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Valve Confirms Hardware Plans

The Valve Job Postings Page has a listing for an Engineer Electronics Engineer that seems a pretty concrete confirmation of hot rumors that Valve is planning to develop hardware of some sort (thanks Engadget). Here's the introduction with the pertinent information speaking of "whole new gaming experiences.":

For years, Valve has been all about writing software that provides great gameplay experiences. Now we’re developing hardware to enhance those experiences, and you can be a key part of making that happen. Join our highly motivated team that’s doing hardware design, prototyping, testing, and production across a wide range of platforms. We’re not talking about me-too mice and gamepads here – help us invent whole new gaming experiences.

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87 Replies. 5 pages. Viewing page 4.
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27. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:45 Nate
 
rist3903 wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 12:26:
I thought I heard that it was going to be a peripheral that would monitor various aspects of the player such as heart rate and perspiration that would then feed back into a director type ai to adjust the gaming experience.

I did not get the impression that this was going to be a standalone console type product, but rather something you plugged into your PC.

Thats something new. Haven't heard this speculation myself. If Valve developed a real cheap bluetooth wristband that did this. They could sell.

Since it isn't "me-too mice and gamepads", perhaps a really fancy controller? Or maybe a Windows based touchpad for gaming. So many possibilities. Just hope this doesn't distract them from creating new PC games.
 
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26. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:43 DG
 
Seems pretty obvious it's not a "console", if it's going to be a platform it's going to run windows or else they lose the catalogue and require the same kind of developer support that MS, Sony and Ninty need. If there's going to be a platform it's going to be a Windows PC with standardised gaming spec. More like Apple hardware than Xbox.

Still more likely it's a plug-in of some kind though. Otherwise they'd need lots of staff, and why else "across a wide range of platforms".
 
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25. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:36 WaltC
 
Bucky wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:36:
I don't have any particular attachment to the PC platform, what I do care about is the input method. Keyboard/Mouse is the superior input choice in pretty much every game genre I play, which is why I stick to the PC. Considering games these days are almost always limited to the current console generation, the extra PC hardware is going to waste anyway. Give me a beefy console with a keyboard and mouse and I'll be the first in line.

So you'd be willing to pay Valve $300-$400 for a PC-compatible console, sans monitor, as opposed to spending $600-$700, sans monitor, for a PC with at least 10x the graphics and computational power and maybe 100x + the storage capacity? Not I...;)

The great advantage to the "PC platform" is being able to upgrade your components individually, of course, which increases the PC's value as a platform by a further 10x over a console, etc.

But here's the thing--Valve isn't going to do a custom console that is incompatible with the PC platform for obvious reasons--namely, regardless of what Valve starts selling, the great mass of its software business will still come from the PC platform demand.

Therefore, whatever Valve decides to make and market, it will undoubtedly be 100% Windows-compatible...;)
 
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It is well known that I do not make mistakes--so if you should happen across a mistake in anything I have written, be assured that I did not write it!
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24. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:30 Orogogus
 
Narf2029 wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:11:
Kind of worrisome. Having a console directly associated with Steam creates pressure toward making games that run on its hardware, however old or underpowered/"affordable" it may be. Why would a publisher want to put a game on Steam if all the console-only users could not run it?

1. That's hardly different from the current situation with the 360 and PS3.

2. They have to make games towards some kind of target. Even for PC games you lose more potential customers as your system requirements go up.

3. I think there's definitely room in the market for something in between ridiculously overpriced Alienware monstrosities and Dell machines with Intel onboard graphics. People are always, always harping about how easy it is to build your own $500 gaming desktop that plays everything at high settings, but that's neither Alienware nor Dell, and to be honest it took just one bad part and 9 hours of troubleshooting for me to never want to build another computer ever again. Valve at least has incentive for more people to own gaming computers beyond making money off the hardware.
 
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23. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:26 rist3903
 
I thought I heard that it was going to be a peripheral that would monitor various aspects of the player such as heart rate and perspiration that would then feed back into a director type ai to adjust the gaming experience.

I did not get the impression that this was going to be a standalone console type product, but rather something you plugged into your PC.
 
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22. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:24 4D-Boxing
 
Bill Gates realized 30 years ago that the money was in software and not in hardware. Valve would be better off striking a deal with Sony that would integrate steam to the PS4 and a similar deal with cable providers concerning set to boxes.  
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21. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:06 Razumen
 
CJ_Parker wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 11:28:
I don't think that the Steambox will really resemble a PC (not even a stripped down one) or a console. My money is more on a set-top box for streaming games and other content to users at home.

Entering the high end console market at this point would seem unwise. Let MS and Sony duke it out. Why take an unnecessary risk by trying desperately to break into a market that requires a multi-billion $ initial investment just for an entrance fee? Not gonna happen.
And the classic PC market? Nah. Plain unattractive. They'd have to deal with fierce competition, price wars, supply & demand issues, RMAs and all that crap... nope, not gonna happen either.

