Every Steam Machine shown so far has amounted to a small desktop PC. But what if you want to take that gaming experience on the road? Well, you might get your wish, meet SteamBoy, a handheld take on Valve’s platform. On the outside, it’s pretty much what you’d expect; it looks like an Steam Controller prototype with a 5-inch display slotted in between. Its creator isn’t giving out many other details right now, but it tells The Escapist that the device’s quad-core processor and 4GB of RAM “won’t be as powerful” as other Steam Machines. That’s not surprising given the size, however, and it should play the “majority” of titles. There are also promises of 3G mobile data and 32GB of built-in storage.
Steam Machines are Valve’s next major project for PC gaming, and a lot of people are very excited to see how it will turn out. If successful, Steam games will have a solid foothold within living room gaming and traditional mouse-and-keyboard play. The only market Valve wouldn’t be attached to at that point is handheld gaming, but at least one manufacturer is now hoping to jump-start that process. On the last day of E3, the SteamBoy Machine team announced its new handheld console that would let players enjoy Steam titles on the go, presumably supporting a variation of SteamOS for living rooms. “SteamBoy is the first device that allows to play Steam games on the go,” SteamBoy Machine’s press release reads, “you will keep playing your favorite games at the bus, the office, the school or the doctor’s waiting room.” The pictured SteamBoy looks like a combination of the Steam Controller and the PlayStation Vita, with two touchpads, 8 action buttons, 4 triggers, and two additional buttons to the rear. While that should certainly be as functional as a Steam Machine, we still aren’t aware what the system specs will be. That’s pretty important for any attempt at adapting PC gaming to mobile play, since the system requirements of individual PC games can vary wildly compared to traditional consoles. According to the SteamBoy Machine team the device will balance performance and cost, and support the majority of current Steam games.