Most popular and highest rated games currently on Steam

Steam games

We like stats and figures, particularly those that shed light on the gaming industry.

And like our article regarding Steam’s most recent Hardware Survey suggests, we especially enjoy delving into the belly of Valve’s super-platform and seeing what we can dig up.

Fortunately, Steam makes finding a lot of the most prevalent statistics relatively easy to find. And in the case where it doesn’t, there are sites like Steam Spy and Steam Database that will do it for you.

We thought we might grab a few figures and stats from all 3 sources and give you a little peak at how games are doing on the PC’s most prominent digital conveyor.

*All stats are as of the time of writing – August 25th.

Most Popular “Online” Games on Steam – Ordered by Current Players
Game Owners
Current Players
Players in the last two weeks
Dota 2 55,609,397 700,730 9,257,044
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive 15,632,682 443,853 6,683,108
Team Fortress 2 29,620,885 62,676 2,089,209
PAYDAY 2 28,587,821 36,818 789,378
ARK: Survival Evolved 1,517,967 31,808 614,587
Grand Theft Auto V 2,919,113 30,640 1,045,750
Garry’s Mod 9,540,374 28,437 1,455,592
Unturned 17,106,951 26,782 1,246,795
Warframe 8,734,257 25,767 575,295
Sid Meier’s Civilization V 7,765,859 24,206 876,774


We’ve ordered the list according to Steam’s preference, by “current players”. But it’s pretty clear to see that some of the most owned games are no longer played as much.

Gary’s Mod and Unturned are perhaps the best examples. For one, Gary’s Mod goes for next-to-nothing on virtually every Steam Sale, making it impossible not to pick up at one point or another, but it lacks a lot of lasting appeal for many.

Unturned, on the other hand, is a free-to-play zombie survival title. For a number of months, that was the only type of game people seemed interested in, and Unturned offered a free, no risk opportunity to give it a go. In actuality, the game is pretty buggy, very simple and, again, offers little incentive for most to keep investing in it.

Dota 2, on the other hand, with its well-maintained community, continuous updates, new events and immense tournaments, will likely sit on top for a long time to come.

That said, the difference in owners and those who are actually playing it tells you how harsh of an experience it is for some.

You’ll notice the likes of Call of Duty aren’t on this list, the first being Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 at number 38. That’s because they rarely drop below $20. No one is going to pay the price Activision is asking for this late into their release.

Most Popular “Single Player” Games on Steam
Game Current Players
Football Manager 2015 36, 308
Clicker Heroes 32, 254
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim 19, 015
AdVenture Capitalist 8, 859
Euro Truck Simulator 2 8, 362
Fallout: New Vegas 5, 238
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 5, 066
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth 4, 700
Cities: Skylines 3, 803
Time Clickers 3, 401


*Only wholly singleplayer games are considered. Local co-op only is acceptable.

Do we really need to explain the appeal of games like Clicker Heroes, AdVenture Capitalist and Time Clickers? They’re free, extremely casual and work on practically every type of PC. That means they’re going to get downloaded a lot, and played at least once by a good deal of the community.

On the other hand, Skyrim, The Witcher 3 and Fallout: New Vegas speak to the PC gaming community’s love for open-world RPGs. Games that are replayable, vast and often a number of experiences – they’re also marketed like no other.

And then you get games that are both maintained by their communities and just play really rather well for their genre, like The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, Cities: Skylines and Euro Truck Simulator 2.

Highest Rated Games
Game Wilson Score
Portal 2 98.87%
One Finger Death Punch 98.8%
Crypt of the NecroDancer 98.34%
Portal 98.23%
Kung Fury 98.07%
Lethal League 98%
Counter-Strike 97.98%
Broforce 97.95%
Mark of the Ninja 97.89%
BattleBlock Theater 97.88%


For those wondering how each game is rated, we want to but unfortunately can’t – not without pages of mathematical theory. Steam Database, quite intelligently, uses the Wilson Score (explained here) to provide the best possible, all-factors-considered score.

Notice the number of indie titles on the list? It’s no accident.

Indie games do less than their larger triple-A counterparts, but more often than not get what they do right. They’re larger, more wholesome experiences as a result, or at least in most cases.

It’s either that or they’re just a lot of fun.

We’d also just love to give props to Broforce, a locally produced South African game. Good job Free Lives.

Highest Rated “AAA” Games
Game Wilson Score
Portal 2 98.87%
Portal 98.23%
Counter-Strike 97.89%
The Wolf Among Us 97.56%
South Park: The Stick of Truth 97.40%
Life Is Strange 97.34%
Left 4 Dead 2 97.21%
Plants vs. Zombies: Game of the Year 97.20%
Half-Life 2 97.18%
The Walking Dead 97.08%


For this final list, we thought we’d give triple-A games a shot at the spotlight, not that Portal 2 needs the help – as the highest rated game on Steam of all time.

What you should notice is the number of TellTale games on the list. They really seem to know what they’re doing as of late, and it all started with The Walking Dead.

Of course, Valve holds the most spots on this list, 5 to be exact, and South Park: The Stick of Truth is probably the best licensed game to date.

What do you think of these stats? Are any of your favourites in anyone of these lists?

Source(s): Steam Stats, Steam Database, Steam Spy

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Most popular and highest rated games currently on Steam

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