Valve has released its annual ‘Best of 2023’ list on Steam, revealing which games dominated PC sales. The titles have not been numerically ranked, but have been classified into four levels based on data collected from January 1 to December 15, 2023: Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze.
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The Top 12 category includes both free-to-play multiplayer games and the largest releases, with the best-selling titles being the award-winning Baldur’s Gate 3, Starfield, Cyberpunk 2077, and Hogwarts Legacy. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, which was panned by both fans and critics, likewise rose through the ranks thanks to a devoted fanbase eager to play its multiplayer mode.
Counter-Strike 2, PUBG: Battlegrounds, Apex Legends, Dota 2, and Destiny 2 all reached the Platinum list, with the latter receiving a new addition, ‘The Final Shape,’ in June of this year. Meanwhile, the Gold tier has some absolute bangers, such as the Resident Evil 4 remake, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Elden Ring, which has sold 20 million copies across all platforms at the time of writing. Its success helped Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon, a lesser-known FromSoftware title, rank among the top 24 best-selling games on the platform.
Even FIFA 23 from last year made the cut, which isn’t unexpected given that its follow-up EA Sports FC 24 was released in the middle of the year.
Steam features extra areas for New Releases by Gross Revenue, Most Played, Early Access sales, and more, in addition to an overall Top-Sellers field. Multiplatform games that were poorly regarded appear to be the focus of attention among the most recent releases, with Star Wars Jedi: Survivor and Payday 3 coming out on top, the latter being chastised for a lack of content.
As expected, multiplayer games had the most players (at least 300,000), but certain single-player titles, such as Goose Goose Duck and Hogwarts Legacy, charted alongside Baldur’s Gate 3, which peaked at over 800,000 concurrent players on Steam.
Given that the game had been in early access for nearly three years, developer Larian Studios only expected 100,000 players. At the time of writing, the massive RPG had over 176,000 continuous players, ranking fourth among the most-played titles on the site.
2023 was also an excellent year for studios to test their games in early access and gather feedback. Dave the Diver, a Mintrocket maritime exploration and fishing game, was a fan favorite, even becoming one of the most played games on the Steam Deck.
While it’s normal to expect less graphically intensive titles like Vampire Survivor and Half-Life to appear, Starfield managed to rise to the top despite its lack of optimization, which caused major stutters in congested locations like New Atlantis and the Wild West-themed Akila.
Beat Saber and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR, as well as Half-Life: Alyx, which pits you against the alien Combines, have emerged as virtual reality gaming favorites.
Steam is now running its annual Winter Sale, which offers hefty discounts on new and returning games. It is open until January 5 at 10:30 p.m. IST.