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Steam starts 2022 with a new concurrent user record of 27.9M

SteamDB
(Image credit: SteamDB)
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Steam is off to a strong start in 2022 with yet another all-time concurrent user record, achieving just shy of 28 million people on the platform all at the same time.

The specific number of 27,942,036, as recorded by SteamDB, was set on January 2, just over a month after Steam surpassed 27 million concurrent users for the first time ever in late November 2021. More than 8.2 million of those people were actively gaming, which is also a considerable jump over the November numbers, although not as a proportion of total users: 8.1 million people were actively gaming simultaneously on April 4, 2020, out of a total concurrent user count of 24.5 million.

Interestingly, Steam's continued concurrency growth comes on the backs of games that aren't exactly fresh and new. Of the top ten games being played when the record was set, only two were released in 2021:

  • CS:GO (2012)
  • Dota 2 (2013)
  • PUBG (2017)
  • Apex Legends (2019)
  • Grand Theft Auto 5 (2015)
  • Team Fortress 2 (2007)
  • Rust (2013)
  • New World (2021)
  • Ark: Survival Evolved (2017)
  • Football Manager 2022 (2021)

While the magic 28 million was just barely missed, I wouldn't be at all surprised to see it hit that mark before long. Steam user numbers have been on an upward trajectory pretty much forever, but saw a major spike in March 2020, driven primarily by the Covid-19 pandemic. There have been peaks and valleys since but overall growth has only accelerated: Valve kicked off 2021 with a new concurrent user record of 25 million, and just over a month later had blown past that to 26.4 million.

(Image credit: SteamDB)

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.