Gamers Hated 2016’s Games, According To Steam’s Most Played Games List
(Last Updated On: January 11, 2017)

According to the revenue reports, the user awards, and now the most played games list, it appears as if gamers really did not take to 2016’s “diversity” driven agenda in games. Well, that’s according to a list of the most played games in 2016 that Githyp compiled.

Similar to Steam Spy, Githyp measured the stats on the most played games that Steam users put time and energy into throughout 2016. What did it show? That all the forced identity politics making their presence known in gaming wasn’t something gamers took fondly to. They definitely gave those games a chance based on the hours played, but as pointed out by Steamed, most gamers decided to sink back into titles released in 2015… or earlier.

So what were the top 5 most played games of 2016? Check out the list below.

  • Dota 2 / 636,607 avg. players per hour (#1 in 2015)
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive / 360,600 avg. players per hour (#2 in 2015)
  • Team Fortress 2 / 50,802 avg. players per hour (#4 in 2015)
  • Grand Theft Auto V / 40,258 avg. players per hour (#5 in 2015)
  • Sid Meier’s Civilization V / 37,885 avg players per hour (#9 in 2015)

But don’t think that gamers weren’t willing to be socially “progressive”. They gave games like Mafia III and Watch Dogs 2 a go ahead. However, they didn’t stick with them for very long. In the case of Mafia III I just couldn’t get into the game due to the lack of gameplay depth and a sparse offering of mechanical diversity. It doesn’t matter what the skin color of the protagonist is, but your game isn’t going to be liked very much if it offers gamers less features than the previous installment that came out six years prior.

I’m pretty sure Overwatch would have made the most played games list had it been available on Steam. It’s a game that’s quite popular with casuals but it also has no gameplay depth either. The fun characters, inviting art-style and top-notch soundtrack helps give the game the appearance of being deeper than what it is, but after half an hour of doing the same thing, it gets boring real fast.

Other games like The Division also didn’t make the top 10 charts, along with strong contenders like Total War: Warhammer.

However, some of 2016’s offerings did make the peak players list. As I mentioned, a lot of gamers were willing to give 2016’s offerings a try… at the very least, as evidenced by the appearance of No Man’s Sky making the number 3 slot on the top 5 peak players list.

  • Dota 2 / 1,286,617 peak players (#1 in 2015)
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive / 845,806 peak players (#2 in 2015)
  • No Man’s Sky / 212,321 peak players (new)
  • XCOM 2 / 132,834 peak players (new)
  • Dark Souls III / 129,922 peak players (new)

It’s nice to see deserving titles like XCOM 2 up there. However, No Man’s Sky should also have an asterisk by it stating “This figure was in result of the biggest bait and switch of eighth gen gaming”.

One thing is quite evident, though: this whole diversity and identity politics push just isn’t paying off in the long term. We saw how gamers rejected 2016’s offerings when it came to the Steam awards, opting instead to stick with old favorites, just the same as we saw how the actual sales saw games not released in 2016 taking in large pieces of the pie in total revenue in the previous year.

Developers and publishers seem to think that forfeiting good gameplay in place of socially aware topic matter is the way forward in gaming. However, sales, play-time, engagement and satisfaction from actual consumers all speak otherwise.

If developers continue to move backward with their gameplay offerings, don’t be surprised to continue to see pre-2015 games still rounding out the charts and winning all the community awards at the end of 2017.

(Main image courtesy of GretaMacedonia)

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Billy has been rustling Jimmies for years covering video games, technology and digital trends within the electronics entertainment space. The GJP cried and their tears became his milkshake. Need to get in touch? Try the Contact Page.

  • K Bell

    The new business models (in the incredibly inbred AAA market) go hand-in-hand with the SJW overdose. Greedy narcissistic sociopaths know they have to appear concerned about humanity to stay in power. SJW propaganda–in the absence of ever taking any helpful or courageous action–sells to morons and keeps the baddies in power. Heil, HRC!

