Steam is one of the most popular video game digital distribution services.
It has over 120 million monthly active users in over 230 countries.
The service offers a ton of third-party games like Counter-Strike and GTA V.
It has over 50,000 games (in the US catalog) which consist of both paid and free-to-play ones.
Here are the top 10 most popular Steam games based on the number of current and peak players:
- Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
- Dota 2
- Lost Ark
- PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS
- Apex Legends
- ARK: Survival Evolved
- Team Fortress 2
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Wallpaper Engine
1. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
The most popular Steam game is Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
It has about 500,000 daily players and a peak of 830,000 players.
Counter-Stike: Global Offensive is also one of the most popular games in the world (by player count) behind Lineage and Overwatch.
The game is dominating in the professional scene with a ton of leagues and tournaments.
When a Major tournament (e.g. PGL Major) is live on Twitch, its viewers can go over a million.
Major Championships are sponsored by Valve where the prize pool is at least $1,000,000.
2. Dota 2
Dota 2 is the second most popular Steam game with about 500,000 daily players and a peak of 640,000 players.
It’s a free-to-play multiplayer online battle arena game like League of Legends.
Similar to Counter-Strike, the game is also developed and published by Valve.
Dota 2 and Counter-Stike: Global Offensive are always toe-to-toe in claiming the top Steam game.
In the professional scene, The International (an annual Dota 2 tournament) has one of the largest prize money at $47.76 million.
3. Lost Ark
By Tripod Studio and Smilegate RPG, Lost Ark is a 2.5D fantasy MMO RPG.
It’s currently the third most popular Steam game with over 300,000 daily players.
Unfortunately, Lost Ark is unavailable in a lot of regions because of its RNG content (loot boxes).
Countries in Southeast Asia, Belgium, the Netherlands, and more do not have access to the game.
4. PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS
Land on strategic locations, loot weapons and survive to become the last team standing.
PUBG: BATTLEGROUNDS is a battle royale game (similar to Fortnite) developed by Krafton.
It has about 250,000 daily players and a peak of over 370,000 players.
Released on 21 Dec 2017, the game has received a lot of mixed reviews on Steam.
Most negative reviews are about hackers and expensive microtransactions.
PUBG Mobile is one of the most popular games in India.
5. Apex Legends
Apex Legends is a free-to-play shooter game developed by Respawn Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts.
Since its Steam release on November 4, 2020, the game has over 200,000 daily active players and a peak of over 320,000 players.
The game has a variety of Legends, tactical gameplay, and innovations that revolutionizes the battle royale experience.
Each legend has its own personality, strengths, and abilities that are easy to learn, but hard to master.
There are a ton of powerful weapons and equipment that you can utilize.
In 2020, Apex Legends won the “Best game you suck at” award.
It also has over 50 awards and nominations and is named “Best shooter 2019” by IGN.
6. ARK: Survival Evolved
With about 140,000 daily players and a peak of 180,000 players, ARK: Survival Evolved is the 5th most popular Steam game.
You’re stranded on an island called ARK and you must hunt, harvest, and build to survive.
Dinosaurs and primeval creators roam the land where you can tame and breed them.
You can also team up with other players to survive, dominate, and escape the island.
There are 100+ player servers where your character, builds, and tames will be saved in-game even if you leave.
7. Team Fortress 2
One of the highest-rated free-to-play games of all time, Team Fortress 2, is also the 7th most played game on Steam.
It has about 129,000 daily players and a peak of over 138,000 players.
The game has consistent updates including new game modes, maps, and equipment.
Team Fortress 2 has multiple game modes—Capture the Flag, Control Point, Payload, Arena, King of the Hill, and more.
Most importantly, you don’t have to pay to win as almost all of the items in the Mann Co. Store can be obtained in-game.
8. Grand Theft Auto V
Grand Theft Auto V is no stranger to the gaming industry.
Over 165 million copies of the game have been sold with over $6 billion in revenue.
This makes it one of the most popular games in the world.
On Steam alone, GTA V has about 100,000 daily players and a peak of over 125,000 players.
The game has a strong modding community with thousands of mods made by its own players.
It has a high number of average viewers on Twitch as a ton of popular streamers play the game.
9. Wallpaper Engine
Wallpaper Engine is technically not a game, but it deserves a spot on this list.
The software allows you to use live wallpapers on your Windows desktop.
This includes 3D/2D animations, websites, videos, and even apps.
You can choose an existing wallpaper or make your own and share it with others.
Additionally, you can download the Wallpaper Engine companion app on the Google Play Store.
The app allows you to transfer wallpapers to your device and use them on the go.
With about 85,000 daily users and a peak of over 98,000 users, Wallpaper Engine secures the 9th spot.
Do whatever it takes to survive the island as everything in it wants to harm you.
Since its launch on 8 February 2018, Rust has over 300 content updates and a guaranteed patch each month.
This includes balance fixes, AI improvements, graphics updates, and more.
Build a shelter, eat (or be eaten), and scavenge materials.
There are a ton of abandoned settlements and mysterious monuments that you can explore.
The game has about 80,000 daily players and a peak of over 100,000 players.
This list is taken from the official game statistics by Steam.
Steam open shares game data by spotting problems earlier and improving its services.
The data includes the top 100 Steam games by the number of current and peak players.
If you have any questions about it, you can ask them in the Steam Discussions.