CSGO Pro Play – Using the Developer Console for an Extra Edge

There are a lot of ways in which a CSGO pro tweaks his game to get the most out of his skill set and playing style. Some of these tweaks are mechanical, using the game console. Others use logic, tactics or strategy. We’ll be covering everything here on Esportsranks, from the most basic console tips, to the most advanced pro strategies. So stay with us, as we create a truly immortal series of articles on how to play CSGO. You’ll be using these tips for years to come.

Enable the Developer Console

Only the dedicated CSGO pro realizes just how important this is. You can enable this in the settings of the game. By default, the ` key allows you to open and close it, though you can set your own shortcut for this as well.

When you start the game, a developer console will appear in which you can enter commands. These are the most important settings you should implement for optimal pro gameplay…

cl_interp 0

cl stands for client and thus for your computer – interp stands for interpret. This value is set to 1 by default and allows your computer to interpret whether a shot was a hit or not. To understand why this is a problem, you need to understand the system behind it. It works like this: You shoot, then your computer signals the server to say: “Hey, I’ve made a hit.” – the server, however, says: “Unfortunately no, you did not,” and while this goes on, you’re more or less left guessing. If you have a setting of cl_interp 1 during this process, there’s a good chance you will still see blood on the wall behind your opponent, even though the server says you did not hit him.

In a competitive CSGO pro game, it is the server, not the computer, that is king. The computer should not interpret hits at all. This makes for an imprecise game where mistakes can – and do – happen. To prevent all this, set cs_interp 0 in the developer console.

net_graph 1

Clearly, this will turn on a graph showing your ping and how good your connection is, as well as what the server’s tick rate is. The tick rate tells you how many times per second the server sends the positions of other players to all other players. A higher tick rate has the advantage that hit boxes are closer to the player model as it moves. On Matchmaking servers the tick rate is always 64.

cl_updaterate 128 | cl_cmdrate 128

With cl_updaterate and cl_cmdrate you command your PC to use the highest possible tick rate. This is more important if you play ESL or clanwars on servers with higher tick rates.

rate 80000

This specifies the maximum size of the packages you receive from the server. The server sends you information about what your teammates and opponents are doing. 80000 is the highest rate you can set.

CSGO Pro Play - Using the Developer Console for an Extra Edge


The crosshair in CSGO shows you with a colour change whether it is an enemy you are looking at in the distance or just a rubber tire. It also shows you friends. In addition, I find the smaller, thin lines that show Recoil very helpful.

Switch off the automatic weapon change

It is absolutely necessary to switch this off. Imagine you are in the middle of combat with the pistol, then accidentally run over a primary weapon. You will then automatically change your weapon right in the middle of combat, and give your opponent a good opportunity to kill you without fear of retaliation.

Setting mouse sensitivity

Mouse sensitivity ​​is a highly controversial topic with almost every CSGO pro and we’re probably going to put off many people with our recommendations here, because we believe that it’s best to keep mouse sensitivity as low as possible.

We recommend that a CSGO pro play with mouse sensitivity set to 1, zoom sensitivity to 1, raw data usage ON, and mouse acceleration OFF. You’ll have to move the mouse 25 cm from right to left  to turn around completely. CSGO is a team game, and as a member of a team, you should really not have to worry about whether someone is behind you, because there should always be someone watching your back. We’ll talk a great deal more about team tactics in future articles on that subject.

Simplifying CS:GO

At the simplest level, in CS:GO, your goal is to aim the crosshair at the opponent’s head and fire. To do that, you might think that it makes sense to have faster mouse movements, which – at first sight – will shorten the time you spend aiming. However, you would have to be genetically fine-engineered, and one of the ten best CSGO pro players on the planet to actually make use of this.

CSGO pro play. Dust 2 - Overview. The map will change team rankings.