    • TheScienceEnthusiast1130

      lol agreed

  • fnd

    I dunno Billy, you seem to be putting a narrative that diversity and id politics doesnt sell(maybe true when there isn’t anything on the table) but then you get OverSJWatch with their lesbian, homosexuals and trans characters. What about the new Deus Ex? I remember a character in the game moaning about SJW’s, but his politics where probably evil, trying to put the beast mark on augmented transhumans (a satanic religion btw). Weird.

    • Hey now, Blizzard pulled a bait and switch with Overwatch. The game was huge in the news for the whole SJW buttroversy, but they never mentioned anything about specific identity politics until after they had more than 10 million registered users. They had all year to mention Tracer being gay but never bothered to bring it up until they had a saturated user base. And then they made a big announcement about injecting identity politics into the game (we still don’t know who the trans character is, my guess is Lucio, and we still don’t know who the other gay or lesbian characters are but most people expect Zarya).

      Deus Ex just kind of faded away. I think the big problem with that game was that it falls into the same problem that a lot of the other games fell into: it didn’t really do anything different.

      Deus Ex games were always about politics, but the original game was about pushing the boundaries in gameplay and storytelling, the same thing with Deus Ex Human Revolution. What did Mankind Divided actually bring to the table?

      In reality, the non-SJW games still suffer the same as SJW games when it comes to actual gameplay. As I mentioned in the article, the 2016 games didn’t really offer anything new, and this also included non-SJW games like Deus Ex. Maybe if the game introduced a new rendering technique and sold itself on graphics the way Battlefield 3 or Crysis did, it could have racked up some more sales.

      • fnd

        Deus ex sold itself on high requeriment hardware. Still butthurt about it.

  • Andy578

    it might help too if they actually made good fucking games. the SJW shit doesn’t help either and i can usually look past it but some of these games really want to throw it in your face and make sure there’s no possible way you can just ignore it. if they actually make those characters more natural and not forced it’d be fine but the way they are doing things is more just for attention then anything else

    • Same here. I’m willing to overlook SJW BS in games if the game is good. If there’s some innovative gameplay implemented, I’ll play it. If there’s some cool new physics systems being utilized, I’ll check it out. If they’re utilizing progressive mechanics to give gamers an all new way to play the game (e.g., Kerbal Space Program, DayZ, Assassin’s Creed, Mirror’s Edge) then it’s all fine in my book.

      The problem is that we’ve been getting regressive gameplay mechanics, worse physics implementations, and all of this SJW BS shoved in there. It’s almost like they don’t want people to buy games anymore.

  • The Jackal

    I’m not sure what you mean about Overwatch not having gamplay depth. When you play low level, non-ranked, I agree. But that applies to almost any game. At higher level, particularly ranked, I can say that how one plays impacts the game’s end result, largely.

    • Not every character can sprint, not every character can climb, only some characters get shields or defensive abilities, and there is no item management, no weapon management, no weapon depth, no item depth, no destructibility, no physics, no vehicles, limited map strategies and no unlockables to increase or alter the gameplay mechanics.

      Overwatch has fewer gameplay mechanics and depth than Team Fortress 2, which was released a decade ago.

      • The Jackal

        Not saying that I wouldn’t enjoy it if all characters could sprint, but giving each character the same abilities creates less distinction in their function. All characters climbing wouldn’t suit the game; it’s better left for few. Having Lucio on your team allows everyone to move faster in an AoE which, in a sense, creates a sprint function for the team.

        I’ve always thought of it as sort of a MOBA-ability-esque FPS. I’m not saying the game is perfect, but I think it draws a lot of unnecessary negativity. I do believe that an item system that would help specialize and create greater diversity would be a good and welcome addition to the game.

        • It’s fine people enjoy Overwatch, but compared to games more than a decade old, it just has no depth. I understand they were going for an FPS-MOBA feel, which is fine… but after half an hour I was bored out of my wits left wondering “Is this it?”

