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Valve Shows How Steam Controller Works In Real Life

timothy posted 1 year,20 days | from the it-burns-it-buuuuuuurns dept.

Input Devices 139

sfcrazy writes "Valve Software have demonstrated how the controller works in the real world with popular games like Portal 2, Civilization V, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Valve has posted a video on their YouTube channel to give users a glimpse of the Steam Controller experience."

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Real Life? (4, Funny)

dunng808 (448849) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106475)

A new MMORPG?

Re:Real Life? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45107087)

I got in the beta and right now it's not worth playing. The classes are so unbalanced it isn't even funny and skills take ages to level up. Although there are a large number of quests, it gets very repetitive and makes "bring me ten rat tails" sound like fun. That reminds me: anyone knows where you're supposed to drop the rat tails? I've tried several vendors but they always say they'll call the guards if I don't get out, is this a bug?
On the bright side the graphics are pretty good, although not very realistic since there's hardly any brown. Hadn't they blown all the budget on graphics, heroin and advertising the game might've lived up to all the hype, but as it is I give it a 4/10. Back to WoW I guess.

Re:Real Life? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107595)

You must be stuck in the Urban mode if you are not getting enough brown, please download the factory pig farm user pack if you would like a fantastic array of brown shades in massive quantities. Oh and the factory pig farmers will take you collection of rat tails for feed off of your hands.

Thanks for playing the beta

Wow. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106509)

That's the coolest thing since the mooncup. [thepolivkafamily.com]

This actually isn't half bad (5, Interesting)

Khyber (864651) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106515)

Might take just a tiny bit of getting used to, but this could actually work.

I'm actually impressed.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

arthurpaliden (939626) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106629)

Ditto. Looks good for the couch when you are playing a leisurely game. However, mouse and kb will will be tops for getting rid of the pent up must kill something moments.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106791)

Ditto. Looks good for the couch when you are playing a leisurely game. However, mouse and kb will will be tops for getting rid of the pent up must kill something moments.

If you're lame enough to seriously play video games, you might want to considering killing yourself. Seriously. Have any of you losers ever gotten any pussy?

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106897)

Same AC here; disregard that, i don't even lift.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (2)

Smauler (915644) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106999)

Looks good for the couch when you are playing a leisurely game.

This is damning with faint praise. This looks nowhere near as good as a mouse. An example : point click timed flash games. When someone gets even close to what an ok person can do with these with another interface, I'll talk.

Also, I would go insane playing Civilization with this... there were 3 movements to get the pointer from one side to the screen to the other. Admittedly, I have my mouse pretty sensitive (less than a centimetre, side to side), and some people who use mice have their setting so low that they have to pick their mice up to get from one side of the screen to another... however, trying to replace a pointer controller is difficult, when the mouse is so good.

Also, their Portal 2 demo was not impressive. I'm not good, but I'm much quicker looking and better than that demo (not boasting, at all - I'm only average).

All that being said - this is not a replacement for the keyboard/mouse. This is a replacement for analogue sticks, and it looks better.

I'm going to grab a steam box when it comes out, anyway, and I'm pretty excited about it. I just don't think controllers will replace the mouse. The keyboard is defunct as a gaming device, it's just a bunch of buttons, anything could accomplish that.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45108063)

All that being said - this is not a replacement for the keyboard/mouse. This is a replacement for analogue sticks, and it looks better.

Thats all they needed to be contenders in the living room, which is the whole point. No one expected it to be better than KB/M.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (2)

JMJimmy (2036122) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106657)

Your right thumb is going to get insanely sore doing that swiping motion to look around quickly. Button presses + motion will be hard/impossible, as will button combos and I guarantee the underside/LS/RS buttons will get clicked accidentally or you'll end up hurting your hands trying not to press them.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (2)

Brulath (2765381) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106845)

It's hackable, so you could probably implement the mouse like a trackball [wikipedia.org] ; a flicking action could simulate the ball rolling/moving the cursor and touching the pad again would stop the cursor.

There are a lot of possibilities for modifying the control scheme in each game to increase accuracy whilst reducing fatigue - there's no reason you must implement it as 1:1 movement for all games.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

Khyber (864651) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106917)

From what I saw in the portal 2 demo there appeared to be some sort of 'swipe inertial motion' going on.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

donaldm (919619) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106941)

Your right thumb is going to get insanely sore doing that swiping motion to look around quickly. Button presses + motion will be hard/impossible, as will button combos and I guarantee the underside/LS/RS buttons will get clicked accidentally or you'll end up hurting your hands trying not to press them.

