Valve seems to once again be ready to put its games on consoles.
Gabe Newell’s staycation in New Zealand is still ongoing, but that doesn’t mean Valve has been spinning its wheels back home in Seattle. In a Q&A at a New Zealand high school, Newell fielded questions from students with one asking “will Steam be putting any games on consoles, or will it just stay on PC?” Newell gave a vague response, but one that seemed to hint to news coming in the future.
“You will get a better idea of that by the end of year,” Newell said.
This potential news is intriguing as Valve has dabbled with video game consoles on a number of occasions and in several different ways.
From 2001 to 2005, Valve published a number of different games on consoles including a PlayStation 2 release of the original Half-Life and an Xbox release of a modified version of Counter-Strike. In 2007, Valve bundled Team Fortress 2, Portal, and the Half-Life 2 and sold them under the name “The Orange Box,” which was published by Valve on Xbox 360 and co-developed with EA Games on PlayStation 3. Valve’s most recent work on a major console was the 2012 release of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive on PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.
Around that time, Valve began dabbling in creating its own console. This effort eventually became known as the Steam Machine. Steam Machines were manufactured collaboratively between Valve and various PC manufacturers, who produced different models at different price point, and featured a unique operating system and controller. Valve abandoned the hardware after a few years.
The phrasing of the student’s question and vagueness of Newell’s answer leaves it open for debate as to what might be in the pipeline, but the most likely answer is that Valve may start releasing games on consoles once again. That turns the question to which Valve games will see a console release.
The most likely candidate is Half-Life: Alyx. The 2020 VR game was met with critical success and could wind up on the PlayStation 5 as Sony prepares to roll out the successor to the PS4’s PSVR.
Past that, a console release of CSGO mayy also make some sense. Despite approaching its ninth birthday, the tactical shooter has enjoyed serious growth since moving to free-to-play in 2018. Given the game’s popularity, infrequent gameplay updates, and easy monetization system, it could work well on consoles just like other popular competitive first-person shooters like Apex Legends.
It’s unknown when Valve’s plans could be confirmed and guessing when news will drop hinges on what sort of news is coming. Fans might want to keep a close eye on E3, which kicks off on June 12.