're wholly missing the point of Steam Boxes: they're meant for the Average Janes and Joes, the teenage kids, all the folks who either don't have the time or will to manage their own computers or maintain them or whatever. Valve has full access to all the source-code they need to make the system as idiot-proof as needed and to have it all automatically update in the background and have an easy-to-use, big-screen UI. Windows most definitely does not have a good UI for a controller-driven, big-screen experience.

Edited 2013-11-27 06:14 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Wed 27th Nov 2013 18:46 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Windows most definitely does not have a good UI for a controller-driven, big-screen experience.


No you are correct.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 26th Nov 2013 23:47 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Valve aren't interested in a proven platform - they want to make a new one. Or rather to "prove" Linux. So that's what they are doing.

Edited 2013-11-26 23:48 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by shmerl
by lucas_maximus on Wed 27th Nov 2013 21:38 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by shmerl"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

They don't want to prove linux. They want to prove SteamOS.

This won't help the greater ecosystem or the community.

What is the point of open source if it doesn't benefit everyone?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by Kivada on Wed 27th Nov 2013 08:33 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

Well it is, because they could have used a proven gaming platform (Windows) that had decent 3D drivers for all 3 of the major GPU manufacturers or they use Linux which only really has one GPU manufacturer that provides good drivers.


Wrong, Gabe Newell already stated that the entire idea of the SteamBox was to get the hell away from Microsoft products.

They already knew they'd be losing compatibility with most of their library, but that is par for the course for game consoles, the few that have had it are actually the exceptions to the rule.

They also knew that the only real hurdle they had to surmount was getting the game engine and middleware devs on board, hence why they also put so much effort into SDL2 and why they have almost assuredly been leaning on them to make Linux ports of their software that is the underpinnings of most games to make porting by the game devs as cheap and painless as possible.

With every piece of middleware or game engine tech that gets ported theres then a flurry of new ports made within a few weeks. Not all of them are on Steam yet for various reasons but they have been ported to Linux.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by Ford Prefect on Thu 28th Nov 2013 01:24 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

Windows is such an inferior platform for a gaming console. Does Windows run on the XBOX? No? Guess why.

Windows and hardware heterogeneity are the two reasons that drove gamers away from the PC in the first place. Valve fixes both things by setting up a minimal game-centered system on a controlled set of certified hardware setups.

You cannot do that software-wise on a Windows platform. However you can setup a barebone Linux system and use that to create exactly the experience you want (see Android). And you have control on every layer of the system (and much fewer needed layers to start with).

Reply Score: 1

No games on SteamOS ?!?
by beowuff on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:18 UTC
beowuff
Member since:
2006-07-26

"but SteamOS has no games!"

What? Won't SteamOS already be able to play games I've purchased that run on linux? Because... I already have many of them...

Reply Score: 2

RE: No games on SteamOS ?!?
by linux-lover on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:55 UTC in reply to "No games on SteamOS ?!?"
linux-lover Member since:
2011-04-25

Yes but there are few recent AAA games on Linux, and none exclusive so the argument being made is that it is the platform that is most lacking in games compared to other consoles and Windows.

I am a linux user and I think that SteamOS has a real shot. But AMD needs to get their shit together with fglrx (linux catalyst for those who aren't aware). Either that or get mesa/gallium3d radeon drivers on performance parity with Windows catalyst and get them to GL 4.x compliance (the latest dev versions are at 3.3).

Reply Score: 2

RE: No games on SteamOS ?!?
by kurkosdr on Wed 27th Nov 2013 13:42 UTC in reply to "No games on SteamOS ?!?"
kurkosdr Member since:
2011-04-11



What? Won't SteamOS already be able to play games I've purchased that run on linux? Because... I already have many of them...

There, there is the million dollar question. Steam will be probably short on native Linux games initially, so if SteamOS can't "sideload" native Linux games available outside of Steam, it will be a major drawback.

Reply Score: 2

It will compete with Apple branded TVs
by ronaldst on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:32 UTC
ronaldst
Member since:
2005-06-29

Oh wait... It won't because there's no market in the living room. No one wants another box. There's a reason why Microsoft is investing in media entertainment to help sell their XBox One.

I already have a big rigs. And surely I don't need another one.

