Valve: streaming 'not in our short-term plans'

There are "interesting possibilities," says Valve business development chief, but "lots of advantages" to non-streaming games.

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Valve has no immediate plans to add game-streaming technology to its online offering, says Jason Holtman, Valve business development director. "In the near-term, are we going to have a streaming system? No," said Holtman at game industry conference Develop in Brighton, England. However, game-streaming technologies like those of OnLive and Gaikai are of interest to the software outfit.

Though "those [technologies] are really interesting to us," said Holtman, "they're not in our short-term plans." For now, Valve is content with old-fashioned, non-streaming games: "We see lots of advantages in the way games work now."

The house of Steam also considers cloud gaming a staple of its service to players already, added Team Fortress 2 designer Robin Walker.

"We love cloud gaming and we think we do it already… you can think of it as just a way of using a back-end structure [for gaming]," he said, comparing streaming's server-side game processing to cloud saves and the back-end that drives the Steam Workshop creation tools.

According to Walker, streaming as a new mode of distributing products is of less interest to Valve than new and potentially better player experiences. "We're not so excited by distribution," he said. "We're excited by a change in customer experience…The exciting thing about Steam is that we can deliver new experiences, iterate on our games much faster."

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