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Valve Revealing First Part of Linux Invasion on Monday

By - Source: Valve Email | B 26 comments

On Monday Valve tossed up a teaser site promising new info.

Just days after Gabe Newell hinted to a possible Steam Box reveal next week, Valve Software on Friday sent along this link stating that the Steam Universe is expanding in 2014. Placed under the heading is a large-screen HDTV with a portal glaring back like a blue-black eye, and three smaller portals underneath, one of which has a countdown timer (71 hours to go at this writing).

"Last year, we shipped a software feature called Big Picture, a user-interface tailored for televisions and gamepads," the company teases. "This year we've been working on even more ways to connect the dots for customers who want Steam in the living-room. Soon, we'll be adding you to our design process, so that you can help us shape the future of Steam."

Valve said in an email that next week, the company will be talking about steps it's taking to make Steam more accessible on televisions and the living room. The first announcement will be on Monday morning, hence the first portal with the countdown timer. That said, bookmark the link and see what the company has in store beginning next week.

During LinuxCon in New Orleans earlier this week, Gabe Newell said that Linux is the future of PC gaming because there are no closed networks; it's an open-source environment that ultimately will provide a cheaper gaming platform for PC gamers because there's no added OS costs. Updates should also not be an issue with an open environment -- he said it took six months just to get an app update approved by Apple.

Valve has already proven its Linux dedication by launching a standalone Linux client in February, and added 198 games to its Linux library. However, Newell hinted to the possible Linux-based Steam Box by illustrating how Linux can eliminate the complexities of having hardware with proprietary software in the living room. Gamers want their systems to be simple and not locked to specific hardware sets for many years.

He said that bringing Steam to Linux "was a signal for our development partners that we really were serious about this Linux thing we were talking about." The company is also contributing to the LLDB debugger project and co-developing an additional debugger. Currently, Linux gaming accounts for less than one percent of the market, including players, player minutes, and revenue. Valve looks to change that.

"It feels a bit funny coming here and telling you guys that Linux and open source are the future of gaming," Newell said after walking on stage. "Sort of like going to Rome and teaching Catholicism to the Pope, so bear with me."

Rumors surrounding Steam Box have focused on the user's ability to upgrade the device when needed, which is why everyone was sure that Xi3 Corp's Piston machine was the flagship device. But sources close to the two companies said the relationship fizzled during CES 2013 in January, so now we're left wondering what will actually power Valve's platform. Yet the company has stated several times in the past that Steam Box won't be a specific hardware set, but more like a Steam Box certification for multiple hardware solutions from partners.

"Next week, we're going to be rolling out more information about how we get [living room unification], and what are the hardware opportunities that we see for bringing Linux into the living room and potentially pointing further down the road to how we can get it even more unified in mobile."

See you Monday.

 

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Display 26 Comments.
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Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    eklipz330 , September 21, 2013 8:44 AM
    go valve go! if someone can further improve the health of the pc industry, it's you!
Other Comments
  • 2 Hide
    digiex , September 21, 2013 3:49 AM
    Game developers got addicted to the charm of M$'s DirectX, and it had to have withdrawal symptoms in shifting to Linux (OpenCL/OpenGL).
  • 0 Hide
    DeizelVolt , September 21, 2013 4:19 AM
    I swear if it's the steambox I'll feel badly out of date on tech.
  • 0 Hide
    KelvinTy , September 21, 2013 7:13 AM
    I want this to not fail, but somehow, I really feel this is not going to work.
  • 2 Hide
    Bloob , September 21, 2013 7:47 AM
    Quote:
    Game developers got addicted to the charm of M$'s DirectX, and it had to have withdrawal symptoms in shifting to Linux (OpenCL/OpenGL).

    There is more to DX than D3D.
  • 9 Hide
    anxiousinfusion , September 21, 2013 8:09 AM
    The Steam Box certification is the right way to do it.
  • 10 Hide
    eklipz330 , September 21, 2013 8:44 AM
    go valve go! if someone can further improve the health of the pc industry, it's you!
  • 3 Hide
    nukemaster , September 21, 2013 11:22 AM
    Quote:
    Game developers got addicted to the charm of M$'s DirectX, and it had to have withdrawal symptoms in shifting to Linux (OpenCL/OpenGL).

    OpenGL and OpenCL work on Windows too. For cross platform gaming this should be a good thing.
    My biggest fear with this is that valve has been rather mad that MS has a store built into Windows 8.
    This may be more about money and less about the gaming industry.

