PC gaming and particularly Steam gaming, is more popular than ever, with the Valve owned store and gaming platform breaking its concurrent player number record over the holiday season. Where the previous record was around 24.7 million concurrent gamers, the new record stands at a massive 25.333,066, setting a new high bar that may take a few more months to break.
Holidays are always a big time for gamers, as without work and school to worry about, everyone has a little more time to play. There are also plenty of gamers who get something new for their particular holiday festival, leading to an influx of new and returning players. Global lockdowns and pandemic restrictions have also played their part in giving people additional gaming time.
All of this lead to a big boost in gaming over the holiday period. The top games, as per PCGamesN, were Counter Strike: Global Offensive, DotA 2, and PuBG, with multiple millions of concurrent players between them. Cyberpunk 2077 made a big splash before the holidays began, and continues strong with over 200,000 active gamers at any one time during the record setting achievement. GTA V and Rainbow Six Siege are also top 10 favorites, with over 100,000 players each.
While newer games like Cyberpunk have made an impact, it's amazing to see that older games like CS:GO, DotA 2, and GTA V still have such a part to play in the PC gaming space. As much as new games might dominate headlines, older ones still pull in the crowds.
What did you spend your time playing this holiday season? I replayed Papers Please for a lot of it. There are still a bunch of endings I've never seen.