Steam Game Charts: U Mad?

This is some kind of sick joke, isn’t it?

1. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

You all did this to spite me, didn’t you? You all got together and said, “hey, how can we make Alec lose the last vestiges of his sanity?” I guess it was either getting CSGO to number one in order to force me to keep including it in this regular feature for an eternity or killing my cat. Well, it’s not going to work. I held my mind together and soberly tried to ascertain exactly why it was that CSGO has made its way to the very top of this chart. No sale, no major update. As far as I can tell, it’s a combination of the second season of ELEAGUE airing on TBS and a surprise banhammer being dropped on several thousand cheaters, thus potentially spurring a wave of replacement accounts.

And stay the hell away from my cat.

2. Divinity: Original Sin 2

Pretty good going for an early access game. The paradoxically-named Original Sin 2 is the follow-up to an RPG no-one realistically expected to punch as hard as it did, and it seems there’s an enormous appetite for more. It’s a heckuvan achievement for devs Larian, who’ve been plugging away at their Divinity series for 14 years with mixed results and now get to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the biggest names around.

3. Mad Max

Heyo, this is a nice surprise, given the usual miserably unchanging state of this top ten. Avalanche’s Fury Road semi-tie-in is the quintessential noughties 7/10 action game rethought for the sandbox-hungry world of 2015/6, and it’s a damned good time despite some underwhelming and even iffy characterisation. Fast Spiky Cars In Giant Endless Desert is hard to argue with, and Avalanche applied their trademark super-destructive verve to it. It’s in the charts cos of a sale, of course. A frankly ridiculous one – it was down to $10/£8 for three days last week, which sadly is no longer the case.

4. NBA 2K17


5. ARK: Scorched Earth – Expansion Pack

The ARK expansion pack has been blackballed by each and every ARK player due to outrage about charging for extra content for a game that’s still in early access. As such, not a single person has bought Scorched Earth and it is a catastrophic commercial failure.

6. Grand Theft Auto V

Attend Favor Thug

Vagrant Tufted Ho

Verdant Fat Tough

Graved That Futon

Daft Tat Hungover

Tartan Fudge Oh TV

7. Rocket League

Only here because it was discounted to 20p until the very second that you read these words, and you missed it because you’re A MASSIVE LOSER.

8. Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Game of the Year Edition

Looks like Warners did a Good 7/10 Action Game Sale last week. The clever-but-stupid Uruk-slasher that would have had JRR screaming in his grave was down to a pre-tay cray-zay $7.49 for half of last week.

9. Batman: Arkham Knight

I’d have liked this if it could have been embraced as a Good 7/10 Action Game and not some kind of second coming, cos Jeez, it’s a hot mess of familiarity and ideas and fanservice and ridic. walking-Batmobile-based puzzle-solving. I just couldn’t take it entirely seriously, but if I’d gone into it expecting that to be the case, I might just have dug it. And, of course, there were all the technical problems on PC, many of which were ultimately just shrugged off by the publisher. Despite all the OUTRAGE, there’s a whole mass of people still wanting to play it, and at $10 for half of last week, it seemed the price was finally right.

10. Everspace

They try to write the name all in capitals, but nope, sure ain’t doing that. evarSp@cE ain’t bad, though. It’s a very pop space-shooter without much in the way of the simulation and nothing in the way of trading or questing – more comparable to Descent In Space than the full-on spaceship ’em ups the screenshots might suggest. Lightweight and a bit repetitive in its current form, as I wrote about in more depth yesterday, but it’s early days in early access, and hopefully its top-selling status means the devs can take it to more interesting places.

Additional notes:

– To the people last week who suggested I make this a top 20 in order to spare us all from the same games repeating, unfortunately that data is not made available by Steam. I can look into it, but you know what they say about blood and stones.

– The people who suggest this article is accompanied by a top 10 itch games piece: that is a good idea. Not sure we have the editorial bandwidth for at this moment in time, but it is definitely Going On The List.

Look ma, no GIFs!


  1. BobbyDylan says:

    Awe. no Gifs….. =(

  2. alexgem says:

    I’m speechles at CS:GO being number 1, but extremely glad to see Divinity:OS 2 at 2nd place, congratz Larian :)

    • welverin says:

      After hearing about the big ban wave, it didn’t surprise me in the slightest.

    • Yontevnknow says:

      They could make it fair, and pull a reverse Overwatch. Making their high score of “#1 gaem” loop back to last place on the list. They could even call it prestige mode.

  3. Plank says:

    No Man’s Sky is out of the Top 100 link to

    • Captain Narol says:


      It seems now that there was a reason for this game being called “No Man’s”, picking that name was indeed visionary…

      Well, I’m still enjoying it and less buyers means more planets just for me so in a way that’s good news !

