Attack of the Fanboy

Valve isn’t worried about Xbox One or PS4

by William Schwartz


Valve isn’t worried about the Xbox One or the PlayStation 4.  When asked about the competition from Sony and Microsoft at Valve’s CES Press Event in Las Vegas, Gabe Newell blew off the fact that both companies have had great launches of their new hardware.

When Newell was asked if Valve could match three million units for the Steam Machines by year’s end, his deflecting reply was that Valve was already sitting pretty at 65 million.

The transcripted content below comes from Kotaku:

Attendee: Microsoft just announced 3 million units of xbox one were sold at launch for the last three months, can you hit that target by the end of the year? Can you do 3 million units?

Newell: Well, it’d take a while for them to catch up. I mean, we’re at 65 million.

Comparing registered free users on Steam to the millions of paying customers that plunked down hundreds of dollars for the Xbox One and PS4, is undoubtedly not comparing apples to apples.  But if Valve’s hardware partners can put forward a valid argument to own one of the low-end Steam Machines compared to the Xbox One and PS4, he’s got a point.  Looking at the specs, purchasing a low-end Steam Machine that features an upgrade path to the future could be better deal than either the PS4 or Xbox One.  Plus, Valve offers a comparable online service to PC gamers to what is being found on the Xbox One and PS4, and it’s free.  Steam has an unparalled catalog of games to choose from, both free and traditional full-priced titles.  Let’s not forget their impeccable ability to move games during their seasonal sales by offering steep discounts and incentives to purchase.

If anything, Steam Machines could help everyone involved.  If they take off, and do sell well, perhaps Sony and Microsoft will begin to look at Valve’s pricing structure for digital downloads and seasonal sales.  As it stands, getting a deal on the PlayStation Network or Xbox Game Store is a rare occurrence.

While console gaming has long been the easy way to stay tapped into the gaming world, Steam Machines could be a viable competitor to both Microsoft and Sony, but Valve should probably still look out for them.   Valve’s new partners were announced today, and you can find the full list of wide-ranging machines here.   Starting at around the price of an Xbox One, ranging all the way up to the price of a car, there’s something for every type of gamer coming to the Steam Machine lineup.

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