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Thread: How long until Microsoft purchases Valve's Steam platform?

  1. #1
    Ultimate Lifeform Nimrod's Avatar
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    Default How long until Microsoft purchases Valve's Steam platform?

    This is more a thinking point than any actual news, nothing is planned at the moment.

    Lets take a look at what "Microsoft" wanted from Games for Windows Live:

    Unified Platform
    One Gamertag across every game
    Messaging and invites cross-game
    Friends list
    Acheivements

    Lets see where it has got to... yes it has achieved its goal but in its current state is extremely buggy and unused. How many people paid £5/$5 a month for that? Not one person I know, besides Xbox gamers who pay for Xbox Live for their Xbox 360.

    Now lets take a look at Valve's steam.

    Remember that when Valve were looking to create steam, they approached many companies including Microsoft who laughed off the idea as impossible and not worth the investiment

    Unified Platform
    One Gamertag across every game
    Messaging and invites cross-game
    Friends list
    Acheivements
    + FREE
    + Purchase Games on the Service
    + Out of game client (aka can log in without loading a Game)

    It seems to me, that Steam is now exactly the service Microsoft is trying to make Games for Windows Live, but so much more advanced. When Steam first came out we all ignored it, called it a DRM machine, but now how many of us honestly use it? The majority of us.

    Microsofts attempt at a PC gaming service has failed, even though they put cross-platform features into it.. The big question that I keep thinking is how long until Microsoft buy Valve or at least purchase into Steam? Steam is what people hoped for from Games for Windows Live but instead got a buggy, originally paid for service with such little support.

    I know Games for Windows Live has become free all of a sudden, but that was a last ditch attempt after they realised no PC gamer would pay to play online... and even then they haven't updated the GUI or features of the client to reflect its now free...

    Whats your views on the matter? Do you think Microsoft will attempt to buy into Steam and convert it into Games for Windows Live? Do you prefer Steam?
    Last edited by Trebor; 17-08-08 at 18:16.

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  2. #2
    The Feature Man
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    Games for Windows Live is already free. Purchasing games on the service would be nice. Though I believe no one would ever use that. Why pay when you can pirate them? I pay for most of my games. I do admit I have pirated one or 2. Out of game client, that would be extremely nice. I'd love to be able to sign in and chat with everyone without opening up a game. Thats something I would use alot. Might even make Games for Windows more interesting for other people. I personally have not really tried Steam except once I used it to download the free Portal game a while back. Still haven't tried to play it yet. I normally purchase my games through D2D (Direct2Drive).
    Last edited by Trebor; 17-08-08 at 18:20.
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    Resident Nutter InsaneNutter's Avatar
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    Even if Microsoft wanted to purchase Steam I honestly donít think Valve would sell to them. Iím quite sure Microsoft are interested in it as they think digital distribution is the way of the future, however Iím sure Valve know there on to something big and have the most popular content distribution system for PC games.

    To me I think Steam is the future of PC gaming, it has full games like Half Life 2 and Unreal 3 on it and casual games like Zuma, Audiosurf and Geometry Wars. You can also sign in to Steam from the desktop then access everything from your games, friends list, community and more from there.

    What I like most on Steam is that I can sign in on any computer and access all my content. I think it'seally nice just to click on a game I own and it will download and install without me having to mess about with DVDís, Cd Keys and patches.

    Games for Windows Live or Xbox Live on PC canít even compete with Steam. For starters it can only be accessed by loading a game up such as Gears of War. To load that game up, if you donít crack it, you need to have the DVD in which really annoys me. Once that game is loaded up you find Games for Windows Live is basically your Xbox Live friend list and Achievements... nothing more.
    If Microsoft want to compete with Steam they need a Windows client so you donít actually have to be in a game to access your account, they need to allow you to download and install your games without the CD. To be honest they need to do everything Steam can do and more if they have any chance of making it a success.

    I would choose Steam anyday, the only thing that annoys me is the UK gets charged in $ on steam and the price of a game on there for us is a lot more than it is for Americans, then we get VAT added on to a purchase which actually makes it cheaper to go to a shop and buy a retail copy of the game. Thatís why the only thing I have purchased on Steam is the Half Life 2 Silver pack back in 2004 as that was a way better deal than what you could get in the Shops. My only other worry about Steam is what if it goes bust? You might think nah it never will but look as MSN music, any purchase people made on there are going to be useless if that person gets a new PC as the DRM servers will be turned off in September.

    What happens if Steam goes the same way? At least on most Games for Windows Live titles you have the CD and could still play them if you ever couldnít activate them again.

    Xbox Live for Windows started off well but I want to know what happend to be able to access it from your desktop and mobiles phones? Microsoft had a lot of Ideaís but never really developed it more than a cross platform friends list with achievements.

