How the lockdown changed gaming habits – The affect of COVID-19 on daily active users on Steam

by lookatnum

This chart looks at how Steam’s daily active user statistic has changed over the past year. In particular, the coronavirus and the associated lockdowns, layoffs, and economic stimulus, and how these factors influenced people’s gaming habits. Obviously, the development of the pandemic is a complex subject, with countless milestones and landmarks to map out the events over time, but it would be impractical for me to include them all. As such, the only point I marked out was when the pandemic was declared a national emergency in the U.S., which seems to me to be a reasonable landmark to look at, as many other major events (like the passage of various economic stimulus bills, stock market crashes, unemployment, etc.) happened around this time.

The average number of additional players on weekends takes the mean user count on Saturday and Sunday, and subtracts that number by the mean across Monday through Friday. When the bar is green, the number is positive, meaning that there were more active users on the weekends. When the bar is red, the number is negative, meaning that there were more active uesrs on weekdays. Each bar starts on Sunday.

Besides the pandemic, you can also see the weekend/weekday difference decrease around Christmas and New Year’s in 2019.

The color scheme is based on the Steam website.


Tools:

Illustrator, Excel, Python


Source:

SteamDB


Corrections:

In the post title, “effect” is misspelled as “affect”

“Declared” is misspelled as “delcared”