In the month of April, Steam exploded with VR-users. While it may appear to be a coincidence at first, it is probably not. Half-Life:Alyx, the long-awaited new game in Valve’s franchise, finally dropped at the end of March. And you guessed it, that game made many fans realize they REALLY needed a VR headset.
VR users on Steam spiked
New data gathered by Steam and analyzed by RoadToVR suggests Half-Life: Alyx single-handedly took VR sets to 950,000 new users. In the month of April the amount of VR headsets user by consumers on Steam skyrocketed from 1.7 to 2.7 million.
Half-Life: Alyx took VR mainstream… kinda
This huge incline in VR users is highly likely thanks to Half-Life: Alyx. The game is obviously only playable with a VR headset and it appears close to a million users purchased one. It is important to note though that Steam only registers the amount of active VR users during the used data hardware surveys. The mentioned one million new users could also have had a VR headset already, but decided to plug it in again for Half-Life: Alyx.
Whatever the case, Half-Life: Alyx took VR (slightly more) mainstream. It’s not anywhere near what we had hoped it would be at; now close to 2 percent of Steam users have a VR headset. Almost half of those users own a headset produced by Oculus (44.6%), with HTC as the runner-up (30.3%). Valve’s own Index has slowly gained ground, now having a 11.9% market share of VR on Steam. Alyx did however not seem to have really impacted Valve’s market share.
Half-Life: Alyx is a succes
Half-Life: Alyx released on Steam on the 23rd of March to almost unanimous rave reviews. Still, the data does make you wonder what would’ve happened if Valve decided to make a conventional Half-Life. With just shy of 2 percent of Steam’s users owning a VR set after Alyx’ release, we can just imagine how big the splash would have been if not 2%, but 50 times that many players were able to experience the game. And by the way, soon almost anyone with a PC will be able to experience the game, as non-VR Half-Life: Alyx conversion mods are already popping up.
Image cutesy of @Valve