Hmm that is what I thought to. On my laptop I rarely use the track pad since my fingers start to get quite sensitive due to them sliding on the smooth surface and it does not take long before they start to hurt, this is one of the reasons I actually turn my track pad off and just use a mouse. I have found that controllers with joysticks and buttons are much more comfortable and I can play for hours at a time without my hands hurting.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106969)

Your right thumb is going to get insanely sore doing that swiping motion to look around quickly. Button presses + motion will be hard/impossible, as will button combos and I guarantee the underside/LS/RS buttons will get clicked accidentally or you'll end up hurting your hands trying not to press them.

You saw that specifically addressed in "Papers Please" where they had both pads acting as mouse so you had mouse swipes with both thumbs. That was the coolest thing to me as it is more natural than a mouse! And if the "click" is a trigger, I do not see the problem.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

Smauler (915644) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107031)

I also worry about the durability of the pad. I really hope they've put it through the paces.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106699)

I'm watching it with great interest, but I was less impressed. The games they were playing were all older games, and I kept thinking how much better it would have been with a keyboard and mouse.

But if games are designed with the new controllers in mind, it could be quite good.

However, I'm kind of opposed to game controllers on principle. If I was a teenager, I might not have this issue, but I can't see owning a device just for controlling games, when I can have such fine control with a mouse and keyboard (which is already on my desk). I have no such compunction about buying a $250 video card that is only really necessary for the games I play, but I never said I was consistent.

I don't like consoles. Don't like console games or what consoles have done to gaming. Don't like third-person cover-based shooters. Feels like I'm in a firefight with a marionette with strings with too much slack.

Plus, I don't play games in the living room. Having said all that, I like the looks of the Steam Box, and the fact that it's something anybody can build and runs Linux. I like that Valve is releasing the CAD files for the box so you can even build one that looks like the one Valve is going to sell. It shows their commitment is to gaming instead of trying to be some kind of all-in-one social shopping device that will report back to HQ with details about me.

I like the idea of a company trying to do what it does instead of making everything a hook into something else, like Sony, Microsoft and to a lesser extent, Nintendo. The ultimate end game of that strategy is iOS, which is in my eyes an abomination.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

Desler (1608317) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106705)

The games they were playing were all older games

Portal 2 and Civ 5 are only around 3 years old.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

artor3 (1344997) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106751)

What does the age of the game have to do with anything? Seriously, I can't even imagine what you might be getting at.

As for the controller, I think it could be great for some games. Total War, for example, could be fantastic with a big screen and a comfy couch. For games that require fine precision (e.g. Starcraft, Dota 2) , nothing stops you from using a keyboard and mouse.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107723)

Total War, for example, could be fantastic with a big screen and a comfy couch.

I have a big screen and a comfy chair in which I play my games, and they are not in the living room where my wife would have to walk past me and see me in my gape-jawed gaming glory as I bound about simulated Steelport in nothing but flip-flops and an Uncle Sam hat.

Now, I guess someone who is wider than me would need a couch to sit on for gaming, but I can still fit in a chair, thanks.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

dadelbunts (1727498) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106857)

What consoles have done to gaming? Please. Also controllers are better for a wide range of games. Any racing game is shit with mouse and keyboard, Same for most flying games.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

hercludes (2935741) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107123)

Console producers slap a computer together, mass-produce it and sell it under a price tag. With this they can corner a series of games exclusively for that console alone, so if you want to play a certain game, you'll have to buy the console. And if you just happen to own a console/PC where the game was not originally designed to play on, you'll probably end up with a buggy game. But the biggest issue is that most console games treat their player as if they couldn't handle the concept of pushing a button. You think most of these horridly generic games would be intuitive as to how to play. There are many more reasons why consoles ruin videogames, it's just this awful generifying of games that all have the same exact issue that is not necessary yet included in every game. Oh well consoles, if you think I don't understand the concept of moving with an analog stick, then I doubt I could've actually turned the console on myself.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

dadelbunts (1727498) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108519)

And thats how its been on PC for decades. You couldnt get PC games on consoles (exclusives). And PC games arent generic? How many FPS games came out after Doom. Did you forget basically the whole 90s where 90% of PC games were basic FPS and RTS clones of each other.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107735)

What consoles have done to gaming?

Quick-time events, third-person perspective, horrible PC ports, "exclusives", "Press X to kill everything on the screen", and I could go on but you're probably getting the idea.

