A digital games distribution platform, Valve Corporation’s Steam, could expand to iOS and Android devices following Steam for Mac launch last May. The news came via a Steampowered User Forum member who had an interesting chat with Valve’s co-founder Gabe Newell at the company’s Bellevue, Washington headquarters. The boss apparently dropped hints of both iOS and Android possibly becoming Steam-powered gaming platforms:
After a little “sneak peek” we sat down to talk about Steam and other goings on in Valve. During this chat he confirmed that Steam will get a video recorder very soon, also he said they were looking into the iOS/Android platform for possible expansions with Steam. He also said that the Source film maker is in the pipeline for a public release.
That’s cool, but there’s more to it than meets the eye.
Steam brought dash of hope and promised greener pastures for the Mac’s troubling games department. An accompanying Steam SDK designed to take care of platform differences enables programmers to write or adapt premium titles that aren’t second-class citizens on the Mac platform.
Also helping move the ball forward is the Mac App Store with its growing library of iOS-ported games, including such hits as Angry Birds, Flight Control and more. On the downside, Valve could find iOS a tough nut to crack.
Everyone from big games publishers to hundreds of creative startups to thousands of garage programmers have been developing excellent games since the iPhone’s inception. Tough competition aside, Steam-powered iOS games are likely to become a huge hit.
Games are big business on the App Store and iOS gadgets have become mainstream entertainment devices. iOS has earned its credibility as a viable gaming platform capable of competing with the likes of Sony PSP and Nintendo DS.
Look no further than Pocket Legends, a 3D MMO by Spacetime Studios which files – at least to my knowledge – as the first iOS game advertised on cable television. Check out the Pocket Legends TV commercial below, as seen on Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central, G4 and more.
Just a year ago, this would have been unheard of.