Coronavirus or other forces that maybe, have contributed to Steam breaking its own record of the number of people online and playing on the platform.
As per Steam’s statistics tracker, the highest number of people online were recorded to be 19,728,027 in number, utilizing the service in the early hours, around 7 am, of Saturday. The previous record for the maximum number of players on the platform was recorded to be 18,801,944 just a month ago, in February 2020. The new record took over the older one by adding about a million users to the online kitty.
Steam Database, on twitter, did opine that this record was likely due to all the people who have been staying at home in light of the coronavirus infection. “#Steam has just reached a new concurrent online user record of 20 million, with 6.2 million currently in-game, likely due to many people staying at home due to the #coronavirus” the account tweeted.
Indeed, the rising numbers began back in January itself, when the Chinese nationals began to isolate themselves as per government directions. These numbers have only increased with time, as seen with Steam breaking its own records with the January 2018 record of 18,537,490 being broken on February 2nd with about 18,801,944 players, amounting to a difference of 300,000 more favoring the online gaming platform.
More people playing online translates to games breaking their records. Gamers on Steam chose to go with Valve’s much popular Counter Strike: Global Offensive which peaked its record at 1,007,062 players. DOTA 2, the classic MOBA title managed about 694,829 gamers. Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds reported 524,462 players while the titles Rainbow Six Siege and Grand Theft Online placed fourth and fifth respectively.
It is known that with the necessity of social distancing and being unable to meet physically in previous hangout spots, many people are resorting to virtual social interactions. It is already public news that a lot of movies and programs are having to postpone their releases and launches while streaming platforms are having to advance their schedule to make the most of this situation. Disney, for example, has had to postpone seven live-action movies production in light of the viral disease.
Major events, related to technology or otherwise, such as Mobile Congress are also being canceled or simply being taken online, with E3 2020 being one of the most recent events being required to do so. A part of the isolated population is expected to game during this period, therefore, reflecting increased traffic on the gaming platforms as well. With entire countries going into lockdown across the world, these numbers are sure to be increasing in the coming weeks leading to more records being broken.