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Steam Machines unlikely to make “any impact at all” in 2014 – is Valve playing the long game?

EDGE - Overpriced, underwhelming to look at and destined to cater for a small niche, the Steam Machines unveiled at CES are unlikely to make any impact on the current console race when they launch later this year.

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Yo Mama1413d ago (Edited 1413d ago )

I concur. I mean, who the hell are these for anyway? I thought they were coming out with these to go for the console gamer, but there are so many different versions that it's just confusing. Not to mention the fact that console only devs will probably not make games for it because of the different configurations. Which means gamers like myself will just stay on a dedicated console for the exclusives.

And they can't be going after current PC gamers because....what's the point? They already have a system that they've spent a good amount of money upgrading to run the latest games. Anyone with a PC basically already has a Steambox. All they have to do is buy the Steam controller, which is sold separately and download the Steam OS..which is also free.

These will die a short death.

Sarcasm1413d ago (Edited 1413d ago )

The strange thing is that it doesn't beat the consoles at what consoles do, mainly ease of use, accessibility, price of the system, and services. And having 13+ different versions from different vendors adds more to the confusion. If Valve really wanted to succeed they should have made their own and simplify it to 3 variations or something.

And it doesn't beat a normal PC's because let's be honest, most games are available on Windows right now and it doesn't look to be changing. And like you said, a lot of people already have a "steam machine" it's called their gaming PC with steam installed.

While the concept of the whole thing was intriguing, it's strange that it really feels half baked. And that controller pad thingy seems more like a novelty that could wear off.

PSN-JeRzYzFyNeSt1413d ago

and how are people going to buy these systems? i doubt Walmart will have one whole isle for 13+ Steam machines lol. retail will not carry them all

DC7771412d ago

Totally agree with Sarcasm here. I thought the idea was to move PC gamers to the couch by making a simplified, small, yet powerful box just for playing Steam games in the living room.

Yet now with have a complicated variety of boxes, basically iBuyPower premades who charge another hundred or two for installing a free Steam OS.

Valve takes no loss here but but I don't see much of a gain either.

webeblazing1412d ago

how doesnt it beat what consoles do? it fix ease of use, its accessible if ordering online if thats what you meant, the $500 steamboxes is more powerful, steam services has always been better than ms, sony and nintendo. they even said that they are in close beta of streaming windows only games to steamboxes and steamos FOR FREE, while others ignore it and charge for streaming service(ps now different i get it but dont downplay their effort).

they are have different vendors because pc has always been open platform and this will weed out the vendors thats trying to over charge. competition breeds success. the overprice will be gone first and the ones focus on gamers will last. but some how so called gamers have problems with it. its funny because the most people that have a proble with it are console only gamers that dont like pc gaming. every hardware company is on board intel, amd, nvidia, msi, etc..

i may buy one in the future but im going to get a nvidia shield because streaming my games anyway for free(even tho valve said they gonna do this) in the size of a controller. i understand most gamers didnt pay attention to other conferences other than their favorite platform but please support things that will move the thing we love forward.

spartanlemur1413d ago

They're not going to die a short death. Steam in this case is Google, SteamOS is Android, Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo are Apple and Blackberry and what Valve are waiting for is a Samsung to come along with a marketing budget the size of a planet and let the public know these things exist.
I'm a PC gamer, so it doesn't concern me, but I can see the allure for console gamers.
Software is cheaper on Steam than it is on Disc for PS4 and XB1, so hardcore gamers will save money in the long run buying a steam machine over a console.

And while today these things might not sell too well, in a few years, once PS4 and XB1 start to show their age, people wanting a new console might opt for a future steam machine, with its superior graphics.

That's not to say these things won't sell well this year. The Oculus Rift is expected to release this year for the PC alone (well, Android too, but the graphics won't be as good), and console gamers who want to try it out but don't want a PC will have an easy choice in buying a Steam Machine. The Oculus Rift will benefit from the same innovation-led sales the Wii did back in 2006, and by extension, Steam Machines probably will too.

I'm not saying these things are going to be a hit, but I also wouldn't be so quick to dismiss them. There's certainly the potential for them to be a success.

Mustang300C20121413d ago (Edited 1413d ago )

None of this makes any sense.

tee_bag2421413d ago

Yep. Valve have only to gain from this move. It is almost entirely a risk free move for them since other vendors are fronting all the hardware except the controller.

Too early to call. But I wouldn't underestimate that Valve's strategy is a good one.

@Mustang300C2012

Can you read ?

dsswoosh1413d ago ShowReplies(2)
TechNews1413d ago

Steam Box NC10: It has only a 2.4GHz Intel Core i3 4000M. For the GPU it features an Nvidia GeForce GTX 765M. It also comes with 8GBs of RAM and 500GBs of storagee. This unit will sell for $1,090, but there's no shipping date yet. WHAT?

