Valve has been running a big assortment of gaming titles on their pet platform Steam, but the best, and supposedly most played games on their platform, is nothing but games developed by Valve themselves. Conspiracy, advertising, or just a better reputation that spreads by word of mouth as more gamers approach the Internet, and Steam as the ultimate gaming platform? Whatever be the case, for quite a few years in the last decade, DOTA 2 and Counter Strike : Global Offensive have been ruling the roost as the most played, most talked about games on Steam. However, if you check the Steam Spy charts now, there is a different game at the top. It is neither DOTA 2, nor Counter Strike : Global Offensive – it is PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS, one of the latest entries into the Steam store. Hereupon the big question lies – where did Valve go wrong, and how is PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS getting attention over a game that had been a business stronghold for Valve as well as one of the most talked about games in online forums and on social media?
If you ask people the same question, the most obvious answer would be “PLAYERUNKNOWN’S is a new game, while Counter Strike has been around for a longer time!” What they don’t answer is, why is this change a sudden one, and why is the community swayed by the promises of a developer different from the owner of the platform they play games on, and how come an Early Access game is defeating a fully fledged one, which has seen years of gameplay after release? (One of the main reasons we should be talking about this – not all Early Access games are bad, and people need to learn that).
If you’re a Counter Strike : Global Offensive player, chances are there you have explored the past titles as well. And if you’ve been for the long run, you will know how Global Offensive proved to be the glowing Queen among all the Counter Strike releases, after 1.6 and Source. Despite its popularity, Valve’s irresponsible attitude towards the game in general made the players jump ship, which is also sounding the death knell for the game. “But it still is the 3rd most played game in the world!” yeah, sure, it is, but no one knows for how long.
A quick reference to our article at http://indiannoob.in/valves-negligence-is-coming-down-hard-on-counter-strike-global-offensive/ will be beneficial, as it covers most of the negative interference caused by Valve in Counter Strike : Global Offensive, which did not strike a cordial note with the players. The worst discovery of all, was the smurf market maybe (a smurf is anyone of a high rank playing with lower ranked players), which gradually became a market of Steam accounts with Counter Strike : Global Offensive in them to hackers, a supposedly undercover black economy taking place in broad daylight, with smurf websites advertising their wares so openly, one might doubt that Valve’s Terms and Conditions are even a thing.
Earlier, people used to call out other people on the basis of ranks, and hacks were expensive stuff handcrafted by the best coders to have cracked open the dark web. Then came the concept of mass-production of accounts, leaving the hackers an unprecedented playing ground, along with the people who make them. Cheaper hacks means more accessible hacks, which proved to be a boon for hackers and a bane for Counter Strike : Global Offensive.
Repeated calls to Valve to fix the VAC system falls on deaf ears. Maps get re-textured, guns get nerfs and buffs (most of which take ages to implement, and when implemented more often than not goes against the player’s wishes), but the VAC system doesn’t get a rework. 100-200 rage hackers get banned daily, but the figure is still nothing as compared to the thousands who are permanently banned by Battleye daily (the anti-cheat protection being used by PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS).Moreover, VAC only bans accounts, whereas Battleye bans hardware IDs, which means that any system on which the game gets a ban can’t play that game again, on any other account.
Newer games definitely get more attention than older ones, but when an old game’s concept appears more appealing solely because the developer is more keen to listen to the community, the cracks become more visible in its competitors. Despite not being a direct competitor due to the difference in the nature of the games – PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS is a battle royale survival game, while Counter Strike : Global Offensive is a squad based shooter game – when you get a game which isn’t ruined by hackers every other game, doesn’t have a toxic community (or more like a community which you can ignore) or rather, has a developer which patches in content as soon as the community becomes vocal about it.
A Steam Spy tweet removes any need for statistical proof should any one try to defend out Valve on this. The tweet fro, Steam Spy here : https://twitter.com/Steam_Spy/status/902166126427328513 – proves beyond doubt that most players of PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS are simply Counter Strike : Global Offensive players. If a Twitter account studying trends in games on Steam doesn’t satisfy you and releasing information in a sarcastic manner doesn’t go down well, actual statistics will.
The tweet from Steam Spy is what I am trying to convey throughout the article – it is Valve’s negligence and carelessness about Counter Strike : Global Offensive that is making players make the leap over to PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS. Not that the game’s concept isn’t new and interesting, it started off as a mod for ARMA 3, and later became a full fledged game when a developer approached the idea with eagerness. When I look to the past, I can see another mod – a mod for Half Life, and later for Half Life 2, which was later repackaged and developed as a full game. A game which is now meeting its tragic demise, thanks to the developers who no longer care about it, or the millions of hackers on their servers ruining the experience for legitimate players, forcing them to find other games for their daily entertainment.
Just my two cents on the matter, but my voice echoes that of a few million frustrated gamers, who were forced off Counter Strike : Global Offensive, and who found refuge in PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS.