Steam Deck is not due until late this year, but it's already being subjected to marked up prices. And by "marked up," it doesn't mean just a couple hundred bucks. 

According to GameRant, Valve's newest handheld gaming console is now the newest victim of scalpers, as usual. Despite costing as little as $399 to start, the Steam Deck is now commanding street prices as much as $2,000-$4,000 via online marketplaces like eBay. There are also numerous slots which cost as high as $5,000. 

Steam deck
(Photo : Steam )

The problem is, scalpers aren't even selling actual consoles. Valve just opened the preorders for Steam Deck recently, so people are literally selling reservations and preorder slots. If you who want to try it the old fashioned way, you have to reserve a unit incredibly fast because slots are flying off the digital shelves. 

And if that wasn't bad enough, it seems like these scalpers are not at all averse to hard-selling. In a report by PCMag, one scalper who listed a preorder slot opened the posting up by saying, "WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR MAN?!?! PAPA'S GOTTA EAT." They further elaborate that their confirmed preorder listing is just for "someone who's filthy rich." 

Read also: Valve Steam Deck vs Nintendo Switch OLED: From Price to Specs, Which Would You Choose?

Steam Deck: Why Are People Going Nuts for this Handheld Gaming Console?

When Nintendo announced the new Switch OLED, it didn't exactly earn a lot of positive attention. A lot of gamers were even underwhelmed by the lack of hardware upgrades on the new Switch. They wanted a much more powerful system, and all they got was a new screen and a higher price tag. 

On the other hand, Steam Deck is more than just a handheld PC. It's likely the most powerful handheld gaming system in the world. It features a custom Zen 2 APU with RDNA2-based, 8-core integrated GPU (which, judging by rumors about the Samsung Exynos 2200 having a 6-core version) should already be more powerful than that of the Xbox One. 

This is why when Valve claimed that their new console can basically run anything you can run on a PC, people believed them. 

Is Valve Doing Something To Stop These Scalpers?

Perhaps. According to PCGamesN, Valve has implemented their own reservation system to try and limit the scalping of Steam Decks. 

Initially, people are only qualified to buy the product if they have an active Steam account. But since scalpers will just work around this by creating new Steam accounts, Valve is ensuring that an eligible account must be in "good standing" and must have made a purchase on the distribution platform before June 2021. 

Inevitable, Really 

Sad as it may seem, however, this is the reality of a world that's been plagued by the massive semiconductor shortage. There's simply not a lot of chips to go around, which means that Valve's new handheld gaming console will go the way of the PS5 and Xbox Series X/S in terms of supply and price for the foreseeable future. 

Related: [UPDATE] Ryzen-Powered Hand-Held Gaming PC? Aya Neo vs. Nintendo Switch: Spec-by-Spec Review

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Written by RJ Pierce 

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