Note: This is an old post that still seems relevant. It’s also a better fit for this blog, so I’m reposting it here.
Ah.. Steam. One of those late bloomers.
I recall when Steam was released in 2003 by Valve, forcing every single Counter-Strike player into it. Yells of revolt and “Why Valve? Why?” were heard, people in IRC and forums were all pissed and clamoring for the boycott of Half Life and CS.
Back in those days, it was hard to believe that Steam could succeed. Making people pay for games (and somehow have the large number of underage players get access to a credit card) was gonna be a tough challenge. But Valve kept strong.
Fast forward and what do we see today? Steam looks like a “Great Success”. A lot of big publishers have slowly jumped on board and Steam now sells more than the Valve games. Big names arrive quickly to the system and indie devs are publishing there, providing a huge selection of titles and easy access by users.
As of January 2014, there are over 3000 games available through Steam and 75 million “active” users. In February 2014, it was announced that Steam had surpassed 7.5 million concurrent users. In October 2013, it was estimated that 75% of purchased games downloaded for the PC are through Steam.
Steam has become the de facto place to go to buy games.
Bravo Valve. Well played.
Originally written on the 27th of March of 2014.