Artifact hits 55k concurrent player peak for first day in the wild

Artifact hits 55k concurrent player peak for first day in the wild

Valve's new release Artifact appears to be off to a decent start, reaching a high of 55,084 concurrent players in its first day in the wild.

That's according to SteamCharts, which pegs the average player count for the brand new card game at 48,651 users. At the time of writing, the project has 43,506 users.

Not only that, the game is already the fourth most popular game on Steam, coming in behind Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2 and Playerunknown's Battlegrounds. Yes, that does mean that Valve titles make up three of the five most popular games on Steam.

Furthermore, 297,054 hours have already been played so far.

The game isn't doing so bad when it comes to streaming, either, with Artifact boasting 24,332 viewers on Twitch at the time of writing.

Artifact is the first game in a renewed focus on software development for Washington-based PC games giant Valve. The firm stepped away from this business in 2013 following the launch of its blockbuster MOBA Dota 2, on which Artifact is based.

In the interim time, the company focused more of its time and money on developing hardware, namely the Steam VR platform. The first tech to use this was HTC'sVive VR, which launched at the end of 2016.

Why Valve has decided to return to software is unclear, but it's likely that this is simply what the company's staff wanted to do.

Valve has said that Artifact isn't a competitor to Blizzard's Hearthstone - currently the biggest name in the digital card game genre.

Despite having an impressive launch, Artifact has experienced some controversy in the build-up to release. The firm had to change the name of a rather tone-deaf card in October, and recently it has experienced some difficulties when it comes to the game's monetisation strategy.

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.