Steam Top Ten: War, Warhammer, Woutubers

what, what? It's just a screenshot from HOV IV. What do you mean 'keep politics out of videogames?'

I am genuinely surprised by which game sold best on Steam last week (previous weeks here, btw). PC gaming remains beautifully unpredictable, doesn’t it?

1. Hearts of Iron IV

Well, this is a surprise. A pleasant one, given the Steam userbase’s propensity for flashbangwallop shooting’n’disembowelling, and given that we’ve had this, Stellaris and Total Warhammer topping the charts in recent weeks, no-one in their right mind could argue that strategy’s moon is waning. Honestly though, the WW2-set HOV is the hardest of Paradox’s cores, even to the point that resident grand strategy enthusiast Adam seems a little anxious around it, and I never would have expected it to charge right to the top. Pre-order deals and bonus content doubtless helped, but even so – this is a whopping achievement.

2. Total War: WARHAMMER

Hogging second place for a second week running, and I suspect it’ll be some time to come before the Games Workshop adaptation drops out the charts – it’s escaped the surge of negativity which eclipsed Rome II, the last mainline Total War release and good word of mouth keeps it aloft. Expect it to return when DLC invades, too.

3. Grand Theft Auto V

4. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Things I have done while trying to avoid devising yet another sentence about CSGO:

  • Looked at Twitter 9 times.
  • Drunk half a cup of lukewarm tea, 20% of which I spilt down my shirt.
  • Stroked the cat. The cat scratched me.
  • Rotated a semi-painted Eldar Wraithguard figurine to which I was applying a light blue layer too late last night, and wincing at my appalling brushwork.
  • Refused to acknowledge a joke John made about the Little Mermaid in the RPS chatroom.
  • Checked Amazon to see if GTX 1070s had been released yet.
  • Walked down to the kitchen to see if there was any bread left. There wasn’t, so I dejectedly walked back upstairs and now probably won’t eat anything until lunchtime.
  • Put out my towel ready to have a much-needed shower, then couldn’t be bothered so I just looked at Twitter instead.
  • Not thought for even a pico-second about CSGO.

5. Youtubers Life

Yes, yes, very apt and funny, but “I want to be a famous YouTuber” is the new “I’m going to get on X Factor” as life goals go, and because I am a dad that scares me a bit. This is why.


The only DLC I’m interested in hearing about is a new campaign in which you get to play as a Cacodemon hunting down Marines. Flight’n’fireballs, and hopefully some nom-nom-nomming of skulls too.

7. Arma 3 Apex

New DLC for the now-venerable Arma 3, and also an attempt to make the military sim series uncharacteristically slick. Apex introduces a new tropical South Pacific setting, but also a horde of graphical, feature and under-the-hood improvements for the whole game. Still in pre-order for now, but at 20% off, hence doing so well for itself.

8. Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege

Ubi’s team shooter makes a return thanks to a £12 / €15 / $15, feature-limited ‘Starter Edition‘, which is only available for a couple more days. Pretty much the full game is in there, but you need to grind a whole bunch to unlock all the classes – or, of course, cough up real Earth money to do it ASAP.

9. Hearts of Iron IV

Don’t blame me – all I have to go on is Valve’s charts RSS feed, which gives no context beyond the name. So my guess is that this is the slightly pricier ‘Colonel’ edition of HOVIV, which includes some extra aesthetic options for some units, but it could be the now-expired pre-order offer which included a few bonus goodies of its own, including ‘German Marching Music.’

10. ARK: Survival Evolved

I can’t see any mention of a recent discount, so I guess this is just doing solidly well for itself once again. Which probably isn’t going to change any time soon, given they announced a new game mode and a dinosaur so big you can build a mobile fortress on its back. Goodness me, whatever would John Hamilton think?

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  1. Premium User Badge

    phuzz says:

    For CSGO and the other permanent residents of the charts, why not just google the name and grab whatever image takes your fancy, like this one for Counter Strike. Appropriately silly non?

  2. Carra says:

    Would love to get HoI4 but I’ve already spent 50 hours in Stellaris. My Grand Strategy itch has been scratched for a while.

    • Sakkura says:

      Well, I have put 60 hours in Stellaris… and I’m at 30 hours in HOI 4. I may have a problem, but surely it’s nothing invading Yugoslavia won’t fix.

      • syndrome says:

        It’s not like Yugoslavians can’t hear you though …

        • Premium User Badge

          Grizzly says:

          I definitely can’t hear the Yugoslavians over the sound of my armoured divisions!

    • Blastaz says:

      Hearts of Iron 4 is better than Stellaris. Much.

