Steam Big Picture mode previewed, Valve goes after consoles

By Julio Franco ยท 11 replies
Sep 10, 2012
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  1. Today, Valve will launch the beta of Big Picture mode, a version of Steam designed for your television. That's right. The de facto central hub of PC gaming is now designed to run while you're lounging in your living room-and...

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  2. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,715   +856

    Very interesting - I can see this really taking off as streaming of pretty much everything is rapidly becoming the norm. And looks like they've really thought out the menu system making it as about as ***** proof as possible. Although I have a beast gaming PC, it would be nice to play some games (like Dirt) on the sofa with a controller.

    One question I have is at what resolution will these games be played at? The native resolution of the TV (1080p or 720p) or something else? Also, what kind of lag may be involved.

    But I sure like this a helluva lot more than console boxes.
  3. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,828   +633

    Or instead of being a consumer waiting for steam to come out with a solution you can not be a lazy arse and just connect your big screen to your PC... I've had this setup since 2007, way before this was even conceptualized. You know, the best way to experience a computer on a big screen is to actually connect the computer to it, trying to use either PS3 or Xbox to browse the internet without a keyboard is just a waste of time even trying to use a stick as a mouse is laughable. Steam can take as long as they want with their "Big Picture" because even when it does come out, I can already assure you I prefer the current version. People have eyes, most of which that work, you don't have to make things take up so much space on screen. To this date I have yet to find a better solution than I already have, a PC just has an infinite range of customization. A closed platform simply doesn't cut it.
  4. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,828   +633

    Then why don't you? The Xbox controller works with most windows games without any modification, just need the wireless adapter. Your beast gaming PC must have HDMI out, get a 50ft HDMI cable and bam, your playing Dirt of your sofa.

    This would depend on both the game and the hardware running it. The menu system is sure to be 1080p, if your running on a console it will be most likely limited to 720p in game. With steams system I couldn't tell you if there would be any lag. With my solution there is no lag, nothing is faster than being hardwired. All this could be yours, just need to make it happen.
  5. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,715   +856

    "Then why don't you?" LOL...because I've been lazy. There's really no reason why I can't. Maybe that can be a weekend project for me and certainly won't take much. I'll also need to get a wireless keyboard, mouse and some sort of board to set them on for my lap for those games where a controller won't work. I have a good buddy who has a 120" projection HD display and that's how he does his gaming. A really fun setup.
  6. Eddo22

    Eddo22 TS Booster Posts: 165   +8

    Valve can say whatever they want about their reason to support consoles. They fact is they are greedy like everybody else. That is the primary reason.

    Also a low cost laptop with a decent gpu in it such as an AMD A8-3500M could easily be hooked up to a tv and a gamepad plugged in, meanwhile having the superior advantages of a keyboard, powerful OS, portability, etc. Why continue dumping money into an ancient console or even a new console that has the same limitations as the last gen? Put it into a gaming laptop or portable pc and the console industry could easily be forgotten.

    Edit: I guess Adhmuz summed it up when he said, "To this date I have yet to find a better solution than I already have, a PC just has an infinite range of customization."
  7. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 2,999   +1,318

    That virtual keyboard is freaking brilliant. Im not kidding. its things like that that make me appreciates little innovations like that.
  8. spydercanopus

    spydercanopus TS Evangelist Posts: 855   +121

    Would be cool if it were it's own OS with compatibility for Windows games. That would make PCs and consoles the same price, nearly.
  9. Wizz-Fizz

    Wizz-Fizz TS Rookie Posts: 35   +11

    Valve are a business, providing a service that people want to use, while making a reasonable profit is the very core of business. I have not seen any evidence of them resorting to any "dirty" tactics as some other big names have been in recent times, so I'm not entirely sure that they deserve this level of animosity.

    A "Steambox" that runs Steam software straight out of the box would almost have to be based off PC architecture in order to get the most out of the existing software library. I wouldn't go so far as to say consoles and PCs would cost the same though. Skyrim, for example, on a $500 console or a $500 PC will still look and perform vastly different than on, say, a $2000 PC.
  10. Bruno M. Villar

    Bruno M. Villar TS Member Posts: 16

    One thing to consider: the eye candy of this software is awesome.
    Another thing to consider: is it going to have massive updates minute-to-minute of the main application (just like happens on the pc - it freaks me so much) and it's going to consume huge ammounts of memory just like it's consuming on my quad core pc?
    Also, is it going to have a poor scrolling just like on the steam pc version?
  11. cuerdc

    cuerdc TS Enthusiast Posts: 84   +10

    Yep like the keyboard layout, but it has got letters on it apple might have a case there
  12. Been waiting on this so I can build a dedicated gaming mini-itx box to leave hooked up to my 50" plasma. Will look nice sitting next to my 360 and PS3.

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