Originally Posted by tgable
The best they can do is go with Linux and Nvidia's Linux drivers. But then they lose all the Direct X games, which is 98% of the PC market. How is Valve going to pressure PC devs to port over to Linux? Because they sold a few thousand Steam-boxes to a few loyal fans?
You're thinking about this wrong. You could license and do DX without having to do windows. It's vastly cheaper. Thats what the 360 is doing now. Yes, technically it will be a "Windows" box, but it won't be a Windows PC in the true form we know. More like a more open xbox.
That depends on MS, but it's money in the bank if Valve is not going to go the Windows route. I also don't see how MS could refuse without legal problems arising. Otherwise it very easily might be the resurgence of a competing format.
all speculation of course, but very possible.
Originally Posted by Crash44 How will they make enough money to bother building hardware?
Without licensing fee's they would have to rely on software sales revenue only. Those killer Steam sales would be history for the most part. I can only hope they have a smart business plan in the works, because building hardware has been the end for too many companies lately.
I've read quite a few articles on Valve's pricing models and everything I've read points to them finding that their generous pricing has actually increased sales and profits. You need to remember they don't price games at $5 from the get go, and the small numbers of people putting off purchases until they find a price that agrees with them is more then made up in volume when Joe, "I can't even run skyrim, but for $5 I'll buy it and play it in 2 years when i upgrade" see's it on sale. They sell it to the faithful and impatient at full price, then slowly drop the price until they reach everyone and their dog price. But people know they're also buying the Valve CS, the servers, ect and that makes the whole package, at a cheap price, a really good deal for a "new game".
I've gone on $50-100 binges during their sale periods on games I would have never played (they're on my HDD and still haven't been started btw), or games I simply would have forgot about in 2 years time when they reached the bargain bins.
It's worked so well, that even EA has been copying it with origin! EA is discounting games and finding it smart to sell DD content in bulk! That's pretty crazy when you think about it.
And guess what, used game markets and the rise of DD pricing models are starting to drive down hard copy new game prices too.
The market was deathly afraid that if they lowered prices they would lower revenues. But with the rise of new gamers, the markets are showing them that cheap entertainment can be sold in bulk and more then make up in volume what they did before in price control. You can only go so far with the idea with physical media, since there ARE costs associated with production. But everything else about a game is sunk the time is labeled done. You spent the money to make it, and now if it's mostly a DD on a service like Steam the ONLY thing to be worried about is to price it and promote it in a way that maximizes revenue. Valve has shown sticking to $60, or only offering slight discounts is not a sure fire way to do that in the digital world where bandwidth is cheap and buys are impulsive.