“Steam Machines” and an innovative controller have been revealed

After announcing a new Linux-based operating system, Valve has recently presented the hardware for the “expansion of the Steam universe”.

On the one hand, the company has explained its hardware strategy for the coming game devices „Steam Machines“ for the living-room. On the other hand, a new innovative controller to control these “machines” has been presented.

While term “Steam Machines” reveals the fact, that there won’t initially be a SteamBox from Valve in the near future, the new game console-similar devices will come from a number of manufacturers in 2014. In the meantime, Valve invites you to sign up the beta-test of a prototype. To qualify for the beta test, you have to register and to comply with the following conditions until 25 October:

After this announcement, it’s clear that Valve leaves the design and the selection of the hardware to its partners. Nevertheless the company encourages beta testers to help by the selection and test of the hardware.

After announcing an operating system and a hardware strategy, Valve has presented, in own opinion, the most important part of the new device, a new innovative controller. The new controller is a kind of gamepad and should help to close the gap between the PC for the table and the game console for the living-room.

To achieve this goal, the new controller have to become a proper replacement for the mouse and the keyboard, and have to ensure better precision over conventional gamepads. Therefore, the gamepad sticks were replaced with two trackpads with a precision of a mouse in the new controller. In addition, the new controller contains, aside from 16 different buttons, a touch screen in the center of the controller which can be used for the additional functionality such as input surfaces or an information display. With these features, the new controller should be suitable for the entire Steam library.

“Steam Squad” is looking for supporters on Kickstarter

The new turn-based strategy game Steam Squad is looking for supporters on Kickstarter.com.

In this game, the player leads a small squad during the First World War and tries to complete several missions on the side of one of the three warring powers performing specific military tasks, coming up with tactical moves, managing the soldiers and military equipment on a battlefield.

Although the game is currently under development, with a nice graphics and great ideas, it’s already looking very solid. The release of the game is planned for January 2014.

SteamOS is coming

One year after introducing of the Big Picture Mode and a half year after releasing of Steam for Linux, Valve is now going to announce the “expansion of the Steam universe” in 3 steps.

On Monday, the first leg of the grand plan was introduced. In this step, Valve has announced the development of a Linux-based operating system SteamOS. The new operating system was specially designed for the TV to make Steam usable as a game console in the living room. For a smooth game experience, Valve is continuously improving the graphics, audio and controller performance on SteamOS. In addition to supporting games, previously ported to Linux, SteamOS will allow playing all Windows or Mac games by streaming them to the SteamOS devices.

Moreover, SteamOS will provide a variety of multimedia and social applications. So, among others, it will allow using of all the music or movie services on it.

Although after the release of Steam for Linux and the trouble with Windows, the development of a Linux-based operating system by Valve for their “game console” was predictable, the fact that it’s going to happen so fast, was not expected.

According to Valve, SteamOS will be soon available as a free download.

Play Football Manager 2014 on Linux for the first time

Maybe, the most realistic football simulation, Football Manager 2014 from Sports Interactive, is available to Pre-Order now, and the great news for Linux users is: FM is finally coming to Linux.

Apart from supporting Linux, FM2014 is bringing a lot of new features and improvements:

  • improved 3D match engine
  • more realistic transfers and contracts
  • tactical overhaul
  • enhanced user interface
  • improved interaction with players, staff and media

Minimum system requirements for a Linux system are:

  • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Linux
  • Processor: Intel Pentium 4 Intel Core AMD Athlon 1.8GHz+
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVidia GeForce 7300 GT AMD Radeon HD 2400 Pro Intel HD 3000/4000 128MB VRAM
  • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
  • Additional Notes: OpenGL 2.0 compliant

FM2014 can be pre-ordered on Steam.

Dota 2: Soon for Linux!

Today, Dota 2 has finished the beta phase. It is now free-to-play and will be published soon for Linux, after the Linux test phase ran out.

Unfortunately, there is a limited number of players who are allowed to play. The reason for this is the prevention of a server overload.

Don´t worry: If you have already redeemed an Early Access pass, you can still enjoy Dota 2 without further notice.

The complete announcement is here!

CrossOver 12.5 has been released

CodeWeavershas released CrossOver 12.5 for Linux and Mac which allows to install and run a countless number of Windows applications on Linux.

The new version of CrossOver is based on the latest version of Wine and thus includes a lot of improvements for various Windows application, like Starcraft II, World of Tanks or Microsoft Office. But the most conspicuous improvement on Linux is a new graphical user interface, which now includes a menu of launchers for all installed Windows applications, and which can be customized by the user.

The full release announcement can be found here.

Planetary Annihilation starting alpha testing

The real-time strategy game Planetary Annihilation, developed by Uber Entertainment, has been released in an alpha version for Linux, Windows and Mac on Steam.

The project was financed through the Kickstarter and has collected $2,229,344 of $900,000 pledges in a period of one month.

While the alpha phase was launched on 7th June 2013, the full version will be published in December 2013. The alpha version is already available on Steam and can be purchased for 82,99€.

Leadwerks brings game development from Windows to Linux

Josh Klint, the founder of Leadwerks and graphics expert, has made us aware of his ambitious project Leadwerks 3. Leadwerks is a visual toolkit which allows developing any kind of computer games without great programming skills and in any game genre, such as platformer or first-person shooter.

Leadwerks has been existing for a while now, but only for Windows, Android and Mac. Klint said that with a Linux version of the tool, games will be developed directly on Linux and not, as previously, only be ported to Linux after the product release.

According to Klint, many Linux users are familiar with the computer sciences and just need a good tool for the game development.

Currently, it’s being decided on the inclusion of Leadweks in Steam on Steam Greenlight. Moreover, Josh Klint has launched a Kickstarter aiming to collect $20,000 to develop better graphics and support for Linux.

There are only 43 days remaining, but unlike Heavy Gear Assault, Leadwerks has got a much higher chance to succeed on Kickstarter.

Please, support Leadwerks on Greenlight and Kickstarter!

Help Heavy Gear Assault to become reality

Since the 20th May, the Kickstarter for the game Heavy Gear Assault has been running. Today, 11 days before the end of this Kickstarter, only $ 44,195 from $ 800,000 were collected.

The project promises to be a successful game title. The gameplay will be based on the gameplay of Heavy Gear and the user will be controlling a combat mech in both single and multiplayer worlds.

The game design will be developed by none other than than Jack Mamais, the leading designer of Far Сry and Crysis. Technically, the game will be based on the coming graphics engine Unreal 4.

Europa Universalis IV is coming on Linux

Europa Universalis IV is expected to appear on 13 August 2013 for Linux, Windows and Mac. It was developed by Paradox Development Studio, the company that has published Crusader Kings II apart of Europa Universalis.

In 2012, Crusader Kings II was one of the best rated games on Metacritic and has got 82 out of 100 points, even 2 points more than Assassin’s Creed III which appeared in the same year. Therefore, there are a lot of expectations of Europa Universalis IV that will hopefully have a lot of new features.