Forget next-gen consoles — if Valve has their way, 2014 will be the year of the Steam Machine. And with 14 companies cranking out the boxes, it's not as easy as buying, say, a PS3. Which is why we've got our eyes on the Alienware Steam Machine ($TBA). Crafted by one of the most trusted names in PC gaming, this sleek black box will be powered by an Intel CPU and Nvidia GPU, and will (of course) run SteamOS, giving you access to tons of games running natively, and thousands more available via in-home streaming. It's like a HTPC, evolved.
Games on the iPhone are great, and they only seem to get better — but controlling a game by tilting, shaking, and occasionally poking at a glass screen leaves something to be desired. With the Moga Ace Power Controller ($100), you get all the controls you're used to with console gaming, without sacrificing the convenience and portability of your phone. The controller expands to cradle your phone, and collapse back down to a small size to fit in your pocket or bag. It features dual analog sticks, a directional button, four action buttons, as well as left and right bumpers and triggers. Best yet, the controller also doubles as an extra battery pack, letting you keep a charge while you play. Compatible with all fifth generation iPhones and iPod touches.
While we've watched as game systems have evolved exponentially over the years, not much monumental has happened to controllers since the invention of the joystick — that is, until the Steam Controller ($TBA). After announcing plans to build an operating system and console based on their popular PC-based gaming platform Steam, the guys at Valve set out to build an input device that would bring the control of a keyboard and mouse into the living room. Based around two circular trackpads that replace the familiar joysticks, it features advanced haptic feedback and a built-in touchscreen that let you play games formerly reserved only for desktop machines.