New study suggests Steam users have spent roughly $28.5 billion on games they’ve never played

Posted on July 1, 2024

A recent study from PCGN and SteamIDFinder has estimated that Steam users have collectively spent about $28.5 billion AUD ($19 billion USD) on games that they have never booted up. To provide an illustration of how much money that represents, the study points out that this figure is “about the same as the gross domestic product of the country of Nicaragua“.

The study admittedly uses some shortcuts to arrive at that figure. The result was reached by analysing the 73 million accounts in the SteamIDFinder database whose visibility is set to public, which constitutes about 10% of the total number of Steam accounts. From that data, it was found that those 73 million accounts had spent about $2.85 billion AUD on games that have sat languishing in their Steam libraries, unplayed and ignored. Multiply that figure by 10 to encompass the global Steam userbase, and it becomes likely that we as a whole have spent roughly the GPD of an entire country on unused PC games.

For those of you wanting to look up how much you have spent on your own backlog of unplayed titles sitting in your Steam library, SteamIDFinder has a tool to determine that figure by entering your account ID. The Steam Summer Sale is currently providing deep discounts for many titles. As such, no doubt many players will make more impulse purchases on cheap games that they unfortunately never get around to playing. Maybe now is as good a time as any to go through your libraries and pick something that you haven’t played at random and make your own pile of shame a little bit smaller.