    Steam is definitely the better of the two, but I donít think itís perfect.
    Last edited by Trebor; 17-08-08 at 18:24.
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  4. #4
    The Feature Man
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    I dunno, STEAM is not that big of a company, unlike microsoft. Microsoft has lots and lots and lots of cash and could easily buy them out. Besides, with Steam getting more and more competitors, like D2D and now the new Impluse from Stardock, I'd say if they were smart they should sell up. That way they get lots of cash and Microsoft can grow...If they did I would switch from D2D to Microsoft easily.
    Last edited by Trebor; 17-08-08 at 18:26.
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  5. #5

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    I haven't even considered comparing Games for Windows Live to Steam. As GFWL is more like an implementation of some Xbox Live community related features into PC games. However, it still does the thing I see as an 'improvement' for PC gaming, a reliable server network not spreading any fears of a shutdown. And now that it's free for whatever gamemode you'll want to play in your GFWL games, it should receive at least a little more trust.. I suppose most of you have played an enjoyable online game that came to an 'end of support' point in the past. Still, one name (gamertag) for every game using the service isn't always a good thing in my opinion. Xbox is a whole stand-alone platform making a whole community out of Live identifying every gamer on it with their own personal tag. PC gamers however, are likely to have different names for different game specific communities.. After all, Microsoft buying Steam wouldn't be that bad, it will give their PC network more trust and should be alright for both companies and the US economy.
    Last edited by Trebor; 19-08-08 at 10:01.
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  6. #6
    The Feature Man
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    I believe Microsoft should really buy them out! They would make tons more money. The GFWL would grow!
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    I don't think Microsoft will buy them out. I don't think they care enough about their games for Windows things. Also if they'd buy them out, a lot of companies would have to agree, not just Valve but also Eidos who also have their games on there. Personally, I really hope Steam will grow since I like the idea of having all my games in one list, just one click away while other people can see what I play. But I don't think Microsoft would do well with Steam since they are way more focussed on Xbox than they are on Games for Windows.

  8. #8
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    I think Microsoft never will, I do hope so though. I disagree with you Assassin, Microsoft is a HUGE company, if they wanted to they could focus on both the Xbox 360 and GFWL.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xzKinGzxBuRnzx View Post
    I think microsoft never will, I do hope so though. I disagree with you assassin, microsoft is a HUGE company if they wanted to they could focus on both 360 and GFWL.
    And there's your problem, if they WANTED. They don't put as much effort in Games for Windows as they do in the Xbox, and who can blame them? Why would Nintendo release games for PC if they have their own platform? Same for Microsoft. The fact that Microsoft is big and has the money to buy everything doesn't mean they can and will. Look at Yahoo, Microsoft tried to buy that but failed because they couldn't get to an agreement. Just because Microsoft is big, doesn't mean they can and will invest in everything.
    Last edited by Trebor; 19-08-08 at 16:31.


  10. #10
    The Feature Man
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    Ok, good point. Microsoft are lazy at some things. Guess we all have to wait and see.
    Last edited by Trebor; 19-08-08 at 16:31.
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  11. #11

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    Gabe Newell (Owner of Valve), has recently stated in an interview he is offered to sell the company twice a week, and he refuses every offer unconditionally, and that he likes where Valve is going and that its reputation is great because of their product, and that they're not a huge corporation like EA or Microsoft.

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    I can't blame them. Everything Valve produces turns into gold. Look at the Orange Box, with 5 games, you'd think at least one would suck, but every one of them was great. Still, I really hope one day I'll have my games in one big list like on Steam. I've really come to appreciate it more recently, and I really think it would be great having one big gaming community, with all your friends able to see what you're playing and comparing achievements. Might take a while though..

  13. #13

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    I hope a deal like that goes through some day

  14. #14

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    Valve is vavle not microsoft, ea or any other bullshit.
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  15. #15

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    Thank god, too. Everything EA touches turns to shit, and half the stuff they make is shit. Microsoft barely ever makes new games, but when they do they're "ok", when valve makes a new game it's great.

  16. #16
    Resident Nutter InsaneNutter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Looter View Post
    Thank god, too. Everything EA touches turns to shit, and half the stuff they make is shit. Microsoft barely ever makes new games, but when they do they're "ok", when valve makes a new game it's great.
    Exactly thatís one of the many reasons why I donít think Valve will sell off Steam, not only do they make good games Steam allows them to get all the profits from online sales of the game without any publishers taking a cut. As Iíve said before valve must know there on to a good thing and would have to be stupid to sell Steam at this moment in time.

    I find myself agreeing more and more with the saying ďSteam is the future of pc gamingĒ

    Itís a shame quite a few pc games I have purchased recently will most likely never be available on Steam.
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