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GDC 2011: Valve To Make Steam More TV-Friendly

Valve Software on Monday announced an upcoming “big picture” mode for its PC gaming digital distribution platform Steam that will add controller support and navigation tailored for interaction via TV sets.
Half-Life and Portal house Valve Software said Monday that it plans on making its popular PC gaming digital distribution platform Steam more TV-friendly. An upcoming “big picture” mode for Steam will add features including controller support and navigation tailored for televisions in an effort to bring PC gaming outside of the office or den and into the living room. Steam currently has over 30 million accounts worldwide. “Our partners and customers have asked us to make Steam available in more places. With the introduction of Steam on the Mac, and soon in Portal 2 on the PS3, we've done just that," said Valve marketing VP Doug Lombardi. "With big picture mode, gaming opportunities for Steam partners and customers become possible via PCs and Macs on any TV or computer display in the house,” he added. Valve is meeting with partners and developers at this week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco to discuss details of the new mode. The company has yet to publicly release details of the plan. Separately, the company also said it is encouraging its business partners to set up and run their own in-game economies. Valve introduced a digital store last year for its internally-developed Team Fortress 2 where it sells virtual items such as weapons and accessories for characters.

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