Lest any of you doubt the raw power of Steam, the latest numbers should, um, erase that doubt. Yes, that’ll do. Valve says that Steam has seen 178 percent new account growth in the past year and more than 200 percent growth in sales. There’s now more than 30 million Steam accounts out there, and I just used mine to pre-order Fallout: New Vegas.
There’s more than 1,200 games available on Steam, and let’s not forget that some of these games, including Left 4 Dead 2, are now playable on your Mac.
In other words, many, many people are buying their PC games on Steam these days. But you already knew that.
The growth of Steam (and others like it, such as Direct 2 Drive) is one reason why, whenever I read NPD numbers, which doesn’t take into account download services, I’m like, “Great, you can tell me that a ton of people bought Madden at Wal-Mart last month, but can you tell me how many people bought Civilization V via Steam last month? Oh, you can’t? Hmm.”
Clearly this digital distribution thing has caught on with a certain segment of the population.