Steam Charts: Normal Parameters

Cor blimey, it’s only the weekly Steam Charts! As always, these are based on the accumulated sales on Steam over the previous week, not what’s doing best for itself at this exact moment in time.

A nice number one this week, but a rather old-fashioned top ten otherwise – with one unexpected aberration.

N.B. there is NO VENGABUS this week. Repeat NO VENGA BUS. It’ll return when it is most needed.

10. Planet Coaster

I thought I’d finished writing the charts but then I realised I’d managed to leave the Planet Coaster entry blank. Dammitall.

Look I’m pretty tired now, so here’s a video of my favourite Zoid instead:

9. Rust

I can’t find a particular reason for this coming back. I guess it’s just never far away from the top ten, and given that this chart rather ably demonstrates that 2017 is yet to provide any big hitters, it was its chance to return. I’ve not played Rust since its earliest days, but looking at the recent devblog I was struck by how much prettier it is now. Is it possible to play Rust as a sort of walking simulator, or will I be murdered by a nuddy nutter within a matter of minutes?

8. Sid Meier’s Civilization VI

I uninstalled Civ VI last night. It was a bleak feeling – and probably shortest time from new Civ game release > uninstallation I’ve known in my lifetime. I don’t know if the issue was with Civ VI itself or with me. I currently have very little free time so a game that is notorious for eating up hours like a dog let loose in a field of popcorn is obviously the worst possible temptation. But on the other hand, I did feel as though I’d seen everything Civ VI had to offer after one and a half campaigns. It’s a very good Civ without question, bar iffy diplomacy and some UI insanity, but it does perhaps too strongly remind me that I’ve been playing essentially the same game for a quarter of a century rather than make me feel as though I’m playing something meaningfully new.

Also I was out of space on my SSD.

7. Watch_Dogs 2

And that was a problem because I really wanted to try Watch Dogs 2. I was deeply uninterested in this in the run up to and even just after release, as UbiSandboxes is another type of game that feels resolutely unchanging, but I keep seeing people tweet surprising stuff from WD2 – social commentary, amazing detail, ridiculous clothes, and generally a sense that, even if it’s a muddle, it’s a fascinating one rather than a drab one. I shall report back with my findings in time.

Does seem like it’s another slow-burn success for Ubi after a wobbly launch though – as was the case for Rainbow Six Siege and, to a lesser extent, The Division.

6. Wallpaper Engine

The first time we’ve had an application rather than a game here, I think? Team RPS actually burrowed into this the other day, so look for more about it soon, but in short – it downloads and applies user-made animated desktop wallpapers from the Steam Workshop, as well as offering tools to convert videos and GIFs into said wallpapers. I shall leave you to guess as to what kind of wallpapers are proving most popular among the Steam userbase, and then we’ll see whether you got it right or not when we look at it in greater length later.

5. Grand Theft Auto V

I wish I hadn’t said that thing about the Venga Bus earlier. I could really use it right now.

4. H1Z1: King of the Kill

King of the Kill King Of The Kill Kling Of the Krill Kring Of The Klill She kills seakings on the killshore.

Also Graham and Brendy weren’t very impressed with it.

3. The Forest

Also joining this week’s roster of ‘Steam’s greatest hits, 2013-2015’ is 2014 singleplayer sandbox horror game The Forest. The reason for that is now-expired 33% price cut, down to $10. No, you’re too late, now sorry.

The Forest is still in early access, but apparently it does have a proper endgame these days. We haven’t looked at in earnest since 2015, and I’ve never tried it at all – I’m sorely tempted to do so now.

2. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

1. Astroneer

The number one game is also the top ten’s most recently-released game, having turned up in mid-December 2016 (even Wallpaper Engine first came out in October). You’ll notice that still leaves us with a total absence of actual 2017 games (we did have Binding Of Isaac: Afterbirth+ last week, but it’s gone already). Granted, we’re only a couple of weeks in now, but c’mon, let’s look a little more contemporary, eh? Fingers crossed that Pit People’s current hot streak last longs enough to give me something new to write about next week.


  1. Ghostwise says:

    If GTA V were to leave the chart it’d be, like, you know, your freezer stops working on its own accord and so it no longer makes a noise but since it’s always been there your brain filters it and so you can’t really tell what’s missing and it starts driving you a bit nut because huh something isn’t quite right but what could it be ?

    So, yes. Metaphor.

  2. MercurialJack says:

    The Counter-Strike: GO picture did make me chuckle rather louder than I’m proud of. Well done. Bring back the bus!

  3. dystome says:

    I shall leave you to guess as to what kind of wallpapers are proving most popular among the Steam userbase, and then we’ll see whether you got it right or not when we look at it in greater length later.

    Porn? Is it porn? I’m going to say porn.

    • YogSo says:

      Since I don’t think Steam allows straight porn, I’m going with the next of kin: scantily-clad curvaceous manga girls.

      • Premium User Badge

        Dios says:

        And Trump memes.

        • Boomerang says:

          Who the hell wants that on their desktop?

          • TeePee says:

            I’m hesitant to invoke the relevant internet rule (not least because it’s no longer 2001), but let’s just say that there’s probably someone with that particular flavour of fetish.

          • Solidstate89 says:

            The same idiots who voted for Trump?

          • GHudston says:

            I vote for lots of things that I don’t want on my desktop…

    • SaintAn says:

      I was looking through their wallpapers to see if they had any animated ones I could steal for my DeskScapes a few weeks ago and it was mostly young looking anime girls on the top list. Not really porn, but some did wear a bit of revealing clothes. Very pretty art though.

      Not even sure what people buy that for if they’re not using it for animated wallpapers since you can find anime walpapers anywhere.

  4. Neurotic says:

    Wallpaper Engine sounds like a nice alternative to the StarDock thing that does ‘live’ wallpaper. My only question is, how much RAM does it eat?

    • Neurotic says:

      It’s Steam description is very reassuring about not hogging resources, and it’s only 3.99 anyway, so I took the plunge.

  5. Neurotic says:

    …and the answer to Alec’s question seems to be ‘Japanese Paedo Cartoon Girls’. *sigh*

  6. Premium User Badge

    Dios says:

    I kind of miss the Venga Bus.

    • JB says:

      I kind of miss Krark. I remember having a lot of fun building him. I wonder if he’s still in the loft at my parents’ house.

  7. Minsc_N_Boo says:

    I found myself randomly humming “the Venga bus is comming” as I was brushing my teeth this morning. I got a strange look from my wife, but I didn’t bother to explain.

  8. Someoldguy says:

    I’d like to think that a 2017 version of Johnny Castaway would be hugely popular like the original screensaver was back in the 90’s. I can remember spending weeks glancing at it periodically to see if I could catch any of the more entertaining clips.

  9. ShrikeMalakim says:

    One thing that might have had some effect on this week’s anomalies: Markiplier resumed his Rust video series after a very long hiatus, and he has also been playing Astroneer, and each video series is giving a very good impression of the games (I know it’s gotten me to push Astroneer up to #1 on my wishlist).

  10. MajorLag says:

    Desktop Wallpapers? Animated Desktop Wallpapers? Did I accidentally fall into a time vortex and wind up in the early 2000s?