CS:GO is the world’s number one multiplayer shooter, taking over that status from another iconic game – Counter-Strike 1.6. CS:GO is an acronym for Counter-Strike Global Offensive. It is the flagship product of Valve.
CS:GO is the next stage in the evolution of Counter-Strike. A full-fledged successor of the epochal for all Millennials, version 1.6, judging from the point of view of popularity. The game was introduced on August 22, 2012, although the beta-testing of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive started a year before that. The first impression of gamers: an improved version of Source in terms of graphics and gameplay.
The meaning of the rounds remained the same: a squad of terrorists and their rivals – counter-terrorists – engage in battle. The last one has to either clear the bomb or rescue the hostages. The game kept the so-called knife and pistol rounds, which can now be seen in CS:GO tournaments.
CSGO betting: the beginning
A significant event for CSGO betting occurred in August 2013, a year after the game’s release. Then came the skins that changed the eSports economy forever. These items have no functional value, changing only the appearance of weapons and equipment. But the demand for them among the players is enormous because the skin allows you to stand out. They fall out in cases at the end of the game, sold in the Steam Market and other intermediary sites.
CS:GO and betting: the main difference and a feature of CSGO betting
The emergence of skins in 2013 has provoked a real storm in betting on CS:GO. Using the Steam API, one by one, the intermediary sites began to appear, where it was possible to sell/buy/trade skins and cases. They were followed by gambling portals offering to play roulette, blackjack, flip a coin, or bet on some eSports event.
The problem with skin gambling portals and pseudo-operators is that they are not regulated in any way. They have found a loophole in the gambling industry. Skins from games in most jurisdictions are not perceived as virtual value.
Consequently, a site that offers to bet on eSports with skins (de jure with banknotes and de facto with tangible value) or play roulette is not violating anything. The primary audience for CS:GO is minors. And the resources are elementary to make a bet with skin can anyone. And then sell the item on the market with the same ease.
CSGO betting sites
Traditional betting shops cannot compete with skin gambling sites for an apparent reason. They lose a considerable portion of their audience (kids) and accept only cash bets. Valve has even been sued several times in connection with skin gambling. As a result, the company is trying to war with individual sites, introducing temporary “moratoriums” on transactions with items, and gamers from certain countries can not open loot boxes.
The main events and types of bets in GO
The most prestigious tournaments in CS:GO, traditionally the most significant number of bets, are Majors. These can be organized by different organizations and take place in other places. Everyone has heard of ESL One in Cologne, FACEIT, and the PGL Major. Traditionally, a lot of attention is paid to the World eSports Games (WESG). This event has collected the largest prize pool in CS:GO.
The prestigious events include DreamHack and BLAST Pro Series – they have good prize funds (250,000) and top lineups. Regularly in the line of bookmakers appear matches from ESL, ECS, ESEA, various masters. In narrow-profile offices like EGB or Rivalry, there is even a line of qualifiers, modest Invitationals, and regional competitions.
If we talk about bets, they are traditionally divided into long-term and short-term. The first category includes markets of the type “who will be the champion of the tournament” or “which of the proposed groups will be the winner”, “the country of the champion,” “who will be in the prizes,” and so on. But more popular are short-term or match markers.
The standard CS:GO event line contains the following markets:
- Who will win the match: P1 and P2 options;
- Who will win the first round;
- Who will win the round of 16, which is the first round in the second period;
- Total rounds – the total number of rounds. As a reminder, 16 victories are required for an overall victory in the match;
- Round by round handicap;
- The exact score: 2:0, 0:2, 2:1 or 1:2. Recall that the game is played on two cards.
- Presence of overtimes;
- Even or odd.
Usually, this is a standard set found in most bookmakers’ offices. But this description is not limited to that. Depending on the level of the bookmaker, the prestige of the tournament and the fame of the teams, additional markers are added. Here are the variants of bets found in the lineup:
- Which team scores first in rounds 3-5-10;
- Whether the score will be 3-0 or 0-3 after the first three rounds;
- The number of kills in the first and 16th rounds;
- First Blood – First Blood in the game;
- Whether either team will score a certain number of rounds in the match;
- Who will win a round on knives and pistols;
- Combined bet: win of the team + total rounds;
- Way to succeed in the first or 16th round: demolition, team kill, bomb blast, end of time.
For top events, we offer statistical bets such as the performance of a single player on the team. Special mention should be made of live betting. Bookmakers offer fast markets: the winner of the round, handicap, whether the bomb will be laid or defeated, the individual total of fractions. Of course, the margin in LIVE is traditionally higher.
Betting shops for CS:GO
Let’s classify bookmakers into three categories:
- Those that support skin betting;
- Specialized eSports bookmakers;
- Traditional betting shops.
Skin betting shops
Representatives of the first category: CS:GO Lounge, CsGoFast, Loot.Bet and others. A characteristic feature is the absence of licenses, tethered to Steam API, allowing users to open an account and bet not money but skins automatically. Unfortunately, the line in the skin bookmaker is not the best. Here’s a spread of a rather exciting event at Loot:
Pay attention to the margin. Even in the market of outcomes, they offer 2.55 – 1.48. This is a margin of 6.5%, and the total margin even reaches 8% in the market. Since the primary audience is children, the sites do not care about the quality of the line. All the same, they have an undeniable trump card in the race against the legitimate bookmakers.
Narrowly specialized bookmakers
There are time-tested players, as well as very controversial sites. They actively sponsor tournaments and teams and invest serious money in marketing, but you play there as long as you lose.
In the pre-match line, the offer is standard with a 5-6% margin. Well, live with an abundance of diverse markets and quick quotes updates. Bookmakers may not cover everything in a row up to qualifications but can please you with additional needs such as how to win a round, the totals in the rounds, and so on. Equal-probability outcomes go for 1.87 each way. For top events there are better odds.
The critical difference between betting on CS:GO is that the game is firmly in the top three eSports disciplines, along with DOTA 2 and the iconic League of Legends. But GO is truly a global game in demand in Asia, Europe, and North America. The first major eSports event took place in 2013, DreamHack Winter. It is a Major Series tournament held under the patronage of Valve.
The growing popularity of CS:GO has led to a significant increase in demand for betting. Not so long ago, eSports betting was a cheap market, catering mainly to a small number of video game fans who liked to bet occasionally. Now things are different. CSGO betting is a lot like traditional sports betting. That’s why there’s a lot of interest from people who used to bet on traditional sports.