Let’s share a rumor and a fact. The fact is that Valve has a boatload of money, so much so, that Valve co-founder and figurehead Gabe Newell has earned a spot or Forbes billionaires list. The rumor from a month ago is that Valve could be using some of this cash flow to develop an open-source console.
After the obligatory (partial) denial from Valve who claim no such hardware would be shipping anytime soon (like Half-Life 3!) and some patented controller designs, they now have job listings which point towards new hardware development.
Most of the current listings related to software development and managing the Steam service but two stand out. Here’s the listing for an Electronics Engineer:
For years, Valve has been all about writing software that provides great gameplay experiences. Now we’re developing hardware to enhance those experiences, and you can be a key part of making that happen. Join our highly motivated team that’s doing hardware design, prototyping, testing, and production across a wide range of platforms. We’re not talking about me-too mice and gamepads here — help us invent whole new gaming experiences.
- Work with the hardware team to conceive, design, evaluate, and produce new types of input, output, and platform hardware
Hardware, hardware, hardware. Valve has admitted to testing out biometric feedback via hardware and building “boxes” to test “Steam Big Picture Mode UI” but like anything related to the Half-Life franchise, they’ve remained coy at the idea of developing a console-like device.
A console – that multiple manufactures could build through licensing – that offers the digital services of Steam and Origin could be the future. With the push toward digital content and talk from developers of a digital future, this could be it. A low-cost PC that works with TV sets and can play all the best games… Sounds like a formula for success if there’s any truth to this, especially if it
launches with Half-Life 3 supports features like cross-platform play which Valve brought with Portal 2 on Steam and PS3.
Unrelated, they’re also looking for a pyschologist to help with game development!
“We want to exploit your experience with experimental design, research methods, statistics, and human behavior to help craft even more compelling gameplay experiences for future Valve titles”
Would an open source gaming console that plays PC games interest you?
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