Consoles have also suppressed hardware advancement for gaming. Without consoles, there would have been 3D headsets five years ago.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

umafuckit (2980809) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108443)

Yeah, so there are shitty console games out there. I agree. I've just bought a PS3 because they're cheap and some of what I've seen has really disappointed me: boring formulaic stuff. On the other hand, I'm really enjoying Journey, Unfinished Swan, Little Big Planet, and Gran Turismo. I'm more in two minds about Drake's Deception, which came with the console: I don't like the control scheme with the game pad. Aiming is painfully hard and it's obvious that the enemies' behavior is designed with this in mind. I believe aiming will get better with practice, but you're fighting against an bad input method.

On the Wii you lots of games with excellent gameplay and the Wiimote allows for natural aiming. I've had a lot of fun on it and I wouldn't characterise it as "press X to kill all" gameplay.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

dadelbunts (1727498) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108497)

Except all of those are idiotic points. Third person perspectives are great for a large number of games and have been around on PC games forever. Do you even game? Exclusives have been around forever. Hell 20 years ago most games on PC were never ported to consoles. You can then say PCs started the whole exclusive bullshit. Not to mention horrendous DRM such as online only for single player games. We can thank PCs for that as well. And my favorite of all, half finished Betas being sold as full products. The most harm done to gaming in the past 10 years was from PCs not consoles.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

dadelbunts (1727498) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108531)

BTW you never said how any racing or flying game would be made better by a keyboard and mouse.Since you think controllers are useless.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (3, Insightful)

houstonbofh (602064) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106973)

I think the entire point was to show how good it was with existing games not specifically written for it. (Since that will be the majority of the games out there on the release day.)

Re:This actually isn't half bad (2)

realityimpaired (1668397) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107809)

However, I'm kind of opposed to game controllers on principle. If I was a teenager, I might not have this issue, but I can't see owning a device just for controlling games, when I can have such fine control with a mouse and keyboard (which is already on my desk). I have no such compunction about buying a $250 video card that is only really necessary for the games I play, but I never said I was consistent.

It really depends on the game... some games are designed for a controller input, and the keyboard/mouse, while they exist, feel like a tack-on. I have a USB Xbox 360 controller: it works perfectly out of the box, even on Linux, and probably half of the games in my library work better with it than they do with keyboard/mouse. General rule of thumb: anything that's got arcade type action will work better with a controller. Some of the games in my library will actually allow multiplayer action on a single system by connecting a controller -- Trine 2, for example, will allow one player on keyboard/mouse, and another on a controller, both controlling characters on screen at the same time. I don't have a 3rd controller, so I can't test it, but in theory it supports 3-player at the same time.

I'm a bit surprised they'd use Civ5 as their demo game, though.... that game was never designed for controller input, and is *way* better with a keyboard.

Re:This actually isn't half bad (1)

bemymonkey (1244086) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107491)

LOL Really? Did you see the CS section? ~2 seconds to position the crosshair on a guy's head... imagine compensating for recoil during an AK burst with that thing, haha :D

As with any other console controller: Completely fucking useless.

Wow. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106535)

I don't really know what to say.

The fact that you have to lift up your thumb and reposition it is horrible. That alone will pretty much mean that you're at a severe disadvantage if you're in a multiplayer game trying to verse someone with a mouse and keyboard, because every time you hit the edge of the control pad you have to momentarily pause to lift up your finger and place it down in the centre again.

If they had some sort of inertia system (similar to how Apple scrolls stuff), then maybe that wouldn't be so bad. You could just run your thumb off the edge of the pad and it would detect this and continue moving in the vector you've specified by doing so, then when you put your finger back down it stops. But I'm not seeing that at all, so for all intents and purposes this appears to be a really shitty thumb trackpad.

I have a feeling that they're going to land up including a joystick emulation feature instead, and that'll be what 99% of the people land up using- and at that point, I'm kinda wondering what the point is over any other game controller.

Re:Wow. (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106589)

Granted, those who use a mouse still reach the edge of the mouse pad, and end up having to pick up the mouse and reposition it as well. Some mice are notoriously hard to actually pick up off the table, with slanted sides that don't let you get a good grip. Personally, I prefer using trackballs. They do have the inertial system by virtue of their design, and you never have to reposition them. Trackballs that let you use your fingers are the best, because you have multiple digits that control the same surface, so as one finger meets the edge, you can switch to another finger, and continue the motion.

Re:Wow. (1)

ballpoint (192660) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107297)

My trackman marble fx wireless just broke down. It was already a meager replacement for the seminal wired original fx, and now I'm stuck as new good finger controlled trackballs are nowhere to be found. It's a sad state of affairs.

Any suggestions ?

Re: Wow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107505)

Fix it?

