With more and more people confined to their homes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, platforms like Twitch, Discord and Steam are seeing huge spikes in the number of people tuning in and/or turning on their consoles as a means of staying connected and fending off boredom.
Steam just had its most popular day of all time on Saturday 14th March, when just shy of 20 million people logged into their accounts to boot up a play session.
This absurdly eye-popping figure absolutely obliterates the platform’s previous concurrent user record, which was 18,801,944 as of February 2020.
Off the back of the news, CS:GO managed to peak at 1,007,062 players, but that wasn’t the only game to see huge spikes in players over the weekend. DOTA 2, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, Rainbow Six Siege and Grand Theft Auto Online also saw an increase resulting in some seriously massive numbers.
The upward swing of player numbers is likely to continue over the coming weeks, if not months. Self-isolation is being recommended by many governments across the world due to the coronavirus epidemic, and there’s not a whole lot to do if you’re stuck in your house for weeks on end…
Large public gatherings, including sports event, have also been curbed, which has also led to more people turning to video games and virtual worlds.
Sports games in the NBA and the UK’s Premier League have been postponed, leaving teams to get a little creative with what they can do – by moving their matches into the virtual world, and this appears to be just the beginning.
It’s not known just how damaging the COVID-19 outbreak will be in the long-run.
Featured Image Credit: Valve