          Once I figured out how to get easy kills with Hanzo, Torbjorn and Bastion the game got stale… real fast. I can see why it’s popular with casuals because it’s easy to play, but coming off games with progressive gameplay mechanics like Warframe, the Assassin’s Creed series, or the Metro games, it was impossible for me to enjoy Overwatch for any length of time beyond a few minutes.

          • Disqusted

            I’ve been thinking maybe people just like Overwatch because it’s a newer Team Fortress 2. Wait until people get sick of Overwatch, and then release essentially the same thing as a new game, and it’ll probably be popular.

            I’m not a fan of games that restrict basic abilities to certain classes. I’m the kind of person who likes to have lots of abilities to choose from and use at any moment. I hate being crippled.

          • Exactly.

            But the thing is, it’s a newer Team Fortress 2 that’s worse!

            You don’t get the crafting, loot system, variety of modes or modding capabilities that you get with Team Fortress 2. Granted, TF2 didn’t launch out the gate with all of what it has now, but it did have enough content to definitely separate itself from the Call of Duties and Battlefields at the time.

            Overwatch’s gameplay has no separation from games like Paladins, SMITE, Paragon, Battleborn or Mirage: Arcane Warfare. What really sells Overwatch is everything outside of the game, especially the characters, lore and world building that Blizzard put into it.

            But yeah, I agree that I like having tons of abilities to explore and exploit with a character, not just get jammed into a restrictive class. It wouldn’t have been so bad if maybe there was also more to the game. Once you master a certain class it’s not like the game changes in anyway or there’s some crazy map designs, or some sort of other element at play. Heck, even Halo 5 had the Warzone mode, which really flipped the PvPvE element on its head and I least have to give 343 props for experimenting with that mode.

  • Disqusted

    I don’t recall particularly liking any 2016 games, although I don’t think I played many. The games I did play and liked weren’t released in 2016. The Last Guardian and Dark Souls 3 were disappointing. I liked Bloodborne a hell of a lot more than Dark Souls 3.

    I just finished Persona 5 (which was a 2016 release in Japan), and thought it was pretty good. Very high quality production with amazing attention to detail. No idea how it compares to other Megami Tensei games, as I haven’t played any of them. I like that Persona 5’s story focuses on cronyism/nepotism/corruption in society, which more people should be made aware of.

    But as a game, I feel that it’s bound too tightly to the story, which negatively impacts the player’s freedom. This is particularly evident if you want to replay the game, as you have to sit through the entire ultra-long story again (~80-100 hours worth). It’s kinda like a visual novel with the “game” portion tacked on. I had the same problem with Akiba’s Trip 2; I wanted to replay it, but I got so sick of having to go through the story over, and over, and over.

    Maybe I just don’t have patience for that kind of thing anymore. I think those kinds of games would be fine if they had a free roam mode after completion, like Yakuza’s Premium Adventure, or whatever it’s called.

  • Sevuz

    I am glad to see that some sanity is still left. The SJW and fem propaganda needs a giant kick in the ass out of gaming or least stay in their own corner where we don’t have to deal with them. But I n´know that is too much to ask for.

    One of this year’s games i have VERY BIG concerns about, is the new Mass Effect. They really seem keen on to have “diversity” and socially “progressive” ideas shoved in if they can. But then again it’s their game and they can do what they want. But if it becomes like Dragon Age: Inquisition (They killed of the Dark Fantasy theme completely in that one and made it corny) then I am signing off on this one as well.

  • durka durka

    but what about doom? I think that was an anpologetic middle finger to them.

    • LurkerJK

      Doom kinda shot its own foot by having the marketing focus on the multiplayer, that probably cost them sales

      Almost every piece of oficial marketing is about the mp, the dlcs are about the mp, the early showing was about the mp beta, I’ve seen a few ppl say the mp is “not horrible” but that’s hardly the reaction the single player got

      It made me question several times if they knew wtf they had on their hands

      I’m also surprised how many ppl are forgetting about it in lists or year mentions, another sign of marketing failure

      • Sevuz

        Yeah the focus on the boring COD7HALO like MP wasn’t a big seller for many xD

      • durka durka

        It did sell though.

