Steam Just Broke Its Concurrent Player Record - Again

By Alistair Jones on at

Forget last week's record - Steam has broken its concurrent user count once again. Yesterday saw more than 19 million people logged into Valve's platform at once, up 300,000 in just one week.

At 14:10 GMT yesterday afternoon, 19,107,803 people were using Steam at once, with a little over 6 million of those actually in-game. That's up from last week's record-breaking tally of 18.8 million, which was set just seven days ago. The previous record of 18.5 million was set back in January 2018.

A significant portion of the new record came from CS:GO, which also broke its concurrent player count yesterday. Valve's FPS topped out at 901,681 players, up nearly 50,000 from the record it set in August 2012. That record was posted shortly after launch, but the game has generally been on the way up over the past couple of years, helped along in no small part by Valve's decision to make it free-to-play at the end of 2018.

A number of factors are likely to have driven Steam's ongoing increases, but industry analyst Daniel Ahmad has suggested that the coronavirus outbreak may have been a catalyst over the past few weeks. Last week's record came on the last day of the traditional Lunar New Year celebrations, which were extended in many parts of the country to encourage people to stay home to prevent the risk of infection.  With 40 million Chinese users on Steam - many of them currently confined to their homes - it's likely that they're helping fuel Valve's recent spike in players.