Steam logs 5 million concurrent users

Official statistics page for online gaming juggernaut shows new all-time high for simultaneous player usage tallied on January 2; up from 4 million in September.

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PC gamers flocked by the millions to Steam to ring in the new year, according to new player usage information from Valve. According to the latest Steam game statistics information, there were 5 million unique users concurrently logged on to the service earlier this week, representing a new all-time high.

More than 5 million rang in the new year playing games on Steam.

The exact milestone of 5,012,463 players was tallied around noon on January 2. That represents significant momentum, as Steam amassed a then-record 4 million concurrent users in September 2011.

Launched in 2003, Steam is Valve's digital distribution hub, and it currently boasts 35 million users. Presently, there are over 1,000 titles from various publishers available for purchase and play through the online distributor. According to Steam's usage data, the top three most popular titles on the service are The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, followed by Counter Strike, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

Discussion

79 comments
ymladdych
ymladdych

@msfan1289: I notice you didn't name any games where the Live/PSN connection is mandatory. And as I wrote before, information is tracked on consoles, but it's limited to basic demographics, billing info, and gaming habits, because most people don't use their consoles for anything but gaming. PC's, on the other hand, hold a lot more information on their users than that. @BloodMist: Really? Why is that, exactly? Origin's TOS is very clear about its whole system scanning/application use, and it states that EA will cross-ref with sites like Facebook. Why are you certain that Steam is different? Furthermore, can you prove it? Lastly, you have to be anxious or afraid to be paranoid. I am neither. I simply don't think that companies are entitled to an unmitigated glut of personal data from their consumers, regardless of their intent. World domination, marketing...it's irrelevant to me. As I wrote before, it's a principle of boundaries. Whether Steam is doing it or not...I don't really know...but that uncertainty is part of the problem. So it's back to the consoles for me.

BloodMist
BloodMist

@ymladdych Unwarranted paranoia, nothing more, nothing less.

msfan1289
msfan1289

@ymladdych and makes you think M$ and Sony is not doing the same when playing offline? oh yeah Steam is out to control us man the aliens are here and they are hiding behind Steam.

ymladdych
ymladdych

@msfan1289: Which games would those be? I'm not saying they don't exist, but I've played quite a few titles on PS3 and I've not encountered any. (I don't know about 360...I just bought one on sale and it's still in its box.) As for Steam library access offline...that's great, except with Skyrim, you have to keep Steam running while you play. So it's still sucking resources. Granted, it's not a lot, but if you don't own a high end rig that cuts through anything, it causes a noticeable difference in performance while under load. Last, but not least...don't you have to allow Steam an internet connection for the initial activation of a new game? And here's the thing...playing offline won't stop Steam from monitoring, snapshotting, or logging whatever info it's supposed to collect. It's simply waiting for that next internet connection...like a spider waits for a fly...just so it can phone home with its data. And the more that developers force Steam on you, the more frequently you'll have to connect for initial activation. If you're comfortable with that...cool. Personally, I'm not. Believe me, I actually wish it didn't bother me, because there are tons of games I'd much rather play on PC than console.

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

@ZeroX91 Valve have said there is a contingency plan for the event the company goes under or service is discontinued. All your games would basically unlock and work without restriction I believe.

msfan1289
msfan1289

@ymladdych hey you have to be logged in to PSN and to LIve for some games. and oh btw you can go in "Offline mode" in Steam and still play games you bought on Steam while you are not connected to the internet.

trane2
trane2

when dota 2 comes out watch at the numbers.

ymladdych
ymladdych

@Topperfalkon: No, they're not compulsory. I can have a completely disconnected console and play my games right from the case. No third-party application required. Resource allocation aside...I only use consoles for gaming, but I use my PC for a variety of other things - some personal and some professional. So yes, I'm going to be more discriminating about any kind of monitoring software. And while Steam may not cross into spyware territory, Origin certainly does, and I'd rather not deal with the question, "How do you know what Steam does or doesn't track?" For me, it's a principle of boundaries more than anything else. I don't mind EA/Valve knowing who I am, where I live, and what games I play or for how long. But as far as I'm concerned, there's no good reason for them to collect any more data than that, and at least with consoles, I know that's pretty much all the info they're going to get. (Barring any marketing spiders they use to cross-reference known consumers with information they gather from sites like Facebook.)

Zloth2
Zloth2

@ZeroX91 games still play with no Internet. If it goes bust then my game library still works just fine, thanks. I wonder if Steam will do something like OnLive once gigabit fiber networks start spreading?

s4dn3s5
s4dn3s5

that's the Skyrim and sales effect. But Steam is growing up fast, very fast.

KrazzyDJ
KrazzyDJ

The more I use Steam, the more I've started to grow fond of it. I mean, I just bought Bioshock - a game which I otherwise might have forgotten about - on a recent discount offer at Steam for, $2.49. I mean, these sort of offers will even tempt a pirate to buy a game !!!

Iffy350
Iffy350

Steam is better than PSN. Why again does Gamespot not have a place on my profile page for posting my Steam username?

Topperfalkon
Topperfalkon

@ymladdych What, so Xbox Live and Playstation Network aren't compulsory services now?

ZeroX91
ZeroX91

Lets just hope they never go out of business because then its bye bye game library.

Toysoldier34
Toysoldier34

Funny out of curiosity I looked up how much my account was worth. $2419.23 USD 282 Games on my Steam account alone. I love gaming.

kurtven
kurtven

I love Steam, No disc's that get scratches or get lost.

vtoshkatur
vtoshkatur

LOL@ PC gaming being dead. Xbox and PS3 dreams of having that many users online at once. It would probably overload their servers though as their not used to seeing this amount of volume.

y3ivan
y3ivan

steam had sales for the whole month.. not just 2 weeks. Although most games i wanted wasnt on sale.

