Steam for Mac Launch: I'm "Steamed"
When it was announced that Steam would be coming to the Mac platform, the world rejoiced. Mac users and Justin Long alike danced in the streets, celebrating the moment when Macs would take a major step forward in computer gaming. Well, Steam has been available for 5 days thus far, and at the time of this writing, I am not happy with the product.
Take a look at the debuts of major consoles. Successful launches always came with a killer app game that would coax potential buyers to shell out the considerable amount of cash to purchase a new machine. Consoles that didn't (Saturn, PS2) had miserable launches that were not well received at all by media and consumers alike. Obviously, in the case of the PS2, the poor launch did not hurt the console over the long haul.
So what games were available for the Mac on day one of the Steam launch? Essentially nothing.
Yes, Steam for Mac technically launched with 63 games, but when you look at the list, it's much easier to roll my eyes than be impressed.
Far be it for me to say, but I don't have a terrible amount of interest in Cooking Dash, Peggle Deluxe, Peggle Nights, Diaper Dash, Zuma Deluxe, Luxor, Luxor 3, Luxor: Mah Jong, Bejeweled 2 Deluxe, Bookworm Deluxe, DinerTown Tycoon, DinerTown Detevtive Agency, Diner Dash: Hometown Hero, Fitness Dash, and Parking Dash.
Keep in mind that a large portion of the advertising came in the form of TF2 iPod silhouette mockups. Where's TF2? Where's Counter Strike? Where's a multiplayer shooter? Featuring games that have already been released and have no online component is a travesty. Playing a game online keeps the experience fresh. Playing Portal for the umpteenth time is not new or fun.
And on that note, Portal, as far as I'm concerned, is the de facto launch game for Steam for Mac. Upon launch, Portal has been offered for free, and will continue to be up until May 24th.
Portal? Really? A two to three hour game that everyone and their mother has already played? That ridiculous. That's insanity. We are talking about the single most important launch in Mac gaming history, and they roll out a coming attraction. Additionally, Portal didn't even work until I updated my brand new Mac. Not brand new as in it's a month old, brand new as in was delivered to my home this week. It's like telling a newborn fresh from the womb, still covered in placenta, that he's too old to sign up for little league.
For me, that really isn't a problem. But if the average Mac user is anything like this guy, then a large population of Steam for Mac users will never get the ball rolling.
In the coming weeks and months, more content will be made available. However, I believe that it would have been better to wait until more compelling content was ready to go before launching the platform.
Oh well, in the meantime, at least I have the Humble Indie Bundle to play.