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What is Counter Strike:GO (CS:GO)?

Counter Strike: Global Offensive (Colloquially known as CS:GO) is a First Person Shooter (FPS) game which is developed by Hidden Path Entertainment and Valve Corporation. Counter Strike: Global Offensive is the latest installment of the incredibly popular and very long running Counter Strike game series. CS:GO stays true to its roots and without changing much from Counter Strike: Source, they developed CS:GO. Unlike a lot of game companies they didn’t needlessly change things, the main things they changed was making the graphics better.

The game itself is fairly simple, although that’s a bit like saying chess is simple. In a standard game of Counter Strike: Global Offensive there are 2 teams, 5 players on each team. One team consists of Counter Terrorists whilst the other is made up of Terrorists. The Terrorists must attempt to break through to either bomb site A or bomb site B and plant the bomb. The Counter Terrorists must mount a defense against the oncoming terrorists and stop them planting the bomb. You can either win the round by eliminating the opposition, if you’re on the Terrorist side by detonating the bomb, and if you’re on the Counter Terrorist side defusing a planted bomb.

Game Modes

There are several different game modes in CS:GO, here is a list of all of them:

Classic: Competitive

This is the scenario described above and it’s the version of CS:GO which is played in professional Counter Strike. It’s also the version of the game which is most popular and which made Counter Strike famous in the first place.

Classic: Casual

Casual is a bit more well.. casual. Whereas competitive has strict rules and regulations which reward players for good play, casual is a way to practise without getting too stressed out about your play. You get body armour and defuse kits and you get bonus money for kills. This takes the stress away from competitive and will allow you to practise new and potentially crazy strategies.

There are other game modes, for example, Demolition and Arms Race. These game modes aren’t as popular as the Classic mode. In Demolition, there is only one bomb site and both Arms Race and Demolition have a gun system where you progress through the guns depending on whether you get a kill or not. Both are fun and will give you practise using lesser known guns.

A History of Counter Strike

Counter Strike was started as a mod for Half Life, and was released in 1999. It has an incredibly dedicated following of fans who have been with the game since beta release at this time. There have been three Counter Strikes to date: 1.6, Source and GO. It’s considered to be one of the more difficult FPS games and as it doesn’t have a long list of unrealistic power-ups and kill streak rewards (like Call of Duty for example). It’s considered to be far more skill centric. This is an important aspect of any professional scene.

The Professional Scene

CS:GO has one of the largest competitive scenes of any game. Although the prize pools aren’t the largest for the tournaments sponsored by the game’s creators, Valve, in 2016 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Esports teams won a grand total of $7.7m. There is some criticism both of Valve’s investment in their pro scenes but also in the way that a lot of the money that is generated goes directly to the leagues and not to the players. For example, Valve’s own tournaments have a cap of $250,000 prize pool.

The professional scene is incredibly exciting, however. The PGL Major Krakow 2017 was very exciting and the final between Immortals and Gambit was particularly entertaining.

Here is a chronological order of the most important CS:GO tournaments in 2017. Although more may be added every year, this is a great general guide for the future also.

World Electronics Sports Games (WESG) – Jan 12-15 2017

Prize pool – $1,500,000 (Held in Changzhou)

Eleague Major – Jan 22-29 2017

Prize pool – $1,000,000 (Held in Atlanta)

ESL Pro League Season 5 Europe – Feb 7-May 11

Prize pool – $125,000 (Online Tournament)

ESL Pro League Season 5 North America – Feb 7-May 11

Prize pool – $125,000 (Online Tournament)

DreamHack Masters – Feb 15-19

Prize pool – $450,000 (Held in Las Vegas)

Intel Extreme Masters XI (IEM) – World Championship Mar 1-5

Prize pool – $250,000 (Held in Katowice)

Star Ladder i-League Star Series – Apr 4-9

Prize pool – $300,000 (Held in Kiev)

Intel Extreme Masters XII (IEM) – May 3-7

Prize pool – $200,000 (Held in Sydney)

ESL Pro League Season 5 Finals – May 30-Jun 4

Prize pool – $750,000 (Held in Dallas)

Esports Championship Series Season 3 Finals – Jul 23-25

Prize pool – $660,000 (Held in London)

ESL One – Jul 4-9 2017

Prize pool – $250,000 (Held in Cologne)

PGL Major – Jul 16-23

Prize pool – $1,000,000 (Held in Krakow)

ESL Pro League Season 6 North America – Aug 22- Nov 12

Prize pool – N/A (Online tournament

ESL Pro League Season 6 Europe – Aug 22- Nov 12

Prize pool – N/A (Online tournament)

DreamHack Masters – Aug 30- Sep 3

Prize pool – $250,000 (Held in Malmo)

ESG Tour – Sep 7-10

Prize pool – $234,978 (Held in Mykonos)

ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier – Sep 8

Prize pool – N/A (Held in Atlanta)

ESL One – Sep 14-17

Prize pool – $250,000 (Held in New York)

Intel Extreme Masters XII – Nov 16-19

Prize pool $300,000 (Held in Oakland)

The cities in brackets are the place they were held in 2017. This normally changes every year.

CS:GO betting

CS:GO is one of the largest Esports. As such it has a large betting scene. Betting on CS:GO isn’t really any different from betting on any other sport or Esport. Team A plays Team B and you can bet on the result. You are either betting on your favoured team to win or for the other team to lose.

