Sony on whether Steam Machines can compete with consoles

The console landscape has been incredibly rocky over the past couple of years. For a while it seemed like the typical dominance of big companies like Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo was set to be shaken by new upstarts. There was the Ouya, which has proved to be a bit of an expensive smartphone gaming machine and there's the Steam Machines, which after much bluster when first revealed don't quite have the same impetus behind them. On top of that, Sony is ruling the roost in the new console generation while Microsoft and Sony battle it out for second place, with over 20 million new-gen systems sold between them.

And of course the PC is beavering away with massive summer sales as usual.

So will the Steam Machines ever make the splash we were foretold of when they were first unveiled, or will they always be a sideline curiosity? Sony's worldwide studios head, Scott Rohde thinks they will one day, but that Valve has a long road ahead of it.

"The short answer is Maybe Someday," he said (via Ars). "It's not meant to be an arrogant statement. It's not something that we're saying, 'Oh yeah we're not worried about them.' I think we're always interested in anything that comes into this space because it's fascinating to all of us.”

He also suggested that getting hardware shipped globally would be a difficult hurdle for Valve to cross, since it's not something the mainly digital distributor - at this point - has had to do.

It will likely rely on its suppliers and third party Steam Machine makers to handle that, but we'll have to wait and see how they do. Alienware is expected to ship its first real Steam Machine later this year, but that won't come with SeamOS or the controller, making it seem somewhat redundant.

Do you guys think Steam Machines will ever compete head to head with consoles from the big three?

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I like the idea of not having

I like the idea of not having to shop around for PC parts myself and just getting a "gaming" PC off the shelf. However history has shown that no matter what you do to bring prices down, it will always be cheaper to build your own rig. The SteamBox concept is good but the implementation will never be accepted because in the end you just have another alienware overpriced PC. Plus the only thing unique about the SteamBoxes is the controller and OS and now they aren't even shipping with either of them!?! This is all an exercise in futility, stop being so redundant Valve.

Controller and os are not

Controller and os are not unique to just the box. Once finished PC's can use them. Again another reason why I am trying to figure out who wants this crap? Want streaming games from a pc, build a dirty cheap one to stream the games from your other machine. Or if you have the pc in the same room as your main tv connect a hdmi cable up and away you go. Seen other companies trying to make a (for lack of better word) tv pc. Every single one has failed.

Valve will make it6 a success

Valve will make it6 a success. They have so much money it's not funny. As these MMOs and such like World of Tanks become more popular, console people will want to play, and consoles just cant do them. PC gaming is stronger than it has ever been and is making way more money than console games. Finally, it's back.

No, it won't.

The multipurpose PC will destroy all & rule the world. Steambox makes less sense than the already existing consoles. Love Valve, but WTF is this aboat?

BETAMAX

I think as history has shown with betamax vs vhs or PS3 vs Wii (if you prefer) - what wins is not always the better but one that is cheap and good enough. In other words It cannot cost 3x more than consoles or people may as well get full pc with customized choices and fullblown OS. Best case scenario is if they are able to have some hardware/software optimizations. Then there is the SECRET WEAPON - HALF LIFE 3 + a couple of other games by valve and steambox will automatically be success :)

