In terms of Steam players, it’s not been going well for Payday 3. The newest installment in the Starbreeze co-op FPS heist series has launched on Game Pass and Steam, but the numbers on Valve’s platform are still dwarfed by its predecessor, Payday 2. Steam doesn’t tell us everything, of course, but it’s a fascinating window into where players of the series would rather spend their time.
We’ve talked about Payday 3 a lot recently. Earlier this month we noted how Payday 2 had three times the players of Payday 3, and then how Payday 3’s player numbers had dropped by 90% since launch, and now it’s gotten even worse.
There’s of course scope for the co-op FPS game to rise back up when Starbreeze fixes the myriad issues with the sequel, but players are showing they’d rather just go back to Payday 2 instead.
As of right now, Payday 3 has just over 2,500 players while Payday 2 sits at over 25,000 – a total ten times bigger. On its own, this could be an anomaly, but Payday 2 has been hovering around 20,000 to 40,000 players for a while, with Payday 3’s release not seeing average player numbers drop in the previous game at all.
The 24-hour peaks as of Tuesday, October 24 are also quite telling, as Payday 2 had almost 40,000 players, while Payday 3 had 3,500.
Payday 3, according to SteamDB and SteamCharts, has been seeing a slow and steady decline. Payday 3’s first big patch has once again been delayed, and matchmaking started as anything but stable. Starbreeze has said more heists are coming to Payday 3 in the future, but the highly volatile launch hasn’t been doing the game any favors. All those Payday 3 Steam reviews at launch certainly didn’t help.
The Payday 3 server issues were blamed on a Starbreeze third-party partner, with the studio saying it will be “evaluating” a new partner to help solve the problems. It’s one of the many problems that has plagued the game and caused the launch boom to suffer, but there’s no telling quite yet if the shooter will manage to bounce back.