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Steam Hardware photo
Steam Hardware

Steam Hardware's early stock is sold out


November 10 release date for the rest
Jun 30
// Joe Parlock
Were you hoping to get your hands on one of those early release versions of the Steam Controller, the Steam Link, or a Steam Machine when they come out in October? Well bad news, they’re all sold out. If you pre-order t...
Valve photo
Valve

How the Steam Controller works as a keyboard


I'm not yet convinced
Jun 05
// Laura Kate Dale
So, Valve has been singing the praises of its upcoming Steam Controller for a while now as the herald of a new golden age of couch friendly PC gaming. Outside of issues like precise mouse controls and button layouts, one of t...
Steam Machines photo
Steam Machines

Steam Machines finally release soon, and pre-orders get them even earlier


Controller and Steam Link, too
Jun 04
// Brett Makedonski
In true Valve fashion, we've waited years to see if Steam Machines will ever actually see the light of day. They were revealed a long time ago, but then they just sort of never came out. Well, the first batch is definitely s...

Steam Controller photo
Steam Controller

Steam Controller and FPS: PAX East 2015 impressions


'A little rumbly'
Mar 10
// Jed Whitaker
One of what was seemingly the better-kept secrets at PAX East 2015, the Steam Controller, was available for hands on at the Alienware booth connected to the company's Steam Machines. I was able to test the previous iteration...

Skyworld takes unique advantage of Valve's new virtual reality tech

Mar 06 // Alessandro Fillari
For our demo, the developers led me into a closed-off room which housed Valve's virtual reality hardware. Around the room were two cameras that tracked movement and set the boundaries of the VR environment by scanning the dimensions of the room. They then handed me the headset, which still looked as if it was in the prototype phase. Wires to the headset were numerous, which required a belt around my waist to hold all of them down. Honestly, it felt like I was wearing something from '90s cyberpunk like Ghost in the Shell or Johnny Mnemonic. It was weighty, but had a number of devices working at once. I actually almost tripped over one of the wires before our demo even started. But any apprehension I had for the device soon faded once I tried out the interface and witnessed it in action. With the headset on, I was in a home menu showing a number of games and applications. The controllers they gave me, which were also connected with wires, were two wand-like devices that were somewhat like a mix between the Sony Move and Wii Remote. Similar to the headset, they were in early form. Using trackpads on the controllers allowed me to cycle through options. And just for fun, pressing down the trackpad caused a balloon to inflate from the controller in the digital space, which was amusing. It felt intuitive, and surprisingly accurate. I could look around to see the menu system with its grey, almost minimalistic background, but the Valve engineer instructed me to look towards the floor. On the floor was a box, which represented the center of the space. Once I started walking forward outside the box, I made it a few steps before a grid popped up in front of me. This grid represented the physical wall that I was about to walk into, which the camera picked up and visualized within the VR space. It was pretty cool stuff, and I felt that I could've spent plenty of time exploring the home menu, but of course, they had a game to show. [embed]288675:57632:0[/embed] Last year, the developers of World of Diving showed off an impressive demonstration for their underwater-exploration sim. The use of the Oculus Rift was well designed and featured impressive depth and range. With the success and buzz they generated with that title, they attracted the attention of Valve, leading to a partnership. But the new VR technology they were presented meant having to design something a bit different. "When they asked to work together with us to make a demo for the GDC announcement, the first thing that came to mind was that we should do something like World of Diving," said creative director Richard Stitselaar. "But that title was designed around the first Oculus, and then the DK2 came along, we had to ramp it up to seventy-five frames per second, then Valve came along and said 'guys, it needs 90 frames per second.' So we had to do a lot of optimization on the game, and we figured we should use our knowledge with VR and apply it to a new game instead." Skyworld is totally different from World of Diving. Set on a floating island that houses a small civilization, you play as an omnipotent ruler that must wage war on the opposing side. As a quasi tabletop turn-based strategy title, players use both Steam controllers as wands in game to conjure up creatures and interact with the world. Over time, you'll build your defenses and expand your resources, which will allow you to send infantry and even dragons to attack your enemies. With the left controller, I was able to pull up a magic book, which housed unit info and spells to cast. Using the right controller allowed me to interact with the elements on the table. Whether picking up units to reposition them or interacting with blacksmiths or dragons, each controller had its own separate uses that complemented the other. "First we had this interaction model where you would look at something as this dot in the middle and then select it," said Stitselaar. "It feels natural to have something in your hand that could enhance the world itself." When you think of VR, you're probably thinking of something that's a bit action-y or fast-paced, and likely not a turn-based strategy title. But Skyworld definitely makes great use of the technology. I was able to view all aspects of the environment with clarity, as zooming simply meant stepping closer. Of course, I had to let go of some very basic certainties when playing with the demo. For instance, we all know that if there's an object in front of you, then you'll likely have to move if you want to get around it. I spent much of the demo walking around the 'table,' never thinking to actually walk up to whatever object I wanted. Eventually, the engineers from Valve and Vertigo Games instructed me that it was okay to walk through the table -- it wasn't real. After attacking enemy installations and moving my infantry around, my time with the demo ended. It was fairly brief, and I felt I only scratched the surface of what I could do. Valve's technology was easily the most impressive use of virtual reality I've seen in a long time, though. Moreover, Vertigo Games' work impressed. I was pleasantly surprised to experience a title that used VR in an original way. While the technology has a ways to go before it will get in the hands of consumers, I'm excited about what the future of VR holds.
Valve VR photo
Vertigo Games talks the future of VR
We got a big shock at the beginning of the week when Valve announced its partnership with HTC to produce a new virtual reality headset. We all knew the company had ambitions to enter the console market with Steam Machines, bu...

