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?

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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 Parent 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 Parent 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 Parent 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 Parent Score: 3

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 Parent 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 Parent 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 Parent Score: 3