Valve adds fresh Steam Controller features to celebrate 500,000 sold

Six months of silence had us worried, but Valve's strange peripheral is still alive and kicking.

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Hayden Dingman

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What’s going on with the Steam Controller these days? Glad you asked. Though Valve’s been pretty quiet on the Steam Machine/Steam Controller front since launch last November, it published a lengthy blog post on Wednesday detailing everything that’s been tweaked in the last six months—and announced that “over half a million Steam Controllers have been sold.”

That’s a respectable number for an odd-duck peripheral—though if it includes controllers packaged in with Steam Machines, it portends rather poorly for Valve’s living room push. I’d be surprised to see a second generation of Steam Machines, if fewer than 500,000 have sold. (That number assumes some Steam Controllers were purchased alongside Steam Links or a la carte.)

As for the tweaks, the standout is that the Steam Controller now works with your desktop, meaning there's no reason to launch Steam Big Picture if you don’t want to. You can even use the pop-up keyboard to “communicate with your non-Steam programs,” if you’re a masochist and don’t want to just use a normal keyboard.

Valve also highlighted support from third parties, including developer-created configurations for Doom, XCOM 2, and Dark Souls III, and touted “enhanced support for games purchased outside of Steam.” Oh, and the controller rumbles properly now.

Mostly this seems like a “Hey, we haven’t forgotten about the Steam Controller” post though—which is good, because six months of near-silence had me worried. Now if only we could get actual Steam Machine numbers...

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