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Gabe Newell thinks Windows 8 is a “catastrophe”

by Ethan Powers on July 25, 2012

Valve co-founder and managing director Gabe Newell is one of the biggest entities in the gaming industry, and when he’s not dodging questions regarding Half-Life 2: Episode 3, he’s generally making bold claims and speaking frankly about the medium’s latest trends and progresses. Newell made an appearance last night at Casual Connect, an annual video game conference in Seattle, and audaciously stated outright that he thinks Windows 8 is a “catastrophe” that will lead software developers and publishers to abandon it, while noting that his company is attempting to add more support for Linux and its platform.

“The big problem that is holding back Linux is games. People don’t realize how critical games are in driving consumer purchasing behavior,” said Newell. “We want to make it as easy as possible for the 2,500 games on Steam to run on Linux as well. It’s a hedging strategy. I think Windows 8 is a catastrophe for everyone in the PC space. I think we’ll lose some of the top-tier PC/OEMs, who will exit the market. I think margins will be destroyed for a bunch of people. If that’s true, then it will be good to have alternatives to hedge against that eventuality.”

Windows 8 has received criticism from those who oppose the implementation of Windows’ Metro UI to desktops. The interface (which can be seen above) is featured primarily on Windows Phones, and displays a tile-like set of blocks with each tile representing a specific application. Windows 8 will become available to the public later on in October.

It’s worth noting that Newell’s criticism of Windows 8 may be correlated to the fact that the Windows Store, Microsoft’s own digital distribution platform which can be used for the PC and Xbox 360, is featured in the center of the Metro UI and could be interpreted by Newell as direct competition to Steam.

Elsewhere in the interview which you can read below in its entirety, Newell discusses the future of video game distribution, the longevity of touch technology, and something about eventually wearing computers on your wrist.

Source: AllThingsD

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  • Brevs

    I honestly cannot believe this is the legit Windows 8. It makes me sick. Going to mobile devices is the wrong move.

  • Frank

    Is that really what windows 8 is gonna look like? When does it release? Need to know so that I can buy a laptop with Windows 7 cause that’s ugly/cluttered.


    I just ordered a custom gaming pc (with a gtx 670!!) and when this thing arrives im installing windows 7 on it and never upgrading. I dont see the point of a tablet/smartphone OS on a desktop

  • Anonymous Tom

    Says the guy who can’t count to 3. At least Windows made it to eight…….

  • That Guy

    i believe theres an option to go to traditional desktop.

  • William Schwartz

    I was using the Windows 8 release client for a short while, and there is an option to go to the traditional desktop. However, on that desktop there is no Start Menu like in previous versions of windows. The Metro desktop is the start menu. Its hard to find what you are looking for to be honest. I suppose it would take some time to get used to but I uninstalled it because I prefer Windows 7.

    There are some cool features on the Metro desktop. The apps and gadgets are actually pretty cool. There are news feeds and social media apps, but it doesn’t really make up for the extra steps that you need to take, just to find what you are looking for.

  • F3ck

    If you go back through history, you’ll see a kind of pattern; every other version of Windows is garbage – separated by decent versions.

    Win8? Shit. Win7? Fine. Win Vista? Shit. Win XP? Fine. Win ME?…

    You get the idea.

    Anyone else still feel like they just bought 7? I know I do – and I’ll pass on that blue abomination up there, thank you very much.

  • bigjershby

    i still use xp lol a 8 year old hacked vista in 6 days so ive never upgraded from xp

    gabes right about gaming and computers hes on top of it ive seen it to gamers use pc even though there trash….inefficient bug riddled headaches =/

  • Brevs

    I realized that a long time ago. The garbage version are just beta (maybe alpha) tests of the decents ones.

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