Steven R. March 15, 2019
Dota Auto Chess is a big deal.
How big a deal? The custom game mode in Dota 2 has soared past the six million user mark and is showing no signs of slowing down.
Dota Auto Chess now has nearly 6.2 million players. This marks an increase of over one million players since the end of February. It’s a massive tally for the game mode and could be a huge boon to Valve as the build to The International 2019 begins.
Dota 2 has recently regained its spot as the most popular game on Steam. Though it held this honor for many years, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds burst onto the scene and then steadily held the top spot on Steam for most concurrent players. That changed in February, when a combination of Auto Chess’s popularity and the launch of the 7.21 patch helped Dota 2 return to the top of the charts for the first time since 2017.
In the weeks since, Dota 2 has sat comfortably atop the mountain as PUBG continues to lose players to rival battle royale titles including Apex Legends and Fortnite.
While Dota 2’s numbers have been helped along by a number of factors including an active professional scene and limited time events, it is impossible to overlook how important Auto Chess is to the Dota 2 landscape today.
Auto Chess makes up a substantial part of Dota 2’s active player base. Depending on the time, anywhere from one third to one half of players signed in to Dota 2 are in Auto Chess, even when major tournaments are underway.
Whether this popularity can be maintained remains to be seen.
Though Auto Chess has boomed in recent months and even lured in professional players from other strategy games, competition is fierce. A Chinese mobile app developer has already launched its own version of Auto Chess.
But for now, Dota 2 is enjoying some of its largest player totals in history thanks to the Auto Chess.