Old game, new record with Counter Strike: Global Offensive

Eric Swanson, Staff Writer

Although “Counter Strike: Global Offensive” has been out for nearly four years, it’s time to review where it began and where it stands today, having held its first $1 million tournament that reached a record 1.6 million concurrent viewers online.

CS:GO, as the player base knows it, is a first person shooter PC game developed and released by Valve. The fourth game in the Counter-Strike franchise it is an objective based shooter where you either play as terrorists or counter-terrorists. The game is unique in that your weapons and equipment are purchased through the money you earn for positive team plays such as eliminating an enemy or planting the bomb.

There are casual and competitive game modes, though the focus of most players is the competitive mode. Players duel it out on various maps in a best-of-30 rounds showdown. The winning team takes home experience that helps increase your rank.

Upon release in summer 2012, the game was plagued with issues and seen as needing much improvement. Eventually many glaring bugs were fixed and the game was awarded “eSports Game of the Year” at The Game Awards in 2015. Being viewed as the most competitive shooter on the market and one of the biggest eSport titles in the world shows how far the game has come.

The eSports side of Counter-Strike has been growing at an impressive rate. Prior to 2016, the major tournaments had a prize pool of $250,000 each. At Major League Gaming Columbus, the prize pool was upped to $1 million, which was won by the Brazilian squad Luminosity Gaming.
CS:GO also snagged its first United States television deal this year. The ELeague is a $1.2 million league made up of 18 teams that will be broadcast on national television starting May 24.

With the rapid growth in popularity I have to agree that Counter Strike: Global Offensive is the greatest competitive video game on the market and anyone that hasn’t played it should give it a try. Priced at only $15 with many more years left in the game’s lifespan, there’s no reason not to. Who knows, maybe you’ll be competing for $1 million playing video games someday too.