When will the steam deck be available?
Steam Deck. Steam Deck is available to reserve now in select regions, and will begin shipping in December 2021. steampowered.comSteam Deck reservation page
The Steam Deck, Valve's portable game system that runs Steam OS and is capable of playing AAA games from Steam's vast library of games, is set to be released in mid to late 2022. However, you can reserve one from sellers on eBay — for up to $5000. We will not be linking to these posts out of ethical reasons.
"Scalping" was coined in the late 19th century for individuals who would re-sell tickets, it is unclear if it was railroad tickets where it originated or theater tickets, usually for a profit. The term "taking a little off the top" when talking about money also refers to scalping. Ticket scalping originated in Amercan English, and the terminology is still used to this day, but not just for tickets.
This writer remembers when Cabbage Patch Kids were sold out of vans or trunks of cars on the side of the road for profit. When websites like eBay originated, individuals found ways of being able to resell items online the same way as doing it in person. Eventually, other product selling websites like Amazon and Etsy have sellers who will sell brand new items that have yet to be released to the public. The need to fulfill the purpose of receiving new or hard to find items before anyone else is still quite prevalent to this day.
The Steam Deck was announced only last week, and we are now seeing sellers, not only on eBay, but even social media as well, sell the Steam Deck for above the MSRP of the product in hopes to lure and entice buyers into making sure they have the game system before their friends, enemies, and competition.
In a society where staying ahead of the game is vitally important, buyers have proven that there is a need for access to items to remain on top of everyone that they know. Some buyers neglect to realize that they are paying a percent higher than another buyer who is willing to wait until the product is readily available.
The above situation where a seller is attempting to scalp a system that will normally sell for around $750, and asking for around $5000, is looking at a profit of upwards of 666%, but only if someone is willing to pay those costs. Plus, is the system going to stay at the current costs, or will they reduce costs to stay competitive with the market come release? The same situation happened over the last few days with Nintendo's new OLED system. The manufacturer has lowered the cost of the product so that they can continue to maintain costs with the competition brought by Valve with the new handheld.
Is it worth paying more for a product that hasn't been released? Or is it better to wait for the system to come out and pay the normal MSRP for the new handheld?
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20 July, 2021 - 12:01am
Valve, maker of Half-Life, Half-Life Alyx-player the Valve Index, and unavoidable online marketplace Steam, unveiled its surprise portable gaming PC, the Steam Deck. Just like that, a heck of a lot more people seem interested in the possibility of tiny handheld gaming PCs. (Too bad Steam Decks are now pre-ordered into the back half of 2022.)
So this week, we Ask Kotaku: Are you intrigued by the Valve Steam Deck?
Steam Deck will be my Persona 4 Golden machine. I literally bought that game on Steam with the intention of playing it mobile from my Mac laptop only to notice that the Steam version of P4G isn’t Mac compatible (womp womp). I haven’t touched it since. I’ll be psyched beyond measure to have a device on which I can play this game on the go. And! According to an itch.io dev, Steam Deck will be compatible with Itch.io’s app. I am stoked to make my Steam Deck my “all the small things” indie paradise machine. I can’t wait!
I’m not convinced that the thing will feel good to hold, or even be that easy to play with, especially for Steam games that haven’t really been optimized for a handheld control scheme. If a game doesn’t require a cursor, I almost always prefer to play with a controller, and there are plenty of games that release on Steam that only support mouse and keyboard at first. Still, if I can play my favorite arcade-y platformers, roguelikes, and bullet hells anywhere I want before they come to Switch and get that Nintendo markup, it seems like $400 well spent.
Plus, Steam has a ton of old and new games that will likely never come to Switch, from Dragon Age: Origins to Wildrmyth. If Valve actually does the hard work of making the Steam Deck a solid user experience (a big if) then it could easily become my favorite console.