    • UnholySmoke says:

      No Man Buys

    • GenialityOfEvil says:

      Well it sold 750,000 copies(that’s minus refunds), so I guess everyone who wanted to buy the game already did.

      • TheMaru says:

        Or waiting for updates and a sale…

        • syllopsium says:

          I still want to play once I a) have a system upgrade and b) a deep discount..

          Hopefully they’ll patch it a bit more in the meantime

          • Yontevnknow says:

            Sadly, a strong system does not fix many of the visual issues. If you really want to hold out hope, wait till it maybe possibly some day gets a rework. This way the few legitimate “wow” moments the game has wont be diminished.

      • hungrycookpot says:

        Count me as one of those 750K that played about 3 hours before realizing that I wish I could have gotten my money back.

    • Shadow says:

      Sinking fast. It’s gonna take a lot to refloat that Titanic, but we’ll probably see spikes around sales and content patches, if there’s any worth their salt.

      Enough to bring it back to the Top 10? Who knows. It’s already sold a lot, so that’s enough for the AAA business to chalk it up as a success, sadly enough.

      • Underwhelmed says:

        No other entertainment media has such absolute loathing between producers and consumers, as video games.

        • Apologised says:


        • Shadow says:

          Absolute loathing? I’m not sure I’d define my feelings about this like that. Having foreseen this whole debacle, I never considered buying NMS.

          I’m only concerned about the AAA industry’s state of affairs. It seems hype itself is profitable, and apparently you can sell just about anything and financially succeed if you manage to create enough hype around your game. As a new dev, it probably kills your reputation and likely any future endeavours you might have in the industry, but do it right and you have one big “hit” at least, before sinking into oblivion.

          One vocal minority will be denouncing your game, another minority will mostly silently enjoy it, while an apathetic majority will buy into the hype and simply move on to the next game if yours doesn’t satisfy them, without caring to refund nor denounce.

          • Sin Vega says:

            This isn’t even a remotely new state of affairs for the games industry.

          • Shadow says:

            Not really, of course. We’re used to seeing it on established franchises, but it’s worrying that it can so easily apply to new games. All you need is a big patron to create the temporary illusion your mediocre garbage is the must-buy game of the decade.

            Said mirage will last long enough to bag you plenty of sales, and the majority of the community won’t care to raise enough of a fuss to discourage future applications of the practice. So absolute loathing? Nowhere nearly enough.

        • hungrycookpot says:

          Humiliation porn?

      • RobF says:

        Staying in the most played games for a whole month is ‘sinking fast’ and ‘a shame’ now?

        I honestly don’t understand videogames.

        • Laurentius says:

          I’s say it was fast yes, seeing it falling behind other “choose your own space grindfest” of Elite and Starbound in one month…

          • RobF says:

            This is concurrent players, not total players. It’s not really a good measure of how many owners are playing it at the best of times but by any sensible and reasonable measure, still having 2k+ people playing at most times of day a month after launch is a fairly spectacular success.

          • Press X to Gary Busey says:

            My go-to example of a spectacular success in keeping concurrent players (for a single player open world game) would be Skyrim with 90k peak since June 2012 (the furthest steamcharts keeps stats sadly) and it never dipped under 37k since. The peak in the last 30 days alone are over 44k.

            Keeping such a stable average concurrent player count over four years is the spectacular success compared to the 80% drop of the average down to 7617 and the 2320 playing NMS right now.

          • RobF says:

            Gosh, if everything has to be Skyrim to be a spectacular success then we’re going to struggle to have many spectacular successes.

            Anyway, NMS is back in the Top 100 again now. Like I say, concurrent players is _not_ a good measurement of anything for a single player game.

    • samination says:

      Maybe now the price will come down to what it was suppose to be in the first place?

    • Premium User Badge

      phuzz says:

      Right from the start it looked unlikely that NMS could ever live up to the amazing hype around the game, and lo and behold, it didn’t.
      I’m sure I’ll pick it up at some point, but probably when it’s a bit cheaper, and it’s had a few patches and updates.

      I’m not going to point and laugh at people who bought it and are regretting it now though. I’ve bought into hype and got burned before (looking at you, Black and White). Just think of this as a learning experience, and next time wait for a few reviews before you buy eh?

  4. Premium User Badge

    Oakreef says:

    I run a botnet of fifty thousand servers constantly buying copies of counter strike just to annoy alec

  5. Unsheep says:

    Hey, at least there are new things on the list for ya !