    In the end. I am still waiting for my HL3 or HL2 ep3 to be released.
  • 0 Hide
    IndignantSkeptic , September 21, 2013 12:33 PM
    I'm glad Valve Software is fighting Microsoft's vendor lock-in by supporting Linux, but Valve Software needs to acknowledge that they themselves are also guilty of vendor lock-in with Steam. Digital distribution needs to be run by a consortium, not one company, and it needs to include everything together such as games, movies, TV series, books, magazines, comics, music etcetera.
  • -4 Hide
    Pherule , September 21, 2013 1:16 PM
    I really hate Steam. It will make acquiring games harder in the long run.
  • -2 Hide
    CaptainTom , September 21, 2013 3:59 PM
    All they need to do is make an HTPC sized desktop for $400 with an i3/FX-4300 and an HD 7750/GTX 650 with equal game support to windows and they will be golden.

    Then make CPU/GPU/RAM upgrading as easy as switching DVD's, and it will be that PC-console bridge so many have been waiting for...
  • 2 Hide
    alextheblue , September 21, 2013 8:56 PM
    Quote:
    go valve go! if someone can further improve the health of the pc industry, it's you!
    I'm not certain how their "Steam Box" and living room gaming initiatives are going to IMPROVE the health of the PC gaming industry. They're trying to compete with Sony, MS, and Nintendo (and to a lesser extext, Android-based living room devices). Linux is just the cheapest vehicle to do that with.
  • 0 Hide
    alextheblue , September 21, 2013 9:06 PM
    Quote:
    My biggest fear with this is that valve has been rather mad that MS has a store built into Windows 8.
    This may be more about money and less about the gaming industry.


    Valve doesn't want to lose any money to the competing digital distribution platforms. Pushing gamers to a platform where Steam reigns unchallenged (Linux) has always been about money.
    Quote:
    I'm glad Valve Software is fighting Microsoft's vendor lock-in by supporting Linux, but Valve Software needs to acknowledge that they themselves are also guilty of vendor lock-in with Steam. Digital distribution needs to be run by a consortium, not one company, and it needs to include everything together such as games, movies, TV series, books, magazines, comics, music etcetera.


    Can't defeat vendor lock-in with more vendor lock-in. In fact, Steam is part of the reason why Microsoft went this route on Windows in the first place.

    I agree with your sentiments about a consortium, but I just don't see it happening. It's a nice idea in principle, but good luck.
  • 0 Hide
    signothorn , September 21, 2013 10:56 PM
    In the meantime, I don't understand why Steam doesn't offer free progs like Classic Shell, which is a powershell that makes W8 look almost identical to W7 with the apps in the start menu. I am excited to see the capabilities of the Steam Box, I feel I'm going to be wrong in thinking they are going to try and make a tiny console to compete with my $2k+ gaming rig.
  • 1 Hide
    kartu , September 22, 2013 2:33 AM
    If you missed it guys, let me explain what ACTUALLY is going on with all these initiatives:

    Microsoft plans "Windows Store" or "Microsoft Store" and if it wasn't a threat enough, unlike Valve, they couldn't care less about margins.

    Possible outcome? GG Steam. (most of their sales at the moment are Windows)
    Valve's reaction? OMG OMG, LET'S GO LINUX or we are history!!!

    What about us, customers? Uh, I'd say, it's a win/win either way. Microsoft Store lowers the prices? Great! PC Gaming going multi-OS? Fantastic!
  • 0 Hide
    tomfreak , September 22, 2013 5:49 AM
    Quote:
    I'm glad Valve Software is fighting Microsoft's vendor lock-in by supporting Linux, but Valve Software needs to acknowledge that they themselves are also guilty of vendor lock-in with Steam. Digital distribution needs to be run by a consortium, not one company, and it needs to include everything together such as games, movies, TV series, books, magazines, comics, music etcetera.
    blame it on developers. If all the major developer like EA/Ubisoft/2K/taketwo/bethesda put money design 1 single open source client distribution + ditching valve slowly. All of them would not need to pay valve a cut. Games would be much cheaper too.
  • 1 Hide
    jcurry23 , September 22, 2013 8:58 AM
    If MS keeps going the route it keeps going for windows 8 metro style OS's for the desktop then I see a lot of people going to linux OS
  • 0 Hide
    jimmysmitty , September 22, 2013 5:24 PM
    Quote:
    Game developers got addicted to the charm of M$'s DirectX, and it had to have withdrawal symptoms in shifting to Linux (OpenCL/OpenGL).


    I find OGL vs DX very interesting. While both support some of the latest and greatest it seems people think OGL is better because it is open source.

    Not sure why but everyone thinks open source is automatically better.

    And while it is great it also has its downsides.

