Earlier today, Valve has let go several employees who worked on Steam and Half-Life. The news was first reported on Gamasutra, but the conversation continued on the web. There is no definitive information on the motivation behind this decision but there is rampant speculation on the web. First, folks were wondering if it was the hardware group that was let go, and this sparked fear that Valve may be cancelling the Valve Steambox project. This probably came from the fact that one of the hardware designer was let go.
Later, Valve’s CEO released a statement to Engadget saying that Valve was not cancelling any projects, and this should somewhat alleviate fears that the Steambox would not make it. In the meantime, there is no certainty about why this happened and employees were asked not to talk about it. Given how high-profile this is, I would be surprised if someone talked publicly about it.
I’m not sure what to think of this, but I can’t imagine that Valve is having dire financial issues, so this has to be a strategic decision that happened to focus the company in a given direction. Do you think that Valve’s hardware will eventually see the light of day? Shouldn’t Valve just let 3rd parties build many types of boxes based on a Valve API?