    1/3 of them can be explained by sales: Mad Max …
    1/3 by hype and streamer promotion: Original Sin 2 …
    1/3 are the same as usual: GTA V …

    Arkham Knight had problems on some PCs but not all of them, the people who had issues were simply very vocal about it and this was capitalized on by populist media. This could explain the continued attraction of the game I guess. Personally I don’t like ANY of the Batman games, so don’t take this as bias.

    • GenialityOfEvil says:

      That’ true of every PC game, it’s just the nature of the platform, but it wasn’t just a vocal minority. WB themselves admitted that, eventually.

  6. johannsebastianbach says:

    The actual correct name of no 10 is 3v4r5p@c3, I believe.

  7. jasta85 says:

    I think half the people grabbing CS:GO these days are just trying to get into the skin gambling business. just checked the steam forums for it and about half the the posts are requesting trades, asking price quotes or asking which gambling websites are legit heh.

    • johannsebastianbach says:

      You don’t need to own CSGO to possess and trade CSGO items, so I doubt that this is the reason.
      I’m almost certain it’s No. 1 because of the VAC ban wave that occurred last week – many cheaters have to buy new copies to keep on cheating.
      Have a look here:

  8. Grizzly says:


    I think it’s ball-to-basket.

  9. Bull0 says:

    Love love love Shadow of Mordor. Patiently awaiting a follow-up over here. Not generally a LOTR fan either

    • Captain Narol says:

      I’m still angry at Alec for calling it a 7/10, that’s definitely a 9/10 in my book and my favorite action game ever !

      I’m still waiting to see something as innovative as the Nemesis System implemented in another AAA game, or even just other games using something coming close.

      • Ericusson says:

        It was way too repetitive to earn a 9/10.
        I actually gave up out of boredom for repeating the same thing over and over again, the game is good but the model is pretty limited.

        Mad max pulled the same stunt, It’s a mediocre cash grab open world that shows no originality and barely some personality.

        • zarthrag says:

          I agree. The gameplay was certainly under-rated – though I do agree the story was a big pants. But the nemesis system… what a great way to punish death/mistakes! I especially loved how the progression of my enemies mutilations – those were some UGLY uruks!

          Sadly, the late-game sees the hero a bit over-powered … likely the first (and hopefully only) time I wished for a skill-point/level cap. Infiltration/fighting was just too easy. (Brand/Dispatch, chain attacks, ugh) “Death threat” was a bit underwhelming, was hoping it to be a more-central mechanic.

    • JakeOfRavenclaw says:

      “Not generally a LOTR fan either”

      To be fair, that probably helps when it comes to Shadow of Mordor, which has a story that Tolkien might have written when he was about fourteen and going through a big Limp Bizkit phase.

      Also to be fair I was probably never going to like a game that hews so close to the Assassin’s Creed formula no matter which IP’s skin it’s wearing, so my opinion can be safely discounted.

      • hpoonis says:

        First started ‘Lord of the Rings’ around age 15 (tum-te-tum years ago). Took me 2.5 years to get to the end – had to start it again. Have read a shitload of hack/slash/sword/sorcery/adventure-type things since then and came to the conclusion that Lord of the Rings was the IBM PC of adventure stories. It may have ‘started’ the genre but others did it far better. Saw the last of the 3 ‘Rings’ movies at the cinema and 3/4 of the way in and all that Sam/Frodo hobbit love was jarring beyond belief. I was just thinking ‘Throw the fucking hobbit in the fire and have done with it!’

        As an aside, I did spy 2 of the hobbit guys when I was residing in Rotorua. They were in one of my favourite cafes.

        There is not really much of a connection twixt the books and the Mordor Shadow game other than the name really. First play, I got killed maybe 5 or 6 times by the same farking orc. It was as though he was just chasing me all over the shop like a petulant child who was learning orc-fu and wanted to show off his skills against the guy who stole his lollipop.

    • Premium User Badge

      Qazinsky says:

      Shadow of Mordor was quite great! My brother bought it too and he happened upon an especially nasty orc that had some combo that protected him from anything my brother threw at him, and just kept killing my brother. Eventually I got one of those quests where you get to avenge a player that has died nearby and managed to sneak up and backstab that orc to death.

      I don’t know if that actually removes the orc from his game, but I like to think that it did, I should probably ask him.

  10. armoredrobot says:

    I bought Mad Max and Shadow of Mordor when they were on sale this weekend, so I think for the first time I can state that I contributed to this list.

  11. Minsc_N_Boo says:

    I think I must be the only person out there that doesn’t own CSGO. I did buy Arkham Asylum, but apparently that wasnt the top 7/10 game this week

    • invitro says:

      I don’t own any of the top 10 except GTAV, and I haven’t played that. (I’m playing Kingdom: New Lands right now, and eagerly awaiting the new Zachtronic.)

