Mac Steam client arrives, Portal offered for free

Who ever said Macs can't play games? Valve released the Mac OS X version of its Steam client earlier this afternoon, allowing users of Apple computers to access the digital distribution, multiplayer gaming, and communication service without having to install Windows.

As the image below attests, the completed Mac release of Steam looks quite a bit like the latest Windows version.

Valve plans to port its entire catalog of games to OS X, although right now, Portal is the only one available. On the upside, Valve offers it for free until May 24—not just to Mac gamers, but to PC users, as well.

The Steam online store also includes more than 60 other Mac-compatible games, including big releases like Torchlight and Civilization IV; indie games like Braid and Machinarium; some LucasArts classics like Loom and The Dig, and a cornucopia of casual games like Zuma Deluxe.

Valve emphasizes its Steam Play feature, which means purchasing a game for one platform entitles you to a copy of that same game for the other platform. If you log in with an existing Steam account, cross-platform games you've purchased should show up as installable in Mac Steam.

See the image gallery below for more screenshots of the OS X Steam client, plus a photo of Valve staffers celebrating the launch.

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