We were promised Steam Machines this year. That's not happening anymore. The launch of Steam Machines (PCs built for the living room that come with a Steam Controller) has been delayed until next year.
That's disappointing for gamers who decided to hold off on buying a PS4 or Xbox One. Valve is pinning the blame on the controllers. The company behind the Steam platform and games such as Portal and Half-Life says they've now seeded wireless prototype controllers to tons of testers and getting a heap of feedback.
The Steam Controller has been the topic of much discussion. The original design had a touchscreen in the center with oddly placed ABXY buttons on its corners. Prototype controllers went out to testers without the touchscreen. Instead, it had four buttons in its place. It goes without saying that nobody liked it. The touchscreen was then scrapped to cut costs.
Fast forward to today and the Steam Controller still has those two dual trackpads instead of analog sticks, but it also has ABXY and directional pad buttons laid out in a more familiar diamond layout. Here's what it looks like now:
If you ask us, it still looks like this:
With Valve just now issuing out wireless controllers, it's no wonder the onslaught of Steam Machines have been delayed.
Steam Machines have the potential (if priced adequately) to completely obliterate game consoles. Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo know that Steam Machines are encroaching on their territory. But half-baked PCs won't do. Valve's smartly delaying the machines and controllers until they're perfect (or near perfect). And with the PS4 and Xbox One both starting at $400 now, Steam Machines are going to have to be more affordable too.
I was excited to see how Steam Machine assault on game consoles would play out this year. I guess I'll have to wait a little longer. Hopefully with the extra time, they can hire some industrial designers to come up with better-looking systems than this.
Via Steam Community