Despite first hitting our PC screens in 1999, Counter-Strike is a gaming franchise on the up.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive was one of the fastest growing eSports last year and remains one of the most popular titles for the industry, alongside the likes of Dota2, League of Legends and Hearthstone.

Anyone new to CS:GO might be a little intimidated upon first arrival to the war-torn world of intense firefights and team tactics.

So with that in mind, we’ve compiled a brief guide for new players looking to get into one of the world’s most popular shooters covering all the basics you’ll need to survive.

Vital statistics

Complexity: 3/5
Longevity: 4/5
Length of game: 3/5
Global reach: 5/5
Betting choice: 5/5

Getting started

When you first load up CS:GO, you won’t be put straight into competitive matches – and that’s just as well.

Instead, you’ll have to play in casual mode until you hit level 3 which enables you to get the hang of the basics before being pitted against veterans.

When you’re in casual mode nobody will really mind if you're not a natural, but it will matter a lot more once the serious matches start.


If you’ve ever played a first-person shooter before, getting to grips with the actual shooting shouldn’t be hard.

Gunplay in CS:GO is broadly similar to other shooters, with a few differences when compared to, say, Call of Duty.

For starters, you can’t simply run and gun - you need to stand still to shoot properly. This means that firefights will consist of strafing, stopping, shooting, strafing, stopping, shooting, and so on.

As in other shooters, you’ll need to be wary of your gun’s recoil.

Unless you fire in single shots or small bursts, your gun will pull upwards as you fire and you’ll need to compensate for this as you aim.

Unless you’re fighting in close quarters, it’s probably best to try to fire in bursts to nullify the effect of recoil.

In CS:GO, every gun has its own spray pattern and, as you play with different weapons, you’ll gradually be able to learn the pattern for each gun and the corresponding mouse movements required to stay on target.

It’s a tricky skill to learn, but worth it.


As CS:GO features fairly small teams of 5v5, teamwork and tactics play an important part in competitive games.

One key difficulty new players often face is finding the balance between caution and aggression. Use the casual mode to get used to finding the rhythm of the game and find the best play style for you in different circumstances and in different parts of the map.

You and your team will need to control the map if you are to be successful in CS:GO. This means playing in a way that allows you to dominate the key positions and keep your opponents on the back foot.

One useful tip is to practice with grenades - throwing a decent grenade can land you a kill, but can also help you keep control of the map. Tactical grenades such as flashbangs and smokescreens can also be lifesavers and match-winners when used correctly.

Wallbanging – or shooting through walls – is another key part of commanding the map and using it to your advantage, so it is handy to know which materials can be penetrated by gunfire.

Since you can often hear enemy players’ footsteps and other sounds, try pumping a few rounds into any walls or objects separating you from them – you might just get lucky.


When you start playing CS:GO seriously in competitive matches, it soon becomes apparent how important the game’s economy is.

Unlike in many other contemporary shooters, between rounds players can spend the money they have earned previously on equipment to aid them in battle.

Kevlar is of crucial importance in competitive mode and a helmet and body armour together cost $1000.

As for weapons, the standard shooter of choice for the terrorist team is the AK-47, whilst the counter-terrorists use the M4.

Each has its unique traits but both are broadly effective and cost-efficient, and so are the first weapons you will want to get familiar with.

You will almost certainly want you to be clued up about ‘eco rounds’ as well – when a team is a bit strapped for cash and it is better to not spend any money in a certain round in order to be better-placed in future ones.

If one player has a lot of money, they can buy weapons to drop for less well-off teammates, meaning communication is vital in competitive mode.

Remember that CS:GO is a team game – so always look out for your teammates.


The professional CS:GO players of the thriving eSports scene can act as a great demonstration of how to play this exhilarating game, and Betway has a range of markets to help spices things up even more.

These include the usual ‘match winner’ and ‘win/draw/win’ markets to more specific options including ‘correct score’, ‘maps total’ (how many maps either team will win), ‘maps handicap’ (how many maps a team will win with or without a head start).

If you're can't decide between two teams, you can always try ‘double chance’ which allows you to pick two of the three 'win/draw/win’ outcomes – making you even more likely to be a winner.

CS:GO betting

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