SteamDevDays: Steam Controller loses touchscreen

SteamDevDays: Steam Controller loses touchscreen
Seth Tipps

By Seth Tipps

January 16th 2014 at 6:04AM

Valve opts for two sets of more conventional buttons for gamepad

The Steam Controller is dropping its touchscreen in favor of physical buttons, the company revealed today at its Steam Dev Days conference.

Though the Seattle event isn't open to the press, developers have been sharing their reactions to the event over Twitter at the hashtag #SteamDevDays.

The original Steam Controller included a touchscreen in between two circular touchpads, but after the beta version of the device was shipped to 300 testers it seems Valve has instead opted for two sets of more traditional A/B/X/Y buttons on the bottom of the gamepad.

It's unclear what, if anything, Valve plans to put in the middle of the controller now, since that looks like an awful lot of unused space.

Seattle developer Charlie Helman reports on Twitter that Valve plans to market other, more expensive models of the Steam Controller, so it's entirely possible that the touchscreen will return.

Helman also reported that the room erupted in applause when a Valve employee told the audience that SteamOS currently supports simultaneous input from as many as 16 Steam Controllers.

This wasn't the only news to come out of the conference today: Valve reaffirmed its intention to include TV, music, and Movie apps for SteamOS before release, plans to discontinue its Greenlight community voting system, and Alienware is releasing its Steam Machine in September.

That's quite a lot of information in just one day, so stay tuned to Develop and follow #SteamDevDays on Twitter to keep up with the latest news.