On January 2nd, 2021, the Steam platform reached another major milestone, breaking 25 million concurrent users for the first time.
To be precise, the high was 25,415,080 per the trackers over at SteamDB. It’s a new high for a new year where clearly, more people than ever are playing PC games through the platform.
The previous record of concurrent users on the platform dates from March 2020, the early days of the COVID-19 crisis’ social distancing measures — with over 22 million users. At the time, Steam saw record numbers of users in-game and concurrent users for three weeks in a row.
The Steam Winter Sale is still ongoing and will end on January 5th. Valve also put out a new Steam Labs Experiment dubbed ‘Exploring Sales’ for this occasion, which should provide a better browsing experience.
Improvements made for better Browsing:
Steam said “Each holiday sale, Steam features thousands of titles on discount. As part of this year’s Autumn Sale, we introduced over a dozen genre- and theme-specific sale pages to help players browse and discover our most popular games on discount during the event. We found these themed pages drove more game store page visits during the sale than all but one other Steam store point of discovery – the grid of featured games at the top of the home page.”
“Given the popularity of these themed pages, we’ve introduced more of them in this year’s Winter Sale, and we’ve added some smarts so we’re able to now list them based on their likely relevance to you.”
A new Feature: Faceted Browsing
Faceted browsing lets you tell Steam what you’re looking for as you browse, by quickly filtering titles along with a variety of axes such as visual style, theme, mood, player support, and more. Concepts can be selected across categories to serve as quick AND search operations, while concepts can be selected within categories to serve as quick OR search operations.
Today’s goal continues the trend of Valves free-to-play games leading the way, with CS: GO reporting more than a million, per usual, while Dota 2 neared 700k and PUBG cleared 400k. Singleplayer games like Cyberpunk 2077 and Stardew Valley both contributed to the top 10 among perennially popular games like GTAV and Rust.
Steam will reach something like 30 million players, or it will crack 10 million players online and in-game record soon.
With 2021 shaping up to be a year where people will stay indoors and work from home to be better safe than sorry, we might just get there sooner than we’d like.