This week in gaming

Run your computer with Steam

Valve announced it’s own operating system, SteamOS, on Monday. The creators of the “Half-Life,” Portal” and “Left 4 Dead” games posted to the Steam website saying that it will be based around Linux, and will be free.

Steam-powered PCs on the horizon

Valve also announced Steam Machines, which are gaming PCs that run SteamOS built specifically to be used in a living-room setting on a TV, on Wednesday.

The machines will be available starting in 2014 and will be made by different manufactures. Several different models will be made available at different price points and with differing hardware.

The company is currently planning to select 300 Steam users randomly to give a prototype Steam Machine for testing purposes. More information on how to make yourself eligible can be found on the Steam Machines announcement page.

Get a grip on Steam

Valve completed their week of announcing things with the reveal of their Steam Controller, which features two trackpads in place of traditional thumbsticks and has a touchscreen in the middle.

The Steam Controller.
The trackpads give haptic feedback such as vibration, pressure and can also act as speakers.

 In the announcement post, Valve states that the controller can be used with every game ever put on the Steam platform by fooling older games into recognizing it as a keyboard and mouse, which avoids the problem of a game not having been designed for use with a gamepad.

Those who are chosen to participate in the Steam Machines beta program will also receive a Steam Controller, but it will be a prototype model that features four buttons in place of the central touchscreen, according to Valve.

A grizzled ancient leaves Bungie

Joseph Staten is leaving developer Bungie to pursue other creative opportunities, according a statement on the developer’s website posted Tuesday.

Staten, who worked at Bungie for 15 years as a writer and cinematic director, took part in the creation and expansion of the “Halo” universe and has been integral in the development of Bungie’s upcoming game “Destiny.”

He also penned one of the “Halo”-universe tie-in novels, “Contact Harvest,” which depicted the first encounter between human colonists and the Covenant years before the events of the first “Halo” game.

There is no official word on what he will be doing now that he has left Bungie.

Howdy-ho, everybody!

“South Park: The Stick of Truth” got a release date and a new trailer this week.

The game, which is being developed by Obsidian Entertainment, will come out on Jan. 10 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.