DC7771412d ago

That's worse than my laptop aside from the graphics card. I think the bad side of this is people may get ripped off.

b163o11413d ago

I'd purchase one, only cause I'm an imbecile when it comes to building PC's. I hate missing out on games like DayZ and SimCity. Not to mention going back and playing games like fallout and elder scrolls on PC the way they where meant to be played. I mean I hate to say it I'll just get there cheapest one, but yeah I'd buy one.

TechNews1413d ago

So you would rather buy steam machine with laptop specs.. The M means mobile.. It's just not worth the money. Btw there are sites where you just pick the parts you want for your rig and they build it for you :D

3-4-51413d ago

They are trying to get the " In between " console / PC gamer who kind of wants both.

The Problem.

That person most likely already has both + Handheld.

The only thing that concerns me is all the stuff that may be tricky or not compatible with STEAM OS...like the non gaming every day small stuff we aren't thinking of yet.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1412d ago
Gabenbrah1413d ago

I think Oculus Rift will play a big role for the Steam machines, its going to be PC exclusive and a device that everyone is going to want to try and play on and that's where the Plug and Play Steam machines come into play.

PSN-JeRzYzFyNeSt1413d ago

i can just goto besttbuy or a friends house to try it out if they have it i don't need to buy it, and I'm sure Sony and Microsoft are looking into making their own VR headsets

Gabenbrah1413d ago

They won't work on consoles, they're too weak. Its minimum that games in VR are 60+ FPS 1080p and these consoles can barely reach that, what chance do they have when the game has to be in 3D and on next gen engines? No chance.

spartanlemur1413d ago

Unless you're planning on squatting in your friend's house or Best Buy until Sony or Microsoft release their version (and that's *if* they do), you'll probably want to buy your own.

tee_bag2421413d ago

Good luck. Like Gabenbrah said - you need a high frame rate in the 60's ALL the time otherwise you literally get motion sickness.

ABizzel11413d ago

@Gabenbrah

Oculus Rift will do absolutely nothing for Steam Machines. The average consumer will walk into Best Buy see the demo, enjoy playing around with head tracking, and as soon as they find out their cheapest option of walking away with the full experience of Steam Machine + OR is going to be close to $1000, he/she is going to walk over to the next aisle and buy a PS4 or XBO.

Steam Machines start at $499, and Oculus Rift is going to be "less than $499" starting Summer 2014. With tax you're back up to around $1000.

Steam Machine is DOA, and it shouldn't have been and could have easily upset the market.

It's DOA because:

1. There are too many versions.
2. They cost too much, and the $499 versions and $1499 version are the only reasonable deals for the hardware.
3. The $499 price point is their only chance at mass appeal, and those versions just aren't where they should be spec wise. They're solid, but not console stompers (lol console stompers)
4. Only 3 of them look appealing (the two $499, and the Alienware)

It could have been the next big thing if:

1. Valve invested in making their own, and exclusively using their own for at least the first full year, with 2 price points for market $499 (AMD, FX 6300, R9 270X, 8GB) / $999 (i7 4770k, GTX 770, 16GB), and custom builds online.
2. They offered every member who registers their new Steambox before December 31, 2014 they get a $10/$20/$50 credit to their Steam account.

Anything to compete. This was their chance to break into the hardware side and they failed. Steam OS is a good idea on its own, but the failure of Steam Machines could do a bit of damage to it's image.

webeblazing1412d ago (Edited 1412d ago )

valve is a company thats trying to make money like all companies, but do it seem to hard to understand they are just trying to give gamers more options and further gaming. these vendors are making their steam machines and like you said some of them are over priced. companies that charge too much for no reason tend to not sell. competition falls to the steam machine like they do for consoles and every thing that people sell right.

they are trying to improve the gaming pc scene in it will change the console scene if the do well. it would make sense for them being pro pc open platform to lock people in. you can choose best deal for you. the best thing about pc gaming that console gamers dont get is choosing whats best for you. from hardware to software even how the games the devs sold for you perform.

let embrace companies that trying to move gaming forward instead of the ones that ripped people off, because i always see people on this site that praise shady pubs just because exclusives, content, and because its they console of preference aren't people tired of this. this will loosen consoles up if it works. can you say mods on console, or free mp, etc..

sorry if i dont reply fanboys take bubbles to people that speak reason. have a bubble it was good input tho.

ABizzel11412d ago (Edited 1412d ago )

@webeblazing

I have no problem with the concept of Steam OS itself. It's the Steam Machines that are the problem. There's no point in them, since they're nothing but standard PC's squished into odd cases. The problem I have with them is that none of them are a great value, all of them range from decent to flat out OVER-PRICED.

