Counter-Strike: Global Offensive News | PCGamesN

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive News | PCGamesN

ESL One Cologne will be "the world's largest" Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament

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ESL One Cologne will be "the world's largest" Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament

It seems like there’s never not a time when a massive eSports tournament is gearing up, and the theme is almost always scale. Each tournament promises to be bigger than the last; bigger crowds, more spectacle, larger arenas. 

In August, this year, ESL will host “the world’s largest" Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament. ESL One Cologne will be held in the LAXNESS arena, normally home to ice hockey team Kölner Haie. It’s the biggest indoor arena in Germany, with a capacity of 15,000. 

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Hotline Miami and Talos Principle join Counter-Strike: Global Offensive music kit hit list

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Hotline Miami and Talos Principle join Counter-Strike: Global Offensive music kit hit list

For users determined to incorporate every aspect of their life into their Steam library, there’s the Steam Music Player - a means of dragging MP3s kicking and screaming into the great, grey client.

Counter-Strike music kits, in case you missed ‘em, are something different: custom replacements for the game’s main menu music and in-match noises: bomb warning, round end, death camera and so on. In addition to a number of eclectic kits from the music industry, the store now presents choice options from the world of indie games too.

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ESL One Katowice qualifier begins Saturday; expect US Counter-Strike heavyweights

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ESL One Katowice qualifier begins Saturday; expect US Counter-Strike heavyweights

This weekend, bombs will be planted and men shot - not in the name of idealism or national security, but for sport.

The Electronic Sports League is one of the oldest names in the business, and has been running Counter-Strike tournaments for a decade. Their dedication has paid off: these days CS isn’t a niche concern, but by some way the second-biggest game on Steam. At last year’s ESL One Cologne, 856 years of Counter-Strike was watched by nearly half a million people.

Some of that game’s finest players will be jetting to Katowice at the weekend to scrap over a $250,000 prize pool.

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Valve delivers ultimatum on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive insider betting

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Valve delivers ultimatum on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive insider betting

Valve have reinforced their policy on professional players, team managers and/or event production staff betting against eSport matches using “inside information". Doing so could lead to players and/or teams from being banned from events that Valve are involved with.

“Betting using inside information, or even the perception or suspicion thereof, carries a significant risk of damaging your personal brand, your team, your community," said the Valve blog “And may lead to exclusion from future Valve-sponsored events."

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Valve confirms CS:GO match-fixing allegations, issues bans to seven players

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Valve confirms CS:GO match-fixing allegations, issues bans to seven players

A little-noticed upset in competitive Counter-Strike: Global Offensive last year has been confirmed as a fixed match involving numerous pro-players and thousands of dollars in wagered money. Now Valve has taken action, placing bans against seven people involved in the scandal and directing that partner organizations bar them from participating in any CS:GO events that Valve has sponsored.

It’s another in a growing list of incidents in CS:GO and eSports that highlight problematic standards of behavior and the increasing stakes involved in eSports wagering.

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How to get better at Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

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How to get better at Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

By Mitch Bowman

With Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s release in 2012, and the subsequent reinvigoration of CS as an esport, the game is larger in the public eye than ever before, and that’s bound to bring in some fresh meat. If you’re one of those new players who’s been sucked in by Global Offensive’s recent popularity, here’s some quick pointers to improve your CS skills.

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Team Liquid continues transformation with new CS:GO roster acquisition

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Team Liquid continues transformation with new CS:GO roster acquisition

Hot on the heels of their expansion into League of Legends, Team Liquid have just acquired a roster to compete in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. It’s another step in the continuing evolution of Team Liquid as it moves from being a StarCraft-only organization to being a game-agnostic eSports brand. It’s also another sign of CS:GO’s rapid maturation as a major eSport.

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How Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is turning into the world's most exciting eSport

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How Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is turning into the world's most exciting eSport

By Mitch Bowman

There was a time not so long ago when Counter-Strike appeared to be a dying game. As competitive esports, both the original game and its successor, Counter-Strike: Source, were waning in popularity. Source had been hit particularly hard by the 2008 demise of the Championship Gaming League, the largest competitive league for the game, and original CS (generally referred to as “1.6" by players), was being eclipsed in the public eye by the RTS and MOBA esports du jour.

Even in 2012, with the release of a major new version of the game, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, things were still looking grim. Many of the organizations that had kept competitive CS alive had folded, leaving a dearth of leagues and tournaments for professional players to compete in. To make matters worse, CS:GO itself was simply not very good when it first launched, and most pros were more inclined to stick with Source or 1.6.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive cheats hit by biggest ban wave in its history

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive cheats hit by biggest ban wave in its history

Valve Anti-Cheat likes to stalk its prey. It’ll flag up and silently follow cheats for days or even weeks until - just before Christmas - it strikes, disguised as a scotch pine and waving its hammer without impunity.