      • Disqusted

        I heard Doom’s single player is awesome, and the multiplayer is horrible trash, or not great. Pretty sad if the devs/publishers/whatever can’t tell which part of their game is good or bad.

        They probably believed that bullshit some asshole said a while back, that single player is dead. “We gotta market this game on its multiplayer, nobody plays single player!”

        • Reven

          I wouldn’t even say the Doom MP was horrible, it was just that… you could tell SP and MP were made by totally different teams. They didn’t feel the same. MP is nothing special, but I still pop into an occasional deathmatch or two and have fun.

        • LurkerJK

          Doom was the best single player fps I’ve played in years

          Sadly a lot of the “journos” are mp fanatics and like parroting the whole “nobody plays single player” shit

          They were the same crowd praising capcom for killing resident evil with coop and asking for coop in every game no matter the consequences

    • Doom was okay for me.

      Let’s be honest here: it had none of the emergent map discovery of the original Dooms. It was a wave-based shooter with good gunplay, satisfying kills, a rocking soundtrack and adequate minion designs (the bosses were freaking legit, though).

      The major problem was that it didn’t feel like Doom Guy was there to discover but there to kill (maybe that wasn’t a problem from a story perspective, because honestly this was the most badass incarnation of Doom Guy ever since he was literally there to be a nightmare to demons). But backtracking, secrets, etc., etc., were kind of put on the back burner for arena-style map designs.

      Again, it’s not bad, but it also wasn’t really Doom. It would have been nice if there were a few more puzzle-oriented levels with the sort of horror feel of the original games where you didn’t know what lurked around the corner.

      A lot of people forget that the original Dooms managed to combine fast-paced FPS gameplay with horror elements (stepping into a dark room only for a back wall to open and some naked flaming man toasting your behind) and puzzle-style level progression (flip the right switch, find the right key, open the right door).

      Add on to the fact that the new Doom’s multiplayer was nothing like the original Doom’s multiplayer and it brought it down a notch.

      But you’re absolutely right that Doom gave a nice, thick middle-finger to all the standard tropes making games terrible and I applaud id Software for that.

      • Reven

        I can see where you’re coming from, but personally I’ve found myself in every level wandering around looking for the collectables and secrets than the combat. I actually got lost in one of the earlier levels even with the map, ended going in circles for about 20 minutes. I do get ya though, but even if it isn’t a complete return to form, it’s still a very satisfying shooter that had no right to be as good as it actually is.

  • R3474X0R

    Those themes probably would have been less of an issue to people if they weren’t so forcefully stamped down everyone’s throat with a “buy this or else you’re a racist/sexist bigot” by a certain gaming media clique and also devs of those games.
    That type of marketing doesn’t pique any curiosity, it only chases people away.

    • Not only that, but they force-fed people this whole diversity stuff and then took away a lot of the good gameplay mechanics. You’re paying more, getting less and basically getting lectured about sociopolitical ideologies.

      At that point, it’s no longer gaming, it’s indoctrination.

      • Disqusted

        I miss when games were mostly about gameplay, not ideology, story, cutscenes, political correctness, personal agenda, etc.

        Speaking of political correctness, I recently heard that in order to get a low age rating in the West, Astebreed had to have bikinis/leotards removed and replaced with coats. Maybe that’s old news, I don’t know.

        I personally think it says a lot when Japanese kids can handle that kind of content without having a mental breakdown, but Western kids can’t.

        • Feli Aslan

          I miss the times when storydriven games where about much more thoughtful topics and themes, like the journey of a young prince to become a man, stories about love, friendship and war like the old Final Fantasies or about a Sith-Lord teaching us Nietzsches philosopie of the Übermensch.