    For OGL its the fact that sometimes it gets no updates. There is almost no support for vendors using OGL, they have to figure all their problems out on their own.

    DX is updated by MS and is supported by MS. But that brings in the down side to DX, which is it being closed means it may not support a technology someone wants to use.

    Its also funny as per Gabe, you can still install Windows on a Steam Box if you please unless they changed that. I doubt they did though as it would cut down on Steam Box sales as some people may prefer Windows for a AiO HTPC.
  • 1 Hide
    jimmysmitty , September 22, 2013 5:30 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    I'm glad Valve Software is fighting Microsoft's vendor lock-in by supporting Linux, but Valve Software needs to acknowledge that they themselves are also guilty of vendor lock-in with Steam. Digital distribution needs to be run by a consortium, not one company, and it needs to include everything together such as games, movies, TV series, books, magazines, comics, music etcetera.
    blame it on developers. If all the major developer like EA/Ubisoft/2K/taketwo/bethesda put money design 1 single open source client distribution + ditching valve slowly. All of them would not need to pay valve a cut. Games would be much cheaper too.


    Games would not be cheaper. Look at Origin. EAs own distribution platform. Are the games cheaper than if on Steam? Nope. Still $60 bucks and they don't give anyone a cut.

    Steam is not why games cost what they do. Its the developers who want to make a larger profit.

    Quote:
    If MS keeps going the route it keeps going for windows 8 metro style OS's for the desktop then I see a lot of people going to linux OS


    Nope. Unless Linux can give people who know very little about systems the ease of use and patching it wont happen. Nor will it happen in a workplace where AD/GP are very useful in creating secure structured environments.

    Linux is great for people who want to tinker or mess with things but really 8 is actually a good OS. People just hate change. Look at DOS-> Windows. People clung to DOS for a long time. In fact Gabe Newell was the one who ported Quake to Windows and that pushed Windows up but people still clung to DOS for a long time. Until SP3 for XP, people clung to 98/2K as they hated the new UI and setup of XP.

    Eventually people will move on.
  • 1 Hide
    somebodyspecial , September 22, 2013 9:44 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    I'm glad Valve Software is fighting Microsoft's vendor lock-in by supporting Linux, but Valve Software needs to acknowledge that they themselves are also guilty of vendor lock-in with Steam. Digital distribution needs to be run by a consortium, not one company, and it needs to include everything together such as games, movies, TV series, books, magazines, comics, music etcetera.
    blame it on developers. If all the major developer like EA/Ubisoft/2K/taketwo/bethesda put money design 1 single open source client distribution + ditching valve slowly. All of them would not need to pay valve a cut. Games would be much cheaper too.


    This is pure hogwash. Games were supposed to get cheaper when they screwed me out of a PAPER manual and a box (which I welcomed, assuming the price would actually drop, I'd rather have PDF's). They went from $30 to $60 and look like they're heading to $65-70 with next gen consoles. On top of that the length dropped from 30-150hrs down to 10-15hrs of game play. All bad things.

    What we need is BIG DEVS to DIE and all be replaced by the likes of Almost Human (4 guys for grimrock 1, now 6 guys working on grimrock 2), Runic Games (torchlights), inxile, hairbrained schemes etc where they give us the same great games but for $15-30 again because there is no Bobby Kotick etc to overpay+tons of overhead, no drm etc. Protection schemes were supposed to stop piracy and lower prices too...They only went up and don't stop ANY pirate, but instead just make life miserable for the honest users. Hopefully who then, if smart, head on over to gamecopyworld.com etc to defeat the dumb protections to get a decent playable experience like the REAL pirates get from every game...LOL.

    Note the small devs go DRM FREE or at most a serial # or something (which to me is just minimal protections I can deal with, I accept a serial being needed to play on their servers, and it doesn't mangle my PC), which really does seem to cheapen the price. Runic Games says they make as much on a $20 download as they used to on a $60 retail box. Don't tell me torchlight 1 or 2 sucked they were better than Diablo3 IMHO. Certainly better at $20 vs. $60 for Diablo3. The small devs have huge forum participation that dictates the GAME before it's made rather than some honcho in a suit saying umm, no gamers get what we want them to have or whatever we can screw them the worst with (RMAH etc...I'm looking at you Diablo3...LOL). Small devs take user input and develop their game with that input in mind. I love kickstarter for this, which provides funding without the need of some big corp with deadlines pushing games out bugs or not. Sure some projects fail (though money gets returned then), but largely they are asking for feedback on what features you want in the game from day ONE, and it looks like a lot of games will come out exactly as I'd hoped (wasteland 2, shroud of the avatar, star citizen, Torment, Project Eternity! all shaping up to be awesome). Try that with EA...LOL. All they do is cut features to meet some ship schedule that's mandated to them by all their bean counters and shareholders.

