Introduction to CS:GO Betting
The original Counter-Strike was one of the defining multiplayer FPS titles of the 90s. Originally developed as a mod to the popular Valve staple Half-Life, it was later reincarnated in the Half-Life 2 Source engine as Counter-Strike: Source. More recently, the latest installment is the modern, updated game Counter Strike: Global Offensive, more commonly shortened to CS:GO.
CS:GO is one of the original titans of the eSports world, and has been an attractive title for players, viewers on streaming sites like Twitch, and also for eSports betting purposes. The game falls into the category of being fairly simple and straightforward to understand, without a lot of wildcards or abstract concepts, making it very approachable for newbie and veterans alike. CS:GO betting is therefore a great way to make a foray into the world of eSports betting.
While there are a lot of more niche bets and possible action available on different CS:GO betting websites, there’s no reason to be intimidated. CS:GO generates a lot of statistics and other information to help you make an intelligent CS:GO betting decision. One team will win, one team will lose, and players will earn points from kills, assists, and completing objectives – pretty basic to any competitive endeavor. The most popular bets that can be made are fairly consistent from platform to platform, and very easy to understand, as we’ll highlight in our guide and CS:GO betting tips below.
How and Why Did CS:GO Betting Become So Popular?
CS:GO was first launched in 2012. Over time, various features have been added to enhance the competitive nature of the game, including match-making and major sponsored eSports tournaments. The game builds on the same modes and general functionality that existed in its previous incarnations, meaning there’s a large cross-section of demographics and ages of players and viewers alike who are familiar with the franchise and how the games work. This makes it easier to start CS:GO betting than with many other eSports titles.
At the same time, CS:GO betting has become popular because so much detailed data comes out of the game itself, just like in professional sports. With stats and other data, it’s easy for bookmakers to set odds for matches, and players to manage their own systems of prediction and analysis. As with most sports and eSports betting, it comes down to researching, and determining your risk vs. reward criteria. Simple bets (we’ll cover the different kind of bets that are most commonly available in the next section) with clearly-stated odds between teams mean that even newcomers who put in a little time and effort have good odds of pulling off wins on the matches on which they bet. Because CS:GO betting is so popular, and makes up such a large portion of the eSports betting landscape, the odds trimming that bookmakers do (effectively adjusting the odds to ensure a commission for their services) is less dramatic than in many other eSports titles, meaning you stand to win more and more often.
What Can You Bet On in CS:GO?
CS:GO betting websites typically allow you to bet cosmetic items (skins and cases – loot crate items, in effect), cash, or both. Different sites have different specialties. A native set of features allowed for betting early on using cosmetic skins that drop via a randomized loot box mechanic in the game, and much of the financial betting that goes on now started as an outgrowth of that. In general, however, people have gravitated to CS:GO betting for real money, as it’s more stable, convenient, reliable, offers better odds, and is beyond the scope of features that the publisher may seek to curtail (which is not the case with skin gambling).
For most enthusiasts looking for eSports CS:GO betting tips, the best place to start on your chosen betting website is to look at the bets available, the odds, and the information available to you. To place a bet, you need to understand the bet criteria, the odds displayed, and do your research on what you think the likely result to be. For example, a bet for one team to win over the other may show odds like Team A has 1.25 odds to win, Team B has 3.75 odds to win. That means Team B is far less likely to win, and you get a much bigger payout if they do as a result. 1.00 odds would return your bet dollar-for-dollar, 1.25 odds would give you 25% profit, etc. In this example, if you bet $10 on Team A, and they win, you’d get $12.50 as a payout (a $2.50 profit). Most match-ups and similar types of bets on almost all CS:GO betting sites will use decimal odds like this.
There are a range of different betting options available on many sites, but some of the most common (and easy-to-understand) CS:GO betting choices are highlighted below.
Match or Series Winner
The most common form of CS:GO betting, and fairly common to almost every eSports title. You wager who will win, based on the odds offered, and your assessment of the teams in the competition. You can bet a little on long-shots and get a big payout, or bet more on a more sure-thing (such as teams that have odds closer to 1.0). This is a great place for new players to start with CS:GO betting.
Another popular entry in CS:GO betting options, score betting requires you to pick the correct score for the series. If it’s a best of three series, for example, there will be odds associated with the winning final score options (2-0 Team A, 2-0 Team B, 2-1 Team A, 2-1 Team B). There are also numeric score-related bets for the actual rounds total on each map. A map has 30 rounds of play, with the first team earning 16 wins named the victor for that map. Odd/even bets are popular in CS:GO betting, and let you pick simply if the final score will be even (e.g., 16 to 14, which is 30, an even number) or odd (e.g., 16-7, which is 23, an odd number).
There are many map-related bet options available as well on most CS:GO betting websites. Options such as the map winner (picking which team will win on a specific map to be played during the series), and the decider map option (a yes or no gamble on whether or not a series will need to go to a final deciding map, e.g., a 3rd round in a best of three series for example), are common.
Other Win-Related Bets
There are also betting options for the winner of the first or second round in a series, winner of the pistol rounds (the first round in each half of play), and other win-related metrics.
Can You Make Money from CS:GO Betting?
Different CS:GO betting websites will offer different odds, and adjust those odds to ensure themselves different profit margins or commissions for their services as a bookmaker. The best players who manage to make money from CS:GO betting review the odds offered at different bookmakers, and do their own analysis on the odds for any matches and bets they intend to make. You’ll often find rumors and tips from tipsters out in the betting world, but it’s usually best to avoid those. Analysis, statistics, and data are typically the best predictors of potential outcomes. The goal is to have your own odds of an outcome that are different than what the bookmaker says, and exploit that difference, as with any sports betting.
For example, if you think a team has a 90% chance to win, but they’re listed at fairly long odds (2.25, say), then that’s a great bet, and you should take it. The bookmaker clearly things they have a poor chance of winning, but your data says they have an excellent chance. If they win, you get your original bet back, plus 125% of that bet ($10 yielding your original $10 plus $12.50 profit, for example). That’s the goal – to out-guess and out-analyze the bookmakers’ odds. With some work and a bit of luck, it’s definitely possible to make some money with CS:GO betting. However, like all gambling, there is also a risk of losing, so never bet more than you can afford to lose – winning is never a guarantee.
What Should You Look for in the Best CS:GO Betting Websites?
When you’re looking for the best CS:GO betting websites, you should consider a few important factors. These include:
- What payment methods do they accept?
- What kind of sign-up bonuses do they offer?
- What is their reputation among other bettors and review sites?
- What kind of odds to they offer, and what do they disclose in terms of the odds adjustment or cut that they take from each bet?
- Does your chosen site have good customer service, and offer the kind of bets you are looking to make?
- What kind of policies do they have in place that may be relevant to your gambling activities (e.g. limits on withdrawals, account freezing on win streaks, and other quirks)?
- Does the site have an interface and provide the kind of data you feel you need to make an informed betting decision?
The Best CS:GO Gambling Sites in 2020
CS:GO remains one of the most popular titles for eSports betting today. With a little research, even an inexperienced gambler can make smart decisions on core CS:GO betting offers. Always be sure you understand what you’re betting on, and do your research…then sit back and enjoy the match. You might just score a big win!
If you are interested in other titles than CS:GO and want to learn about them, why not start with our Dota 2 Betting Guide. In case you need an some information on esports betting for beginners, check our beginners guide.