Hardware entry

Can they make it? well it's a coin toss based on choices right now. If they had hit the market with their original release date a few months after the initial console launches but with better hardware they would have had a shot at integrating with the initial launch and been able to mingle with launch install bases. Now it's an uphill battle because a handful of people who might have bought a Steam Machine now own Ps4's or possibly an Xbox 1, they probably won't want to invest in another console now especially one that will most likely be a good deal more pricey. Then you have trends, with the Ps4 and X1 getting a head start they're the 'norm' already, meaning people who buy Steam Machines won't be 'in' with everyone else. A lot of people buy games within their circle of friends/family, if they've already bought a Ps4 or X1 the chances are they'll be the same instead of a Steam Machine. However, by Steam Machines pushing their release date back they're giving themselves the capacity, at least, to hit the market with a gaming machine light years beyond these new consoles. Later this year Intel will launch 8 core CPUs with clock speeds that will make these new consoles weep. SSD's will continue to decline in price and with PCI-E SSD support on the way combined with new more powerful graphics architecture and GFX tech doubling in power every 3-4 months lately, Valve has the "chance" to hit the market with a console that could desolate the competition. Imagine a 8 core 3.5GHz cpu with 16~32 gigs of system RAM, a terabyte SSD with a PCI-E connection and a 6~8 Gig video card and an optical drive that plays CDs, DvDs and Blu Rays. A rig like that could devastate the industry because it would be something like 2~3 generations ahead of current consoles (judging by the 'upgrade' between the ps3/360 generation to this new one). Not to mention Steam Machines would have FULL backwards compatibility and for me that's a major seller. Can't tell you how annoyed I am that I have to keep my Ps3 to keep playing my Ps3 games.

Initially steam machines will

Initially steam machines will appeal much more to PC gamers than console gamers. People who already own a gaming pc and would like to play pc games with friends in their living rooms. They can buy a lwo spec, dirt cheap pc and stream games from the gaming rig to the steam machine.

I am PC gamer and if I want

I am PC gamer and if I want to play games in the living room with my friends I could just build a low-cost/low-spec machine to do so. I would never spend the cash on a steam machine when I could just build a PC with the same exact same specs but for less money.

Correct

I agree. Now that you can stream games across your network using your Steam account, you can just use any low end rig, or even a cheap laptop you have laying around to stream the game from your higher end rig to the cheap computer hooked up to the TV via HDMI. Where I think Steam Boxes might fall short is convincing current console gamers to pay more for hardware as a replacement. PC games do have the benefit of using mods however, so anything is possible.

easy work but a long way

everybody with a pc will get a steam machine instead of a ps4 or xb1 i think. because you can use your whole libary from your pc on your console as well. you have lower prices for new games (instead of the common console game prices), which allows you to buy a console with more power instead. that sounds fair for me! the only problem are console exclusive games. but if valve manages to overcome that, i think they will lead the console future!

To the guys below, sure a

To the guys below, sure a steam machine can be used as a regular PC to run games and all. To do that valve already announced it would be working with nvidia and amd to develop proper linux drivers and both companies confirmed it. Even so, a steam machine can also be used to stream games from a windows gaming rig. That feature is live on steam already, just log into the same account from 2 different PCs on the same LAN and you can stream games installed in one PC to the other. Basically that allows you to play steam games in the living room when your friends come over. So the steam machine could have really low specs, or you could do it like I will, just build a small, cheap pc, install steam os, hook it to your TV and use it just to stream games.

But why would you? if your

But why would you? if your playing pc games not a huge list of games that can be played by more then one person at a time, so might as well just show them on your gaming pc in the other room. If you can already stream them via a cheap self built system what's the point of a steam box? Not that I am picking holes. I just simply can't see why anyone would pay for one of these boxes.

There is a lengthy list of pc

There is a lengthy list of pc games that can be played with more than one person on the same machine, sure if compared to the list of games that can't be played by more than one person at the same time it becomes small in comparison. But still, there are plenty of games out there with local multiplayer. As for the function of a steam machine, I assume they would have categories (low, mid and high end), leaving it up to you to decide if your box would work like a console, running games on its own, or just a stream box.

Hah!

I Seriously doubt it will be able to run even most Steam games since it's running the worst OS for games, Linux! Total crap if you ask me. Without Direct X that soooo many games require I think it will all fail.

Only reason I can see a pc

Only reason I can see a pc owner buying a steam machine is if there PC is so old it can't run anything new, like a 10+ year old store bought thing. Even then for the money they could get a new pc that could come up to play most modern games in some form. Problem I keep seeing with the steam boxes. There just PC's that have little to no upgrade options, I can't see why anyone in there right mind would want it.

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