Valve reveals Steam's biggest moneymakers in 2023, with some big surprises

Valve reveals Steam's biggest moneymakers in 2023, with some big surprises
Bethesda | Valve

Written by 

Harry Boulton


28th Dec 2023 09:43

It's that time of year again and the best-selling games on Steam have been revealed, giving us a glimpse at the most popular games - with some surprising entries that you might not have expected at the top of the list.

There are many of the usual suspects on here, from long-standing live service titles to the biggest releases from this year like Starfield and Baldur's Gate 3. These moneymakers aren't just measured on pure unit sales either, as it takes into account the full gross revenue gained by a game's sales and/or in-game purchases.

Which games are at the top?

Image of the 2023 Steam best sellers page
Click to enlarge

The list itself is broken down into four sections, giving us the 'Platinum', 'Gold', 'Silver', and 'Bronze' games which roughly correlate to their position on the list. The games aren't ordered within the categories themselves, but only the top 12 titles earn themself the honour of the Platinum categorisation.

Making it into this top category are long-running stapes like Counter-Strike 2, Dota 2, and Destiny 2 (maybe two really is the magic number), and they are joined by a few of the year's biggest releases like the aforementioned Starfield and Baldur's Gate 3, alongside Hogwarts Legacy too.

Sons of the Forest is the sole 'indie' representation in this section, as the early-access survival game definitely made an impression after its release in February. It is Lost Ark, however, that perhaps impresses the most  - as the MMORPG rises above all competition despite some players writing it off.

While both only make the 'Silver' tier, breakout hits Lethal Company and BattleBit Remastered have clearly sold exceptionally well too - proving that you don't need a massive dev team or a huge budget to throw punches at the top.

The Cyberpunk resurgence is clear

Image of a character in a yellow jacket facing away from the camera in Cyberpunk 2077
Click to enlarge

One additional story made clear by this list is the true resurgence of Cyberpunk 2077 post-Phantom Liberty expansion and Update 2.0.

It would be silly to sit here and pretend that the game has ever sold poorly - considering it still holds the highest all-time peak for a single-player game - but it is a testament to the work that CD PROJEKT RED has put into the game that it still remains among the best sellers three years post-release.

While acquisitions might not be in the future of CDPR, it is clear that any hype or praise surrounding their neon-lit dark future world is not going anywhere anytime soon.

Harry Boulton
About the author
Harry Boulton
Harry is a Guides Writer at GGRecon, having completed a Masters of Research degree in Film Studies. Previously a freelance writer for PCGamesN, The Loadout, and Red Bull Gaming, he loves playing a wide variety of games from the Souls series to JRPGs, Counter-Strike, and EA FC. When not playing or writing about games and hardware, you're likely to find him watching football or listening to Madonna and Kate Bush.
CS Pro carries his team to victory despite suffering from food poisoning
Baldur’s Gate 3 mod takes RPG from horny to wholesome
Starfield's next update adds 60FPS, improved surface maps, and more
Cloud9 announces "full rebuilding process" as HObbit and perfecto depart
Esports World Cup CS2 open qualifier sees multiple major upsets