At its peak, Battlefield 1 had more players online at once than Civilization VI, which launched on the same day.
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The website bf1stats.com indicates that 184,482 people were storming the trenches on PC at Battlefield 1’s peak since its launch on Friday. If Battlefield 1 were on Steam (rather than EA’s Origin), it would beat Civilization VI to the third spot – Firaxis’s latest peaked at 162,314. You may say it’s like comparing apples with oranges, but it speaks to the size of this franchise that it can be a console-focused shooter, yet still draw more players on PC than a strategy series that’s been a stalwart of the platform for twenty-five years.
Most Battlefield 1 players are on Sony’s PlayStation 4, with a peak of 366,603. Add this to the PC community and the 277,299 players on Xbox One, and you get 828,384. Which is an awful lot. Indeed, according to Chart-Track – which tracks only physical sales – the latest EA blockbuster has sold more than predecessors Battlefield: Hardline and Battlefield 4 managed in their entire first week, combined.
Battlefield 4 had a notoriously rocky launch, and Hardline was seen as generally underwhelming, but those are still some pretty impressive numbers. The extraordinary YouTube brawl between this year’s Battlefield and Call of Duty trailers clearly did EA a huge service, which isn’t perhaps the best news for anyone who found the whole thing a little absurd.