I just feel like it's a completely missed opportunity, and could have been a big boon to PC gaming, but instead it feels more like a "Look PC's can do HDTV gaming too."

Any PC gamer who was looking into Steam Machines have seen these specs. and prices and just decided to build there own. That's not how you start a revolution in any industry. The only people Steam Machines are for are for people who are ignorant when it comes to building a gaming PC. I'm sure there are millions of them, but the fact that there are so many Steam Machines is a HUGE turn off, especially when you're dealing with something you know little about. It's like going to buy a car and not knowing anything about the Engine, Gas Mileage, if it's a Manual or Automatic, etc...

The concept was there, but the execution has more than likely failed, and it could have been avoided if Valve made their own, or worked with a single company to build their very own Steambox, then released the OS, and more for 3rd party companies.

As I said the 2 versions I listed above, would have been perfect, and would have been worthwhile checking out if you were trying to upgrade you gaming PC or buy a new one, but with the price : performance of the majority of the Steam Machines these things are nothing, but a pass.

Another thing, against Steam Machines, is that since they're on the smaller side, upgrades are going to be extremely limited. The motherboards probably only support 2 channels of memory on the smaller machines (which means if you really want an upgradeable PC, you'll have to buy the overpriced versions). On top of that you won't be able to upgrade your CPU to the newer Intels scheduled for this year. Then you have to really worry about heating and cooling for such a small case if you want to try Xfire / SIL, and hope the Motherboard even supports it.

There's just little reason for anyone to buy a Steam Machine if they have remotely any knowledge about PC's. If you can look a the main components of a computer and tell what part is what, then you can build a gaming PC without any problems.

d3nworth11413d ago

Doubt it. First you have to buy a Steam machine $499 for the cheapest version plus the oculus rift which will probably $200-$300 the most. That roughly $700-$800 dollars not including games. The oculus isnt going to help the steam machine one bit. The problem is that there are 13 steam machines and people who aren't PC savvy will most likely be confused.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1412d ago
annus1413d ago

I thought it was common knowledge they were playing the long game? They are getting developers to START developing their games for SteamOS, so that eventually the OS will have a large amount of games from here onwards. Of course they aren't magically going to get every single game on the console, but in say 5 years, they will have a large collection where people will be able to move away from Windows if they so desire.

It's just like the new consoles, many people will still stick to the PS3/360 (or at least still game on them as well as next-gen) until their is a larger library.

Aleithian1413d ago

Yeah, I'm not seeing it. I mean, really, the only innovation here is a new OS and a new controller. Otherwise, it's just a name-brand of gaming PCs.

As to the OS, it's a great idea, but being linux-based it's got a backwards compatibility problem. Going forward, everything depends on the developers having incentive to put in the time and money to make their games linux compatible. Arguably, that incentive isn't there.

As to the controller, I haven't tried it, but I also have no incentive to try it. It's ugly, bulky, and I seriously question the touch pad idea. And now that I can use a dualshock 4 on PC, there's no need to get it for PC games.

floetry1011413d ago (Edited 1413d ago )

The steam box was never intended to compete against the console market, it can't and it won't. It's designed as a middle-man to get console gamers to dip their feet into PC gaming without the overwhelming sense of "What the hell am I doing building this thing?".

Basically, it cuts out the hassle of designing a PC that fits your budget. With the steam box you have everything built to spec, at a price that won't rip your wallet apart like Alienware, with all the benefits of the PC community, modding, development etc. etc.

I think the concept is lost on a lot of people and while it won't do gargantuan numbers, I think it will give the majority of console gamers the opportunity to experience some of the great pleasures of PC gaming.

Jubez1871413d ago (Edited 1413d ago )

What you are saying is 100% right, but everyone else is 100% right in saying that nobody gives one fck about being in the "middleman" range.

webeblazing1412d ago

well its a sad state in gaming than. if so many people on this are saying that they have a ps3 xb360, wii, and dont want a pc because not want to build a pc or like lugging around a tower, buy bash vavle when coming up with this. we already know people are bashing this because its a pc, but come on it solve a lot of complaints but people bashing it for no reason when it can increase the standards of gaming. they are just steering people away from it that may be interested in it. $500 almost 2x the power of ps4 and xbone, free online, cross chat even to people on xbone through skype, streaming BC with windows, new controller along with any controller, cheap games, mods, better dev support, high gfx fidelity, great gaming community like ps xb and wii, emulators, ftp games galore, mmos, real internet browser, every hardware maker support(intel, amd, nvidia, msi, asus, etc). seriously what is the problem.

like i said im not gonna buy till most likely '15-16 but its kinda look bad when gamers dont see the value when we can stick together and weed out the companies that want a quick buck the the beauty of open market.

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