Thousands of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive cheats were permanently excluded from one of the best first-person shooters on PC yesterday, and several of the game’s most popular hacks compromised.

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Valve squashes Counter-Strike: Global Offensive bird surfing bug; community is sad

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Valve squashes Counter-Strike: Global Offensive bird surfing bug; community is sad

When Valve “rebuilt" their classic Counter-Strike: Global Offensive map Train, they did so with an unintended, but hilarious bug: bird surfing. Players quickly discovered that if they hopped on top of a group of innocent bystanding birds, they could use their flight to “surf" above the map. Things got out of hand when players furthered the exploit to get to the rooftops directly above bombsite A, giving them an unfair advantage.

But don’t worry, Valve have already flown in a hotfix to remove the bug, but not without leaving a subtle nod to its existence in its place.

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Valve have "rebuilt" classic Counter-Strike: Global Offensive map Train

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Valve have "rebuilt" classic Counter-Strike: Global Offensive map Train

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive started the year with record numbers and expanding community prize pools, and has trundled on ever since to become a firm fixture of Steam’s upper-most-played list.

Some classic CS maps have aged in the meantime - but luckily, the track’s turned out to be one of those oval playset ones and we’ve come back around to Train. Valve have rebuild the memorable map to ensure it remains pretty and competitive in one of the best first-person shooters on PC.

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Team LDLC overcome exploits to win Counter-Strike: Global Offensive finals at DreamHack

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Team LDLC overcome exploits to win Counter-Strike: Global Offensive finals at DreamHack

The Counter-Strike wing of French pro-gaming force Team LDLC claimed the top spot in the 2014 DreamHack CS:GO Championship this weekend - and with it, $100,000 of the tournament’s $250,000 community-funded prize pool.

It’s a surprising result - not because LDLC aren’t capable, but because they were briefly knocked out of the championship a day earlier.

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UPDATED: DreamHack drama: Fnatic use a questionable boost to defeat LDLC

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UPDATED: DreamHack drama: Fnatic use a questionable boost to defeat LDLC

Controversy and drama has once again struck the esoteric world of eSports, with Fnatic ruffling more than its fair share of feathers at the DreamHack Winter quarter finals. Suffering a nine-round deficit, the Swedish team wasn’t looking so hot, until they pulled a rabbit out of their hat. 

They used a boost - where players jump on another player’s head to reach a high up spot - to reach a mostly unknown map position in Overpass that gave them a huge advantage over the opposing team LDLC. They used the vast amount of extra knowledge the position gave them to take victory from LDLC. There’s just one problem, though: it might be illegal.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's Operation Vanguard acquaints players with 'campaigns'

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's Operation Vanguard acquaints players with 'campaigns'

Operation Vanguard is the latest in a lengthy line of community initiatives Valve have run for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive over the last year and a half. In now-established fashion, players can pay for temporary access to six of the game’s best community maps on Valve’s dedicated servers - and the mappers will receive a cut of the profits.

New this time are operation campaigns: a progression system that strings together mission objectives in one of the best first-person shooters on PC and rewards players with extra cases or weapon drops.

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive kicks off the Electronic Sports World Cup

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive kicks off the Electronic Sports World Cup

Today is the first day of this year’s Electronic Sports World Cup in Paris, with players duking it out in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Shootmania and Trackmania 2, FIFA 15 and Just Dance. 

Matches will be taking place all day, from now until Sunday, November 2nd. You can watch the Livestream from the main stage below, which is all about Counter-Strike: Global Offensive at the moment.

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Counter-Strike ushers in its Halloween Mask-erade with player ghosts and vengeful chickens

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Counter-Strike ushers in its Halloween Mask-erade with player ghosts and vengeful chickens

I suppose it’s testament to Payday’s appropriation of Dead Presidents chic that no other gun game can do masks without running the idea by Overkill first. Character models in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, one of the great PC first-person shooters, have been temporarily jujjed up with fancy dress disguises - some of which come courtesy of Team Fortress and Payday 2.

“BEWARE! For with all these treats, also come tricks," write Valve. “On All Hollow’s Eve there is no more room in Chicken Hell."

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive update adds Music Kits to help "establish your identity"

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive update adds Music Kits to help "establish your identity"

The latest update to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has brought in an interesting addition: Music Kits. These digital MP3 players replace the ambient music in different parts of the game, from in the main menu all the way to planting the bomb. There’s nine unique kits available on the store today from a variety of artists and composers, all tailor made for CS:GO.

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