Originally Posted by snaguoonkee
The hardest part about Valve doing this is that this machine will be full of compromises that has to be fine tuned for the best experience. ie, will this have a full Ubuntu-like desktop? That is required for modding, third-party installations, etc., but will the target audience (console gamers) want to have a desktop on their machine? Also, how will Steam compete with other consoles for multi-media services for video, music, web browsing?
These are the compromises that had to be made when Windows RT and Windows 8 came out. They both have to adjust their systems so that it adds functionality for both kinds of input (touch/kbm for Win8 and controller/kbm for Steam). Some people would want a desktop machine for their own uses, some people want an easy gaming console.
Also, the premise of PC gaming was that there was a desktop, if Steam doesn't have access to one, and then require a kb/m for access to it, there would be nothing besides a lack of games that differentiates this between a PS3. Some might mention graphics quality, but this has to compete with other consoles on price too, and if they include an i5 with a gtx 660/7850 or a similar setup for the visual quality the point of PC gaming is for, it's going to be more expensive than other consoles by a good $200-300 which in turn offers nothing besides indie games that don't require that hardware and a few AAA games that maybe will. Also, the lifespan of a PC is lower than the lifespan of a console due to developers, so I forsee more iterations of the steambox than consoles.
But this can be good if it's done right and the comprises are made correctly. This is meant to be a console but just x86, which offers little of what makes a PC a PC. I personally won't be buying one because anyone on here can make an inexpensive Trinity PC to connect to the TV and play Steam games with Big Picture Mode but with no restrictions and easy upgrading.
I imagine it'll be a Ubuntu based custom distro that boots straight into Steam Big Picture mode, but would have shortcuts to the terminal, a file browser, etc that you can access if you need to. You're also forgetting about Steam Workshop, which allows mods for Skyrim to be installed and updated inside Skyrim itself.
The controller/KBM hybrid is a hell of a lot easier than the touch one, I'm pretty sure it's been done before too? Anyway, if Valve did offer an i5 that'd be fine, you do realize on both the PS3 and 360 at launch Sony and MS took a loss on each console that they proceeded to make up using game sales which I could see Valve attempting.
The lifespan of a PC is only lower due to a lack of standardization, look at the different parts in each rig in this topic alone...This would have standard hardware developers could optimise for and get the most out of.
People have to remember that Microsoft has already done this, in a console world where nearly all the 3D consoles use OpenGL subsets they pushed DirectX and got it moving.
Originally Posted by whyteoni Theory
: Valve releases both a micro-ATX or ITX based Steam Box "console," but also releases the "Steamix" (Linux based OS distro). That way you can buy the all-in-one hardware package, or just use the "Steamix" OS on your existing setup. I would also assume the Steam Box controller would easily work with a PC, so you could buy that separately as well. Just a thought...
That's what I imagine will happen, it should have a way that games can pick up they're in a SteamBox and then launch with optimal settings based off the game makers testing.
Originally Posted by bojinglebells
38 options vs. 1858
360 launched with 14, PS3 with 12.
Originally Posted by beanbagofdoom
Should be at least -
A10-5800k or G860 + 6670
I think it'll be nVidia based, probably optimised for 720p but capable of 1080p at lower settings and have a way that games can pick up they're in a SteamBox and optimise the settings to pre-chosen ones.
Originally Posted by whyteoni
Originally Posted by Cheeseinat0r
I really want the steambox to be a success but the obstacles I see for Valve are this:
Console manufacturers don't make money on their consoles. The loss of profit from console sales is subsidized by game purchases. The reason why games on steam are so cheap is that their game sales are just pure profit.
Another question is will it be able to also play physical games? A lot of console gamers rely on the used-game market. We saw how well it went when Sony announced a patent that will prevent games from being played on another console.
I think you bring up great points. However, I believe Valve has the captial to sell the consoles at a loss for now, and still make a profit very quickly. A few things they have going for them:
1) Using Linux, the developement needed will be limited for the software. If
their new engine (Source 2) can natively support Linux, it will be easy to have games come out to fill the current void. Some devs are undoubtedly already planning on making games with S2, and if it can make Linux friendly games I am sure more will join in as an easy way to increase their potential customer base.
2) I'm assuming Valve will stick to fairly standard parts (unlike the highly customized gear inside other consoles) as this will essentialy by a mini-gaming PC, which means they wont have to pay to dev and produce new/unique hardware lines. That also means the software side of the house (drivers mostly) won't have to be made and distributed with as much effort as other traditional consoles. In this way, at scale, they save in the price of hardware and software. When the PS3 first came out it cost as much as $600 (USD), imagine what a that much money could buy for an ITX gaming rig, and then reduce the cost as it will be mass produced.
3) As far as physical games and resale, I think we're going to see a pure Steam client system. This has the advantages of being able to quickly and easily (depending on your internet conection) download titles and cloud saving between devices. It also means that Valve and devs wont loose any money in used games. Hopefully that will make it easier for them to continue to offer the great sales they currently do. In the console market the talk is already spreading to not expect another generation (after PS4, Xbox 720) that will support physical media. Given that, it wont be hard for Valve to do likewise. That also means they can save money/space/power in the hardware by not having an optical drive.
All speculation based on the limited data, but I think it makes logical sense.
1) In addition to this, if Valve can convince a few developers to use Wine to port current games (Much like The Sims on Mac) then I can see it having a great launch lineup.
2) No doubt, I reckon AMD quad core and a mid-range nVidia GPU, you don't need an ultra fast CPU (4 threads is pretty useful though) but GPU speed matters...If they can also subsidize the costs by absorbing the losses from each sold with extra game sales that'd also be awesome, much like how Sony and MS do it.
3) Yep, we won't have any of that and the consoles are moving to that..Why do you think PC got DRM and the like in the first place? Publishers hate used game sales.
Originally Posted by thestache
I honestly see its success resting on its performance.
Everyone will be looking for a new console soon and if the steambox comes out with better hardware and the ability to upgrade that hardware to produce a much better experience than the next gen consoles then I see them winning a lot of sales there.
All digital games which I assume it will have will limit their demographic though.
This will be interesting. But everyone pretty much could have called the Linux based system since the Linux steam release. It was clear they were making a move.
The ability to upgrade would be a negative overall, since the amount of people who would buy those upgrades would be very small.