Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has spawned from humble beginnings as a Half-Life mod in 1998 through to one of the leading esports in the world today, attracting millions of dollars in prize money each year. Betting on CS:GO is now a massive industry in its own right, and players can bet on the esport at a huge variety of bookmakers, including big names like bet365, Betway and Pinnacle.
CS:GO has earned its title as a top tier competitive esport because of its insanely fast-paced action and multi-layered strategy. Betting on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is hugely exciting, especially when betting on one of the game's Majors where prize pools exceed one million dollars. On this page you can find the best CS:GO betting information there is to offer, including upcoming matches, esportsbooks, bonuses and match odds.
Before we get into the betting proper, it’s important to understand how match odds are written, as the formatting is concise but not necessarily intuitive. Let’s start with an example to make it clear.
Let’s suppose that Team A is playing against Team B in a match of Counter-Strike. A betting site is offering 3:1 odds. That means if you bet on Team B to win and they follow through, your bet will yield $3 for every $1 that you put down. That means a $50 bet turns into a $150 return. That’s pretty straightforward, right? Show more.
You can also use these odds to work out what your betting site reckons the chances are that a given outcome occurs. Let’s use the previous example once more, where Team A has 3:1 odds over Team B.
We sum 3 (Team A’s part) and 1 (Team B’s part), giving us a total of 4. We take the inverse of 4, meaning we divide one by that value. That’s 1 over 4, which is equal to 0.25; that means the bookie thinks that Team B has a 25% chance of winning.
If you believe that Team B has a much better shot, then you could vote for the underdog and potentially make a tidy profit. Similarly, if you think Team A has an even greater chance than 75%, you could bet on the favourites to get a relatively safe (if small) return.
One last point is that you’ll want to check what odds are being given out by other websites and sportsbooks. If you’re planning to bet on Team B, then finding a website that offers 3.5:1 or 4:1 odds will increase the amount of money you win substantially. This extra step can often be the difference between breaking even or ending up ahead in the long term, so don’t forget it! Show less.
Happily, as Counter-Strike is one of the biggest esports titles, basically every website that offers esports betting will cover Counter-Strike in some fashion. That makes it a bit easier to choose a website based on its bonuses, interface or odds, rather than being limited to just a few choices are you are for smaller titles.
Generally, you have two choices here: go for a big betting site with an established reputation, or a newer esports-focused site that may offer a deeper range of bets. Bet365 is one of the few mainstream sites that is still a great choice for CS fans, as it offers a diverse range of betting options, detailed proposition bets and bonuses for mobile and tablet play. Unikrn is emblematic of the other option; a slick esports-first website with full licensing, proposition bets, excellent support and incredibly welcoming bonuses.
Counter-Strike bonuses are offered in a few different forms, depending on the website or bookie that you're using. Perhaps the most common are first deposit bonuses, where you're given anywhere from 25% to 200% of your initial deposit as extra money to play with. There are some terms and conditions attached of course, but this is still a nice way to get into a site without venturing too much of your own cash. Show more.
Similarly, no deposit bonuses allow you to bet with real money without actually depositing at all. It'll take some skill to get to the point where you can cash out, but knowledgeable bettors can sometimes make it happen. Similarly, cash-back bonuses provide a bit of a cushion, returning a percentage of your cash after each losing bet. Show less.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) is a complex and tactical first person shooter, and it’s recommended that any prospective gambler fully understands the details of the mechanics, strategy and tactics that underpin this esport. Use the betting guides and overview content on this page to learn more about the esport and to gain a competitive edge in CS:GO betting. Show more.
Like American football, Counter-Strike can be deceptively simple. But it’s not just the team with the biggest guys (or in CS:GO, the fastest aimers) that come out on top; there’s also a deep strategical and tactical layer to explore. Once you start to see these in motion, and how the styles of top teams differ, the game becomes a lot more interesting. Whether it’s the attacking T side preparing an elaborate barrage of grenades to force the defending CT side out of areas of the map, or the CT side undertaking daring reconnaissance missions to prepare themselves for the fight ahead, there’s plenty to watch out for. Players that die sit out the rest of the round, so each action has weighty consequences. Show less.