This will flop hard. It will make ChromeOS will look like a runaway success.

All the action is on "smartphones".

Reply Score: 2

Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

Oh wait... It won't because there's no market in the living room. No one wants another box. There's a reason why Microsoft is investing in media entertainment to help sell their XBox One.

I already have a big rigs. And surely I don't need another one.

This will flop hard. It will make ChromeOS will look like a runaway success.

All the action is on "smartphones".


Wrong, Everyone still wants a game console, and thats what the Steambox is, a PC turned into a game console, with one major advantage, it's upgradeable and will have backwards compatibility for as long as there is still an x86 instruction set I.E. forever.

Reply Score: 3

Online Aspect
by DrillSgt on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:44 UTC
DrillSgt
Member since:
2005-12-02

The main reason some people pick certain consoles now is they have friends that play games on those consoles. Look at any of the games that are available for multiple platforms, such as Call of Duty, Battlefield, etc. If you have it for xbox, you can't play with or against someone who has the same game on ps3, or on the pc. They would have to have the same system as you in order to be able to play with them. That is where a steambox could shine, by allowing people on the pc to be able to play with people on the steambox. Will that happen? Only time will tell.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Online Aspect
by Kivada on Wed 27th Nov 2013 08:43 UTC in reply to "Online Aspect"
Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

The main reason some people pick certain consoles now is they have friends that play games on those consoles. Look at any of the games that are available for multiple platforms, such as Call of Duty, Battlefield, etc. If you have it for xbox, you can't play with or against someone who has the same game on ps3, or on the pc. They would have to have the same system as you in order to be able to play with them. That is where a steambox could shine, by allowing people on the pc to be able to play with people on the steambox. Will that happen? Only time will tell.


Already happening, Steambox is just a standard PC with a stripped down Linux install that boots into Steam on Linux in Big Picture mode. Seeing as how most game servers already run on Linux this is a nonissue. The only exception I've got currently is the Worms game that got included in one of the HIBs, since the devs are greedy morons that have made like 15 games on the same basic concept and apparently not particularly bright coders the game doesn't allow users of any one OS play against the users on any other OS.

What that means though is that at the very least though is that people that play that Worms game on SteamBox will still be able to play against people running the game on Linux, just not against people on Mac and Windows.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by stabbyjones
by stabbyjones on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:50 UTC
stabbyjones
Member since:
2008-04-15

If it was Nvidia graphics it would be an instant buy. Integrated psu is a big plus for something that size.

The game streaming from an existing Windows pc also makes all the game arguments moot. Right now, I own 109 games on steam and only 30 of those are Windows only.

I'm buying a steam os box for sure. It will have the ability to play and steam over lan thousands more games than the Xbox/ps4.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Comment by stabbyjones
by lucas_maximus on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:04 UTC in reply to "Comment by stabbyjones"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

I gotta keep my gaming PC on while I use another PC to play the game on. Sounds f--king stupid.

I have a simpler solution. Play the games on the PC or hook your existing TV upto the TV and push it behind the cabinet if your other half complains.

Edited 2013-11-26 21:05 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones
by Kivada on Wed 27th Nov 2013 08:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by stabbyjones"
Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

The streaming option is there for people with giant i7 extreme edition w/ 4x GTX Titan SLi setups.

Which are hot and noisy.

With streaming though you could have that box as a game server over a Gbit network stream your games to a fanless Atom or Brazos HTPC system connected to the TV and have the same level of performance.

Reply Score: 2

XBox is turning into an appliance
by tomz on Tue 26th Nov 2013 19:55 UTC
tomz
Member since:
2010-05-06

I agree with the discussion on "this week in tech". The XBox is now a blu-ray player, a skype videophone, roku box and the rest.

The Steam machine I'm really interested in since I want a really good Linux box to attach to my 2560x1600 (old 30" Apple Cinema) display, then maybe 4k. I hope it has loads of ram but is still expandable, and runs a standard Distro (or something like the Raspberry Pi does - Steamdora? Steambian?).

But can it mine bitcoins?

Reply Score: 4

Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Tue 26th Nov 2013 20:06 UTC
ilovebeer
Member since:
2011-08-08

With the launch titles for the two new consoles being total and utter garbage, the argument "but SteamOS has no games!" is moot.