Re:Wow. (1)

KozmoStevnNaut (630146) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107531)

Kensington Slimblade, it's quite good. Not nearly the same form factor as an FX, but finger-controlled and very flickable.

Re:Wow. (1)

damnbunni (1215350) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107545)

Kensington still makes finger-controlled trackballs. I use an ExpertMouse myself; they also have one called the Blade.

Why they call a trackball a mouse, I've never been able to figure out.

Re:Wow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107653)

My trackman marble fx wireless just broke down. It was already a meager replacement for the seminal wired original fx, and now I'm stuck as new good finger controlled trackballs are nowhere to be found. It's a sad state of affairs.

Any suggestions ?

Try to fix your current trackball first.

Re:Wow. (1)

nu1x (992092) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107581)

Mouse pad ?

Re:Wow. (1)

mynis01 (2448882) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107709)

I play with high enough sensitivity to where I don't reach the edge of my mouse pad. Most of the time, I can just rest my wrist on my mouse pad and not even have to pick up my arm, let alone the mouse.

Re:Wow. (5, Informative)

gumpish (682245) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106617)

If they had some sort of inertia system...

Did you not see this exact mechanic in the Civ 5 demo?

Take another look [youtube.com] at the "swipe" on the right thumbpad at 2:23 and again at 2:27. It seems to work like a smartphone. If you lift your thumb while it's moving then the cursor has inertia.

Re:Wow. (1)

JMJimmy (2036122) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106663)

That's built into the game, not the controller which means you'll be at the mercy of the developer as to whether or not the controller will be of any use

Re:Wow. (2)

gumpish (682245) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106753)

Even if your sourceless assertion is accurate, there's nothing stopping Valve from implementing that functionality in the driver.

Re:Wow. (2)

Holi (250190) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107073)

Which it obviously is as they specifically mentioned that the 1 to 1 control was one way you could configure the controller.

Re:Wow. (1)

Jartan (219704) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106761)

It's still far better than a gamepad.

Re:Wow. (1)

Deluvianvortex (2908365) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106899)

its not built into the game, and you can see him doing it earlier in the portal demo.

Re:Wow. (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106881)

Did you get to 36 seconds into the video and have an aneurysm? You can choose freely between 1:1 and relative input.

CAD already posted a pretty accurate description (4, Funny)

Wrath0fb0b (302444) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106551)

Borderline NSFW [cad-comic.com]

Very nice! (4, Insightful)

RyanFenton (230700) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106557)

A very good video showing movement mapped to real gameplay.

The obvious: It's not QUITE as 1-1 as a mouse with 4 inches of control surface.

But I'd still rate it a bit higher than a trackball, which is high praise from me, since I really enjoy using trackball inputs when a mouse isn't convenient.

This is a real accomplishment in input innovation - even without considering the dynamic haptic feedback portion of the design.

I'd be amazed, if this works as advertised, if Sony and Microsoft don't push for a copycat controller very rapidly - especially given the PC-like nature of their new consoles.

The remaining challenge: How would it fare against a 360/Dualshock controller in specialized console games. From what I've heard from developers so far:

Super Meat Boy dev trys out the Steam controller [polygon.com]

It sounds like it's a good compromise overall - but it's still got some hurdles to clear to being "the best" - but man, it sounds promising so far!

Ryan Fenton

Re:Very nice! (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106847)

This is a real accomplishment in input innovation - even without considering the dynamic haptic feedback portion of the design.

Not really. I had one of these [amazon.com] for my Super Nintendo back in the day. Sure, this controller might be more sensitive, but the idea itself isn't new.

Re:Very nice! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45107173)

"It's not QUITE as 1-1 as a mouse with 4 inches of control surface."

That's what she said.

Ryan Fenton

Re:Very nice! (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108539)

I'm still using a trackman wheel. They're getting harder to come by (they don't live forever) and I am having to replace microswitches... I find I'm more accurate with it than I am with a mouse, and I can play more rounds before fatigue sets in.

On the other hand, or on the other both hands? I am finding I can spend a truly unfortunate number of hours playing GTAV on the 360. I have really big hands, so this is a big deal for me...

Just like laptop trackpad (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106559)

Watching the FPS gameplay it reminds me of when I plan on my laptop using a trackpad. I would say it is a level up from the joystick on controllers now, however still not quite a mouse.

I am curious how this will work with games that are designed for a joystick. Such as driving or flight simulators.

