Of course Aperture Science robots make all the Steam Controllers

Valve’s strange new Steam Controllers may be of questionable value (opens in new tab) for actually playing games, but their manufacturing process is fascinating to watch. Valve published a How It’s Made (opens in new tab)-style video of its new Steam Controller production line in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, showing how robots, complete with cheeky Aperture Laboratories decals, assemble the controllers. They’re not quite as charismatic as Atlas and P-body from Portal 2, but they do have an industrious charm.

Valve says in the video description that it wanted a flexible manufacturing process for its first hardware production line, which meant automating more than the industry standard. Then it “kind of went overboard” and created “one of the largest fully automated assembly lines in the US.” Overboard? Probably, but remarkable to watch nonetheless; humans still staff the facility, but from basic components to boxed products, the only hands that touch the controllers are the ones that tear open the packaging and plug them in.

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