Forbes lists Gabe Newell as a 'name you need to know' in 2011

Financial magazine's crowd-sourced list of candidates to make massive impacts in next year features Valve CEO in recognition of Steam's hold on PC digital distribution.

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Digital download unit sales of PC games surpassed their physical cousins during the first half of 2010 according to statistics compiled by the research firm NPD Group. One man leading this charge is Gabe Newell, CEO of Valve and its mega distribution house Steam, which recently tallied its 30 millionth user. Now, financial magazine Forbes has its eye on the man, saying Newell is a "name you need to know in 2011."

Forbes has its eye on Newell, Valve, and Steam.

Forbes kicked off the "Names You Need to Know in 2011" campaign in late October, saying that the magazine is "looking for 'names' that are likely going to have a huge impact in the coming 12 months." Selections for the list will be chosen, in part, by nominations made by the community.

The magazine believes Newell is an appropriate selection for the list largely due to his work with Steam. The Forbes report cites "one industry estimate" that postulates that Steam's virtual storefront accounts for a whopping 70 percent of the market for digitally distributed video games. The source of the estimate was not specified.

What is known, however, is that Steam has partnerships with most major publishers--from Activision to Electronic Arts--and has over 1,200 PC and Mac games available in its Web store.

Newell worked for Microsoft for 13 years and held multiple positions in the company's Systems, Applications, and Advanced Technology divisions. After leaving the company, he founded Valve in 1996. The studio's first title was 1998's Half-Life, the adored first-person shooter. Valve is also responsible for the Portal, Left 4 Dead, Team Fortress, and Counter Strike franchises, among others.

Other "names" on Forbes' list include James Murdoch, the son of News Corp's Rupert Murdoch, NBA star Kevin Durant, Honestly.com, the nation of Ghana, and urban farming.

Discussion

134 comments
LittleDuck
LittleDuck

@9thedevilmaycry This makes him attractive!!

DanielL5583
DanielL5583

Newell knows how to make his wonga. And I respect that. What did he do? Make Half-Life. Why would you also need Half-Life? Counter-Strike. How popular is Counter-Strike? VERY.

Manuel24
Manuel24

who can hate gabe??he created half life!!!, l4d, and did the way possible to make cs, he always supported the gaming comunity

superdum2
superdum2

@blakeney hell no im just sayn games belong on a shelf not a HD

blakeney
blakeney

@superdum2 Do you like action figuers on your shelf too? :S :P

superdum2
superdum2

@blakeney i think games look good on a shelf

blakeney
blakeney

@superdum2 Yea, you can get that feeling from owning better things, like a nice soundsystem, or a lovely ming dynasty vase?! :P Some may say that having the burden of a physical copy wasting space (for their vase?:P) on their shelf, in all its nasty sqaure plasticness!

digi-demon
digi-demon

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

BloodBeings
BloodBeings

Gabe Newell, we PS3 fanboys are so lucky for him to get over his grudge of PS3 being stupid

namdar
namdar

I also will note Gabe Newell is going to save PC gaming oh and entice Mac gaming :)

namdar
namdar

Ya I have been using steam since it's infancy its gotten really great over the years, but this can hurt people who want to play a game without an internet connection. You go to the store to buy the game and you find out it can be pretty difficult getting it to install, just look at Orange Box.

Phrykshun
Phrykshun

I thought I would hate Steam. I always preferred a physical copy. But one day I bought a game from the store that forced me to download it from Steam. The CD key wasn't even correct. I was ready to hate them. But they fixed that within hours. The games download fast with no installation, everything patches automatically, and they often sell games for less than the stores. And while I like having my game collection on the shelf, I really hate having to insert the disc to play.

superdum2
superdum2

@vernholio i supose if you look at it in that sense for organization but im not for downloads i prefer a phisicle copy of the game because then it feels more satisfying setting on a shelf displaying that i own it.

CaptainHerlock
CaptainHerlock

He's a "name you need to know". Especially at the airport, because if he's on your flight that means you're getting bumped because they'll be over the weight restriction.

bodylotion
bodylotion

@nathan83_xp : like gabe newell single handedly invented steam. Without Steam there would've been other programs, even without all these digital distributors PC Gaming will remain untill someone combines the easiness of the console with the power and all the options a PC provides which could be soon ofcourse. But i agree Steam made pc games a lot more popular since people would buy a steam game just because it's so easy to use.

BenGenio
BenGenio

Gabe needs a "steam"room :p

nathan83_xp
nathan83_xp

the man is a fortune teller, without steam major (read: greedy) publishers would probably drop PC as a gaming platform all together.

cynicalundead
cynicalundead

We might "need to know him in 2011," if he lives that long. He's so fat he uses bacon for a band-aid. LOL

digi-demon
digi-demon

Maybe slimfast is another name worth knowing :P 'elf needs food badly' LOL

kwanzudood
kwanzudood

Ughhhh....i think Gabe Newell needs a personal trainer as a "name he needs to know in 2011"

Stinger78
Stinger78

Gabe Newell and Valve have been "names to know" since 1998. 2011 just happens to be when Portal 2, and hopefully Half-Life 2: Episode 3 come out. On a side-note, if Electronic Arts has a partnership with Valve to distribute products through Steam then why keep their EA Download Manager? If the same game through Steam can be offered for the same price or even cheaper, I would much rather choose Steam due to it being a more complete DDL service.

vernholio
vernholio

@superdum2 Understand your point, but I'm running out of shelf space! (Especially since GameStop no longer buys back PC Games! Time for eBay, I figure). I have to admit though, while it can be a lengthy process to re-download an existing game, it was awesome when I recently rebuilt my PC. Re-install Steam, log in and *poof* there's my catalog of purchased games. No clutter, no mess!