That's an absurd claim to make. First, the big name launch titles are selling. No surprise there. Next, the consoles themselves are selling. Again, no surprise there. Also, what does steam have that can actually compete with the massive juggernaut titles Sony & Microsoft have in their corner? The only thing that comes close is Half-Life and that's just one title which will have the world to prove to gamers when/if another one comes out.

Steam has a lot to overcome and even more to prove. If it doesn't get those huge titles already available on already available next-gen's then it's either sunk or has a long slow uphill climb ahead of it. To say Steam having no games is moot is absolutely ridiculous -- games are everything to gamers and if you want $499+ of their hard earned money, you damn well better have some blockbuster titles to go along with it.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by ilovebeer
by jebb on Tue 26th Nov 2013 20:51 UTC in reply to "Comment by ilovebeer"
jebb Member since:
2006-07-06

Also, what does steam have that can actually compete with the massive juggernaut titles Sony & Microsoft have in their corner?

Portal!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by ilovebeer
by Kivada on Wed 27th Nov 2013 08:50 UTC in reply to "Comment by ilovebeer"
Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

The ability to run every PC game since the DOS days and offer the game devs a much larger slice of the profits as well as huge sales for the end user.

Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo have none of those things.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Wed 27th Nov 2013 17:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by ilovebeer"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

The ability to run every PC game since the DOS days and offer the game devs a much larger slice of the profits as well as huge sales for the end user.

That's quite a claim. I haven't seen a single shred of evidence to back it up so perhaps you can provide that for us. Or maybe you're confusing Steam OS's ability to stream an input (for example, a game running on your Windows/Mac box), which is not at all impressive, as being capable of playing/emulating Windows & Mac games.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by ilovebeer
by Kivada on Thu 28th Nov 2013 01:31 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by ilovebeer"
Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

The main thing that is missing is the game engine and middleware which Valve is actively getting those devs on board with Linux.

Even old DOS games are starting to make their way to Steam for Linux, I recently picked up I Have No Mouth Yet I Must Scream. The first Fallout has been available on Linux for a couple of years now via the Desura store.

And unlike Windows you don't have to buy the right version of Windows to have backward compatibility, all that matters to the game devs are if their engine and middleware are there or not.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Thu 28th Nov 2013 16:12 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by ilovebeer"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Now I'm convinced you're confused about what a pc running Steam OS is capable of. To be clear, I'll quote directly from http://store.steampowered.com/livingroom/SteamOS/ for you:

You can play all your Windows and Mac games on your SteamOS machine, too. Just turn on your existing computer and run Steam as you always have - then your SteamOS machine can stream those games over your home network straight to your TV!

You're claiming that Steam OS will have "the ability to run every PC game since the DOS days and offer the game devs a much larger slice of the profits as well as huge sales for the end user". I haven't seen Valve or any credible source make such a claim so maybe you can share where you heard this.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: Comment by ilovebeer
by Kivada on Fri 29th Nov 2013 09:40 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by ilovebeer"
Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

Nope, as a Linux user I already know what it's capable of.

And you don't have to tell your customers that they need to buy Windows Pro or Ultimate for the XP mode which even then doesn't help them with Win32 games.

All you need is the engines and middleware, the rest will follow as the platform grows.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Fri 29th Nov 2013 15:21 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by ilovebeer"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

So there is no credible source for your claim, it's just over-ambitious wishful thinking on your part. I'm pretty sure everyone knew that anyways.

Reply Score: 3

consoles
by ezraz on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:04 UTC
ezraz
Member since:
2012-06-20

Reason 1 - My PS2 has sat under a TV, outlived 4 of them, sucking in dust, and running for over 12 years now. Millions of hours of entertainment without a single hardware issue or upgrade. It will fire up right now with no OS upgrade needed. That's very rare for digital devices and I don't want to buy another one for another 12 years. No Xbox overheating fear in my house, I have an old house, I don't need more fire worries.

Reason 2 - I don't really care about whatever the hottest shooter ultraviolent game is, I can't stand them. In fact the only games I can stand are sports games and puzzles, or innovative indie style games, and PS has plenty of those. I probably buy a game a year at most, so I'm far more interested in the quality and depth of the games, not the popularity. Bad music is popular too but I don't need it.

