In late November, we reported that Valve's Index VR headset was selling out in a hurry, leading to shipping delays on most Index packages—headset-only, controllers-only, and headset and controller bundles—in the US and Canada. Now, according to Road to VR, it's sold out everywhere, and may not be back in time to handle the demand for Half-Life: Alyx.
Alyx, as we all know, is one of the big factors behind the pre-release popularity of the Index. VR hasn't set the world on fire yet, but the opportunity to play the first new Half-Life game in 13 years (and counting) is a whole different beast. That's something people really want to do (some people, anyway), and some of them seem prepared to drop serious bucks to do it.
Horsing around with a VPN confirms the Road to VR report: Instead of a purchase option, the Index page in Canada, the US, the UK, and Finland displays regional pricing and a "notify me" button that will line you up for an FYI when the various components are available again. The one place that apparently still has some Index stock kicking around is Japan, where distribution is handled by Degica. "Full kits" are sold out, as are standalone controllers and base stations, but headsets and headsets bundled with controllers are still available for purchase.
A Valve rep told the site that it is "working hard to build more units and meet the high demand," and that it hopes to have the device back in stock before Half-Life: Alyx ships. That's currently expected to happen sometime in March, although a firm release date hasn't been set yet.