Historically, Destiny 2 on PC has had the smallest player base when compared to PS4 and Xbox One. But with the release of the free-to-play version of the game, known as Destiny 2: New Light, PC has now vaulted ahead to become the most popular platform for Destiny 2.
And it makes a lot of sense, as there are many factors that just recently coincided to allow this to happen. First of all, Destiny 2 moved PC clients from (its former publisher) Activision-Blizzard's Battle.net launcher to Steam, which should be getting Destiny 2 in front of more users. Secondly, there is a much lower barrier to entry than ever before with the release of New Light, which offers free access a ton of the game's content.
Plus, Destiny 2 just released its Shadowkeep expansion and kicked off Year 3, which has brought new attention to the game, including renewed hype from its already established players. All these factors have likely lead to a significant influx of players on PC. This data comes courtesy of Charlemagne, a website that uses Destiny 2's API to track player activity.
Prior to Shadowkeep/New Light, Playstation was the most popular platform for Destiny and PC was the least popular. Today Steam is the most popular platform by a healthy margin. https://t.co/0PQ3TECAQO pic.twitter.com/X6TB4YpjCq— Charlemagne, Warmind (@Charlemagne_Bot) October 10, 2019
There's also another big factor that is likely at work to drive this move to PC, which is focused less on new players and instead explains a movement of existing players from console to PC. The addition of Cross-Save, which Destiny 2 activated late this summer allowed existing Destiny 2 players to transfer their accounts over to PC from console for the first time, bringing with them everything they have earned while playing on console.
There was a large attach rate to the PS4 because ever since the launch of Destiny 1, PS4 has received exclusive content. Because of PS4 exclusives, the PS4 became home to the game for many content creators and hardcore fans of the game. Some players moved over to Destiny 2 on PC when it released almost two months after the original console release, but many stayed on PS4 because moving to PC meant a complete reset without being able to carry over any content, including legacy content that carried over from Destiny 1 to Destiny 2 and was locked to whatever console Destiny 1 was played on.
But not only did Cross-Save allow easy transfer of players' entire accounts, with Bungie taking full self-publishing rights of the Destiny franchise, the studio put an end to platform exclusives. That meant many console players moved over to PC to enjoy some of the things that Destiny 2 on PC can offer, like a 60+ FPS frame rate and 4K resolution. It looks like all these factors finally tipped the favors to the PC, leading to the single largest group of players on PC versus PS4 and Xbox One.
Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One, with a Stadia version also in development.