Freshly data-mined information from the latest Steam update indicates that Valve is potentially working on a new console.
Developer and Steam data miner Pavel Djundik posted the fresh code on GitHub, which shows a potential codename of “Neptune” and a possible console name in “SteamPal.” The code includes a mention of an Airplane Mode setting, low battery notifications, Bluetooth, and grip buttons, which hints that the potential console will be a mobile or handheld device.
This potential reveal comes just a week after Valve president Gabe Newell gave a cryptic answer to a question regarding Steam games coming to consoles. “You will get a better idea of that by the end of this year… and it won’t be the answer you would expect,” he said.
If the SteamPal is officially announced at some point this year, it will mark Steam’s second official attempt at jumping into the console gaming sphere. Valve released the Steam Machine line in November 2015 after years of testing. Steam Machine was a line of pre-built gaming PCs built by multiple gaming manufacturers (Alienware, Digital Storm, Zotac) with console features. Due to problems with SteamOS and communication issues between Valve, developers, and manufacturers, the Steam Machine line was received poorly from a financial and critical sense. Valve sold less than half a million copies and no longer lists them for sale on the Steam store.
There’s no official Steam event on the horizon that could reveal any additional information, but Steam Next Fest, highlighting upcoming games and developers, begins on June 16.