Unless you're one of the few customers who pre-ordered the Steam Controller, Steam Link or any of the Steam Machines during the "Get It Early" event, your first chance to get your hands on the hardware won't be on October 16, but the official launch date of November 10. Pre-orders are still available online, but Valve also wants to attract more customers by partnering with three store chains to create a Steam section among the shelves.
GameStop, EB Games, and GAME UK cover the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, respectively. With these companies, Valve covers a large portion of its audience through both digital and physical pre-orders. To sweeten the deal, Valve offered some pre-order incentives: Those who place an order now will also get a copy of Portal 2 and the popular team-based game Rocket League.
These were the same stores that also took part in the "Get It Early" program, and those orders were sold out in less than a month. With the anticipation of a larger demand for the November launch date, it only makes sense to have a dedicated Steam section in the stores of the three franchises.
In the past, Valve's most notable presence in stores was through The Orange Box, a disc-based version of five games for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 that included Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Portal, and Team Fortress 2. Three years ago, the company also introduced Steam prepaid cards as alternative to purchasing games on the PC Steam platform.
However, this latest release will put a big dent in your wallet. The Steam Controller will cost $49.99, and the Steam Link, which allows streaming of your games from your PC to a TV, is an additional $49.99. The Steam Machines themselves are significantly more expensive, starting at $449.99.
|Alienware Steam Machines||Steam Machine i3||Steam Machine i3 (Upgraded)||Steam Machine i5||Steam Machine i7|
|CPU||Intel Core i3-4130T (Dual-Core)||Intel Core i3-4130T (Dual-Core)||Intel Core i5-4590T (Quad Core)||Intel Core i7-4765T (Quad Core)|
|RAM||4 GB DDR3||8 GB DDR3||8 GB DDR3||8 GB DDR3|
|Storage||500 GB 7200 RPM HDD||1 TB 7200 RPM HDD||1 TB 7200 RPM HDD||1 TB 7200 RPM HDD|
|GPU||Nvidia GeForce GTX GPU (2 GB GDDR5)||Nvidia GeForce GTX GPU (2 GB GDDR5)||Nvidia GeForce GTX GPU (2 GB GDDR5)||Nvidia GeForce GTX GPU (2 GB GDDR5)|
|Connectivity||1x1 802.11 Wireless Card||1x1 802.11 Wireless Card||2x2 802.11 Wireless Card||2x2 802.11 Wireless Card|
|Syber Steam Machines||Steam Machine I||Steam Machine P||Steam Machine X|
|CPU||Intel Core i3-4160 (Dual Core)||Intel Core i5-4460 (Quad Core)||Intel Core i7-4790K (Quad Core)|
|RAM||4 GB DDR3||8 GB DDR3||16 GB DDR3|
|Storage||500 GB HDD||1 TB HDD||1 TB HDD|
|GPU||Nvidia GTX 750 (1 GB DDR5)||Nvidia GTX 960 (2 GB DDR5)||Nvidia GTX 980 (4 GB DDR5)|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi: 802.11 b/g/n/ LAN: 10/100/1000 RJ-45||Wi-Fi: 802.11 b/g/n/ LAN: 10/100/1000 RJ-45||Wi-Fi: 802.11 b/g/n/ LAN: 10/100/1000 RJ-45|
|I/O||Front: 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, audio/mic jack Rear: 2x USB 3.0, 4x USB 2.0, HDMI 1.4, DVI-D||Front: 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, audio/mic jack Rear: 2x USB 3.0, 4x USB 2.0, HDMI 1.4, DVI-D||Front: 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, audio/mic jack Rear: 2x USB 3.0, 4x USB 2.0, HDMI 1.4, DVI-D|
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Remember you can easily make your own Steam Machine, the OS is free. So you can make it support whatever you want.
I am a bit worried though. Hopefully it works out and is not a waste of money. Most people who go to these places tend to normally be console gamers.
It would be great if this pushed PC gaming back into the mainstream eye. I hate seeing barely a single sided shelf dedicated to PC games when there are so many more. Then again that is what Steam is for.
Most people download PC games anymore, rarely do they buy the disks. Though personally, I always prefer a CD-ROM if available.
“Gabe Newell’s ongoing anger at Microsoft and Windows continues to motivate him to push forward on the lame-brained Linux-based Steam Machines. Not since Howard Hughes’s H-1 Hercules has there been such a monumental boondoggle. We now know why so much effort was put into excavating all the Atari E.T. cartridges in Alamogordo, New Mexico: to make room for all the Steam Machines.”
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