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Gabe Talks More About Valve's Next-Gen Linux Console

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  • elanthis
    replied
    Originally posted by tomato View Post
    Valve is an AAA player by itself... When they show that it is viable and profitable then others will follow suit.
    Just like how OS X is now a super successful gaming platform after Steam was launched there, right?

    I mean, sure, there are actually more games on OS X now. Steam had a positive impact. OS X is still nowhere close to dethroning Windows as the PC gaming platform of choice, but OS X users have a lot more options to have fun these days than they used to. Linux will likewise see a positive impact from Steam, but it will continue to be missing large swaths of the best games available, just like OS X.

    A Steam Machine (please let that be the actual name) would be another boost. Typically new consoles have flopped, independent of technical qualifications but we are seeing a recent strong shift away from the traditional console market, so there may well be a huge opening for something like the Valve console (or Ouja). It's all going to come down to the actual game catalog on the device. If you can't get Activision and EA and Ubisoft and so on 100% on board with a Steam console (including Linux ports), it is not going to do well. Valve will need to give those companies incentives, which even on the PC space they're having a huge problem doing right now (notice how many of the most popular PC games are not available on Steam these days, including many that have console ports).

    Unfortunately, a large part of that is going to be how tightly they can lock down the machine for DRM reasons. Game publishers put up with ridiculous rates of piracy on the PC because they don't have much choice (DRM on a PC just doesn't work to stop anyone but very casual pirates). Any new platform, however, is just a new risk to them; if they can't get things locked down, they have no reason to spend money to port to a platform just to see 90%+ of their efforts stolen. Especially when they can keep making lots of money with the new Wii U, the next XBox, and whatever Sony is up to and get much lower piracy rates (it requires more effort to even use pirated games on those platforms, effectively barring the large masses of casual pirates).

    And since Valve's console's success will be tired _entirely_ to the game catalog on it, getting those publishers on board is the #1 most important thing for them to do as a for-profit corporate entity launching a new for-profit gamer-oriented consumer electronics device. They are going to lock down their console as much as is required to satisfy those publishers, or they are going to fail miserably. Maybe they can convince those publishers that they don't need to lock down the console much, and that's great. Quite possibly they will not be able to do that, and the new Valve console will only be good for a handful of titles compared to its competition.

    That doesn't even include exclusive titles to the other platforms, such as Nintendo's beloved catalog, Microsoft's impressive catalog of titles from MGS and subsidiaries, or Sony's critically-acclaimed first-party titles. PC does have exclusives, but most of those _aren't on Steam_ (even most of Valve's own titles have XBox ports), or are smaller indie games that will hardly push sales of a new hardware platform (and if they do, Valve will be competing with Ouja, not traditional proprietary consoles).

    tl;dr version: Valve has to suck publishers' $%#@ for a new console to succeed, as success in the consumer device market will have nothing to do with openness, Linux, or Valve being Valve.

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  • F i L
    replied
    Extremely exciting news! This will surely change the Linux Gaming (and Linux Desktop) landscape.

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  • JanC
    replied
    I'm sure Valve (and/or future console manufacturers) will work with the necessary upstreams (X, kernel, etc.) to get better drivers and configuration tools if they need them...

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  • jhansonxi
    replied
    Originally posted by alexThunder View Post
    I think you can't determine, which control style is the best for gaming. I.e. for FPS and RTS, Mouse&Keyboard are best, for Beat 'em Ups, Action Adventures (especially the Hack 'n Slay-ish ones) or Racing Games, a Gamepad is preferable. There are also genres, where both controls work well, such as TPS.
    I've found joystick + mouse to be better, depending on the stick.

    Originally posted by alexThunder View Post
    I can confirm that. The PS3 controller works pretty good as well, although it might need a bit more time to fine tune calibrations.
    Unfortunately many Linux games don't support gamepads well. Analog devices were basically useless but even USB devices had broken functionality. I tried a USB gamepad in Trine but couldn't aim with the thief.

    Then there is the general lack of configuration tools for programmable game controllers.

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  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by Kano View Post
    Also don't forget they most likely will rely on amd products and amd is well known for the Linux driver quality, intel+nvidia would be way too expensive.
    I hope they won't. With such a mess nobody will reach performance level comparable to Windows. As Valve has shown Linux+nVIDIA eats m$ for breakfast, but AMD looses badly in terms of performance, features, support and bugs.

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  • tomato
    replied
    Originally posted by Kano View Post
    Basically that was what most ppl expected after the Linux announcement but to be successfull against the win eco system they need to convince more AAA players in the gaming world to port the games - otherwise it will be a niche product. Currently mainly smaller studios port the games. Also don't forget they most likely will rely on amd products and amd is well known for the Linux driver quality, intel+nvidia would be way too expensive.
    Valve is an AAA player by itself... When they show that it is viable and profitable then others will follow suit.

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  • KameZero
    replied
    Originally posted by Kano View Post
    Also don't forget they most likely will rely on amd products and amd is well known for the Linux driver quality, intel+nvidia would be way too expensive.
    Not gonna lie, I lol'd for like ten minutes.

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  • moilami
    replied
    Restricted console hardware is not a good future. Steam is doing a favor to everyone if they chose PC hardware for a console.

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  • ua=42
    replied
    If they do come out with an x86 Linux console thats sold in Wal-mart, Best Buy, etc. Then linux support will be a much higher priority for hardware developers and software developers.

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  • alexThunder
    replied
    Originally posted by Kano View Post
    Basically that was what most ppl expected after the Linux announcement but to be successfull against the win eco system they need to convince more AAA players in the gaming world to port the games - otherwise it will be a niche product. Currently mainly smaller studios port the games. Also don't forget they most likely will rely on amd products and amd is well known for the Linux driver quality, intel+nvidia would be way too expensive.
    You think Valve is that serious about Linux? If they make a x86 console running Linux, that would definitely lead several AAA publisher to support Linux as gaming platform. Of course, the device had to be succesful in sales, but since Valve and Steam are pretty big and well received names, I gues that should work. Still, that seems a lot of effort just for boosting Linux support Oo

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