Posted by Michael Simpson
Leave it to Valve to start making announcements on the first day of the GDC tutorials about their new ideas and innovations. “Big Picture” has left me with quite a large amount of speculation and expectations.
What We Know…
…is sadly very little, as Valve hasn’t said a whole lot. As I understand, Big Picture is going to allow PC and Mac gamers to take advantage of their home theatre setups and allow Steam games to be played on a TV (or other computer monitors, as well). This also means that Steam will be adapted for the TV, complete with a TV friendly interface and controller support. This all sounds interesting enough, but it leaves me thinking about the fact that I can already hook my PC up to the TV and play games through it. So can any other remotely tech savvy individual with the right equipment. How is Big Picture going to offer something new?
I’m going to go out on a limb here and offer my take on what Big Picture will be, or at least what I hope it will be. It’s hard for me to believe that Big Picture will simply be a form of Steam that was created for the TV; this certainly wouldn’t be very innovative and would still necessitate a direct PC to TV hookup. No, instead, I wager that Big Picture will involve some sort of networking device (think Apple TV) that will plug into a TV via HDMI, allowing for wireless streaming to the device and thus to the TV. I’m also guessing this device would have USB inputs to take controllers. This would be a pretty hassle free way to play Steam games on a TV, and definitely something I would buy into. Furthermore, I see this device as being Valve’s answer (at least partially) to OnLive
What’s your take on Big Picture, and how do you think it will be implemented? Do you think this kind of device or software could have an impact on console gaming at all? Feel free to leave some ideas/thoughts in the comments, I’m really quite curious what you’re all thinking of this announcement and how you think “Big Picture” will take shape.