Arma II is back at the top of Steam's charts. All the sales, deals and holiday bargains are over with and a familiar trend is returning: the game required to play DayZ is now dominating the charts once more. This isn't surprising given that Dean “Rocket” Hall recently confirmed the delay we all seen coming and that may have played a role in Arma II's sale resurgence.
Ever since April of 2012, Arma II has been gaining consistent sales traction. Why? Because of a little mod called DayZ.
The horror, post-apocalyptic zombie survival game is a harsh, unforgiving experience. You have to find and scavenge food. You have to find clean water. You have to scavenge for weapons and gear and work hard to try to survive through the night without attracting a horde of zombies. It's a hard game that managed to go mainstream thanks to word of mouth.
As showcased on Blues News, Steam's Top 10 games of the week post-holiday sales has Arma II: Combined Operations at the top of the chart, followed by Chivalry, Skyrim and Borderlands 2.
It could be postulated that the recent announcement for the delay in the DayZ Standalone could have had an effect on gamers' buying principles and instead of waiting to buy the standalone – as many expected to see by the end of 2012 – they're instead just diving head-first into the original mod by purchasing Arma II: Combined Operations while they wait for the full standalone release of DayZ.
One of the things that really interests me is what the big wigs at EA and Activision think of this. As many PC gamers know, EA and DICE opted out of including mod tools or game file accessibility to Battlefield 3 just the same as Activision and Treyarch opted out of including mod tools and file accessibility to Call of Duty games post Modern Warfare 1. Yet here it is, almost an entire year later and a niche military sim is soaking up unadvertised, non-promoted sales at the top of the charts thanks to a mod and word-of-mouth. Unbelievable.
This is definitely a good omen for Bohemia Interactive as it could bode very well for the upcoming release of Arma III, especially if it helps expand the modding community and helps the brand recognition to grow.