EraserHead81
EraserHead81

Steam is the one of the best things happened in the world of games. Newell for the president !:-)))

OGKNav
OGKNav

That goddamn picture. I know GS used that specific picture on purpose.

superdum2
superdum2

i hate downloading games i prefer to keep them on a shelf

digi-demon
digi-demon

Hmmm....For Sale - Wii Fit boxed never used - unwanted present. Swap for KFC Bargain Bucket....:D

EtherUnion
EtherUnion

I WASTED THOUSAND HOURS BECAUSE UR VALVE GAMES!!! and its worthed.... lol...

Stonecutters908
Stonecutters908

I have a steam account and I stopped using it for the simple reason that I abandoned most PC gaming a long time ago because I got tired of annually spending money upgrading my PC for gaming purposes. Plus the plethora of games that never see the light of day on a PC makes the whole thing unappealing. I know there are plenty of PC games not on consoles, but the trade isn't even to me.

FarmFreshDX
FarmFreshDX

Anybody who flames Valve for things like not releasing another Half-Life game obviously don't see the big picture. Valve is the only company I know of that releases free DLC (the 360 versions of DLC have a charge, but that's on MS's end. PS3 will have full Steamworks, nudge nudge, MS) pretty regularly with top-notch voice acting just to say "thanks" to the community. They also constantly poll Left 4 Dead players on things, some of which are things that later get improved in a patch. They also continue to research the way their games are played and patch in balance fixes and interesting ways to make the game more fun and interesting. Sure, all the haters will still hate them and thumbs-down this comment because they troll, but for all the people who appreciate the work Valve does, give me a thumbs-up for good ol' Gabe.

winterice2113
winterice2113

I think we should put "In Gabe We Trust" on at least some kind of U.S currency now

smbius
smbius

It's apparent that the Steam haters here have NEVER used steam or owns pirated copies of game X. Steam doesn't tie down games if it needs to be updated. In fact, if you want to play a Steam-based game on some other PC, you just download Steam, the game, and continue exactly where you left off in the game. Everything is synched but you are not tied to anything. You can still play the game even when you're not connected to the internet. Assuming you have legit physical media, just install (or re-install a digital version) and logon to Steam. Battle.NET learned the same technique from Steam. Just play Starcraft 2.

smbius
smbius

@S2333 - For a few years now, I haven't seen steam down except for notified maintenance which is very rare. And, when it's down, unfinished downloads and achievements are simply pending until they're back up. Works great.

xSlugox
xSlugox

Must have been awhile since you've been on Steam cuz it works just fine... Learn, then comment.

x-ray1
x-ray1

Steam..humm. I have an account; its O.K. when it works. Want to impress me Newell, Get Half Life going again. CEO's annoy me.

Topperfalkon
Topperfalkon

@naryan actually Valve tend to hire the development teams behind successful indie/mod groups and offer them Valve's resources to help them develop their ideas as stand-alone products. Would people honestly have raved about Portal's predecessor? Probably not...because unless you follow the indie/mod communities you wouldn't have heard about it.

high344
high344

Lead example of "standig up for your beliefs" yeah right!

Angel_Belial
Angel_Belial

I'll consider it a name I need to know if the next Half-Life game is coming out.

S2333
S2333

Steam is great when it works. When the system goes down or is buggy it is bad, very very very bad.

blahblahblah999
blahblahblah999

what's the point of having their 'physical cousins' when if you install the physical version you have your hands tied behind your back as you're forced to assimilate the game into Steam anyway (and all the headaches that come with that). Yes I love not being able to play something because it started downloading the 500mb update on my world-class s**t internet. I'm sure it has it's upsides, I'm just yet to see any of them except itunes-esque levels of intrusive advertising and inaccurate consumer feedback. Less crap and just let me play the game.

tomtomwolfwolf
tomtomwolfwolf

a feature I'd like to see in steam is to be able to have a physical copy of a game(i.e bad company 2) and add to your library as if you bought it off steam, and the have achievements etc. and when an expansion pack comes out(i.e. BC2: Vietnam) ill be able to get it on steam and add it to my physical copy of the full game. baiscally, if i have a DVD of a game, i want to be able to enter my serial number and play as if i bought it off steam.

Dynamo11
Dynamo11

Cause when they do, eventually, release Half Life 3 it'll blow the roof off.

JangoF-76
JangoF-76

"...candidates to make massive impacts..." hahaha!

Petch1984
Petch1984

Perhaps it's not seen as cool or whatever to like a company but I have nothing but praise for these guys. Steam have had some truly great offers in the past.

Altaireed
Altaireed

Gabe ...dude...seriously....is valve gonna make another Half-Life game,simple YES or NO will suffice,I don't care what's it called,just YES or NOT!?!?!?!?