Ultimately, CSGO isn’t about how fast you shoot – it’s about how well you aim when you do shoot. If your first shots do not connect in a short range firefight, you can even switch to continuous fire and track your opponents as you put them down. CSGO isn’t about speed. It’s about foreseeing the position of your opponent and shooting him while giving him the least possible opportunity to shoot you. It’s about keep your cool – keeping your nerve – and keeping your head. You can take that last point in whichever way you wish. Actually, let’s talk about it a little more.

Keeping your head

A calm, clear mind that doesn’t get excited, worried, tense or depressed is far more valuable to a CSGO pro than a fast trigger finger. We’re not saying you shouldn’t use it, if you can track and hit accurately with the greatest mouse sensitivity. What we’re saying here is that only a very few people have the genetic capability to process information and co-ordinate hand-to-eye that quickly. If you’re not one of them, you’d best settle for a clear mind, steady nerves, and a slower mouse speed. The slower mouse speed acts as a buffer to help you aim more accurately and with greater precision. If you manage to keep your nerves and aim, you’re two steps ahead of most players.

Setting up your Keyboard like a CSGO Pro

Basically, it is up to you whether you play with WASD, or the arrow keys. A good reason for WASD, however, is the amount of surrounding keys. For example, you can do a quick weapon change with Q. You can also use other buttons, such as F, to immediately have a stun grenade ready to hand and not solely by repeatedly cycling to the stun grenade to change to it. CSGO is a game where combats can be measured in milliseconds. Every little bit of time saved pressing a control key counts towards whether you win or lose.

Equipment and posture

Your goal as a CSGO pro is to become exceptional in play. How do you do that? By bringing calm and serenity to your playing style. Any confrontation with an opponent in CSGO is a race against time. To win that race you have to play more effectively and precisely than your opponent. For this, however, optimal conditions must prevail. We’ll show you what’s important.

SK Gaming - CSGO Pro Play

Image Credit: SK Gaming

Buy a headset or take Dad’s old stereo headset

A 5.1 headphone is of course the best choice, but if you can’t afford it, buy something similar, but cheaper. When you play with ordinary speakers, you hear less. You are not shielded from your environment and the subtle, quiet sounds that an opposing player makes at a distance can no longer be heard. With a headset and some practice in interpreting background noise, you will know when and where your opponents are coming and you will be prepared.

Buy a good mouse pad

It should be one above which your mouse is almost floating. An X-Board is a reasonably good pad for a CSGO pro, and reasonably cheap. You should not be prevented from aiming properly by your table or a sticky mouse pad.

Buy a mouse created especially for playing

They are simply better in the hand and are very accurate. Whether you go for Razer or Logitech is purely a matter of taste. Try out what suits you. We play with a Razer DeathAdder and it works very well.

A special gamer keyboard is more or less superfluous in CSGO

We play on a cheap Logitech model and have nothing to complain of. G-keys are not really needed for CSGO, and lighting would only create a distracting backlight to the monitor.

Let’s move to posture

A CSGO pro should sit as comfortably as possible. If you feel most comfortable in a bathrobe, then put it on. Place your forearm on the table and the palm of your hand on the mouse pad. You steer the mouse with the palm of your hand sideways and with your fingers up and down. This gives the most adaptability and the best response times.

Once you find a sitting position and attitude in which you feel really comfortable, and find that it works exceptionally well, make a note of it and stick to it. For example, as I play in front of a fairly large monitor, I sit back in the chair and crouch about 30-50 cm, depending on whether I’m just trying to get an opponent at a distance, or running normally.

Lights off and blinds down

This is perhaps the most important point of all to a CSGO pro. Set up your environment to maximise focus. Your attention should be completely focused on the monitor, because this allows you to be receptive to all the stimuli that the game sends. Of course you should let fresh air into the room after every competitive game.

This is only the beginning – these are the basics of CSGO pro play. We’ll be going into team play and competitive tactics in subsequent articles in this series. Go ahead, apply our tips, and practice against the best CS:GO players you can find.

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