Die hard PC gamer.. very impressed (2)

Seranfall (680430) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106571)

I haven't owned a console since the NES. I've always been a PC gamer. I rarely play games with a anything other than a keyboard and mouse. I'm honestly impressed at what they have come up with. I'll seriously consider buying a steam machine once they are readily available. I think Valve has done a great job so far. It will be very interesting to see if it is successful and see what the competition does in response.

sweaty hands ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106591)

my hands often get sweaty gaming and using effectively trackpads/touch becomes impossible, controllers traditionally use knobs/sticks for a reason and it sure isnt a technological one

Non-centering joystick (1)

Dwedit (232252) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106593)

So for several of the games, the left trackpad seems to be equivalent to a non-centering joystick or Turbo Touch 360 (touch-sensitive gamepad for NES/Genesis, etc).
The non-centering joystick of the Atari 5200 got really bad reviews, and the Turbo Touch 360 was rated the 9th worst video game controller of all time by IGN.

Re:Non-centering joystick (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106645)

no, in those games it's just an area with zones for WSAD movement. the point about "centering" is irrelevant when there's no stick

Re:Non-centering joystick (1)

Z80a (971949) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106651)

I think they're trying to solve it by making the trackpad concave and with a plastic ring on the middle to tell you where the middle is. But must see how effective it is at it.

Re:Non-centering joystick (1)

vux984 (928602) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107559)

The non-centering joystick of the Atari 5200 got really bad reviews, and the Turbo Touch 360 was rated the 9th worst video game controller of all time by IGN.

What is a mouse on a mousepad in an FPS shooter with mouse look if its not a "non-centering joystick"?

I don't know if the steam controller is going to be any good in practice, but for on the couch gaming -- I'm willing to give it a shot. I already prefer to play quite a few styles of games with a controller - Platformers, shmups, and stuff like defense grid.

The new Xcom I can go either way on - but if I'm on the couch playing it on the big screen, I'll go with a controller.

Really the only games I just can't abide controllers for are FPS, and most RTS. And hunched forward over the coffee table with a keyboard and mouse with my head tilted back to see the tv is cringe inducing... so I play those on my office PC. But I'd like a good couch experience... I'm willing to try steam controller. It's basically playing an FPS with a trackpad (which I've done and THAT is miserable -- but its a trackpad designed to be handheld and used with a thumb which overcomes one of the major problems with trackpads... and it has good button placement for "shooting" etc, which is the other major problem with trackpads. So it might suck... but it might be good.

RTS games (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106649)

They need show then that can be mouse only and mouse + keyboard hot keys.

Is there any evidence of real openness? (1)

Kethinov (636034) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106669)

Is there any real evidence that steamOS will actually be truly open?

I know they advertised that the OS will be open source to some degree, but I haven't been able to dig up the details.

What worries me is this: if I can't sideload apps, install separate app stores, or root the system, then it's not truly open.

I'm worried steamOS will be as locked down to Steam as iOS is locked down to the iOS app store.

Is there evidence that steamOS will be more open than that?

Re:Is there any evidence of real openness? (1, Informative)

TrollstonButterbeans (2914995) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106765)

Uh ... Steam = DRM = store for secure distribution. Do you need a dunce cap or a bonk on the head?

Or are you shooting for "Dumb post of the year" or what?

Re:Is there any evidence of real openness? (1)

Kethinov (636034) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108361)

You replied with a post that consisted of:

1. An insult.

2. No actual answer to my question about sideloading.

And someone modded you up.

Yep, that's Slashdot.

Re:Is there any evidence of real openness? (1)

flimflammer (956759) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106915)

Er, you are aware that SteamOS is essentially nothing but a custom desktop Linux distribution with some specialized drivers and applications to facilitate the Steam storefront and peripheral hardware, right? That should be all you need to know to realize how open it's going to be.

They welcome anyone to install it on their own home desktops. Of course you'll be able to sideload whatever you want onto it or pick at the guts. Just don't expect the storefront client to be open source.

Re:Is there any evidence of real openness? (1)

Kethinov (636034) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108385)

Do you have hard information that SteamOS will permit sideloading or are you just assuming it will based on their vague marketing rhetoric?

Re:Is there any evidence of real openness? (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106993)

Is there any real evidence that steamOS will actually be truly open?

I know they advertised that the OS will be open source to some degree, but I haven't been able to dig up the details.

It is the steam client on Linux. Essentually, install Ubuntu, and the Steam client. Then set up your game user so the shell is the steam client, not Unity, and have it default to big picture mode. Now you have a steam box. And I am sure you can go the other way as well. The core is Linux, and the beta is the Ubuntu userbase.

