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There are plenty of great games out there, but only the best can claim to have broken world records. In fact, you might be surprised by the games that have actually broken any records – I know I was. Some are as unexpected as can be.

Which games have been inducted into the Guinness World Records? Which games have pioneered new genres and transformed the face of gaming forever? Keep reading to find out.

Grand Theft Auto V

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Here’s the massive elephant in the room that inspired this article to begin with. If you’re into the Grand Theft Auto series, which personally I’m not, or if you keep up with the gaming industry, then you probably know that GTA V busted so many records in the week after its release. For those of you who are in the dark, here’s what it accomplished:

  • Most viewed trailer for an action-adventure game.
  • Best-selling action-adventure game in 24 hours.
  • Best-selling video game in 24 hours.
  • Highest grossing video game in 24 hours.
  • Highest revenue generated by an entertainment product in 24 hours.
  • Fastest video game to gross $1 billion.
  • Fastest entertainment property to gross $1 billion.

What’s most impressive is that a couple of those records aren’t even specific to video games; they’re about entertainment as a whole. The fact that GTA V was able to sell so quickly only speaks wonders about how much hype the game was able to generate. It may or may not be your cup of tea, but the marketing team behind it really earned their paychecks here.

World of Warcraft

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World of Warcraft will celebrate their 10th anniversary next year, yet it remains as one of the most popular games on the planet. Even people who have never played the game know about it – that’s how popular it is. Of course, prior MMORPGs like EverQuest and Ultima Online paved the way for WoW’s success, but WoW really clinched mainstream appeal.

It’s been a few years since WoW peaked in terms of subscriber numbers. Back in 2010, it reached a fabled 12 million concurrent subscriptions, which has yet to be matched by any other MMORPG to date. This number has earned WoW the Guinness title for Most Popular MMORPG By Subscribers. Nowadays, it sits somewhere around 8 million concurrent subscriptions – still more than most MMOs but a far cry from what it once was.

It’ll be interesting to see if any future games manages to break WoW’s 12 million record.

EVE Online

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If World of Warcraft took the cake for highest concurrent subscriptions, then EVE Online deserves its due for highest concurrent online players in a single server. One big difference between EVE Online and most other MMORPGs is that there’s only one server on which you can play so everyone is in the same realm, economy, and community. That’s just one of many reasons to play EVE Online 5 Reasons To Give Eve Online A Second Chance 5 Reasons To Give Eve Online A Second Chance Over the past few years CCP Games have made changes to help newbies dig into Eve’s massive universe, and they’ve paid off. Read More .

Earlier in May of this year, EVE Online broke their own record – thus breaking the record in the entire MMORPG genre – for the highest number of players online at the same time on the same server. How many players, exactly? 65,303. That’s more than most sports stadiums, all crammed into a single multiplayer game. For comparison, most MMORPGs are split into multiple servers that house a few thousand concurrent players each.

Let no one say that a massive one-world MMORPG isn’t possible, especially after EVE Online proved that it is.

CityVille

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Does anyone remember FarmVille? Of course you do. It was one of the staple apps that really guided Facebook into what it is today: less of a social network and more of an app-riddled mess. Created by Zynga, a company known for so many of their casual social games, FarmVille pioneered the social simulation genre – which was then improved upon by their sequel hit, CityVille.

On launch day, CityVille racked up 100,000 unique players. Within two weeks, CityVille grew to include over 26 million unique players, earning it the title of fastest growing social network game. Within its first 50 days, CityVille continued to grow its player base up to 61 million unique players, making it the most popular Facebook app ever.

Wii Sports

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If you had to guess the one game that sold the most copies of all time, which game would you choose? If your guess was Super Mario Bros, you would’ve been correct a few years ago. At 40.24 million copies sold, Super Mario Bros led the pack for quite a long time – that is, until the Nintendo Wii came out, and Wii Sports overtook the title.

How many copies do you think Wii Sports sold? It couldn’t be that much more than Super Mario Bros, right? After all, Super Mario Bros is an iconic game with tons of history. Wii Sports, on the other hand, is just a proof of concept Wii game. Well, it turns out that Wii Sports has sold nearly 83 million copies to date. That’s more than double!

Of course, some argue that it’s only because Wii Sports was bundled with the Wii. On the other hand, some people claim the opposite is true: there are people who bought the Wii simply to play Wii Sports. Either way, Wii Sports currently holds the Guinness title for best-selling video game of all time, regardless of how it got there.

Conclusion

There you have it: games that have drawn universal attention due to their massive presence in the gaming world. There are so many more potential gamers out there, and so many untapped markets. I can only hope that these records continue to be decimated as the years roll by.

How many of these games did you foresee ahead of time? Which record-breaking games took you by surprise? Were there any games you expected to see but didn’t? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!

Image Credit: World of Warcraft Wallpaper

  1. Denasawr
    December 29, 2013 at 6:52 pm
  2. Denasawr
    December 29, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    Just a note that League of Legends deserves a spot here. Compared to WoW, for example which had a peak TOTAL user base of 12 million subscribed overall, LoL has stats claiming that 32 million players ACTIVELY play League of Legends each MONTH. Overall, they have 70 MILLION players registered overall. In fact, their stats go on to say that 12 million players log on each day to play league every. single day.

    12 Million people playing one game each and everyday. That's not a building full of people, or even a stadium: that's a full-blown nation.

    • Joel L
      December 30, 2013 at 5:53 am

      Yeah, you make a good point. As much as I dislike LoL for its gameplay and art direction, I have to concede that Riot has really done something that no other video game company has done before. Did LoL earn any Guinness World Records, though?

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