  12. Spacewalk says:

    “but you know what they say about blood and stones.”

    Altamont was a bad idea.

  13. gwop_the_derailer says:

    The ARK expansion pack has been blackballed by each and every ARK player due to outrage about charging for extra content for a game that’s still in early access. As such, not a single person has bought Scorched Earth and it is a catastrophic commercial failure.

    History repeats itself…

  14. TheAngriestHobo says:

    Attend Favor Thug

    Vagrant Tufted Ho

    Verdant Fat Tough

    Graved That Futon

    Daft Tat Hungover

    Tartan Fudge Oh TV

    Ov the gut and fart

    • Bull0 says:

      The Gut and Fart sounds like a boozer for orcs and trolls and that

    • Darth Gangrel says:

      I’d watch a tv programme about tartan fudge. Mmmm, fudge…

  15. tomimt says:

    I just got the Arkham Knight, from Humble sale though, and I was pretty surprised how well it runs, so I’d assume it has seen quite a bit of improvements. With the settings I have now I get +30fps and My rig ain’t a 1000 dollar machine either. Only the driving has some issues with framerates, but in general I’ve seen nothing major.

  16. RaymondQSmuckles says:

    Perhaps the rate of change in the list, being “almost never a significant change” means this report could be less frequent? Alternate with itch game lists, give Steam community a little more opportunity to grow out of their singular rut, and give your readers a little break from the monotony as well.

    • Darth Gangrel says:

      But there are several changes this week: Deus Ex, The Witcher 3, Dead by Daylight, Rimworld, ARK: Survival Evolved and Borderlands 2 GOTY are no longer on the list. That’s 6 games. While the usual suspects (CS:GO, GTA V) are still here, I haven’t seen Arkham Knight or Shadow of Mordor in a good while. Everspace and D:OS 2 are new entries.

  17. smeaa mario says:

    Just a few days ago, I was visiting my old folks. My brother, who has no means of buying games on Steam, asked me to get CSGO for him. And I did it. Sorry for contributing to your rage.

    • Jediben says:

      I believe that Angela Merkel has been giving every asylum seekers a copy of the game so that they don’t lose their weapons training after the long journey.

  18. keefybabe says:

    Arkham Knight… All I can say is UGH batmobile. I didn’t want to buy a wank racing game, I wanted to be batman.

    • Someoldguy says:

      By contrast, I balked at buying Mad Max in the sale because of the reviews that said the driving parts were great fun but you were obliged to indulge in crap melee combat too often. Oh well.

      • jonahcutter says:

        The melee is not crap. Well, if you like Batman-style combat, it’s not. It’s arguably a bit better, as it requires you to actually point yourself in the proper direction to counter and attack. There’s no auto-hitting regardless of which way you’re facing.

        It’s also far more grounded and “realistic”. No back flips and spinning across rooms. It’s a brawler version of the Batman combat. That’s not a value judgement though. They’re both fun in their respective approaches.

        Now if you think Batman combat is crap, then you’ll likely think Mad Max is crap. I don’t though. I enjoy the Batman combat immensely and found the Mad Max variation on it one of the more satisfying combat gameplays to experience in a while.

    • Vandelay says:

      *shrug* I liked it. It was certainly an improvement on City and I wouldn’t go with the hatred that the batmobile sections get. They should be better, but at worst they are a mild distraction.

      I felt it did lack predator section, clearly the strongest part of the game. They were there occasionally, but not enough. The hand to hand combat is honed to perfection though.

      Of course, we all would prefer an Arkham Asylum 2,but what we got was still really good (caveat, I played on PS4, so didn’t have to contend with the PC issues.)

  19. invitro says:

    “The people who suggest this article is accompanied by a top 10 itch games piece” — What is an itch game?

    • Darth Gangrel says:

      Probably a game sold on, a site for selling inde games. I don’t think it relates to games that creates an itch you feel compelled to scratch, like the game Scratches, link to

  20. MikoSquiz says:

    Wagh, I’m so tempted by D:OS2, but I don’t want to spoil it for myself with Early Access nonsense. As much as I liked Pillars of Eternity, etc, Divinity: Original Sin is pretty solidly The RPG of The 2010s So Far for me. Hell, make it the century so far.

    • Thurgret says:

      Hold on till it’s released. I tried it for a couple hours, and it shows lots of promise, but it’s still really rough round the edges in places, with a few things happening that just frustrated me – of the sort that I expect will be non-existent come full release.

  21. heretic says:

    Bring back the gifs! At least half the list…