Steam's Big Picture Mode isn't taking aim at consoles. It's taking aim at console games | PCGamesN

Introducing Gameport: the oddest game incubator in Europe

Skyforge is an MMO where halfway in you become a god

DayZ devs tackle server performance and security ahead of Christmas break

Steam's Big Picture Mode isn't taking aim at consoles. It's taking aim at console games

Steam's Big Picture mode has just landed. The reaction to it, and what it might it mean for the future of PC games is fascinating. A lot of the questions and response has centred around the idea that Valve are taking aim at the consoles and that Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo should be worried.

I'm not sure that's entirely true. The benefits of Steam's Big Picture Mode, to Valve, to third parties, and to PC gamers are subtler than that.

I don't think Big Picture Mode is a threat to consoles. But I think it's a real threat to some console games. Specifically: multi platform games.

What Big Picture Mode does is provide another place to play the things you bought. The PC version of every multi platform game around is now a little bit more valuable, because, with the right hardware and a bit of tinkering, you can get that game running well on a PC you place under or by your living room TV. Not just running well: almost certainly running at a faster frame rate, with more detail, and in a launcher that's near perfectly suited to a controller.

Now, PC gamers simply have more options on where they can they play their game. They can play in their den or office, up close and personal. If the living room is free, they can take their game, their save games, their progress and achievements and start on the living room PC. If they're away on a trip, say a holiday or for work, they can pick up a laptop and take the game with them. If they pack a controller and an HDMI cable they can plug their laptop into their hotel room telly and play on that.

The PC version of a multi platform game is now undisputedly going to be the most flexible and most persistent version. And it will probably be cheaper, too.

What that means in reality? Those that choose to adopt BPM will increasingly reject Xbox 360 and PS3 titles. Case in point: I've been looking forward to Assassin's Creed 3 all year, and had assumed I'd buy it, like I bought the rest of the Assassin's Creed games, on Xbox 360. That's not going to happen. I want the PC version. At some point, I figured I'd get round to playing Dark Souls - but had assumed I'd get the Xbox version. Now, it's PC all the way. I've been meaning to play the Walking Dead through - but I couldn't work out whether to buy it on iOS, Xbox, Playstation 3 or PC. Now the PC version is the natural version.

Login or Register
Alienware - Game VictoriousTurtle Beach
Introducing Gameport: the oddest game incubator in Europe

Epigenesis

Introducing Gameport: the oddest game incubator in Europe

DayZ devs tackle server performance and security ahead of Christmas break

DayZ devs tackle server performance and security ahead of Christmas break

Gearbox talk Tales from the Borderlands:

Gearbox talk Tales from the Borderlands: "We're not writing the dialogue because Telltale's better at that"

Team Fortress 2 update brings tweaks to pl_upward, improves client stability

Team Fortress 2 update brings tweaks to pl_upward, improves client stability

PayPal spills the beans on the Steam Autumn sale; starts November 26th

PayPal spills the beans on the Steam Autumn sale; starts November 26th

Telltale's Game of Thrones appears on Steam for pre-purchase; coming this December

Telltale's Game of Thrones appears on Steam for pre-purchase; coming this December

Skyforge is an MMO where halfway in you become a god

Skyforge

Skyforge is an MMO where halfway in you become a god

Layoffs hit Double Fine as unannounced project deal falls through

Layoffs hit Double Fine as unannounced project deal falls through

Civilization Online trailer shows time-lapse of players building Paris, before nuking it

Civilization Online trailer shows time-lapse of players building Paris, before nuking it

Blizzard revert World of Warcraft dungeon loot changes after overwhelming fan feedback

Blizzard revert World of Warcraft dungeon loot changes after overwhelming fan feedback

Evolve won't charge players for its DLC maps; other DLC won't restrict matchmaking either

Evolve won't charge players for its DLC maps; other DLC won't restrict matchmaking either

The Game Awards 2014 announces fan and jury nominees and categories

The Game Awards 2014 announces fan and jury nominees and categories

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor review in progress

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor review in progress

Chivalry isn't dead - Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is free for the weekend

Chivalry isn't dead - Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is free for the weekend

EVE Online's

EVE Online's "This is EVE" trailer uses player voice comms to capture the MMO

Metal Gear Solid 5 screenshots compare the PC and PS4 versions of Snake's bottom

Metal Gear Solid 5 screenshots compare the PC and PS4 versions of Snake's bottom

Blow up spaceships in the name of trade in Wayward Terran Frontier: Zero Falls

Blow up spaceships in the name of trade in Wayward Terran Frontier: Zero Falls

Korean RPG Lost Ark Online looks even more ambitious in the new extended trailer

Korean RPG Lost Ark Online looks even more ambitious in the new extended trailer

Yogscast’s Jingle Jam streams for charity all this December

Yogscast

Yogscast’s Jingle Jam streams for charity all this December

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor gets another free skin and a new challenge mode

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor gets another free skin and a new challenge mode

Dota 2 Nemesis Assassin event paints targets on hero heads

Dota 2 Nemesis Assassin event paints targets on hero heads

Frontier rethink refund policy for those that wanted an offline mode in Elite: Dangerous

Frontier rethink refund policy for those that wanted an offline mode in Elite: Dangerous

Gin and jungling: Snoop Dogg supports fan petition for Dota 2 announcer pack

Gin and jungling: Snoop Dogg supports fan petition for Dota 2 announcer pack

MiniDayZ is a free top-down fan project with the backing of Bohemia

MiniDayZ is a free top-down fan project with the backing of Bohemia