Valve Console Controller Patent Surfaces

3 years ago by  

A few days ago we brought you news that Valve maybe developing a next-gen console, one that will compete with next-gen competitors on the market. This console is rumored to be capable of running Steam, Origin and any other cloud-based distributor. Today we have designs of what could be the controller for this device.

The idea of Valve creating a console is exciting enough, though what the controller is designed to do is even more intriguing. The patents for this controller were filed in 2009 and the device is said to have “user swappable control components.”

This means that in theory, the user could swap out the joysticks for another peripheral. In this patent there’s a picture that indicates a trackball could take the spot that was once occupied by a joystick. See the rest of the photos below:

These interchangeable parts could prove to be more beneficial to the gamer than a standard controller. For those who tend to run their controllers into the ground, a damaged joystick could be replaced instead of buying a whole new controller. On the other hand, the connectors for these parts could be weaker than that of regular controllers and could break easier.

Games on Steam are primarily PC-based with several console ports mixed in. Some games benefit from a mouse and keyboard, and others with a controller. Switching out a joystick for a trackpad will make the controller more versatile for different types of games.

The Valve controller is also said to have the ability to collect biometric data, though the patent’s main focus is on the swappable components. This is understandable since Nintendo’s own peripheral, the Vitality Sensor, didn’t fair so well.

While the idea that this controller possibly collecting even more personal data may not be exciting to gamers, the idea of a Steam-powered console is. This is also something other console makers should pay attention to, especially Microsoft. Right now, Valve has about 40 million users on Steam which rivals that of Xbox Live. Imagine an Xbox experience combined with the awesome Steam sales.

This patent was filed in 2009 and it’s unclear if this will come to fruition. Rumor has it that Valve may reveal this console at GDC, which is happening right now in San Francisco, or at E3 2012 this June.

Be sure to keep your eyes here for any developments in this story.

Follow me on Twitter @Dwayne236

Source: Kotaku

  • nuk60

    Xbox Controller…..LAME

  • Argamow

    If Valve really wants to make a console I wish them the best of luck. Hopefully it will work out much better than the Phantom console. Anyone else think Phantom is a great name for vaporware?

  • Postal Gold

    To be honest, I cannot quite see what is so innovative of using a trackball instead of a regular joystick on that gamepad.
    I doubt those controllers will be able to compete with Wii and Kinect in the long run.

    • StillOnMars

      Wii and Kinect? You’re kidding right?

      • Ryuhza

        I hope so.

        I HOPE SO.

    • fade2BLACK

      Why does no one mention Move? Though it sold less than Kinect, its long run customers are much more satisfied!

      • Ryuhza

        Lack of supported titles, unfortunately.

  • Michael

    I want to see this controller in action. I would prefer it look a little different from an Xbox controller, but no biggie. I think putting both joysticks/track balls parallel to each other is a huge advantage for the controller. I never liked how the Xbox 360’s joysticks were on different levels.

  • genericiz3d

    To be completely honest, a console coming from a company whose managing director has been quoted saying that “PS3 [should] be more open like a Mac than more closed like a Gamecube” will have no business being in my house.

    • Ryuhza

      How old is that quote?

  • Spider-Abu


  • LIKLE3

    any joystick or button is easily replaceable on an Xbox pad anyway so that ain’t no pretty sure they ain’t gunna release a console with Xbox and ps4 out within the next 3 yr..
    Now is the time if they R gunna.

    I won’t b buyin tho!

  • Wolf

    today, I’ve found this controller, and it’s the weirdest thing I’ve ever seen so far:
    maybe the next big thing doesn’t come from a big company:)