Re:Is there any evidence of real openness? (1)

Kethinov (636034) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108397)

Do you have hard evidence that stock Ubuntu with Steam installed is architecturally identical to SteamOS and that SteamOS will permit sideloading the same Ubuntu does, or are you just guessing based on their vague marketing pages?

still a compromise (1)

JustNiz (692889) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106693)

Its clear from the video its still noticeably not as quick to accurately place shots as with a mouse (and keyboard).
If it aint broke dont fix it. I'm gonna stick with a mouse and keyboard thanks.

Re:still a compromise (1)

flimflammer (956759) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106921)

Nothing but a keyboard or mouse will product the same results of a keyboard and mouse to its fullest extent. You're not the target market. This is designed to make living room play easier for those who wish to partake in such an endeavor. If you're already sitting at your desk, you're probably better off using the keyboard and mouse.

Don't compare it to gamepads. (4, Insightful)

Jartan (219704) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106715)

I've seen a lot of comments naming specific scenarios where a gamepad is better. That's completely pointless. If a gamepad is better in that scenario then you'll just use a gamepad.

The entire purpose of this thing is mouse/kb games.

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (1)

eyenot (102141) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106841)

I want to get one just for that reason. Sitting down and spending hours tweaking the settings of an XPadder setup to get a controller working "hrnnn kinda sorta" with a game meant for mouse and keyboard rarely pays off the way it feels like it should.

A controller like this takes care of all that.

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106859)

The entire purpose of this thing is mouse/kb games.

I would say it mainly replaces mouse, not keyboard.
It is cool, but it will never be the accuracy and speed of a mouse, and the speed and feedback of a keyboard.http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/13/10/12/0013251/valve-shows-how-steam-controller-works-in-real-life#

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45107185)

Of course a gamepad can't beat a mouse in doing a mouse's job. Valve isn't stupid. The target market isn't PC gamers but console gamers, so Valve needs something like a gamepad.
There is still the problem that on competitive multiplayer games the console gamers would be up against PC gamers. Unless Valve finds a way to segregate the servers that will be a very painful experience for the mouseless.

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (4, Informative)

umafuckit (2980809) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108465)

Of course a gamepad can't beat a mouse in doing a mouse's job. Valve isn't stupid. The target market isn't PC gamers but console gamers, so Valve needs something like a gamepad.

The target market is people who want to play games in the living room. I'm a PC gamer at heart, but I often like being in the living room. I'd be interested in Valve's angle if it works well.

There is still the problem that on competitive multiplayer games the console gamers would be up against PC gamers. Unless Valve finds a way to segregate the servers that will be a very painful experience for the mouseless.

How is that that a problem? They're segregated now. If the console kids were mixed with PC gamers in a multiplayer FPS they would be anhialiated instantly. All you have to do is segregate according to input device (or allow the gamepad user a choice of whether they want to be). But let's see how it performs. If it's good enough there may be no need to segregate.

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (4, Informative)

Undead Waffle (1447615) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106873)

Basically. The point is Valve came up with Steam Box but all of their own titles are designed for mouse and keyboard, so they needed an appropriate controller or there wouldn't be anything to play. I was wondering how they were going to solve this problem and this controller design was a brilliant solution.

Didn't seem to be a problem for Nintendo and Sony (1)

kyncani (873884) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107129)

The point is Valve came up with Steam Box but all of their own titles are designed for mouse and keyboard, so they needed an appropriate controller or there wouldn't be anything to play. I was wondering how they were going to solve this problem and this controller design was a brilliant solution.

Nintendo and Sony didn't have anything to play with the NES, SNES and the PS1 either.
They just made sure games would come out and work with their console and controller.
Worked well enough for them.

Re:Didn't seem to be a problem for Nintendo and So (2)

Patch86 (1465427) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108293)

While you're right (and still right- the PS4 won't have any games until someone releases games for it), surely Valve's biggest selling point with Steam is that they already have 100's of much loved titles covering every genre ready to go. I don't know how many Steam titles there are for Linux already, but it's a non-trivial number and includes AAA titles from the last few years (not least their own titles).

Bearing in mind that they'll be a new kid on the block in the console market, it certainly helps if they have a much bigger and better games catalogue than any of their next-gen rivals.

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (1)

aliquis (678370) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107533)

I've seen a lot of comments naming specific scenarios where a gamepad is better. That's completely pointless. If a gamepad is better in that scenario then you'll just use a gamepad.

But if you're going to argue like that then a mouse and keyboard is also better in that scenario and hence the controller is useless..

For those two situations at least.

That we want to know how well it performs against either if this is what one will be using I don't find weird at all.

Me I wonder about the ergonomics of having your thumb push against a stiff surface the whole time, even if the pressure needed is very small.

