In today's completely shocking and unexpected
bit of news, Valve has announced Mac support for its Steam
digital distribution platform and Source -- the engine that powers Half-Life 2
, amongst others. In fact, Portal 2
will be Valve's first simultaneous release across PC and Mac. "Steamworks for the Mac supports all of the Steamworks APIs, and we have added a new feature, called Steam Play, which allows customers who purchase the product for the Mac or Windows to play on the other platform free of charge," said Valve's Jason Holtman. "For example, Steam Play, in combination with the Steam Cloud, allows a gamer playing on their work PC to go home and pick up playing the same game at the same point on their home Mac. We expect most developers and publishers to take advantage of Steam Play." If that doesn't get you all kinds of giddy, then you may just be dead inside
Steam and Valve's lineup of games (including "including Left 4 Dead 2, Team Fortress 2, Counter-Strike, Portal,
and the Half-Life
series") will be available to Mac users this April, but from here on out, simultaneous cross-platform releases should be the norm. "Checking in code produces a PC build and Mac build at the same time, automatically, so the two platforms are perfectly in lock-step," said Josh Weier, project lead on Portal 2
. "We're always playing a native version on the Mac right alongside the PC. This makes it very easy for us and for anyone using Source to do game development for the Mac."
So, who's got the champagne and noise makers?