Posted on January 15, 2014, Phil Owen Valve Overhauling Steam Controller Design
The Steam Controller as it has existed thus far is an odd-as-hell thing to look at, and when I examined and tried to play games with it at CES lest week I found it maddening. It’s good news to me, then, that much of the design is being significantly altered, while at the same time a little bit disappointed that I may never find out if lots of people are actually able to get used to and become proficient with the alien thing.
The new mock-up, as you can see above in the photo taken by Leszek Godlewski, abandons the square pad in the middle with face buttons on the corners in favor of a more traditional d-pad and button diamond layout. The clicky trackpads are staying, of course, as they are kinda necessary for the automatic mouse-and-keyboard emulation for games that won’t have tailored control schemes, but in general it still looks more normal.
That said, this is just a mockup and signal that the beta controllers are probably not the final editions. There may not actually ever be a Steam Controller that looks like that, and the controllers that make it to retail may not look like that. It’s an evolving creature.