    Also, regarding a cut to valve: Do you know of any other ways to get cheaper games besides them or gog? Does EA sell cheap games direct? NOPE. Does EA/TakeTwo etc have huge sales weekly? NOPE. I don't like steam, but if I was broke I'd sign up probably. I get enough from GOG to keep busy and until that ends (hopefully never) I'll continue to go to them with no DRM or crap steam app. But I like what Valve does pricing wise and getting games seen by many people where a small dev usually would just go broke. Valve gets them out in front where they couldn't get to before alone or in stores competing with EA etc for shelf space (again, despite me hating their app they do good work for small devs).
  • 1 Hide
    jimmysmitty , September 22, 2013 10:40 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    I'm glad Valve Software is fighting Microsoft's vendor lock-in by supporting Linux, but Valve Software needs to acknowledge that they themselves are also guilty of vendor lock-in with Steam. Digital distribution needs to be run by a consortium, not one company, and it needs to include everything together such as games, movies, TV series, books, magazines, comics, music etcetera.
    blame it on developers. If all the major developer like EA/Ubisoft/2K/taketwo/bethesda put money design 1 single open source client distribution + ditching valve slowly. All of them would not need to pay valve a cut. Games would be much cheaper too.


    This is pure hogwash. Games were supposed to get cheaper when they screwed me out of a PAPER manual and a box (which I welcomed, assuming the price would actually drop, I'd rather have PDF's). They went from $30 to $60 and look like they're heading to $65-70 with next gen consoles. On top of that the length dropped from 30-150hrs down to 10-15hrs of game play. All bad things.

    What we need is BIG DEVS to DIE and all be replaced by the likes of Almost Human (4 guys for grimrock 1, now 6 guys working on grimrock 2), Runic Games (torchlights), inxile, hairbrained schemes etc where they give us the same great games but for $15-30 again because there is no Bobby Kotick etc to overpay+tons of overhead, no drm etc. Protection schemes were supposed to stop piracy and lower prices too...They only went up and don't stop ANY pirate, but instead just make life miserable for the honest users. Hopefully who then, if smart, head on over to gamecopyworld.com etc to defeat the dumb protections to get a decent playable experience like the REAL pirates get from every game...LOL.

    Note the small devs go DRM FREE or at most a serial # or something (which to me is just minimal protections I can deal with, I accept a serial being needed to play on their servers, and it doesn't mangle my PC), which really does seem to cheapen the price. Runic Games says they make as much on a $20 download as they used to on a $60 retail box. Don't tell me torchlight 1 or 2 sucked they were better than Diablo3 IMHO. Certainly better at $20 vs. $60 for Diablo3. The small devs have huge forum participation that dictates the GAME before it's made rather than some honcho in a suit saying umm, no gamers get what we want them to have or whatever we can screw them the worst with (RMAH etc...I'm looking at you Diablo3...LOL). Small devs take user input and develop their game with that input in mind. I love kickstarter for this, which provides funding without the need of some big corp with deadlines pushing games out bugs or not. Sure some projects fail (though money gets returned then), but largely they are asking for feedback on what features you want in the game from day ONE, and it looks like a lot of games will come out exactly as I'd hoped (wasteland 2, shroud of the avatar, star citizen, Torment, Project Eternity! all shaping up to be awesome). Try that with EA...LOL. All they do is cut features to meet some ship schedule that's mandated to them by all their bean counters and shareholders.

    Also, regarding a cut to valve: Do you know of any other ways to get cheaper games besides them or gog? Does EA sell cheap games direct? NOPE. Does EA/TakeTwo etc have huge sales weekly? NOPE. I don't like steam, but if I was broke I'd sign up probably. I get enough from GOG to keep busy and until that ends (hopefully never) I'll continue to go to them with no DRM or crap steam app. But I like what Valve does pricing wise and getting games seen by many people where a small dev usually would just go broke. Valve gets them out in front where they couldn't get to before alone or in stores competing with EA etc for shelf space (again, despite me hating their app they do good work for small devs).


    Games have always been $50-$60/. They are going up but mostly that's if you want the extra content in the "deluxe edition" or "special edition".

    Also, you realize that GOG is only providing games that have no DRM. That's why there aren't many big name titles on it. Sucks but most big titles will have DRM and there are still some great ones to play like BioShock Infinite or BL2 etc.

    I just wish if they release it on Steam they leave it using Steam as the DRM as its unobtrusive and doesn't take mush in terms of system resources. No need to pile on more DRM with Steam.
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