Top game maker on move towards Linux: ‘ I think Windows 8 is a catastrophe’

Gabe Newell might not be well known outside the gaming industry, but ask anyone in the know, and the answer is likely to come back that Gabe is a bit of a guru.

Having created Valve, one of the very biggest distribution platforms in gaming, his voice is one to listen to, when he makes his rare public appearances. Like he recently did at Casual Connect.

Speaking on various subjects, including the future of gaming, open vs. closed platforms and the evolution of the touch screens, Gabe Newell also weighed in on his old company, Microsoft and their latest incarnation of Windows – Windows 8 – and what lay behind Valve’s recent move towards Linux.

“The big problem that is holding back Linux is games. People don’t realize how critical games are in driving consumer purchasing behavior,” he said.

“We want to make it as easy as possible for the 2,500 games on Steam to run on Linux as well. It’s a hedging strategy. I think Windows 8 is a catastrophe for everyone in the PC space. I think we’ll lose some of the top-tier PC/OEMs, who will exit the market. I think margins will be destroyed for a bunch of people. If that’s true, then it will be good to have alternatives to hedge against that eventuality.”

Ouch, Microsoft.

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