Steam Charts: Bunched Up Edition

Do you find solace through memetics? Which enormously popular game you like is also liked by lots of other people? What else might form the triangle of your desire? Cast aside your romantic delusions, and delve into the acquisitive mire that is the Steam Charts.

10. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Call off the search. Sorry everyone. We’ve found it. After two weeks of being missing from the charts, CSGO sheepishly crawls back in at #10. It had gone to a party, missed the last bus home, and slept on the floor of its mate’s house. We’ve been up all night worried sick, and the least it could have done is called.

9. Football Manager 2018

There are games where you get to be a bird, and fly freely in the sky, looping and twisting and swooping. There are other games where you get to control the armies of an alien nation, in impossibly exotic imaginary wars. Sometimes games let you experience entire other worlds, or vividly following the narratives of fascinating figures. And then there are games where you get to pretend to be at work.

8. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – GOTYE

One day science will discover what it is that makes one excellent single-player game have the ability to stay in the charts in perpetuity, and others see a brief sales spike, then retreat to a modest trickle in the background. (Name of your sex tape.) But it is not yet that day, and The Witcher 3 continues to sell infinite numbers of copies.

7 and 3. Assassin’s Creed Origins

Here is not the place to start listing all of Steam’s foibles, because the internet isn’t that big. But quite what on Earth is going on with their own sales tracking, where Origins for a second week manages to occupy multiple spaces, despite the listing pointing to the same sales page, remains a mystery. Indeed, CODWARS manages three places this week, rather dramatically decreasing the number of HILARIOUSLY pithy bon mots I must come up with for this column. It’s you, the reader, who loses out here.

I’ve played a lot of Origins, and I just cannot find anything to love about it, beyond how utterly splendid the sound effects are while swimming. I equally can’t find anything to hate about it. I could easily spend a week just playing the game, letting it eat up time, and come away with nothing but a peculiar sense of neutrality. It’s the fidget spinner of gaming.

6. Grand Theft Auto V

Gosh, there’s only one week to go before it’s too late for anyone to figure out what’s been going on with the GTAV entry in this column for the last thirteen weeks! In the meantime:

What Are Rockstar Spending All The GTA V Money On?

Thank you letters to Leslie Benzies

5, 4 and 2. Call Of Duty: WWII

Taking up an impressive three spots in this week’s charts, presumably due to a muddle of pre-orders, post-release purchases, and Satanic rituals, is the surprising quite goodness of Call Of Duty: World War Two. At least in single-player campaign form. When it comes to multiplayer I believe the required response is to hate everything that’s different about it when compared to the previous one, then play it for nine thousand hours.

1. Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds

How about some classic cLOUDDEAD?


  1. SuicideKing says:

    Would it be possible to extend the list beyond 10 if one game occupies multiple positions? So this list would extend to the top 13, for example.

    • napoleonic says:

      That would imply that John cares enough about this column despite being visibly sick to death of it.

      • John Walker says:

        I am absolutely in no way sick of this column, and enjoy writing the gibberish for it.

        I am absolutely sick of writing about The Witcher 3, GTA V and CS:GO, and hope that avoiding doing so pushes me down some more inventive avenues, or at least allows me to share the pain in a “we’re all in this together” way.

        Of course, the latter doesn’t work when someone sets out to have an antagonistic reaction.

        • napoleonic says:

          I wasn’t intending to be antagonistic: I’m sorry if it came across that way. My intent was quite sympathetic actually, because I felt like I could empathise with being stuck with a chore I didn’t want to do any more. Apparently I was just projecting. I’m glad you’re still enjoying it, because I check in every week to see what silliness you’ve come up with this time.


        • Hunchback says:

          My wife bought me The Witcher 3 GOTY during the anniversary sales. \o/

          • wombat191 says:

            Does that mean your wife doesn’t want to see you for hundreds of hours? haha

    • John Walker says:

      It’s not, I’m afraid. The data we use to keep this chart as accurate as possible comes directly from Steam, and only goes up to 10. Although this sort of anomaly will likely stop once the big pre-ordered releases are done this month.

  2. Faldrath says:

    Why is there a screenshot of Spintires when it’s apparently not on the list? Or is that not Spintires? I’m confused. Somebody help.

    • Nauallis says:

      It’s the game we need, but not the game we deserve.

    • Someoldguy says:

      I would suggest that it is a visual allusion to the ‘acquisitive mire’

    • Premium User Badge

      phuzz says:

      None of the screenshots line up, or at least I think they don’t, not played CODwobbles2, but that looks quite Battlefield 1-ish.

    • and its man says:

      Everything feels more acceptable and gratifying with mud.

  3. Someoldguy says:

    I’m delighted there’s one good RPG in the charts, but it does seem a shame that it’s Witcher and not a new one like DOS2 – or Elex, in an alternative universe where it was good enough to get an RPS recommended sticker from John.

    • LewdPenguin says:

      DOS2 has at least spent a bit of time here immediately post-release, and will surely return come sale time as those like me that think it’s almost certainly right up our street but have such a rediculous backlog of stuff to play already that paying full price (even if it is full price at a pretty darn reasonable 30 beer tokens) for anything just seems silly, finally do jump in.