      Stellaris is like EU3 pre in Nomine expansion. They haven’t quite worked in (or out) enough fun mechanics to go with the new concept.

      HOI4 may streamline some areas a lot, like the tech tree and chain of command, but it adds quite a lot of zing and it manages to make the game have more sandboxy freedom while still playing historically if you want it to.

      • Premium User Badge

        Alfy says:

        For Stellaris, I’m not sure the one DLC is gonna be enough to solve the issues (unless it’s one big whopper of a DLC!). There’s just so much missing, quite apart form all the issues that already need addressing right now. And then, you just know the day the features are added, the AI isn’t going to be able to deal with them properly, the same way it already isn’t capable of dealing with the game as it is now.

        For me, this release has been excruciating, because I just know it’s not gonna be a proper game for a few years at least. AND it’s gonna cost at least much as I have already put in to get there.

        • Blastaz says:

          In Nomine was the second expansion pack and came out a year and a half after launch. Under the current dlc schedule that is probably 3 or 4 big content packs.

          Broadly they need to add in more interesting diplomacy and trade, a better war goal/peace system, and fix sectors. If they focus their expansion packs properly they should be able to do it.

          But Stellaris is pretty ambitious going for 4x and space rather than grand strategy and history so it’s probably allowed to stumble a little. Overall I liked it, but it was a game that needed a few more features. With Paradox’s dlc schedule they should get there as long as it keeps on selling, and it had a very strong launch so it looks likely to me.

          • Premium User Badge

            Alfy says:

            It’s true that the strong laugh will be a big motivator for Paradox to get things right/better: plenty of potential DLC purchasers out there. On the other hand, they will face competition, something they’re definitely not used to when it comes to their history games.

      • Premium User Badge

        Nauallis says:

        MODS, duh.

        Seriously though, the mysterious nameless folks of the internet seem to like to claim that mods will fix everything. My experience with Stellaris is that modders are already addressing many of the “problems”. My 70-odd hours and counting of Stellaris have begun to be modded-only.

        • matcpow says:

          What mods would you recommend?

          • Premium User Badge

            Nauallis says:

            The first I tried were “Infinite Legacy” and “AI rebalance”. Infinite Legacy is comprehensive mod that takes ideas from about 15 other mods, and retools the game so that it’s easier to build up, expand, and go to war. Meaning that you don’t only find resource nodes of 1-4 value, but some as high as 10 or 11 (from what I’ve seen). Gaia planets get massive citizen tile bonuses, like 10 physics research from a single citizen box, before any buildings. I saw one 12-pop gaia world with three of those squares; quintupled my science output from that world alone. Terraforming becomes available for dead planets, i.e. barren, molten, ice worlds. A few others, not sure about asteroids and gas planets. The tech tree gets reworked a bit to account for the massive extra resources. The weapons are retooled so that lasers are longer ranged, PDF weapons seem more effective.

            AI rebalance you’ll have to read the notes, but basically makes the AI more aggressive and has more incentives to expand & attack.

            Those two are like a complete modpack. Played long enough to get cruisers. Was interesting.

            Last night I tried about fifteen other mods, just not those two. Included things like enhanced colors, beautiful universe, vassalization fix (makes your vassals not hate you as fast, sometimes even comes to love you, yay lube), capital planet switching, extra species traits, enhanced starts, a handful of ship reskin options (start with ancient or robot ship types), and a few more that I can’t remember. These were more like gameplay tweaks than the the total retooling that the first two mods created. The steam workshop is where I got everything.

  3. Fnord73 says:

    I think a lot of the Hearts of Iron purchasers are like me, never going to play it but bought it just to look at all the shiny menus. They are beautiful.

    • Sakkura says:

      I would rather have bought it for the music. Tirallalaaaa, tirallalaaaa! (oh god, is that the new falalalan?)

  4. TheAngriestHobo says:

    That article on the economics of Youtube was fascinating. Thanks for that.

  5. barelyhomosapien says:

    Still waiting for the HOI4 review, RPS. Unless you want me to write one for you, happy to give it a shot.

    Have to say I was much more interested in Stellaris (which I do love) but I’m really, REALLY enjoying the new Hearts Of Iron.

    • Alec Meer says:

      I believe Adam intends to do it but he’s currently losing his mind in LA

      • Sakkura says:

        At least it’s not a game that would take much time to review properl- oh god is it dawn already.

        • barelyhomosapien says:

          Yes but at least you finally crushed the axis as Ethiopia.

          At least *I* found that a fun weekend project…

        • Blastaz says:

          I had a week of 3ams.

          They haven’t stopped.

          Send help!

