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PC digital revenues declined 30 percent in May compared to 2016, but there's no need to worry

There's good news and bad news in the latest report out of market analyst firm Superdata. The worldwide digital games market grew nine percent year-over-year in May, reaching a value of $7.8 billion. But the "premium PC market" was actually down by a whopping 30 percent compared to last year. That's not a sign of a general malaise in the industry, though, but just a gentle reminder that Overwatch came out in May last year. 

Despite having a full year under its belt, Superdata said Overwatch is still growing, with digital revenues in May up from April, although still down year-over-year—not surprising, again because of the direct comparison with its launch month. Nonetheless, "additional [Overwatch] content revenue hit a new high in May on the back of a one-year anniversary event," Superdata said.   

The report also noted that Playerunknown's Battlegrounds "had another solid sales month in May, bringing life to date digital sales above 2 million units," and predicted that "June looks to be another massive month for the game." When you're right, you're right: Bluehole revealed yesterday that PUBG has now surpassed four million copies sold in just three months. 

And for one last interesting bit of trivia, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 digital revenues have actually moved past Infinite Warfare on the strength of the Zombies Chronicles expansion, which came out in mid-May for the PS4. (It arrived on the PC and Xbox One in early June.) That represents "console total digital revenue" and so it's not really up our alley, but it's interesting because it really reflects just how unenthusiastic people are about Infinite Warfare relative to its predecessors.

Finally, here are your top ten digital PC games worldwide, ranked by gross earnings for the month: 

  • League of Legends
  • Crossfire
  • Fantasy Westward Journey Online II
  • Dungeon Fighter Online
  • DOTA 2
  • World of Warcraft
  • World of Tanks
  • Overwatch
  • New Westward Journey Online II
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Superdata estimated in December 2016 that the overall PC gaming market was worth just under $36 billion for the year, "driven largely by free-to-play online titles and downloadable games."  

Andy Chalk
Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.