We're getting some pretty exciting news about Valve's hardware beta, and strangely enough that news is coming from 4chan. A group of fans from 4chan went to Valve's offices to wish Gabe Newell a happy birthday (even giving him a home made Team Fortress 2 hat as a gift), and the head honcho was kind enough to hang out in the lobby and answer some questions. The video one 4chan member recorded lasts almost an hour, and though the whole thing is worth a watch, it's Gabe's discussion of the Valve hardware beta that we're going to hone in on.
Apparently the hardware beta is already underway, and Valve has developed three different prototype controllers that are being tested at the moment. We've known about Valve's foray into controllers for a while now, but this is the first we've heard of prototypes that are actually in testing. Valve's development of controllers meshes nicely with the launch of the big picture mode beta, which boasts a special interface made for larger screens.
Of course, other controllers like the Xbox 360 gamepad work just fine when playing most Steam games, but it would be interesting what Valve can do when developing a controller with PC gaming in mind. Valve also has Steam in mind while developing these gamepads, so a Valve-branded controller could definitely be something worth picking up. Unfortunately, we don't know anything about these controllers, so it's hard to make any kind of call concerning whether or not they'll be worth our time.
Still, we know they're out there somewhere. Maybe this means that it won't be very long before Valve starts talking about them more openly? If you've got some time, be sure to give the full video a watch - seeing a bunch of fans from 4chan pick Gabe Newell's mind actually proves to be quite interesting.