CSGO's average player count breaks all-time record to kick-off new year - Dexerto
CS:GO

CSGO’s average player count breaks all-time record to kick-off new year

Published: 26/Jan/2020 17:05

by Andy Williams

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Valve’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has surpassed a major milestone for the first time as it approaches its eighth year as a premier esport.

CS:GO has stamped its place firmly as the gold-standard for first-person shooter esports. Despite being a multi-platform title, the vast majority of its player base stems from PC.

While Valve’s flagship FPS has retained the traditional model of open circuit competition, the bridge between the casual and competitive gameplay is pivotal to its success.

CSGOs Operation Shattered Web.
Valve
Operation Shattered Web is Counter-Strike’s latest operation, since November 2017.

Even Seven years after CS:GO’s release, the player base is continuing to grow — and at a rapid rate. New content in Operation Shattered Web has pushed it to new levels of popularity in early 2020.

On January 26, CS:GO surpassed half-a-million average players for the first time in the game’s history, after clocking 504,128 average players in a 30-day period. Data via Steam Charts.

Steamcharts' CS:GO statistics.
Steamcharts
There is a clear upward trend in Counter-Strike’s player statistics.

After a dip in player interest throughout the first half of 2019, Valve’s flagship FPS steadily crept its way back towards the major milestone. 

After a string of major tournaments and the release of Operation Shattered Web towards the backend of November, player interest spiked and Global Offensive smashed its previous all-time average player record.

Steamcharts' CS:GO statistics.
Steamcharts
CS:GO surpassed half-a-million average players for the first time in its history.

A major part of this success is CS:GO’s renowned competitive play, with the Elo system at its core. Elo is a method of calculating a player’s skill level relative to their competitive environment, while counterbalancing for a player’s opponents strengths/weaknesses.

Put simply, it allows players to seamlessly transition between casual and competitive games. Meaning that the appeal (to an otherwise taboo game mode) is far greater, so ultimately more people are enticed to play.

On top of this, player interest is likely still overflowing from Valve’s decision to move to a free-to-play model back in December 2018.

The peak concurrent viewership record of 850,485 still remains untouched from April 2016. However, with Valve’s new competitive schedule set to be implemented during the 2020 season, perhaps it’s only a matter of time before the previous record is broken.

CS:GO

IEM Katowice 2021 quarterfinals preview

Published: 24/Feb/2021 18:21 Updated: 24/Feb/2021 20:02

by Andrew Amos

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IEM Katowice 2021 has already served up some amazing matchups, and now the quarterfinals are upon us. With CIS supremacy sweeping the CS:GO server, Astralis stand as the lone force to try and stave the three Russian squads away.

Six teams have qualified for the playoffs at IEM Katowice 2021, and four of them are from CIS. Gambit, Natus Vincere, and Virtus.pro are hungry for quarterfinals success, while Spirit awaits one of them in the semifinals.

It’s put more pressure now, more than ever, onto two stalwarts of their respective scenes ⁠— Denmark’s (and Europe’s) Astralis, and North America’s Liquid. The latter looks reinvigorated with Gabriel ‘FalleN’ Toledo in the squad, while the former are struggling to reach their peak online.

Ahead of this weekend’s action, let’s take a look at the two quarterfinals ⁠— Gambit vs Natus Vincere and Virtus.pro vs Astralis ⁠— and what you should expect.

Gambit vs Natus Vincere

The battle for CIS supremacy will reign on in the quarterfinals of IEM Katowice when Gambit takes on Natus Vincere. This has been a historically Na’Vi-sided matchup, to the surprise of absolutely no one.

Gambit went on a lower-bracket tear to make it to the quarterfinals of IEM Katowice, and they won’t let their rivals stand in their way. Young gun Dmitry ‘sh1ro’ Sokolov is really trying to make a name for himself as CS:GO’s next big AWPer, trying to reach the heights of idols like Oleksandr ‘s1mple’ Vastyliev.

Natus Vincere Socios s1mple

Seeing the two face off will be a treat in this quarterfinal, but don’t expect the reigning champions to take it easy. Na’Vi are really finding their stride now, and despite losing to Team Liquid to find themselves in this position, you can’t keep them down for long.

Denis ‘electronic’ Sharipov and s1mple are bouncing off each other better than ever, and it really feels like a repeat of IEM Katowice 2020 is on the cards. Na’Vi didn’t make it easy for themselves there in groups, before proceeding to demolish Liquid, Astralis, and G2 Esports without dropping a single map in playoffs.

Gambit’s going to have to be prepared for a Na’Vi they’ve never faced before. It’s the biggest stage this matchup has happened on, and while the potential for an upset is there, you’d have to back Na’Vi to finish strong at Katowice.

Thrive Props

  • Ax1le: 28.5 total kills
    • Over = 90 points
    • Under = 110 points
  • Hobbit: 43.5 total deaths
    • Over = 110 points
    • Under = 90 points
  • Electronic: 6.5 total assists
    • Over = 95 points
    • Under = 105 points
  • Flamie: 18.5 total headshots
    • Over = 105 points
    • Under = 95 points
  • S1mple: 75.5 total kills and deaths
    • Over = 100 points
    • Under = 100 points

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Virtus.pro vs Astralis

Virtus.pro and Astralis marks the first rematch of the StarLadder Major Berlin 2019 final. Back then, Astralis were decimating anyone in their patch, and VP (then Avangar) were collateral as the Danes took home their fourth major. However, it’s funny how things change in 18 months.

Astralis’ experimentation with six and seven-man rosters has led nowhere, and with the core five back together, they’ve been struggling to get back into gear. Virtus.pro, on the other hand, has started 2021 on fire with a win at cs_summit 7 (where Astralis didn’t play).

One also has to look at how far Virtus.pro has come since then. “Jame Time” might still be the slogan, but everyone from Timur ‘buster’ Tulepov to Mareks ‘YEKINDAR’ Galinskis have been pulling their weight. The team isn’t as reliant on Jame’s AWP to win as they once were, and he’s taken to the IGL role like a fish to water.

If there is one time where Virtus.pro could get their revenge, it’s now. VP have taken down Vitality and FURIA ⁠— two of the best teams in the world ⁠— to get here, and Astralis have been hot and cold to start off the year. The tournament remaining online likely doesn’t help Astralis either.

However, you can never count out the Danes. Much like Gambit vs Natus Vincere, the real big ticket matchup will be Jame vs Nicolai ‘device’ Reedtz. The AWPers will once again prove to be the deciding factor in this matchup, and if history is anything to go by, it should be explosive.

Thrive Props

  • Buster: 45.5 total kills
    • Over = 115 points
    • Under = 85 points
  • Sanji: 32.5 total deaths
    • Over = 80 points
    • Under = 120 points
  • Magisk: 9.5 total assists
    • Over = 100 points
    • Under = 100 points
  • gla1ve: 13.5 total headshots
    • Over = 90 points
    • Under = 110 points
  • Device: 88.5 total kills and deaths
    • Over = 110 points
    • Under = 90 points

The IEM Katowice 2021 quarterfinals get underway on February 26.


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