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Half-Life: Alyx precipitates 1 million VR HMD boost in 1 month

by Mark Tyson on 4 May 2020, 14:11

Tags: Valve

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Half-Life: Alyx VR HMD adoption spike

The latest Steam Hardware Survey (SHS) report has been published, covering April 2020. Among the gently undulating trend lines, one chart is particularly striking - and it shows the uplift in monthly connected VR headsets on the Steam platform. As the RoadtoVR reports, a spike marks the debut month of Half-Life: Alyx.

It is fair to say that the monthly connected HMD figures have been rising quite nicely since records of this hardware type started to be tallied. Across the New Year you can see a bit more of a significant rise. Perhaps the January dip was caused by people waiting for the new game to release, and was due to the well documented stock issues that hit this HMD, worldwide.

The data shows that nearly a million people plugged in a VR HMD last month. The RoadtoVR analysis shows that 1.91 per cent of Steam users has a VR headset at last count, which is quite a fair chunk. Compare that percentage with Linux users (0.89 per cent), or MacOS users (4.04 per cent), for example. It is estimated that there are some 2.7m HMD toting Steam users now thanks to the big leap last month.

I've embedded a couple more RoadtoVR charts above, if you want to pick though the state of the market data a bit more (click to zoom).

'May the fourth be with you' - Classic Star Wars Battlefront online multiplayer

As today is the 4th May, or 'May the 4th' as they say across the Atlantic, Steam is holding its annual Star Wars titles sale. Many games are discounted 50 or 60 per cent, some more - all for the occasion. GoG has a similar sale on if you prefer.

There is a bit of a hidden gem packing nostalgic allure to those who played the original Star Wars Battlefront via LAN or the GameSpy service years ago. An update has been provided to both the Steam (£3.59) and GoG (£4.09) versions of Battlefront 2004, so that they can be played with online multiplayer (with Steam / GoG crossplay too).



HEXUS Forums :: 41 Comments

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HEXUS
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That's an awful lot of e-waste in 2 years time.
spacein_vader
HEXUS
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That's an awful lot of e-waste in 2 years time.

I was around for when VR was a passing fad in the 1990s. I tried Doom on a VR display. It was kinda fun but just not something you're going to get into unless you're a hardcore gamer with lots of money and time / space to use it. Setting the whole thing up, moving furniture and so on means it'll probably end up as being “too much like hard work” to set up when you can just sit at a PC or TV and press “go”.

I suspect this one big game will be completed, not give the kind of kick start for the tech they wanted to make further big titles profitable and it'll die a death.

I really can see VR kicking off in the same way laser quest / arcades work. But there has to be the games built for it.
I think VR will take another leap when Sony releases the next generation of PSVR. Valve's Index is just too expensive to affect mainstream.
VR is a dead end. AR (projecting things into the real world behind,) may do better. IMO of course.
philehidiot
I was around for when VR was a passing fad in the 1990s. I tried Doom on a VR display. It was kinda fun but just not something you're going to get into unless you're a hardcore gamer with lots of money and time / space to use it. Setting the whole thing up, moving furniture and so on means it'll probably end up as being “too much like hard work” to set up when you can just sit at a PC or TV and press “go”.

I suspect this one big game will be completed, not give the kind of kick start for the tech they wanted to make further big titles profitable and it'll die a death.

I really can see VR kicking off in the same way laser quest / arcades work. But there has to be the games built for it.

It's not, you don't need space to play VR, you don't need to move to play VR, you don't even need VR controllers to play VR, you can enjoy VR with a good old console controller in the comfort of your couch. Just move the character using the controller. What's really stones in VR's way are: price, cost of the HMD, cost of the VR capable hardware, and undesirable effects that some users experience for various reasons and those will probably stay out of VR no matter what.

The reason VR won't die is VR Chat, people are just lazy and shy and like things like that for some reason. Just look at all the online social games out there all of them with so much users.