Valve, the software vendor behind the popular Steam PC gaming portal, has squashed suggestions that it is giving up on its Steam Machine console gaming platform.
Valve this week removed prominent links on its storefront to Steam Machines, a console hardware platform brought out in November 2015 intended to bring PC gaming to the living room.
Steam Machines could run either Windows or Steam OS, a Debian-based distribution of Linux optimised for gaming.
Valve also designed its own controller to go with it that is capable of mimicking a computer mouse - this is still available to buy via the Steam storefront, along with Steam Links, which can connect a PC remotely to a TV over a home Wifi network.
While it's true Steam Machines aren't exactly flying off the shelves, our reasons for striving towards a competitive and open gaming platform haven't significantly changed
However, the initiative hasn't proved a runaway success, with many games not convincingly making the shift from keyboard-and-mouse to either the Steam Controller or standard console controllers.
Valve has claimed, though, that the de-listing of Steam Machines was merely a "routine cleanup" of its storefront and that it hasn't abandoned Steam Machines.
"While it's true Steam Machines aren't exactly flying off the shelves, our reasons for striving towards a competitive and open gaming platform haven't significantly changed, the company posted in its forums.
"We're still working hard on making Linux operating systems a great place for gaming and applications. We think it will ultimately result in a better experience for developers and customers alike, including those not on Steam.
"Through the Steam Machine initiative, we've learned quite a bit about the state of the Linux ecosystem for real-world game developers out there. We've taken a lot of feedback and have been heads-down on addressing the shortcomings we observed.
"We think an important part of that effort is our ongoing investment in making Vulkan a competitive and well-supported graphics API, as well as making sure it has first-class support on Linux platforms."
A lot of focus was put on Valve's part in developing the Vulkan API, which also involved AMD, Nvidia, and Intel as part of the Khronos Group. It has also funded software company LunarG, which is working heavily on Vulkan with the goal of creating a low-overhead GPU driver for Linux based systems.
As such, there are no hints to the real long-term plans for Steam Machines, only that they might not be so dead in water as first appears - just resting, perhaps?
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