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[ArsTechnica] Introducing Steam Gauge: Ars reveals Steam’s most popular games

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
...We've come up with what we believe is a much more robust way of estimating sales and player data based on publicly available information, at least when it comes to games specifically on Valve’s Steam download service. The information we’ve collected over the past few months includes not only sales estimates for every game on Steam, but also data on how many hours Steam users have spent time playing those games. The result is a wide-ranging survey of a service that estimates suggest represents 70 to 75 percent of the current PC gaming market in the US...

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2014/04/introducing-steam-gauge-ars-reveals-steams-most-popular-games/

Interesting writeup, and interesting results
Edited by -iceblade^ - 4/16/14 at 3:22pm
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post #2 of 12
Very interesting, but keep this in mind (pasted from the comments section)
Quote:
The unplayed stats are basically wrong because until roughly 2010-2011 Steam didn't track or never accurately tracked game play time especially for the first 7 or so years of its existence. So games older than 2009 will have completely wrong or non existent data. And even games released past that time on steam such Deus Ex Invisible War don't work at all for game play stats. That's why HL2: Lost Coast looks so low, everyone already played it BEFORE stats were being tracked.
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post #3 of 12
What about account's set to private? Can they still track playtime on those accounts thru steam ID? I'm not really concerned about privacy issues, I'm just concerned that this data might not be nearly as accurate as they think.
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post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by BinaryDemon View Post

What about account's set to private? Can they still track playtime on those accounts thru steam ID? I'm not really concerned about privacy issues, I'm just concerned that this data might not be nearly as accurate as they think.
Pretty sure steam tracks game time even when a profile is private. Simple because the lowest privacy setting you can set makes your profile only visible to you, so I would assume steam tracks your game time for you to see there.
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post #5 of 12
What is dota2. Seems like everyone plays that game. Is it a mmo
    
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post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by PsYcHo29388 View Post

Pretty sure steam tracks game time even when a profile is private. Simple because the lowest privacy setting you can set makes your profile only visible to you, so I would assume steam tracks your game time for you to see there.

If you log into your account and view the profile, do you have play hours? You do? Stats tracked.

This is very useful in the long run, the ability to define what people enjoy in a game. Will a game be a gamers choice for casual play, is it a game people play religiously? What separates those games, what brings in the players every day no matter what else is released. Maybe it will help some of the crappy knock off styles and bring focus on things people really want in games. Even a copy can be amazing if it's got the game play people want, or even a fresh take (tweaks) on it. Though in the end, it's still hit or miss as to what's going to be the next big thing.
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post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by startekee View Post

What is dota2. Seems like everyone plays that game. Is it a mmo

No it's an action RTS game. The stand alone version of Dota the game that every "moba" game like League of Legends, HoN, etc. are based on.
 
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post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by PsYcHo29388 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by BinaryDemon View Post

What about account's set to private? Can they still track playtime on those accounts thru steam ID? I'm not really concerned about privacy issues, I'm just concerned that this data might not be nearly as accurate as they think.
Pretty sure steam tracks game time even when a profile is private. Simple because the lowest privacy setting you can set makes your profile only visible to you, so I would assume steam tracks your game time for you to see there.

It will track game time for private accounts -- as long as your account is online. Steam doesn't track game time for any account (public or private) when that account is offline. That fact will inevitably bias the player-hours in favor of games where the Steam account has to be online on order for the game to be played (games like Dota 2 and Team Fortress 2, for example).

Steam thinks I've played Civilization V for 146 hours. My actual playtime is at least double that; but my account spends more time offline than online, and I've never intentionally gone online just to play Civ V.
    
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post #9 of 12
These stats can't be 100% accurate for single player games, because Steam doesn't track "offline mode" hours. Also, I see Dota 2 beating TF2 in those stats? Could be due to the issue some other user pointed out. I mean, it's a 2007 game man and Dota 2 just came out compared to it.
post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baghi View Post

These stats can't be 100% accurate for single player games, because Steam doesn't track "offline mode" hours. Also, I see Dota 2 beating TF2 in those stats? Could be due to the issue some other user pointed out. I mean, it's a 2007 game man and Dota 2 just came out compared to it.

Nope, Dota 2 definitely beats TF2. It's been widely available for almost 2 years now, and at any given point has anywhere from 5-10x as many people playing than TF2 if not more.
 
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