Valve was in the news this week for their surprise announcements that they gradually revealed each day within 48 hours. They have concluded it with their last announcement — and it is not Half Life 3.
Valve’s first announcement was Steam OS. A free to distribute Operation System based on Linux. You can read more about Steam OS here.
Valve’s second announcement was Steam Machines. Steam OS will be shipped with each Steam Machine. Valve announced that they are collaborating with various partners to bring Steam Machines to the retail market. Steam Machines is basically what was rumored about Steam Box.
Many people were expecting them to announce Half Life 3 or at least a new game exclusive to their Steam OS and Steam Machines. Instead, as it turned out, they announced a new controller, presumably, to be used by Steam Machines or Steam OS installed hardware. The controller has dual trackpads, haptic feedback from dual linear resonant actuators, a touch screen, and physical buttons. It looks weird to say the least.
Valve has promised that the controller will support all games in Steam library through a Legacy mode, treating this controller as Keyboard and Mouse. You can read the official description of Steam controller below
A different kind of gamepad
We set out with a singular goal: bring the Steam experience, in its entirety, into the living-room. We knew how to build the user interface, we knew how to build a machine, and even an operating system. But that still left input — our biggest missing link. We realized early on that our goals required a new kind of input technology — one that could bridge the gap from the desk to the living room without compromises. So we spent a year experimenting with new approaches to input and we now believe we’ve arrived at something worth sharing and testing with you.
So with this new announcement, Valve has finally showed their intention on entering the market that is formerly targeted at console gamers. Couch gaming was always a big factor for console gaming. Now that Valve has revealed Steam Machines and Steam Controller, it will be interesting to see how Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft respond to it.
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