What Makes CS:GO the King of Shooters? CSGO Player Count Analyzed

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CSGO Player Count – Explained 2019

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is often called the most popular competitive online shooter or the king of online tactical shooters. However, that has to be based on something other than simple sentiment.

In this post, we will look at one of the most important data for any game – player count. In its most basic sense, it is an indicator of how well the game fares. For example, a high and stable population of gamers suggests that it is liked, the content is satisfying and they have found what they were looking for. A sudden surge in the number of players shows that a new major update, patch or change to the game interested either returning or new players. Similarly, the first month after the launch and the first year are considered very important statistics. How many players left after just a few weeks? How many stayed. What is the difference between the population of the first month versus the population today? It all gives important data to the game developers, basing on which they can make strategic decisions in regard to the future of that particular game.

So, let’s look at some data and analyze the CSGO player count to try and decide how popular it really is. 

CSGO popularity over the years?

If take a look at the Steam Charts data regarding the all-time number of concurrent players in CSGO, it is quite easy to see that the population is on a steady rise. Just comper the first month with the 30k concurrent player peak as well as a little over 100k concurrent CSGO players a year after release with current numbers easily reaching 700k. Moreover, the average is also quite good, as for the past few months it reached around 400k. With a little over 700k peak concurrent players, the Steam CSGO player count stays both high and stable.

Moreover, whenever analyzing such data, we can find which events bring the most people by the relative peaks we can see around the dates of the events. From this, we can clearly see how popular the CSGO becomes around the time of Major tournaments. This is especially visible during the Boston Major 2018 (January). Another very visible peak that brought in many new players was Valve’s decision to go with the free-to-play model from December 2018. As we can see from the player count CSGO data the change in the number of players between December 2018 and January 2019 was almost 30%. Although this is not the biggest change in the history of the Steam player count CSGO has seen, it is still the biggest one in the later years when the population was already huge. After all, there’s a huge difference between 30% out of 100k and 30% out of 600k, right?

From all the data, we can safely assume that the CSGO popularity doesn’t fade, but rather grows more and more. 

How and where can you check CSGO popularity?

There is a number of tools and websites that gather the data about the player base of different games, including the player count for CSGO, and offer them for free. This works quite well, but especially for games played on Steam, mostly because Steam API allows gathering such data by their users as well as third-party tools that utilize the API. 

To see the CSGO player count you can use a tool we use: Steam Charts. It is a third-party tool that shows an ongoing player count data for numerous Steam games. It is also perfect for displaying all-time data or counting down the numbers and changes between separate time periods like months, years or periods of your own choice. 

Another way is to go simply for the Steam official data regarding player count and playtime of their numerous titles. There are two huge advantages that the Steam official stats hold over any third-party tool or website. Firstly, they are the official Steam’s tool, meaning they are the ones to collect the data at their source. Secondly, they have some very helpful filters if you wish to compare two or more different games. 

Recent changes to CSGO that affected popularity

Although every new operation and major update raise the CSGO player count, by far the most important change to the CSGO formula was changing the buy-to-play model into a free-to-play one. In December 2018, CSGO became free for anyone to play. You still have the option to pay for a prime account which allows the holder to matchmake only with other holders of Prime Status. Prime Status holders are also eligible for exclusive drops: souvenirs, weapon cases, and skins. Together with the free-to-play update, CSGO introduced their own Battle Royale game mode known as Danger Zone. However, it became rather unpopular shortly after the release.

Other events that usually bring more people back to the game are CSGO major tournaments. Many of the come-backers don’t play the game though, but rather watch the streams of the matches for the exclusive souvenir drops. Especially after the famous $61k Souvenir AWP | Dragon Lore, people tend to make some money on watching the tournament matches. 

Big and still growing

When taking a closer look at CSGO player count and the changes it undergoes it is clear that CSGO has all right to be called the king of online competitive shooters. With a well-established eSports scene, hundreds of thousands of concurrent players each month and steadily growing numbers, it may only become even bigger. The question is though, for how long?