Even if it was amazing and Valve had a great track record in supporting and making hardware this would still be a pass for me because it doesn’t really seem useful. I rarely go out on long trips and I work from home. So I spend a lot of my time around video game consoles and a fast PC. I have no need for a portable PC. And when I do go on a rare trip or vacation, I’m trying to escape my job and not bring it with me in the form of a handheld PC with a so-so battery and meh-quality screen. If I want to play something, I can whip out my phone and kill some time for a lot less, and it won’t break my wrists holding it.
Which isn’t to say it’s not cool. One aspect that does intrigue me is that it carries forward some of the interface ideas pioneered by Valve’s legit innovative, forward-thinking Steam Controller. The dual touchpads, four rear bumpers, and sheer programmability of it all are all really exciting. Triggers look pretty good too. However, the d-pad and face button placement make them look like afterthoughts and ergonomic nightmares. So, note of concern there.
The screen doesn’t impress me either. Maybe I was wrong to expect 1080p rather than slightly over 720p, but 1280x800 feels pretty crusty these days and I’m a little concerned that the odd 16:10 resolution could cause display annoyances with games that prefer 16:9. Hopefully no big deal?
Still, I really like Ash’s notion that the Steam Deck would be a perfect device to enjoy smaller indie games and Itch.io material. If I were to jump on board, that’d be the most compelling use case for me.
I see the Steam Deck as a luxury item, more so even than a solid gaming PC. But it’s one of those purchases that I look at with my adult money and no one to tell me no and dive right into. Treat yourself.
Has this stubborn stance affected my job? You bet! Sometimes it’s demanded I wait ages until a game comes out on Switch (see: Hades). Sometimes it’s meant I’ve missed a game entirely (see: a list too long to type out). But the Steam Deck is small, fairly priced, and, best of all, requires no research commitment whatsoever. Finally, I’ll be able to play PC games. Whew! Feels good to get that off my chest.
Hell, I’ve been playing with these things since back in 2013, when Razer released the Edge handheld PC gaming tablet. These devices have existed for a long time, just like gaming PCs were around a long time before Valve brought out its Steam Machines. I like that they’re trying to bring the price down to make portable PC gaming more affordable, but if people really wanted a PC gaming portable that’s not a gaming laptop, they would have caught on by now.
Kotaku’s weighed in, but where do you stand? Do you want to use the Steam Deck to cozy up with your favorite indies? Or do you think it’s a waste of money? We’ll be back next time to deliberate and debate on another nerdy issue. See you in the comments!
19 July, 2021 - 06:15pm
While it's an affordable option for those without a powerful desktop or laptop, it's not that great for those who do have these or already own newer consoles or even a Switch. When in handheld mode, it should be able to run many games with no problem on high settings unless you're looking at future releases and even some current ones. Steam Deck's low resolution allows most games to run great, supposedly even games like Control, but if you plan on docking it like you would the Switch, you may find yourself playing at much lower settings because of hardware limitations.
PCs tend to evolve a lot faster than consoles, so having a handheld gaming PC that can't be upgraded is an issue. The smaller resolution may let it last more than a couple of years for double-A or even triple-A gaming, but it's going to fall behind quickly with no way to catch up. Sure, there are some reports that the Steam Deck contains an M.2 SSD that could possibly be replaced by the user (at the risk of violating the warranty, that is), but on-board graphics and processors will be stock; the only way to replace those would be to buy a newer model. At the rate PC gaming improves, the life span would be much shorter than a normal console, which isn't feasible when considering Steam Deck prices. Eventually, the Steam Deck will end up as a high-end emulator or indie game machine, and that doesn't seem to be Valve's intention given the type of games they've been advertising for it.
The Steam Deck is a good idea in theory and will definitely find an audience. Especially with the potential as a portable means of emulation, playing less demanding games on the go and even Lan parties. However, it's a high price to pay if you're looking for something for long-term gaming and really seems like a missed innovation. Hopefully, future Steam Deck's will be better future-proofed, but if you're interested in purchasing one now, pre-orders or reservations are open to Steam accounts that made purchases prior to June with three models available, with the least expensive at $399USD/$499CDN/£349 and only 64GB of storage.