Each competitive match of Counter-Strike consists of two teams, Counter-Terrorists and Terrorists, each made up of 5 players. The game is divided into up to 30 rounds, and teams swap sides after the 15th round. The first team to win 16 rounds takes the map.
Every round has a time limit of 1 minute 55 seconds and during this time a team must achieve one of the following to win the round:
Either side can also win by fragging all 5 players of the opposing team before the round timer ends.
All players have equal abilities and characteristics, with the only differing features being that a) the Terrorist side starts with the bomb, and b) each side has a unique selection of guns that can be purchased at the start of each round. However, all guns are dropped on death, and any player can pick up and use any gun.
Each player can carry up to 4 weapons; a knife (which cannot be dropped), a pistol, a number of grenades and a main weapon which could range from a shotgun or submachine gun through to a sniper rifle or heavy machine gun. In general, larger guns cost more money; upgraded pistols can cost $500, but an AWP sniper rifle costs $4750.
Players keep their guns and other equipment if they survive the round; otherwise they have to use the cash earned from kills and rounds completed to re-equip themselves. If there isn’t enough cash across the team for a full re-buy, teams can choose to save their money for the next round or take the risk of investing into substandard gear in order to keep the pressure up on their opponents.
Armor is also an important facet of the game. Players are able to buy Kevlar to reduce the damage they take from most weapons, or a Kevlar and Helmet to reduce damage from shots to the head as well. Armor can easily make the difference between survival and death, so expect to see it almost always when a team is investing fully in a round. The one common exception is the AWP player, who may sometimes forgo armor in order to get their sniper rifle of choice; this is called a ‘glass cannon’ build.
CS:GO has an official ‘active duty’ map pool that is played at all of the leading competitive tournaments and leagues. There is also a ‘reserve pool’ that has a number of maps which often rotate with the active pool – the reserve pool is often used to pull out maps that need rebalancing, or ones that simply are no longer popular.
Each map plays by the same mechanics outlined above, however a CS:GO gambler should be aware that different teams have a preference for different maps, and that this preference, and the ‘map voting’ that occurs prior to the game starting are extremely important aspects of game – and can make an enormous difference in the outcome and odds of a match. It’s rare for a team to be equally comfortable on all maps, so a surprise map pick is one area that underdog teams can stand a better chance against strong opponents. This change in odds is one you can predict based on each team’s history, and can be the difference-maker in CS:GO betting.
Each team in CS:GO is made up of players that lend themselves to different roles. These roles aren’t strictly defined in most teams, but players will tend to gravitate to different duties on the T side.
Entry fraggers work to enter bombsites and get kills early on, while support players set them up with grenades and covering fire. Lurkers generally operate on the opposite side of the map, sewing confusion and back-stabbing enemies (only sometimes literally), while AWPers use their eponymous sniper rifle to take kills from afar. Meanwhile, in-game leaders (IGLs) are calling the shots, deciding on the strategies to be employed at the start of each round and making changes on the fly.
On the CT side, it’s slightly different. IGLs and AWPers still perform their role, but the remaining players are classed based on the bombsite or other areas of the map that they choose to defend. Therefore, you might talk about an ‘A’ or ‘B’ player, or a ‘rotater’ who sits between the two bombsites and supports the one getting hit.
The best teams in the world will have a group of 5 players with one filling each or many of these roles extremely well, based on their personality and play style.
As an esports bettor, it is wise to do some due diligence around the teams that you back, and becoming familiar with the composition of each team, particularly when it comes to their individual roles. An in-game leader will often be the cornerstone of any team, so ensuring that they are on form and have the respect of their team is a wise move.