Loki and Portal

A long time ago, Valve released a little indie game called Portal, and took the gaming world by surprise. They followed it up with a sequel that expanded the world in awesome ways. I mean, it had J. K. Simmons voicing “Cave Johnson,” a legendary video game character with some truly memorable lines. Anyway, the game was filled with stick figures, like this:

In a small way, they actually helped you understand what was going on, by giving you a little expectation of what was coming in the chamber signs, once you understood the “language”:

Now there’s a new MCU series about Loki on Disney+. It introduces the Time Variance Authority to the universe, which was, in fact, a thing in the print comics, which I was never exposed to. The TVA uses a retro-futuristic style that has elements that look like Portal’s stick figure man.

It’s so similar, I wonder if Disney has had to pay Valve for the rights.

Anyway, I am absolutely loving Loki. It has even more promise than Wandavision, and that’s saying something.

Valve’s Gabe Newell hints at vague console plans coming “this year” | Ars Technica

Or maybe Newell was suggesting that Valve plans to revive its Steam Machines program, getting behind a line of SteamOS-powered living room consoles once more. Given the quick market death of that effort, though, this is probably the least likely bit of speculation at the moment.

Source: Valve’s Gabe Newell hints at vague console plans coming “this year” | Ars Technica

I think that Valve will, indeed, make a serious go at a console, running SteamOS (née, Linux), and I think the launch will coincide with the reveal of Half-Life Episode 3. I think they’ve been sitting on that pent-up demand to launch their console. I just think they had no idea they’d be sitting on it for 13 years and counting, now.

UPDATE: I just stumbled across a recent talk by Linus Torvalds, where he points out that he is already on record that Valve might be the one organization that could make “Linux on the desktop” a reality, because they will be obstinate about making a distribution that doesn’t make ABI-breaking package updates every few months. It looks like SteamOS is being updated — about once a year, but that sounds suspiciously as if plans to produce a proper SteamOS-based device has been discussed with him. Maybe that’s just wishful thinking. I’m very happy with my PS5, but I would love to see a Valve console come to market, for a lot of reasons.