Reason 3 - I work on a computer all day, when I get the living room to myself for some gaming I don't want to be on the computer. A computer to me is already for working, socializing, producing media, communications, research, and my personal data - I don't want any of that in my gaming world. Gaming world for me is to get away.

So for those three reasons, I'll be taking home a nice new PS4 with 2-3 games (madden 25, nba 2k13, maybe FIFA or GTA) and installing the PS4 into it's rightful spot where the PS2 lives, because that PS2 was probably the most entertaining and reliable thing I've ever purchased for $300.

Reply Score: 1

Big Deal
by bowkota on Tue 26th Nov 2013 21:06 UTC
bowkota
Member since:
2011-10-12

Performance is sometimes very irrelevant in consoles.

Low level access to the hardware is much more important, Karmack has talked about it extensively.
Remember how awesome Shenmue looked on the crappy old Dreamcast hardware?

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Darkmage
by Darkmage on Tue 26th Nov 2013 22:16 UTC
Darkmage
Member since:
2006-10-20

Steambox will be a success, As a media player it's going to destroy PS4/Xbox. It's not even a question. XBMC is going to be installable with a single command. Every person on the planet is going to want one when they realise it can play every media file ever. It'll be like the iPods being able to play mp3s. Suddenly that massive pirate back catalog you have just works. Throw in a bluray drive and you've just made the PS4/Xbone look like retarded media choices. This is going to take off as soon as people can start recommending it as the go-to device for media.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Darkmage
by leech on Tue 26th Nov 2013 23:17 UTC in reply to "Comment by Darkmage"
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

You mention blu-ray, I wonder if Valve (or someone) will have an official way to play Blu-rays on Linux. Last I checked it's still rather spotty (with makemkv and lxbdplayer, it's a hit and miss affair.)

Reply Score: 3

open source
by bram on Tue 26th Nov 2013 22:49 UTC
bram
Member since:
2009-04-03

I hope valve will go with an open source, stable graphics driver.
Fglrx is a liability, I would rather use a slower but open driver.

Reply Score: 2

RE: open source
by asupcb on Wed 27th Nov 2013 08:32 UTC in reply to "open source"
asupcb Member since:
2005-11-10

I use Steam on Ubuntu 12.04 with the open-source AMD driver and the games seem to work fine. Although I don't play any high end games.

Reply Score: 2

Emulators
by jgfenix on Tue 26th Nov 2013 23:08 UTC
jgfenix
Member since:
2006-05-25

This will be also a good plataform to run emulators.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Emulators
by ilovebeer on Wed 27th Nov 2013 01:31 UTC in reply to "Emulators"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Maybe as good as whatever emulators there are for Linux now.

Reply Score: 2

DRM
by Luke McCarthy on Wed 27th Nov 2013 11:06 UTC
Luke McCarthy
Member since:
2005-07-06

This has exactly the same DRM policy as the original announcement for Xbox One before the backlast (i.e. you can't resell games), but why does Valve Corporation get a free pass?

Reply Score: 5

RE: DRM
by Lennie on Wed 27th Nov 2013 17:31 UTC in reply to "DRM"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I hear Valve/Steam pricing is different aka better, cheaper ?

Edited 2013-11-27 17:33 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Not *that* cheap
by protomank on Wed 27th Nov 2013 11:07 UTC
protomank
Member since:
2006-08-03

The PS4 is 100 dollars cheaper.

The XBox One comes with Kinectic hardware that, while I do not care about the voice and movement control, adds value to the console. So, the fair comparsion is with PS4, not XBox.

Again, PS4 is 399, not 499. So "same price" is really unfair here.

It seems like PS4 have a ultra fast RAM, that is essential for games. It could make games faster even with lower CPU/GPU. Loose on number of polygons, wins at transfering shaders/textures.

If the machine runs windows instead of a strimmed down version of linux or steamOS, much horsepower would be lost just to run the OS. So, a console could be better with lower hardware because of its OS and API.

Also, the motherboard and structure of consoles is highly optimized, a generic PC could loose a good bit of speed due to, for example, PIC express connections or simply the RAM, CPU and GPU being distant in the motherboard.

