Valve’s Steam digital storefront hit an all-time record yesterday, drawing in over 20 million users, according to Steam tracking site SteamDB.
A staggering 20,313,451 people were using Steam simultaneously, although only a little over 6 million were actually in-game at the time.
Nevertheless, it’s an impressive number and one that echoes a steady rise in the number of player-peaks the storefront has recorded since the beginning of this year. In recent months, the concurrent player count has surged past 19 million for the first time. On Saturday, Steam broke records only to be surpassed a day later by this latest 20 million record.
As for the sudden reason in the surge in activity, the weekend unquestionably helped as many are off work enjoying their favorite pastime, but much of it can be attributed to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
As more nations impose lockdowns, recommend self-isolation and social distancing, and governments close schools and limit mass gatherings, people are flocking to video games to keep themselves busy. With the outdoors currently out of bounds for many to limit the spread of the coronavirus, many are choosing to find comfort in video games.
So what are people playing? Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is by far the most popular. This weekend, Valve’s tactical first-person shooter drew in over 1 million players for the first time ever, a threshold that has seemingly held strong over successive 24 hours peaks.
As well as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Steam mainstays Dota 2, PUBG, Grand Theft Auto V, Rainbow Six Siege, ARK: Survival Evolved, Team Fortress 2, Destiny 2, Monster Hunter: World, and Warframe complete the top 10 of the most popular games right now.
Given that the coronavirus pandemic has yet to peak in most countries, we are likely to see the number of concurrent Steam users rise even higher over the coming days and weeks.