Also I think the purpose of this is to play games. Not just specific mouse and keyboard games, but that the touch-pads allowed an easier way of handling those to.

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107537)

.. with one more o. /parent

Re:Don't compare it to gamepads. (1)

lordofthechia (598872) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107609)

This is exactly it. It's designed to be as comfortable and easy to hold as a gamepad, but get as close to mouse + keyboard precision. There are Linux drivers for the PS3 Six-axis or Dual Shock 3 [ubuntu.com] and XBOX 360 controllers [ubuntu.com] (which should work just fine in Steam OS).

People criticizing this for *not* copying the tried and true gamepad design (two analog sticks, 1 d-pad, 4 side buttons, etc) are like people critiquing a pickup truck or sports car for not seating 4 and having enough room for all their groceries.

Sidenote - for thoese banging their heads against the wall trying to use a PS3 DS3 controller in windows using motion joy this guy made an awesome alternative that I got working with two controllers and works just peachy with Steam Big Picture [pcsx2.net] .

First half-decent console controller? (1)

thatkid_2002 (1529917) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106783)

I can't stand console controllers, but this one actually seems to afford the user some resemblance of speed and accuracy. While I'd still infinitely prefer a keyboard and mouse the Steam controller has put me in a favourable disposition regarding buying my first console, a Steam Box... As opposed to: "A console? Over my dead body!"

Fighting games? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106795)

What about fighting games? With no buttons on the right of the pad, how do you do moves? A touchpad sectioned off as buttons isn't going to cut it - and using the buttons on the center is completely impractical as they are too far from the right thumb. I think Valve isn't considering enough genre's here.

Re:Fighting games? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107635)

The controller has buttons on the back in addition to typical triggers and bumpers. If that isn't good enough, use a gamepad or a fight stick like everyone else. I think you aren't considering enough options.

Old idea (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106861)

The Triax Turbo Touch 360 [wikipedia.org] tried this LONG before Valve. I had one. It was a novel idea at the time but didn't work so great and earned a spot at #9 on IGN's list of worst controllers: "Dear Control Engineers: Please don't remove the D-pad on a controller in favor of a touch-sensitive surface. You may try to con fighting gamers into thinking it'll make smooth circular motions easier, but you may not realize they like to rest their thumb on the pad when idle. Thanks. Your Pal, Craig"

Re:Old idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106991)

And in 25 years there has not been even a slight advancement in the technologies used in such a controller. You are just stupid.

Re:Old idea (1)

rogoshen1 (2922505) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107347)

The Newton failed, therefore tablet PC's are a non-starter -- makes about as much sense as your comment :) How well is a touch based controller truly going to work when paired with a console designed around a 4 way D pad? (This is barring all the short comings it had with sensitivity to x/y movement, as well as pressure sensitivity.)

fa1lzors!? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,20 days | (#45106945)

Rubbing (1)

Russ1642 (1087959) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106951)

Looks like it'll cause a lot of blisters.

Different games need different controllers (1)

aiadot (3055455) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106957)

It's nice that Valve is bringing a, what seems to be, good controller for point and click and turn based games. But I still believe that if you're a PC gamer you'll have to couple it with a Xbox/PS4 controller(both supposed work on PCs out of the box) and a m+kb set as well.
Portal, unless you're doing a speed-run, you don't need to rush while still being accurate. So any controller could deliver a good experience. The counter-strike demo wasn't a real match, so it's hard to make a judgement. Don't get me wrong, it's very usable and if every person in the match is using the same controller, I see no issues whatsoever. But given that you'll be playing these games on a PC or Steam Machine, it's very likely that lot's of players will be using mouse+keyboards, and that could be a huge disadvantage for steam controller users.
Then there are the "console" type of games: 2/3D platformers, JRPGS, SHUMPS(my favorite genre on the PC), action/adventure, etc, I have the feeling that the console controllers will be better. And for racers and fighters, people using console controllers or wheels/sticks will have the better advantage/experience.

Re:Different games need different controllers (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108327)

It should be pointed out that as the Steam Box is just a regular Linux distro on regular PC hardware, you will not be limited to using just this controller. You'll be able to use anything available on the market for PCs, including- wireless keyboard & mouse, wireless handheld keyboard & trackpad, Sony Dual Shock controllers, Dual Shock rip off imitation controllers, Xbox controllers, Xbox ripoff imitation controllers, joysticks...

This controller is just because Valve know that 99% of their Steam catalogue is designed for keyboard & mouse, they know that 99% of that 99% will never be modified for use with a console gamepad, and they know that most console gamers would balk at the suggestion they should sit on their couch with a tea tray on their lap for a keyboard & mouse. This is their selling point to that crowd. If you're happy with the tea tray keyboard & mouse set up, Valve certainly won't be objecting. And if you want to buy a £10 PS-style gamepad from Amazon to play with, they'll be happy with that too.