NoodleFighter
NoodleFighter

They say Steam saves gamers money, but in reality it makes them spend more then they intended with all those damn deals.

ymladdych
ymladdych

I was one of those 5+ million schmoes...playing Skyrim. I think Steam's a great idea when it's a voluntary service, but I hate that it's required to run my game when I have the disc version. In fact, it's because of mandatory Steam/Origin installations that I'll be moving to a "console only" lifestyle after Diablo III.

msfan1289
msfan1289

oh yeah PC gaming is sure dying off ....

XanderZane
XanderZane

I wasn't one of those 5 million users on Jan 2. lol!! I was playing XBox 360 at 1:00am on that day.

Darkflare_EX
Darkflare_EX

I should really remember to consider getting a game from Steam. It's just that I'm very very picky and don't have a lot of cash to throw around even with deals going on. That and I play primarily on consoles.

Rocker6
Rocker6

@zzamaro A sad fact,I agree.Howewer,the studio,CDP still made enough profit,aren't in any serious financial trouble,and are already working on new projects,so Witcher 2 is a success. As a PC gamer,I admit how piracy is stronger on PC than on console(even though console games are pirated too),but piracy doesn't stop PC platform from being healthy,and one of the best proofs beside Steam is SW:TOR MMO,a game with the biggest budget this year that is PC exclusive(I don't plan playing it though,not a MMO fan). So in the end,parrot_of_adun is right,piracy isn't killing PC gaming.A good game will get good sales on PC,as long as the community is treated with respect by removing innefective and intrusive DRMs,and as long as games aren't milked annual releases with no improvements like CoD.PC gamers held onto their games for long periods of time(Starcraft 1-even after a decade the community is strong),and aren't interested in annual crap that doesn't bring anything new,since we can't trade it in after we get bored of it.We consider lasting appeal very important...

toddx77
toddx77

No surprise here, steam is amazing. As a reward can we get some info on Half life 3 please? lol

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

@zzamaro You have completely missed the point. Those 4.5 million were not necessarily lost sales. It's not likely many of them would have bought it if not for piracy. On the other hand, 1.5 million is impressive for a game like The Witcher 2 (not much advertising and and CDP isn't the most well known company). So in other words, W2 was an unqualified success, and that's the important part.

FuryX-4
FuryX-4

Valve should have a warning label thats says "Do not enter Steam if you want your wallet to be gone with these awesome games and amazing discounts we provide" :P

Reyveign
Reyveign

@DemonChorro The only thing Origin did for the holidays was offer a 50% off sale on a Sims 3 bundle... they didn't even offer the games on sale individually. The package was like $80 and didn't even include every Sims 3 title in their store. And to think... this company wants to compete with Steam...

moroumenos
moroumenos

Honestly, no surprise there! I have been a long time console player until I got a good gaming PC and, Steam. Since then, I haven't logged on PS3, not even once! I honestly believe I am not going to buy the next-gen consoles. Plus, Steam offers deals that you can't find nowhere. PS store+Xbox live deals are nothing compared to what Steam offers. My wallet is getting lighter every week, although is it really a good thing? Long live to Steam!

demonkingx5
demonkingx5

@BloodMist i know i got Braid & Limbo for 2.50$ each & the whole odd world series for less than 4$. PC + Steam = greatness how can poeple say otherwise

BloodMist
BloodMist

Ahh yes of course, having hundreds of deals on countless great games for a solid month might have had something to do with that.No other company would be cool or smart enough to do what Valve does.

NoDzombie
NoDzombie

and they say PC gaming is dead.......

HaloPimp978
HaloPimp978

Steam>Origin nuff said. Happy for Steam best way to get PC games.

Avenger1324
Avenger1324

Last day of the Steam sales - everyone logging in to check the repeat deals and trade their discount vouchers - that or playing Skyrim :)

Hobbes444
Hobbes444

Well sure, everyone's playing Skyrim, one of the system requirements is: Internet Access required for Steam activation And people tell me i should go buy a console, with the quality of pc games (ie: BF3, Skyrim) i don't think im ever gettin some 300 dollar console

DanielL5583
DanielL5583

Nice one, VALVe! You never cease to impress us all!

Ladiesman17
Ladiesman17

yeah,, good for them,, :) hope Valve keep impress me

Syk0_k03r
Syk0_k03r

I learned everything I needed to know about that garbage in 2004. steam sucked back then, and always will.

DemonChorro
DemonChorro

Steam had a 2 week sale.... while Origin was doing nothing..... nice. Steam FTW

Ronnie_Rim
Ronnie_Rim

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Grovilis
Grovilis

Why does Origin even try?

Grovilis
Grovilis

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Rocker6
Rocker6

But...but how? Isn't PC gaming dead? :lol: Congrats Valve,you make me proud to be a PC gamer,a company that actually cares about their consumers in these times of greed plaguing the gaming industry...

nurnberg
nurnberg

Doommongering posters should be banned from this site for idiocy.

ExplosiveChorro
ExplosiveChorro

Steam holiday sale destroyed my wallet.... to... many... games...

Death_Blade_182
Death_Blade_182

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

So... There are 30M+ users, with 5M active on a single day... Right, piracy is ruining PC gaming and no PC gamer actually pays for anything. To the consoles! /sarcasm