Valve Brings Steam To The Living Room With 'Big Picture'

A lot of talk gets slung around about what’s better, PC gaming or console. It's a debate that continues to rear its ugly head whenever gamers of different backgrounds/tastes are in the same vicinity (that is, once we leave our bedrooms), but it's also one that so often is settled when everyone can come to agree it's not necessarily what's 'better' per se, but one that boils down to what each feels most comfortable with. Valve's very latest addition to Steam, however, has the potential to blur the lines between the two. It's called 'Big Picture' and it's everything you love about Steam, in your living room.


The idea behind it being that being stuck in front of a mouse and keyboard isn't always everyone's idea of fun, sometimes it's best to just kick back on the sofa and unwind. Big Picture, then, brings your entire collection of Steam games, list of friends and the ever-popular Steam Store straight to your big-screen 'Daisywheel' looks to make text entry on controller easier than ever.TV. With a newly-optimised user interface built for the added screen real estate (and one that compensates for the distance between user and display), the Big Picture has also been designed with controllers in mind, with a more user-friendly browser, an interesting new keyboard UI called 'Daisywheel', and a clear emphasis on 'controller-friendly' games direct from the store.

At first, you might be forgiven for wondering what the point of it is, but it’s actually a fairly smart move on Valve's part. Your PC or laptop could just as easily transform into your console - that is as long as you don’t have people over who want to play too – and with access to the Steam community and the ever increasing list of games, it does away with the feeling of buyers remorse when a new iteration of a console comes out. In the end, it's the best of both worlds and for that, we're thankful. (PC wins.)

Harvey McDaniel