Valve in 2015 photo
Valve in 2015

Valve: Steam Link game-streaming device, controller, free Source 2, and VR in 2015


Announce ALL the things, just not Half-Life 3
Mar 03
// Jed Whitaker
Valve just announced a number of new products for 2015 along with some pricing details. (Leave it to Valve to reveal hardware with dates and pricing at the same time.) This year, the company will release: Steam Link, Steam Ma...
Alienware photo
Alienware

Alienware Alpha receives $50 coupon plus gift card


Your almost-Steam Machine, now cheaper
Dec 12
// Dealzon
Dell's Alienware Alpha - also known as the sorta, maybe, not really Steam Machine - gets an official $50 discount today via a limited time coupon on Dell. The incentives don't stop there though, as Dell is also throwing in an...
Steam Dev Days photo
Steam Dev Days

28 talks from Steam Dev Days are now online


The more you know
Feb 11
// Jordan Devore
Valve held a conference for developers last month called Steam Dev Days and, as promised, a number of sessions have since been uploaded to YouTube. In some cases, presentation slides are also available. While there's certain...
DTOID News photo
Watch DTOID news... with your EYES!
Welp, here's your exciting video game news! Lots and lots of fun things, like Nintendo's financial problems, [obvious] lack of plans to move into mobile games, a single Super Smash Bros. screen, and the rumored new console,"...

Steam Machine photo
Steam Machine

Alienware Steam Machines won't be upgradable


New hardware to release anually
Jan 21
// Jordan Devore
Alienware is coming out with a Steam Machine of its own, or should I say Steam Machines -- the company intends to put out a new model "every year." Speaking to TrustedReviews, general manager Frank Azor said "There will be no...
Steam Machine photo
Steam Machine

Here's what Steam Machines look like on the inside


Valve's beta unit and Steam Controller torn down
Dec 19
// Jordan Devore
The folks at iFixit have taken one of Valve's 300 prototype Steam Machines apart and the results, while about what you'd expect, are still pretty cool nonetheless. It's remarkable just how much they're able to fit in such a s...
Steam Machine photo
Steam Machine

Here are some videos of Steam Machines in action


Hands on with the new system and controller
Dec 16
// Joshua Derocher
Thanks to the magic of YouTube, some of the people lucky enough to receive one of the 300 beta Steam Machines have been able to share their impressions of the system. The OS looks like exactly like Steam's Big Picture Mode, ...
SteamOS photo
SteamOS

Build your Steam Box today; Steam OS Beta now available


Valve's operating system for the Living Room is live
Dec 15
// Wesley Ruscher
Have you been holding out on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in lieu of building your very own PC answer to the home console, the Steam Machine? Well wait no further, as the Steam OS Beta is now freely available for human cons...
 photo

Digital Storm's Valve-approved Steam Machine teased


$1,469, launches at CES next month
Dec 11
// Dale North
Digital Storm says that they have the first liquid-cooled Valve-approved Steam Machine ready to show at CES next month. The PC maker says that they're not trying to compete with console pricing at all, and are going after gra...

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