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A record number of Steam games released in 2019 - but the flood is slowing

The flood of new Steam games is bigger than ever, but not by much

With rare exception, every year Steam has released more games than it had in the previous 12 months. The floodgates opened wide in 2014, and every year since has seen the number of games released grow by thousands. 2019 marked another record number of releases, but it seems we may have finally reached the peak of how much content can hit Steam in a 365-day space.

8,290 games launched on Steam in 2019, up ever-so-slightly from 8234 in 2018, as SteamSpy shows. (These numbers also include non-gaming software releases, but no DLC.) That’s after years of massive increases from 1,676 in 2014, to 2,708 in 2015, 4,409 in 2016, and 6,339 in 2017. Perhaps 2020 will be the first year in a decade where Steam doesn’t reach a new record of new releases.

Steam’s policy over the past few years of allowing everything that’s not “illegal, or straight up trolling” has been controversial, to say the least. While that’s allowed plenty of small developers to get their games on Valve’s storefront, the good stuff is often buried under 99 cent games with ‘hentai’ in the title.

You don’t need to pay a dollar or play low-effort videogames to see nude anime girls, friends.

Valve’s solution for curation continues to be ever-more-robust algorithms, though it’s ultimately an insurmountable task to ensure that every user sees each game they might be interested in from a pool in the tens of thousands.