Austin, Texas – Gaming PC manufacturer Alienware said its new Alpha gaming console is now shipping to pre-order customers and retailers.
The Alpha is available now at select Walmart and Fry’s locations, from Alienware.com and a from selection online retailers including: Amazon, Bestbuy.com, GameStop,com, NewEgg and TigerDirect.
Pricing starts at a $549 suggested retail, with options for Intel’s 4th-generation core i3, i5 and i7 processors, up to 8GBs of DDR3 memory, hard drive storage up to 2TBs and the latest Intel Wireless 802.11ac adapters.
Billed as “the world’s first PC gaming console,” the Alpha was designed to offer the ease of using a gaming console and the freedom of using a complete Windows gaming PC.
At launch, the Alpha console will deliver more than 600 Steam controller-supported games over a broadband connection.
Alienware is giving more than $100 worth of free games and bonus content for gamers who purchased before day one.
Alpha is about the size of other next-generation gaming consoles on the market and is comprised of some of the latest technologies from Intel and NVIDIA. The console also carries Alienware’s distinct sci-fi design styling.
The Alienware Alpha boots directly into the Alpha-UI, an exclusive user interface that provides streamlined controller-based navigation. The system does not require a mouse or keyboard.
The Alpha-UI allows users to select the Steam Big Picture, adjust the system and AlienFX settings and access a music library.
“We’ve been working hard this past year to break the mold and develop a system that finally brings hundreds of Steam games, including some really fun indie titles, to TVs,” said Frank Azor, general manager of Alienware. “The team and I are excited to finally deliver our vision for big screen gaming and give our fans a console that delivers true next-gen performance with the flexibility to choose how, what and where they want to play.”
The Alienware Alpha uses a unique NVIDIA-developed GeForce GTX 860M GPU that is said to maximize gaming performance while balancing the thermal envelope and power utilization to provide high-performance graphics and speed while staying cool and quiet.
Alienware said it was able to increase the GPU’s standard performance even further by customizing the GPU to run at a higher speed. Alienware and NVIDIA paired 2GB of GDDR5 memory to the Alpha’s custom NVIDIA GTX GPU.
The best new games are offered at FullHD 1080p resolutions.
For a limited time, customers who order the Alienware Alpha will receive free bonus content including the complete versions of Anomaly: Warzone Earth, Awesomenauts, Magicka, Metro: Last Light, PayDay 2 and Strike Suit Zero. Alienware Alpha will also include an exclusive Gauntlet in-game item, the Magicka: Dungeons and Daemons DLC, and Alienware exclusive demos of Defense Grid 2 and Super Splatters.
The Alpha UI will also allow users to access the full Windows 8.1 desktop for a more traditional PC gaming experience.
The Alienware Alpha ships with a Microsoft Xbox 360 wireless controller, and is compatible with most PC-based controllers or peripherals, including standard keyboards and mice.
The Windows 8.1 OS in the Alpha will also allow use with an office suite to perform standard PC program applications, while apps from the Windows Store provides access to dozens of streaming services or play local media collections.