Valve’s entry in the videogame console market is not a piece of hardware—it’s an operating system, SteamOS, that will run on a variety of boxes. At a brief event at CES 2014, Valve has announced thirteen Steam Machine partners, including well-known manufacturers like Alienware, Falcon Northwest, and iBuyPower, as well as Materiel.net, Alternate, Next, CyberPowerPC, Origin, Digital Storm, Scan Computers, Webhallen, Gigabyte, and Zotac.
One element of the Steam Machine that distinguishes it from other consoles on the market is Valve’s unusual concept for a joystick-less controller. However, Valve’s partners may be making their own controllers, so folks interested in playing on a more traditional gamepad may get their wish.
Prices for the Steam Machines run the gamut from $499 to $6,000. Release dates have not been announced, but some machines may be available as early as this summer.