Valve’s Gabe Newell Talks Living Room PC Gaming, Hints At Steam Box

Recently, Valve rolled out Steam’s “Big Picture” mode, which aims (and succeeds) to take some of the hassle out of doing your PC gaming in the living room, something that has been catching on more and more with gamers over the past several years.

Valve boss Gabe Newell, speaking to Kotaku after the 2012 VGAs on Friday, said that the feature is turning out to be more popular than the company initially expected, and that Valve is looking into ways to push PC gaming in the living room even further.

“I think in general that most customers and most developers are gonna find that [the PC is] a better environment for them,” Newell told the site. “Cause they won’t have to split the world into thinking about ‘why are my friends in the living room, why are my video sources in the living room different from everyone else?’ So in a sense we hopefully are gonna unify those environments.”

Earlier this year, there was a lot of talk — some of it from Valve — that the company was looking into developing its own hardware to put PCs in more direct competition with consoles, perhaps something along the lines of a “Steam box.”

Newell told Kotaku that the company is still looking into that, and he even gave insight on what the company’s current vision of what a Steam box might be like.

“Well certainly our hardware will be a very controlled environment,” he said. “If you want more flexibility, you can always buy a more general purpose PC. For people who want a more turnkey solution, that’s what some people are really gonna want for their living room.

“The nice thing about a PC is a lot of different people can try out different solutions, and customers can find the ones that work best for them.”