So, this is not so black and white that a steam machine with better GPU/CPU is better ;)

Reply Score: 3

Something to think about.
by Riba on Wed 27th Nov 2013 12:04 UTC
Riba
Member since:
2006-02-12

"why on earth would anyone want a limited, locked-down, proprietary, slower console?"

I would.

Someone mentioned that Steam box is upgradeable, and this is exactly why I am not interested and consider it its biggest drawback.

Personally, the biggest selling point of a console is the fact that the games must be working on a given hardware, and it is not you who needs to make sure your hardware is good enough to run a particular game. We can discuss the TCO when all the Steam boxes need to be upgraded in ~2 years because majority of games will need more power.

Consoles will perform fine for years to come.

Edited 2013-11-27 12:05 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Something to think about.
by Lennie on Wed 27th Nov 2013 17:33 UTC in reply to "Something to think about."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

You aren't asked to do so.

It's better to have options than no options at all.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Something to think about.
by ilovebeer on Wed 27th Nov 2013 18:11 UTC in reply to "RE: Something to think about."
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Riba makes a very good point. Btw, if options is what you want, you might as well just run Windows & WMC.. You will have way more games available (including what Steam has to offer) and as much if not more `upgrade` possibility.

I find it hilarious that Valve has gotten into the pre-built pc game and has managed to pass it off as something new, and even funnier yet that people are talking about it as if it -is- something new. Maybe Dell will start offering pc's with Steam OS pre-installed rather than Windows.

Step 1: Build a custom small-footprint pc and install Steam OS on it.
Step 2: Buy a gaming controller.
Step 3: BAM! You've created a Steam machine AKA the new hotness.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Something to think about.
by Lennie on Wed 27th Nov 2013 18:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Something to think about."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Actually modern Windows, 64-bit Windows, doesn't run DOS games anymore.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Something to think about.
by vault on Wed 27th Nov 2013 22:17 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Something to think about."
vault Member since:
2005-09-15

Actually modern Windows, 64-bit Windows, doesn't run DOS games anymore.

DOSbox works very well. It can even run Windows 3.11.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Something to think about.
by Lennie on Wed 27th Nov 2013 22:25 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Something to think about."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

It didn't run the applications I had.

Maybe mine were special as they were not games.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Something to think about.
by kurkosdr on Wed 27th Nov 2013 19:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Something to think about."
kurkosdr Member since:
2011-04-11

Maybe Dell will start offering pc's with Steam OS pre-installed rather than Windows.

Since Dell has been historically using Linux as a bargain chip when discussing Windows license prices with MS (by making a small number of models with Linux pre-installed), this might not be such a remote possibility

Edited 2013-11-27 19:12 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Backwards compatibility is a myth
by Darkmage on Fri 29th Nov 2013 01:50 UTC
Darkmage
Member since:
2006-10-20

Backwards compatibility with windows games on both windows and linux is a myth. I should know, since for the last decade I've been trying to run DirectX 1/2/3/4/5 games in wine. Submitting bug reports and pleading for the developers to complete implementing those DirectX versions. Windows itself is no longer capable of playing many of its older games as Microsoft has axed entire code paths that DirectX used to rely on.

Virtual Machine Emulation doesn't work either, because they don't wrap directx below version 8 with hardware acceleration. Try playing Warhammer: Dark Omen on any Windows or Linux PC system with 3d acceleration enabled. It won't happen without a ton of messing around on windows (hacking the .exe with hex codes etc) and on Linux you'll get a black screen and nothing else.

After 13 years of not being implemented I'm pretty certain it's safe to assume the next 13 years won't see it implemented either. Unless I win the lottery and pay for that development to occur.

This is the current todo list for wine:
http://wiki.winehq.org/DirectX-ToDo?highlight=%28todo%29 They're so busy chasing a moving target in DirectX 10/11/12 that they never bothered to finish what they started in earlier DirectX. As a result game support is a joking mismatch of directX 7-9. What they should do is finish 1-9 then focus on the newer titles. Actually get to the point where wine can be a true drop-in replacement for windows 95 to XP. Linux is already getting many modern games ported anyway. 1-2 years from now it could be hard to find windows exclusives.

Reply Score: 3

ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Or in 1-2 years from now things will more or less be the same as they are now. Windows will still be the dominating gaming platform and Linux will be the shabby alternative.

Reply Score: 2