      • tnzk says:

        The thing with having a backlog is…

        How does any of it get done when people constantly spend money on new, super cheap games?

        Have gamers figured out they can actually hold off on buying a game until they actually will play it immediately? You can get rid of your backlog and find the new game you want to play is going to be on sale for the umpteenth time.

        • LewdPenguin says:

          I think more and more people are moving towards waiting, hence the near certainty of any popular title reappearing here at least the first, if not first few times it gets discounted post-release.

          Personally I don’t care about being able to post crap about the latest hype game on failbook or twotter as part of the zeitgeist, if a game’s good it’ll still be good a year or more later when I get around to it, and as you say if I feel inclined to something newer than I already have waiting, there’s rarely long to wait for another round of sales and the chance to pick up something great from a while back to enjoy, often a GOTY complete version at half the price or less of the base game at release.

  4. Da5e says:

    *gasp* I LOVE cLOUDDEAD.

    Ever listen to any Dälek, John? Or clipping.? They’re my go-to for weird hip-hop since everyone involved in cLOUDDEAD I think hate each other now.

    Weird music is better than computer games. You should have a weird music column.

    • and its man says:

      Please repeat “Strawberry in an ostrich throat” ten times very quickly.

      That’s not weird music.
      This, sir, is Rhinolalia Aperta Hipus-Hopus, also known as hypernasal hip-hop.
      cLOUDDEAD always sounded to me like the Virgin Prunes gone MCs.

      (now I’m open to any suggestions for a proper latin translation for “hip-hop”…)

    • John Walker says:

      Ooh, thanks for the tips! Especially with cLOUDDEAD’s entire catalogue gone from Spotify. I listen to Why? a lot, obviously, but haven’t tried the others.

      • Da5e says:

        Dälek are the more obviously listenable of the two – they’re pissed-off New Jersey hip-hop fiends who cite things like Cocteau Twins, Blut aus Nord and My Bloody Valentine as influences. An album of theirs dropped on Profound Lore, a label better known for bands like Leviathan and Portal.

        clipping. is just *weird*, I highly recommend starting with the latest release (The Deep, which is lyrically astonishing and keeps upping the tempo until it finally ends in a harsh noise apocalypse) and working back. If you’re impatient, Body & Blood is a proper banger to go for, made up of huge distorted kick drums and a Deathpile(?!) sample. They know their power electronics.

      • quasiotter says:

        John Walker, I already loved you, but including cLOUDDEAD makes me love you even more. Especially this song, which I consider to be so good, that I rarely listen to it to keep it special.

    • Malkara says:

      Oh man, clipping. is Daveed Diggs? And it’s like cLOUDDEAD? Sold!

      • Da5e says:

        I wouldn’t say it’s like cLOUDDEAD – it’s WAY nastier, they’ve built tracks from Whitehouse samples (check out the Wriggle EP, it’s savage.)

      • and its man says:

        Not as fun as cLOUDDEAD.
        Quickly went back to old Antipop Consortium, or Anticon goodness like Passage’s “The Forcefield Kids”.

        Speaking of Anticon crew and cLOUDDEAD, were you somehow waiting for this one, John?

  5. comic knight says:

    The reason CSGO is always there is because kids are constantly being born and aging into being able to play it and buy it. Until it becomes unpopular this is going to happen unless we stop having children.

  6. Godwhacker says:

    Wolfenstein: The New One out of the top ten already? Massive shame.

    • Malkara says:

      It’s been getting hammered on Steam reviews for performance problems.

      I haven’t seen any myself, but unfortunately they seem to be pretty widespread.

      • Caiman says:

        Honestly, who would be a game developer these days? Between kids complaining that it won’t give them 120 fps at 4K on their 3-year old rig, launch week bugs that won’t change a negative review once they’re fixed, and (in this case) people complaining that shooting Nazis is too political, I’d probably want to go open a restaurant somewhere instead.

  7. rustybroomhandle says:

    Blood Money – quite the poetic choice of screenshot there.

  8. Premium User Badge

    particlese says:

    It’s the fidget spinner of gaming.

    What are you trying to accomplish here, man?! I nearly knocked over a fellow train passenger with my lungs this time…

  9. GrumpyCatFace says:

    Looking forward to the day when a single game somehow occupies all 10 spots, and John’s head explodes.

    • LewdPenguin says:

      Sadly even though I’m sure Ubisoft, EA, Bethesda et al all have at least as many people working on ingenious ways to sell different versions of the same thing at ever higher price points, it’s all for nought as pLUnKbAT is scheduled to remain in the #1 spot until well after our sun expires.

      • brucethemoose says:

        Pub is still early access, right?

        They should make exactly 10 different editions on release, just so it eats up the whole chart.

  10. DEspresso says:

    Not a great position for that MG to cover that last flag, you have only 1.5 seconds to react when Tommy speeds around the corner. Besides you can tell by the dead bodies this is ‘nade country.

  11. daver4470 says:

    And then there are games where you get to pretend to be at work.

    But…. at a much better job than any one I’ve had so far, at least.

  12. theoriginalhoxton says:

    Am I the only one missing the reasoning behind having a shadow of mordor picture for Origins?