The PC isn’t dead — just ask gamers. In fact, look to the Steam platform, which saw the release of 7,672 PC games throughout 2017. That equals an average of 21 game releases per day. Did you see that same amount hit the Xbox One and/or PlayStation 4 in the same year? Nope.
The number derives from the third-party Steam Spy website, which tracks Valve Software’s digital distribution platform to chart the number of active users, the paid versus free-to-play ratio, the average number of games owned by each Steam customer, and so on. The data is anonymous and only used to track these general statistics along with the overall growth of the platform.
While that number sounds huge, part of the population stems from Steam Direct, a self-publishing platform that allows any game developer to sell its product on Steam for a $100 per-title fee. Steam Direct replaced Steam Greenlight, which relied on a voting system that determined if a game would or would not have a place on the Steam store.
There are currently 20,489 titles listed on Steam for various platforms, including Windows, MacOS, Linux, HTC Vive, and Oculus Rift (Steam Spy says 18,953). What’s interesting is that in January 2016, the number was reportedly only at 7,390 games. The big jump may be due to the introduction of high-definition virtual reality experiences, and an abundance of free-to-play games in addition to all content piling up under the Steam Direct umbrella.
But Steam Spy’s statistics builds on all this data by listing more than 2 billion paid games owned as of December 31, 2017, and nearly 1 billion copies of free-to-play games claimed by millions of Steam members spread out across 254 countries. On the last day of 2016, Steam saw 1,582,281,094 paid games owned by its users, and 752,246,379 free-to-play games claimed by Steam members.
Here are a few other statistics charted by Steam Spy generated from 2,019,883 accounts:
|Active users (two weeks):||60,052,174|
|Active users (total):||
|Playtime (two weeks):||
|Total games owned:||
|Average number of games owned:||
11.07 per user
|Games in database:||
Right now, the biggest game on Steam is Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds, which saw a peak usage of 2,821,337 players at the time we wrote this article, and a current player count of 1,287,806. The game is one of the 7,672 titles released during 2017, overtaking Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, DOTA 2, Grand Theft Auto V, and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege with the highest player count right now.
That said, there is definitely no sign that the PC is dead. As we have seen over the last year or so, manufacturers are proving market watchers wrong with high-performance devices packing affordable prices. Even more, Steam Spy shows the PC-based platform experienced a rapid growth over the last two years, moving from 1,772 games release in 2014 to 4,207 games in 2016. We will likely see more than 9,000 new titles in 2018 alone, keeping the PC market alive and kicking.