Grand Theft Auto is still enormously popular.
Despite originally debuting on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 way back in 2013, Grand Theft Auto V’s release on PC is setting a new record. Right now, around 300,000 people are playing GTA V on Steam at the same time, according to the platform’s stat page. That is more than the all-time peak players for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on Steam, which hit 287,411 players back in November 2011. This means GTA V has the highest ever peak concurrent players for a non-Valve game on Steam. This is a pretty impressive feat considering this is the third time developer Rockstar has released this entry in the Grand Theft Auto series over the last 17 months.
In addition to the concurrent player numbers, website Steam Spy estimates the GTA V has already sold around 1 million copies on Steam alone. Steam Spy uses publicly available Steam-account information to extrapolate sales, so this doesn’t include any copies of GTA V on PC sold outside of Valve’s digital-distribution platform.
#GTAV owners on Steam: 1074894 ± 80049 It's really early number and it doesn't include copies sold outside Steam.
— Steam Spy (@Steam_Spy) April 14, 2015
For Rockstar, that’s just another million copies sold to add to the pile. In 2013, GTA V was by far the best-selling release of the year. It surpassed more than 30 million copies shipped to retailers before the end of that year. In 2014, after releasing GTA V on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, total sales ballooned to 45 million. This makes it one of the best-selling games of all time. It has also generated more than $2 billion in revenue for Rockstar and publisher Take-Two Interactive.
But the story of Grand Theft Auto V isn’t just about upfront sales. While the game is generating lots of money through its sales, it will continue to make money for months to come through its GTA: Online mode. This multiplayer world features many in-game purchases, and it is the big way that Rockstar plans to continue making income from GTA V while it works on the next entry in the series. Having hundreds of thousands of people playing online is one way to ensure GTA: Online’s economy thrives.