It’s wonderful to see the way top CS:GO teams innovate strategies to take out their opponents. Each team constantly refines the techniques they use, as opposing teams adapt to them. CS:GO competition strategy is what makes it such a complex (and epic) game of feint and attack, of attack and counter.
Astralis had a big winning streak at the recent DreamHack Masters Malmö. While that winning streak eventually came to an end, we did see them come up with some interesting strategies.
Graffiti as a counter-terrorist weapon!
When Astralis played against Natus Vincere on the map overpass, their players sprayed graffiti on a sign near the bathrooms that’s usually used by pro players to aim smokes just before releasing them. Players center their cross-hairs on the symbol on the sign before pitching the smoke grenade.
By painting graffiti on such a crucial ‘lining up’ point, Astralis made it that much more difficult for Natus Vincere to set up smoke cover.
This seems rather too subtle a CS:GO competition strategy. But it’s the subtle strategies that sometimes mark a pro team in combat. Astralis crushed Na’Vi in that Overpass play 16 rounds to 6.
How does it work?
The player using the strategy simply equips the graffiti, and triggers it at the target – in this case, a point usually used to aim for a throw.
The graffiti is persistent, and remains in place for several minutes.
The spray can be used fifty times, so that’s more than adequate for most matches.
Does this count as a game exploit?
Well, pixel-walking it’s not. That’s what you’d call an exploit.
This is just a perfectly acceptable use of an aspect of the game that the designers put in themselves. Of course, they never imagined the extended uses it could be put to, but then pro players use complex strategies all the time that most amateurs would never dream necessary.
And enough of those strategies just might make a difference. At least Astralis thought so.
But Astralis never reached the Finals of DreamHack Masters Malmö!
There’s a point at which overly-complex strategies offer diminishing returns.
When you consider the way ‘shox’ of G2 blew away members of North in the Finals of DreamHack, you realize that ultimately, while strategies are crucial to victory, it’s skill that really counts.
CS:GO competition strategy is geared towards making your opponents make mistakes…
Feints and large-scale strategies that get your opponents to make lethal mistakes are far more effective in CS:GO than subtle tricks.
The subtle strategies are useful, but only if they’re backed up by deadly skill in the intense firefights that define CS:GO combat.
Today is Astralis vs Ninjas in Pyjamas in the ESL Pro League. It’ll be interesting to see what styles of lethal game play they bring to their combats today.
Stay tuned for detailed day-by-day analyses of major CS:GO events, and ace reporting.