Valve Index Headsets Sold Out Worldwide on the Back of ‘Half-Life: Alyx’ Hype
The announcement, last November, of the upcoming virtual reality Half-Life: Alyx had an almost instant impact on the demand for the Valve Index VR headset. The sales were staggering in the last months of 2019 and the headset soon sold out in stores across the U.S. and the world.
Half-Life: Alyx is arriving in March this year but Valve is still unable to meet the demand for the Index PC VR headset. As of now, almost all the packages of the Valve Index virtual reality headset are sold out in almost all the regions of the world where the headset is currently being sold (it is available in 31 countries). According to Road to VR, the headset might not be restocked fast enough to meet the demand from users eager to get their hands on the premium headset before the release of Half-Life: Alyx.
It is very clear that Alyx is driving the buying frenzy. Many hardened gamers are salivating at the prospect of playing the new Half-Life series for the first time in 13 years.
Road to VR performed a comprehensive check to determine the stock and availability of the virtual reality headset in all the 31 countries where the headset is currently being sold. The Valve Index headset is available in various packages:-
- The Full Kit which includes the Headset, Controllers and the Base Stations
- Headset and Controllers
- Base Station-only
From the review, the headset is sold out everywhere except in Japan. In those countries where it is sold out, none of the Valve Index are currently in stock or available for immediate purchase.
Valve’s only response for the surging demand has been to revamp the Index page so as to make it easier for buyers to know when the headset will be in stock next. Previously, the Valve pages simply showed a ‘Back in Stock Soon’. At the moment, there is only a ‘Notify Me’ button which enables logged-in users to sign up for alerts when the headset is in stock once again. At the top of the window, there is a message that reads, “We’re busy catching up with demand for Valve Index”. The message continues that Valve is busy working to manufacture more units and satisfy the high demand for the virtual reality headset. The company says it is targeting for the headset to be back in stock just in time before the Half-Life: Alyx ships March this year. No definite release date has been provided yet.
In Japan, where some packages are still available, the distribution is handled by Degica. There, the Valve Index “Full Kits” have already been sold out as well as the base stations and the standalone controllers. However, the headsets bundled with the controllers can still be purchased.
The performance of the Valve Index headset in the past two months has been nothing short of spectacular given its unremarkable performance last summer when the headset had been launched. According to market research data, Valve had sold only a few of its Index headsets in the first three months of the headset’s launched. By some estimates, the headset had sold just under 50,000 headsets in those first three months.
The low interest in the headset among PC gamers has been attributed to the fact the headset offered no fundamental innovations in spite of the fact they had impressive specs and of very high quality. The only key innovation in the headset had been its special hand controllers.
The interest who have stayed that lukewarm had Valve not announced that the first Half-Life game in a more than a decade would be a VR-exclusive. The announcement made waves among the PC gamer community and many have now opted to try out the game in virtual reality.