Valve severs ties with Xi3 Piston, now has “no involvement”

Tuesday, 12th March 2013 08:56 GMT By Dave Cook

Valve was widely thought to have backed the Xi3 Piston micro PC – often dubbed “Steam Box”. However, Valve’s Doug Lombardi has made clear that the Seattle studio no longer has any involvement in Xi3′s dealings.

In a statement sent to Eurogamer, Lombardi simply said, “Valve began some exploratory work with Xi3 last year, but currently has no involvement in any product of theirs”.

Pre-orders on the Piston began at SXSW over the weekend, starting at $999.99, a price-tag that has caused some confusion out there in social networking land. Many commentators say the price is too high, while others seem excited regardless.

We’ve got the first trailer for the Xi3 Piston here:

What do you make of the above?



  1. MegaGeek1

    Great timing Doug. I’d cash my chips in too after that price announcement.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Djoenz

    Lol so true @1.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Samoan Spider

    Hmm, so still no further forward on what software this is running if Steam have publicly denied involvement. So I’m assuming a windows license is in that price too then. Starts to make a little more sense though. Its still ludicrous.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Stardog

    And video game journalism fails again. Almost every news title on every gaming website has contained “Steam box”.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Dave Cook

    @4 Wouldn’t say it was a fail. Valve openly backed it didn’t they? What else are we supposed to think unless told otherwise – which Doug has now done.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Mike W


    So true, I thought they were trying to price themselves out of the market before they even entered it.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. TD_Monstrous69

    Wow….so much for that future of living room PC’s challenging consoles, huh Valve? Talk about a cut-and-run before anything’s really started. Not gonna say this kills Xi3, but their PC has definitely lost some brand recognition with Valve backing away.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. freedoms_stain

    @7, people continually misrepresent this product as Valve’s own “Steam box”. They have to take a step away from that because once consumers have the wrong idea in their head it can be very difficult to shake them of it.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. orakaa

    So… what’s with the Steam box then?
    This was vaguely the only finished product/mock-up connected to it that we heard of (hence why it was referred to as “a Steam box”).

    I think this is where we could see the limits of this concept.
    Valve talked a lot about this but I’m really not sure they have the structure, funds or even the “culture” to do this.

    It takes a lot of good marketing decisions and money to get into hardware, otherwise, the device doesn’t get popular and is quickly forgotten (Jaguar, 3DO, etc.)

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Samoan Spider

    @9 But there is talk of Valve doing a Google (Android) on us and whilst they’ll provide their own hardware base and Linux to run steam on, the majority of hardware development will happen with other manufacturers using SteamOS in their own boxes. I think what has scared Valve here is people calling this product THE Steambox rather than A Steambox. Xi3 have possibly jumped the gun a little because other suspected ‘partners’ like Alienware and its ilk, are keeping mum. All conjecture, but its the best guess I have.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. DSB

    It was about time Lombardi came on scene.

    Confusing the Piston with an actual Steam Box is pretty damaging to the brand.

    @5 I agree, it’s on Valve. But it very much is a “Steam Box” with quotes, not an actual Steam Box.

    @9 There’s every reason to be skeptical, but unlike consoles, Valve doesn’t have to worry about infrastructure. Their infrastructure is largely already in place, and they won’t be locking their boxes down.

    Arguably the hardest part will be to retrofit Linux.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Cobra951

    So much for that, then. It doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in a boiler now.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. TheWulf

    @7: Valve are working on their own Steambox hardware. They worked on a prototype with Xi3 but never anything more. With that kind of spectacle-laden shit stirring, you could go and write for RPS.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. nollie4545

    Without Valve on board this thing is surely still-born. Calling it a ‘piston’, pretty mis-leading, no?

    Come on Valve, do for hardware what you did for software. Kick some ass. A small form factor PC, running a lightweight OS and good graphics potential, to really stir up the console world.

    #14 2 years ago
  15. TheWulf

    Also, as an addendum to what I said prior? No. I don’t root for either side of the PC versus consoles stuff. I even get irritated by platform exclusivity, no matter what the platform is, because all you’re doing is screwing over the other guy.

    I’ve felt that way since I was a kid. Consoles versus home computers, consoles versus consoles, it’s all so bloody stupid. Asking me to root for one side is like asking me whether I’d prefer to root for The Sociopathy Club or The Sociopathic Slammers. I’d just rather not play the sport.

    In regards to this bullshit about hating on a platform for being a platform, isn’t it about time we all… I don’t know… grew up? It was funny and cute when we were kids, because most kids are too dumb to know better. It’s depressing to see that most adults are also too dumb to know better… it reminds me of football hooliganism.

    Just idiocy.

    It’s a platform.

    You play games on it.

    It could be a PC, a PS3, a Wii, or a bloody piece of paper and dice if you’re so inclined. There is no right or wrong in regards to platforms. Now let’s leave that infernally asinine nonsense about platform hating in the ’80s and the ’90s – back where we were all younger.

    Unless you have a sociopathic need to prove that your platform was the right choice and to “win” against everyone else, there’s really no further need for this. So… please, stop embarrassing yourselves and, by proxy, embarrassing me as a fellow gamer.


    #15 2 years ago
  16. partchimp

    @15 spot on.

    I think some people on this couldn’t actually give two shits about games and would rather bitch about which platform is better.

    #16 2 years ago

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