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Steam Hits the Big Screen

No High Scores

Valve announced today that Steam is soon going to be sporting a Big Picture mode so that it looks all nice and purty on your big ol, family room LED-LCD television. The mode will have a navigational system tailored for the television and support gamepads. This isn’t terribly surprising given their recent decision to bring Steam to the PS3 however I still question why you’d hook a PC up to your television in the first place. I can see taking an old PC and using it to serve up movies and such but are you really going to have the primary home PC tethered to the television? Similarly, are you going to take your bomb-ass new gaming rig and plug it into a TV so that the whole family can see how badly you suck at Portal 2? No thanks. I’ll stick to console gaming on my TV and stick to PC gaming, um, well, that would be never.

Seen on Edge Online.

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Brandon loves games, which shouldn't be a surprise given where you're reading this. He has written for GameShark, The Escapist and G4, and made them all less relevant as a result.

15 thoughts to “Steam Hits the Big Screen”

  1. Your PC gaming hatred continues to force me to question our friendship.

    I swear if you didn’t post recipes about exploding bacon I’d consider a replacement. Pokemon…good lord.

  2. Ok, how about a bold prediction:
    Sony and Valve are going to team up on the PS4 and have it run Steam. Sony sucks at the software side of things and Valve have no hardware expertise, so that’s going to work out well. Newell also worked on the first Windows version, I think, so he knows his shit.
    The PS4 is going to have hardware very similar to a normal PC, so that even normal PC games can very easily be optimised to have a PS4 mode in it and Valve can keep Steam for PC and Steam for PS4 unified (cross-platform licenses, cross-platform profiles, cross-platform multiplayer).
    The PS4 is going to have the advantage of standardised hardware. Developers will be able to optimise their PC games for the PS4 and reduce the problems associated with PC gaming, whilst at the same time enabling keyboard and mouse controls for most games, and having options for modding and stuff through the Steam interface.
    Steam will eventually also tap into the films-on-demand and music stuff, but probably in cooperation with an existing provider like netlfix.

    A lot of PC gamers will switch to the PS4 for convenience and place it under their desk while still enjoying all the PC games as they used to.

    … totally gonna happen.

    P.S. I broke this website, YES! Also, BOOOOOOOO for hating on PC gaming!

  3. I’m not anti-PC. I just don’t play PC games. Plenty of people have wonderful experiences with PC games, and for folks that live in places with ridiculous import taxes, playing PC games is the only affordable way to experience gaming.

    So there’s no anti-PC bias here, and if there were, it would be with me, not the site. Todd and Bill play PC games all of the time. But, as I said, there isn’t with me, because I don’t care how what people play their games on. It’s all good as far as I’m concerned.

  4. Because heavens forbid one writer wouldn’t like gameing on PC. In my opinion he’s just makeing up for other blogs and their rampant PC gamer ego-stroking, acting like they’re the master race.

  5. Again, I don’t hate PC games, I don’t hate PC gaming, I don’t hate people that play on PC’s. I used to be a PC gamer myself. I built one of the damn things back in the day with processor thermometers and desktop alerts when things got too hot and I have the thermal paste stains to prove it.

    If my comment about not playing PC games gave the impression that I hate PC gaming and the people that play on PC games, well, I apologize. That was not my intention.

    Bottom line is that I love games and if you want to do nothing but play Farmville all day, well I’m glad you have a game that you enjoy.

    That being said, Plankton, that PS4 prediction would be awesome.

  6. Oh, Mr. B. Always stirring up trouble. Time to put you back in the box for a spell. We’ll let you out in a week, after I say something terrible and it gets to be my turn.

  7. I started reading NHS the day PA linked it and I have found it to be very fair with its PC coverage. There’s quite a bit of PC centric stuff here, I think, but not too much. Just look through the pages.

    Anyway, not sure why Brandon never playing PC games detracts from your enjoyment of them, but I think you took what he said a tad too seriously. You should stick around though. Really friendly community thus far.

  8. Don’t worry about it, no need to apologise in my opinion. I was simply BOOOO-ing for the sake of it. Jumping on bandwagons in name of sarcasm is what I do.
    I think most people will realise that people have their opinions and preference and also occasionally will like to express themselves in hyperbole.

  9. I like the idea of having Steam on my TV as long as it has a 10-foot interface (though I am more like 5 feet way). I would possibly be down with a Steam Powered set-top box even. I currently have a Hackintosh based HTPC connected to my HDTV that I enjoy playing Starcraft 2 on (though there are a few issue with font sizes being too small). My main machine is a laptop though.

  10. Not that it says a whole lot because when you say it over the internet if you have a big enough audience it’s bound to be true, but I do in fact have the PC I am writing on now hooked up to a 42″ Plasma television. Since my graphics card has two DVI outputs and hooking it up to the television, which is literally at a 90 degree angle to the computer desk, involved an extra cable and and a splitter for the sound it started as essentially a “why not” type deal.

    Now however I find I use the function a lot. Much of my browsing has been of internet television shows hosted on sites such as “That Guy with the Glasses” so it’s been useful for that, and it makes looking at anything on youtube or Hulu more enjoyable. Some games lend themselves more to being on the television. (Oddly enough flight simulator X is one of them.) And with a small wireless keyboard / trackball combo like iogear’s for $40, and fences (Otherwise switching resolutions will eff up your desktop icon’s order so you can’t find crap.) it’s actually pretty darn useful.

    Also, I played Dragon Age start to finish on my HDTV through my PC because my monitor had died. ;p

  11. You went from no I have nothing against PC games to the only game you can play on a PC is Farmville in the same post. I would actually like to know why you try to rescind a comment only to make it worse three sentences later. On my end I do not own a PS3 or a 360 but it is not because I look down on them from high atop my PC mountain. I simply looked at the cost of ownership and have not seen any viable reason to purchase either one.

  12. No, what he’s saying is “If you like to play Farmville all day, go you” not “PC gamers only play Farmville”.

  13. Thanks for posting this. I recently built a pc for fun and decided to hook it up to my 42″ plasma. It started as a lark but now my wife and I frequently use it for watching hulu, surfing when the family mac is in use and doing a ton of odds and ends.

    I’ve started playing around with Steam as well and the interface doesn’t work as well on the big screen. Hearing that they are adding support specifically for my screen makes me very happy.

    I’m new to the site (heard about you through Dubious Quality). Excellent work, you all.

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