The odds are based around which team has been performing well recently, their standings in the CS:GO rankings and whether they are strong on individual maps. In professional CS:GO teams are often much stronger on certain maps. For this reason, it’s important to do your research before you place a bet.

If you’re willing to do a large amount of research, and follow all CS:GO teams carefully, there’s a chance that you might spot something that gambling sites do not. Therefore, it’s perfectly possible that you may find great odds for a team to win on a map that they’re strong on. Although this is a lot to hope for it’s definitely possible so keep your eyes peeled! Some of the larger betting websites may offer odds purely based on superficial rankings and not on how good a certain team is on a certain map.

What can you bet on in CS:GO?

As you can see above there are a lot of CS:GO tournaments every year. Most betting websites will offer odds on most of these tournaments so the above is a good guide to tournaments you can bet on for CS:GO. Some betting websites may also offer bets on smaller online and offline tournaments. Each website will offer their own range of CS:GO tournaments so it’s best to find your preferred website and see what they offer. If your chosen website isn’t offering the tournaments you want to bet on then it’s simple enough to open an account on a different betting website.

It is suggest to also check our reviews on the different websites that offer Esports betting so that you can pick your favourite one.

Weapons in CS:GO

There are many different weapons in CS:GO. The Terrorist side and the Counter Terrorist side also have different weapons. The more expensive the weapon, in general, the better it is. There is also a lot of different equipment known as ‘gear’ in CS:GO. Below is a full list of the weapons and equipment used in CS:GO.

Terrorists (Pistols) Counter Terrorists (Pistols)
Glock-18 P2000
P250 USP-S
Desert Eagle P250
Dual Berettas Desert Eagle
Tec-9 Dual Berettas
CZ75 Auto Five-SeveN
Shotguns Shotguns

Nova

Nova

XM1014

XM1014

Sawed-Off

MAG-7

Submachine guns

Submachine guns

MAC-10

MP9

MP7

MP7

UMP-45

UMP-45

PP-Bizon

PP-Bizon

P90

P90

Rifles

Rifles

Galil AR

FAMAS

AK-47

M4A4

SSG 08

M4A1-S

SG 553

SSG 08

AWP

AUG

AWP

The guns which are considered to be the best in CS:GO are the M4A1-S, AK-47 and the AWP. These are basically the ‘staple’ weapons in CS:GO. Especially the AK-47 and the M4A1-S. This is because they are very accurate weapons, not incredibly expensive and offer you the least amount of recoil.

The AWP is a one-shot sniper rifle whereas the Scout (SSG 08) is a two-shot sniper rifle (unless you get a headshot of course.) A general way of how weapons work is as follows: you don’t always just buy the most expensive weapon. If you die in a round you lose that weapon. However, your allies can pick up your dropped weapon and bring it to the next round if they don’t die.

A lot of the time you hear people talking about ecos and saves in professional games. An eco round is where you spend as little money as possible on the absolute essentials in order to try and save money for a full buy the next round. This doesn’t give you the best possible chance of winning that round, but it puts you in a good position for the next round.

A save is when you know you’ve lost a round so you hide in an area and defend it, in an attempt to take your expensive weapon into the next round. Both these tactics are normally employed by very good players and are completely ignored by players at lower ranks.

Skins

With the introduction of the Arms Deal update came a new concept to the CS:GO community: Skins. Also known as finishes, these are aesthetic updates to weapons which are purely cosmetic. They offer no changes to the way guns work but make almost no difference to gameplay.

There are several ways to earn skins. First, you can earn them through random drops while playing online. These come at the end of the game and you mostly get common drops from this method. You can also get them from loot crates and promotional containers which you can buy. Another way you can earn a better skin is by trading 10 different worse skins with a trade-up contract. The final way to get skins is by buying them from other players on the steam market place.

There are 8 different types of weapon skins: Common (white, consumer grade), Uncommon (light blue, industrial grade), Rare (dark blue, high grade), Mythical (purple, restricted), Legendary (pink/purple, exotic), Ancient (red, extraordinary), Exceedingly rare (gold, melee weapons), Immortal (yellow/orange, contraband). Obviously, the colour denotes the rarity and value of a skin.

CS:GO Maps

Aztec, Dust, Dust II, Cache (became official on July 1, 2014), Cbble (released on December 18, 2013), Inferno, Mirage (released on June 12, 2013), Nuke, Overpass (released on December 18, 2013), Train Vertigo (released on October 1, 2012), Canals (released on March 15, 2017). There are more maps but these are the most important maps as they are the ones which bomb disposal is played on.

Final Words

CS:GO is one of the largest professional scenes in the world. It’s growing all the time and with larger tournaments which are being added to all the time, it will continue to grow. The game itself is incredibly popular with around 500,000 playing at one time. Although it’s not the largest online game in the world it’s amongst the most popular.

The game is simple and reasonably easy to pick up. However, just like most games with professional scenes, the skill cap is incredibly high. The difference between a new player and a professional player is incredibly large. It takes a while to get used to the game mechanics especially the more difficult ones to perform. Once the basics are mastered, however, the game is incredibly fun to play and will satisfy those who are looking for both a competitive and casual gaming experience.