Which leaves us with choice no. 3, i.e. an OnLive kind of service. Streaming services are destined to become a major part of the media landscape a few years down the road and since all of the other big corps seem to have decided on a wait&see strategy this could just be the perfect opportunity for Valve to claim a major stake in this rather new area of business. Valve have proven to be smart long term strategists. They wouldn't do just another console or just another PC. They'll do something else, something newish. Steambox = Streambox. Mark my words.

Streaming is more niche and unreliable than either consoles or PC, plus they'd still have to invest in a server farm to render those games and pump it them to the players. And did I mention streaming is shit?

No, I think it's more likely it's a standardized barebones PC that you can play Steam games on out of the box on your TV - They already have the infrastructure, a HUGE library of games, they've admitted to developing a Big-TV mode for Steam and have a decent name for themselves, I'd say it's very much possible.
 
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20. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 12:05 Burrito of Peace
 
nin wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:57:
Cutter wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:54:
No sir, I don't like it.

Well, your dislike to like ratio is about 10 to 1...




Let's be fair. If it came with a belt that had an onion attached to it, Cutter would be all over it like white and rice.
 
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19. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 11:45 Prez
 
I'm not paying attention to any more Valve news unless it concerns Half-Life. This has gone way beyond ridiculous.  
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
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18. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 11:28 CJ_Parker
 
I don't think that the Steambox will really resemble a PC (not even a stripped down one) or a console. My money is more on a set-top box for streaming games and other content to users at home.

Entering the high end console market at this point would seem unwise. Let MS and Sony duke it out. Why take an unnecessary risk by trying desperately to break into a market that requires a multi-billion $ initial investment just for an entrance fee? Not gonna happen.
And the classic PC market? Nah. Plain unattractive. They'd have to deal with fierce competition, price wars, supply & demand issues, RMAs and all that crap... nope, not gonna happen either.

Which leaves us with choice no. 3, i.e. an OnLive kind of service. Streaming services are destined to become a major part of the media landscape a few years down the road and since all of the other big corps seem to have decided on a wait&see strategy this could just be the perfect opportunity for Valve to claim a major stake in this rather new area of business. Valve have proven to be smart long term strategists. They wouldn't do just another console or just another PC. They'll do something else, something newish. Steambox = Streambox. Mark my words.
 
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17. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 11:27 nin
 
Oh you stopped working on it because you guys were bored with HL.

I think that's a bit of a stretch.

 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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16. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 11:20 RollinThundr
 
Phantom 2.0 BTW Valve how's that episode 3 of HL coming along? Oh you stopped working on it because you guys were bored with HL. Yeah good luck with your Steam console.  
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15. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 11:16 Mgshadow
 
Ok color me interested...  
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14. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:57 Necrophob
 
Eirikrautha wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:46:
The hardware will be released in episodes.

Well, they darn well better not release the motherboard and CPU in the first 2 episodes, then never get around to releasing the graphics card...

Before releasing the graphics card, they will get sidetracked by peripherals, leaving the graphics card left for dead :/
 
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13. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:57 nin
 
Cutter wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:54:
No sir, I don't like it.

Well, your dislike to like ratio is about 10 to 1...


 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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12. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:54 Cutter
 
No sir, I don't like it.
 
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11. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:46 Eirikrautha
 
The hardware will be released in episodes.

Well, they darn well better not release the motherboard and CPU in the first 2 episodes, then never get around to releasing the graphics card...
 
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10. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:45 Verno
 
Burrito of Peace wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:29:
Anyone think that it might be something like peripherals and not a console?

It's certainly possible but I doubt it considering the PC market is well served already in that regard and it would make more sense to have a unifying platform for them to marry any peripherals to in the first place. This is just another step in the living room foray, Valves growth in the PC market can't really continue as traditional desktop computers decline without making inroads into the console user base.
 
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Watching: Continuum, Star Trek TNG, Haunt
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9. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:36 Bucky
 
Quboid wrote on Apr 13, 2012, 10:05:
Definitely an interesting one. My guess is a stripped down PC running Steam and little else, but what sort of controller they have will say a lot about what they have in mind.

This. I don't have any particular attachment to the PC platform, what I do care about is the input method. Keyboard/Mouse is the superior input choice in pretty much every game genre I play, which is why I stick to the PC. Considering games these days are almost always limited to the current console generation, the extra PC hardware is going to waste anyway. Give me a beefy console with a keyboard and mouse and I'll be the first in line.
 
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8. Re: Valve Confirms Hardware Plans Apr 13, 2012, 10:31 SpectralMeat
 
Maybe it is a wireless adapter for connecting your TV and PC so you can use your PC from your TV with a steam controller or maybe a cloud console thingie to stream games from Steam.
Either way I am curious what Steam is working on.
 
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Steam: SpectralMeat
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87 Replies. 5 pages. Viewing page 4.
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