Strangely, the best part of this (1)

He Who Has No Name (768306) | 1 year,20 days | (#45106961)

...was I spent the next few hours playing and replaying Papers Please.

Painfully slow (0)

dnaumov (453672) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107069)

Anyone even moderately serious about FPS gaming was probably facepalming pretty bad in the Counterstrike part of the video, where after getting the crosshair roughly NEAR the target, the player had to make a second adjustment that took maybe half a second in order to actually get the target in the crosshairs and hit it. That's half a second too much. What was the benefit this controller added over the existing PS3/360 gamepads again?

Re:Painfully slow (1)

He Who Has No Name (768306) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107171)

I'd actually pay good money for the left hand-half of this so I could use it like a thumbstick and have variable movement direction / speed input instead of just four discrete keys like the usual WASD config.

Being able to sneak slowly in juuuust the right direction in Deus Ex or Splinter Cell, or steer more naturally in World of Tanks would be great. I'm sick of only having the choice of four directions, and either not moving or going full speed.

You'd also get the ability to do away with dedicated walk and sprint buttons, all you'd maybe need is crouch or use the other touch pad to control height of stance.

Movement precsion VS Look precision (1)

basecastula (2556196) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107403)

That is the crux of the problem right there. Using the keyboard for movement has the disadvantage of not being able to move backwards, 15 degrees to the left and curve around a corner while moving slowly. You know what I'm talking about, think the Playstation era Metal Gear Solid games(especially VR missions). For a long time PC user have sucked it up and gotten used to the limitation. Using gamepads for PC was an option in some ways but loosing that amount of precision in the game is far outweighed by the gain of using a mouse. A mouse can perform movements not possible with a joystick. That is the main argument for the KB/Mouse along with the possibility for hotkeys and such. What we really want is a Mouse-type look with a stick like movement. Many have tried, few have achieved the level of dexterity that either method has to offer. I just wish everybody here had a controller to play with before going on about the way "they think" it feels like, or the way "it looks" like it feels. Should they have tried harder to appease that active Slashdot demographic. DICE should had buttered the bread.

Re:Movement precsion VS Look precision (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107587)

Years ago at a LAN party we were playing counter strike and one of my friends tried putting my joystick in left-hand mode to use for walking. Other than the spring being a little too stiff, it actually worked quite well.

Re:Painfully slow (1)

ledow (319597) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107553)

I see people do that with mice still, because they don't know to adjust the sensitivity.

I reckon if you were to change that, you could get it nearer to a mouse without losing much of the slow-pinpoint at the other end.

And, let's be honest, like the Wii, this is NOT aimed at the hardcore professional gamer. For pissing about on TF2 from the sofa, that thing seems pretty good.

Who cares about the controller ... (1)

slydder (549704) | 1 year,20 days | (#45107219)

Am I the only one that is more impressed with the fact that CS:GO is ported than with the controller? I can finally play something more like COD or MOH.

Wait for 'Steam Thumb'... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107573)

... which comes from rubbing your thumb over the surface THOUSANDS of times an hour.
I don't understand why somebody can't just put a board on their lap, have a cut down keyboard with the ASDW keys and several others on it, and a normal mouse. Nothing compares to using a mouse to control an FPS.

Steam Machine (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,19 days | (#45107857)

I wasn't considering buying a Steam Machine before this video.

counter strike (1)

sumitjadhav137 (3012081) | 1 year,19 days | (#45107987)

please put some effort towards CS 1.6

Looks better than a console gamepad (2)

umafuckit (2980809) | 1 year,19 days | (#45108383)

I'm encouraged by what I'm seeing here. I just bought a PS3 now that they're nice and cheap and boy was I disappointed by how the controller functions in FPS games. Previously I've played shooters on a PC and a Wii with Wiimote as a pointer (Resident Evil). The PS3 controller is terrible in comparison in such games. It's fine for racers and platformers, though. Looking at videos on Youtube I've come to the conclusion that even with a lot of practice one would never be as fast on a PS3 controller as with a K&M.

The PS3 (or XBox) analog sticks define direction and speed of the camera in an FPS game. However, what you want is the absolute position of the camera (since you're aiming). A mouse gives you this, which is why it's such a great input method. A track-pad also does this pretty well, as the concept is the same. If they can sort out the details, such as speed and resolution of pointing, this could be a very nice controller indeed.

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