Earlier this week, Nat Brown, one of the original Xbox team members at Microsoft, wrote a piece on the present and future of gaming, and Apple's potential to shape it. From iLike.code:
Apple, if it chooses to do so, will simply kill Playstation, Wii-U and xBox by introducing an open 30%-cut app/game ecosystem for Apple-TV. I already make a lot of money on iOS – I will be the first to write apps for Apple-TV when I can, and I know I’ll make money.
M.G. Siegler, who has good sources on Apple, says that while he hasn't heard anything about an Apple TV SDK specifically, he does believe that something is on track for the fall. From TechCrunch:
This is all speculation, of course. But while everyone is busy focusing on the hardware, they’re looking past the obvious software advantage of anything Apple does in the living room. The 800,000 apps won’t translate directly, but in two categories in particular: video and video games, Apple is going to dominate where their rivals cannot simply because of the support of small, third-party app developers.
Just like with power users vs. empowered users, hardcore gamers would likely lament the death of the dedicated console market, but their numbers and concerns would be dwarfed by the influx of casual, mainstream gamers.
Read both posts, it really would be a "delicious twist".