Valve’s Steam Controller is eschewing the center touchscreen in favor of physical buttons, according to attendees tweeting from the Steam Dev Days conference.
The image below, which shows the beta version of Steam Controller handed out to attendees, comes from the Twitter account of Dave Oshry, chief financial officer for former videogame community turned game development studio Hot Blooded Games.
Oshry’s picture, along with tweets from game design consulting agency Auroch Digital and design and production director Tomas Rawlings and Becky Taylor, community manager for Toy Soldiers developer Signal Studios, indicate that Valve removed the touch screen because “ghost mode made it redundant.” Ghost mode, in this case, seems to be the on-screen button-mapping display used to configure the Steam Controller.
Changes to the device are far from over, however. According to Taylor, Valve which be tilting the now square-arranged buttons to form a diamond, allowing them to be compatible with other controllers (say, the ABXY arrangement on an Xbox 360 controller) and to serve as a D-pad if necessary.
Update: Steam Database tweeted a photo of a slide showcasing the Steam Controller redesign (updated the top header image with that photo).