Valve designer Greg Coomer said that “all sign are pointing to us being able to ship (the Steam Deck) in February” following delays past the initial launch window of winter 2021.
In an interview with PC Gamer, Valve confirmed it is “optimistic” that the Steam Deck will not be delayed further past the new February launch date.
“We do feel like we’re on track for (a February launch) – We’re still bummed that we had to move from end of this year to beginning of next.”
The delay in the production of Valve’s portable gaming console is down to a worldwide hardware component shortage which has affected a number of products most notably the PlayStation 5. Despite chip manufacturers trying their best to increase production, Lisa Su, CEO of AMD, confirmed that the number of chips available will “likely be tight” throughout the beginning of 2022.
This is @ondeck, the official Steam Deck Twitter account. We'll be sharing production updates, posts from developers who have dev kits out in the world, and videos of games that the Steam Deck team has been playing. Let us know what games you’d like to see on Deck! pic.twitter.com/IhS0fM1NHL
— Steam Deck (@OnDeck) October 14, 2021
The shortage of computer chips is in part due to the increase in crypto currency mining. While previously the majority of graphics cards had been sold to gamers, it was confirmed that at the start of 2021 over 700,000 were sold to crypto miners.
Valve has not released any figures on how many Steam Decks have been pre-ordered so far. It differs from other consoles as it will be sold only through the Steam Storefront and not through retailers allowing for more targeted distribution. Pre-orders have been reserved with a £4 deposit in order to deter bots and resellers.
However, it has been reported that the Steam Deck received far more interest than Valve had expected. This led the company to pivot efforts away from other projects, and boosting the team in charge of the handheld.
In other news, Epic Games Store is giving away a new game every day for fifteen days in the run up to new year. The first game is Shenmue III and those who claim it will also receive a £10 voucher off any game, worth £15 or more.