In a reveal that will surprise no one who plays these games, Dota 2, Apex, CS:GO, and Siege all made a lot of money in 2021.

Digital games marketplace Steam has announced its top-selling games for 2021, and for esports fans, there are some familiar faces in the Platinum section. Apex Legends, Dota 2, CSGO, and Rainbow Six Siege all hit the top category, with Dota 2 and CS: GO both reaching the milestone for the sixth year running.

Going Platinum on Steam?

"Going Platinum" is a term borrowed from the music industry. A platinum album originally meant an album that had sold over one million copies. This was adapted to 400,000 units in gaming due to games generally costing more than albums or singles.

However, on Steam, it's generally recognized that a platinum game makes between $200-$500 million a year in gross revenue. This figure allows for free-to-play games with in-game purchases to still go platinum despite having sold no copies. 

This is certainly the case for Dota 2. The game had two Battle Passes and an International Compendium this year to bolster sales. The Nemistice Battle Pass in the summer, The International 2021 Compendium, and Aghanim's Labyrinth Battle Pass have seen players dole out hard cash for voice lines, character sets of varying quality, and other goodies.

An Exclusive Club

Apex, Dota 2, CSGO, and Siege join a list of other multi and single-player games on the platinum tier. With its sprawling online and thriving roleplay community, Grand Theft Auto V has earned platinum this year. 

New World, Amazon Games' new MMORPG hit platinum on Steam despite a shaky launch. In addition, Destiny 2, Battlefield 2042, Dead by Daylight, Naraka: Bladepoint, and Valhiem also made it to platinum. 

It's a familiar adage for players of some of Steam's highest-grossing games to throw around terms like "dead game." But if these categories are anything to go by, it'll be a long time before any of these games even begin to approach death.

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