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This Month In: Counter-Strike GO (February 2013)

Our first This Month In article about Counter-Strike GO last month was met with positive response. So on to the next issue for February. We’ve got plans to expand our This Month In series to keep you posted on the latest news and going-ons with your favorite game franchises, so look out for that soon!

This month was a pretty eventful one in the world of CS:GO. There was a large patch towards the end of January, which officially added Deathmatch mode to the game and now allow all players to easily find and connect to matches set in various maps from Competitive and Demolition modes – great for practice and learning maps without the pressure of Competitive mode. In the same update, Valve made changes to the recoil patterns (which are now more consistent than before) and damage output of many weapons, based on feedback from professional players. There was also an increase in the AWP’s reward from $50 to $100 in Competitive mode, lowering of molotov price to $500 just for the T-side and making the Glock and Five-Seven exclusive to the T and CT teams respectively.

Along with the adjustment of pistol prices and boosting the firing speed of the Tec-9, the January 23 CS:GO patch made the Desert Eagle pistol extremely overpowered. It was to the point that it could theoretically substitute more expensive weapons like SMGs in the hands of more seasoned players. This was quickly patched a week later by Valve, but unfortunately, this turned the tables completely on the Desert Eagle and made it underpowered and inaccurate.

cs-go-pistol-patch-balance

Gamers also complained on the Internet that the Glock was now overpowered thanks to its ability to one-shot kill with headshots and rather accurate 3 round burst. There was a change in an update just earlier this week where Valve increased the Deagle’s range, boosted the recoil for the Glock while reducing the range of the P250. Despite these efforts, gamers continue to be dissatisfied at the pistol changes and rant on forums. Some have even gone to say that the pre-January 23 state of pistols in CS:GO was just right and the change was a solution to a non-existent problem. We expect the pistol balance debacle to continue well through the next month and we’ll see if Valve makes further adjustments to balance in future updates.

Last week, Valve issued another significant update for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. After deploying the Left4Dead 2 Workshop, they’ve brought Maps Workshop to CS:GO which lets gamers and map developers convene in a designated place just for custom maps. This is excellent news for the community as the availability of fresh custom maps for free in an accessible location brings life to the game for both new and existing players.

cs-go-map-workshop

In the same update, Valve also added a classic Hostage map, de_assault, to the official matchmaking map rotation of CS:GO. Of course, it’s been updated for modern times, graphically, and has some minor layout tweaks. And speaking of modern maps, our video of the month for This Month In CS:GO is a tour, by UK-based Hatton Games, of the new Cistern custom map for Defusal matches. de_cistern_b1 (the map’s actual name) is an unofficial, custom map made by a long-time Counter-Strike gamer. The focus of Cistern is not only to create a well balanced and fun Defusal map, but to show off high levels of eye-candy as well. The map is incredibly well detailed and includes several custom props and objects in its environment – despite Source Engine showing signs of age, the gorgeous graphics this map pushes that ceiling up a notch.

Valve also introduced the ability to spectate your Steam friends’ CS:GO games in its recent updates to the game. This is great for so many reasons, including learning strategies from friends or other gamers who are better players and passing time while waiting for a friend to get out of a Competitive match. To prevent cheating or giving away enemy positions (since spectators can spectate anyone from both teams), streaming isn’t live and is 1 round behind the actual game being played.

CS:GO unofficial magazine, de_fuser, brought out two new issues right on schedule in the past month. The fan-made magazine is a resource for highlights from the CS:GO competitive/professional gaming scene and features useful tips and team strategies. Issue 7 and Issue 8 are out now; and we look forward to Issue 9 later this month and Issue 10 in early March.

We’ll end this issue of This Month In CS:GO with a piece of news that’s made history in Global Offensive since the game was launched in August 2012. Ninjas-in-Pyjamas (better known as NiP) is a professional Counter-Strike: GO team from Sweden that’s been undefeated for months and taking home 1st place prizes in various large tournaments such as DreamHack. Up till 2 days ago, NiP had been undefeated as a team in competitions… but on February 14th, 2013, German CS:GO team n!faculty made history and defeated NiP at the Raidcall EMS One Spring 2013 Cup on the de_mirage map with a score of 16-12.

It looked as if NiP would come out ahead after winning 5 consecutive rounds at the beginning but in the end, the Germans managed to eventually even things out, pull ahead and win the game. If you have 38 minutes to spare, there is a full video of said match available, narrated/casted by The War Owl. Good luck, have fun to all CS:GO players… until next time!

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