  6. Greg Wild says:

    If the evidence in the files is anything to go on, with all the DLC that may be coming out for Total Warhammer, it looks like it’ll be bringing in the money for a long time to come: link to

    • Premium User Badge

      liquidsoap89 says:

      Oh god, that list mentions Skaven AND FUCKING TOMB KINGS! My life will be complete if those end up being true.

  7. SuicideKing says:

    The community has been going nuts since Apex was staged to dev branch. The island, Tanoa, is absolutely wonderful and we finally have Kalashnikovs and open jeeps in Arma 3. Not to mention VTOLs.

    Yesterday’s PC Gaming Show trailer for Apex:
    link to

    More info: link to

  8. Premium User Badge

    Alfy says:

    It seems Paradox’s streamlining-to-the-hilt strategy is working out. Which is a bit of a shame, because I found Stellaris to be bone dry, featureless, and utterly boring after barely a couple dozen hours. Is it really worth praising the successes of grand strategy games when said games compare so poorly to their worthier predecessors? Or am I just an old sod all of a sudden??

    • Laurentius says:

      But, there is a big difference. Stellaris is really light on features and many of its content simply is not even working as it promised to, I agree that after inital phase, Stellaris doesn’t bring much to the table. HoI4 though is the best of the series, hands down. Yes, it is still a bit light on many things and I clarly see DLC coming (sigh) but what works, works great. Battle plans are great, air war is working and being managable and impactful. For me, old time paradox fan, HoI4 is succesful release, Stellaris is not.

    • Zenicetus says:

      Stellaris had a huge amount of pre-release and post-release buzz just because it was the first Paradox space 4x/GSG, regardless of being light on features. I think it’s still coasting on goodwill and future potential.

    • Premium User Badge

      X_kot says:

      To be fair to Stellaris, this is only the first go. Paradox needs time to iterate to make their games really shine. And unlike some devs (*cough*Creative Assembly*cough*) they create DLC that add and enhance features rather than pump out factions and expect the community to balance their game.

  9. Fernando Partridge says:

    @Alec Meer Re: Total War: Warhammer “it’s escaped the surge of negativity which eclipsed Rome II, the last mainline Total War release”. Um, wat? Wasn’t the one before Warhammer, Total War: Attila? I’m pretty sure it was Attila. Does this mean we’re going to see a shamefur dispray of furious editing to hide your mistake, or are you going to admit it like an honourable drunken journalist? Good article anyway, thanks :)

    • Blastaz says:

      It’s the classic “mainline” defence.

    • Bobtree says:

      Supposedly Attila was going to be a Rome 2 expansion until they spun it off as a standalone to distance it from the bad press and reviews.

      • Blastaz says:

        Conspiracy nonsense. It’s the standard sort of standalone expansion set in the same area but slightly different time period and often named and themed after a single historical figure in the same vein as: Alexander, Napoleon, and, eh, Fall of the Samurai…

    • Premium User Badge

      kfix says:

      I’m hoping that this drunken commenter can explain what kind of pet-involving sex act a “shamefur dispray” is.

  10. haldolium says:

    Whats the reason for this list? These games already have visibility beyond anything and aren’t worth any special mentions.

    Shouldn’t you rather do a list (if you feel the need for more list-news anyways) of like “top 10 new releases with only 10 reviews”… I rather struggle to get AWAY from that stupid charts whenever browsing steam, since the most interesting titles aren’t on it and are soon enough forgotten when they’re not on it.

    • frightlever says:

      You make a very good point, but finding those under-appreciated games would require vastly more work than commenting on an existing Top Ten. I doubt that AM is getting much joy from having to do it either.

    • try2bcool69 says:

      I would base it on something other than reviews, because, since they have now been weaponized, they are an absolutely useless indicator of anything other than butthurtedness.

    • ButteringSundays says:

      That, and in my experience it’s pretty stale. The only games that pop up in the chart that weren’t there the week before are the games everyone is talking about… because everyone has bought it, that’s why it’s in the top 10.

      I mean it doesn’t do any harm… but what you suggest definitely sounds more interesting.

  11. try2bcool69 says:

    Wait…is the Herman Munster eyrolling for GTAV, CS:GO, or both?

    My guess is both.

  12. Premium User Badge

    richlamp says:

    I genuinely don’t understand who the people are who keep buying CS:GO in the middle of 2016.

    • ButteringSundays says:

      I’ve often thought that. I can believe it’s one of the most played games, but I don’t get how it sustains such consistently good sales.

    • shadybearfaced says:

      Regarding CSGO’s constantly huge sales, its because hackers need new accounts every time they get VAC’d