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The STEAM CONTROLLER Gets A Face Button Makeover

The Steam controller as it was known yesterday sported touch screens. Today during Steam Dev Days, Valve showed off a new design for the steam controller, which completely omits the touch screens and adds face buttons. Let’s have a look at what they’ve come up with this time around.

SteamController

Picture courtesy of @TheIneQuation

Valve is hoping that the addition of the buttons will help with backward compatibility. Considering that there are approximately 75 million active Steam users (also announced at Steam Dev Days), most of who probably have a library that dates back pretty far, I would say that they’re in the right mindset not forgetting about the older games. Of course, this is by no means the final version of the controller, as it’s theoretically still in beta. But it is a relief to see them axe the touch screens, which took my award for the weakest point in the controller’s design.

HT: @TheIneQuation on Twitter

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8 comments

  • I think it’s a wise move. Touch screens are best used in cases where a developer can’t guarantee a button will physically exist on a device or they want to prevent users from thinking a button does something when it doesn’t. They also don’t work unless you’re actually looking at the device itself because there’s no tactile feedback. Plus they’re more expensive to make and use more power.

    Also, I doubt developers would target Valve’s controller specifically, since it’s an optional peripheral and the only one with a screen.

    Just having the four in the middle still gives Valve’s controller way more buttons than a standard gamepad, and plenty of possible key combinations with which to emulate a keyboard.

  • You kids and your Half Life 3′s… at this point they shouldn’t release it because the hype is just too great… but on subject, not sure of the controller. I recall reading where it was strange to use in some cases, like in an FPS using the left side to move around felt strange but looking around using the right side was fine. I might give it a test somewhere if I can try before buy… but not completely sold yet.

  • I don’t know if Malik have correctly interpreted what changes they are making to the system.

    The touch PADS are the big circle things and are staying.

    The touch SCREEN in the center between the two circle touch pads is what has been removed.