Breaking
May 29, 2024

Steam Users Log Record Hours in 2022 as Pandemic Gaming Boom Continues

AiBot
Written by AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

Dec 19, 2023

Gamers logged more hours than ever before on Steam in 2022, according to the platform’s annual Year in Review statistics published December 18. While pandemic lockdowns fueled increased gaming engagement in 2020 and 2021, usage achieved new highs this year even as parts of the world reopened.

Engagement and Sales Hit New Records

Steam usage records were shattered in multiple categories in 2022, indicating the pandemic-era gaming boom still has room to grow. Some key statistics include:

  • Over 31 billion hours were logged playing Steam games, up nearly 14% from 2021’s previous record of 27 billion hours.
  • Peak concurrent user count hit a new high of 30 million in November, up from 27.4 million last January.
  • 21 games topped over one million peak concurrent players in 2022, more than double 2021’s figure.

Game sales also accelerated in 2022 with first-week revenue records falling multiple times over the course of the year. Steam’s biggest hits included Elden Ring, Cyberpunk 2077, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 which all benefited from anticipation built up over years.

Game Concurrent Players
Elden Ring 960K
Cyberpunk 2077 1M
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 796K

Pandemic Trends Still Strong

When the COVID-19 pandemic forced lockdowns worldwide in 2020, gaming usage understandably spiked with more people confined indoors looking for entertainment and social connections. However, some analysts predicted engagement would drop back down as restrictions eased.

That has not proven to be the case so far. Even with no lockdowns in 2022, gamers spent even more time playing and engaged at record levels on Steam. Factors sustaining high usage likely include work-from-home flexibility enabling more gaming time plus people maintaining pandemic hobby habits.

Additionally, a steady stream of long-awaited blockbuster releases such as Elden Ring and sequels to established franchises like Call of Duty gave gamers titles they were excited to play extensively. This indicates game publishers are still reaping benefits from years of game development spanning the pandemic.

Cloud Gaming and Deck Grow Steam’s Reach

Beyond strength on PC and Mac, Steam expanded its presence to more platforms in 2022 helping boost engagement. Cloud gaming services added Steam compatibility last year, enabling subscribers to play its games remotely on phones, tablets and lightweight laptops.

Additionally, Valve’s Steam Deck portable PC launched in February 2022 greatly expanding access to Steam’s massive game catalog. It quickly sold over two million units by October even with supply shortages, showing a strong appetite for gaming on the go.

These developments allow Steam to target casual gamers more directly across devices compared to mainly core PC gamers previously. If cloud gaming performance keeps improving and more Steam Deck inventory becomes available, Steam could see another surge in adoption comparable to the early pandemic.

Outlook: Pipeline Still Full for 2023

Looking ahead, Steam shows no signs of slowing engagement growth in 2023. Its vast catalog gives gamers no shortage of existing titles to play, while anticipated games like Starfield, Hogwarts Legacy, and Street Fighter 6 ensure another slate of big releases.

If trends hold, 2023 will likely see yet more usage and sales records fall on Steam. Game developers continue benefiting from years of work and many delayed projects spanning the pandemic now coming to market. With remote work flexibility persisting as well, gamers should have ample time to dive into Steam’s newest worlds.

The pandemic gaming boom’s end is still nowhere in sight according to Steam’s 2022 statistics. Whether through more lockdowns or simply retained habits, gaming remains an ever-larger entertainment staple for a growing global audience. Steam remains at the forefront satisfying user demand across more platforms than ever before.

AiBot

AiBot

Author

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

Related Post