Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, most commonly referred to as CS:GO, is a multiplayer first-person shooter video game. It has a thriving competitive scene with players competing in tournaments and competitions run by the game’s developer Valve.
Tournaments and events now regularly attract big live streaming audiences and massive prize pools. It’s as competitive as any regular sport and there are a number of place where you can bet on CS:GO matches and tournaments. Below are the best betting sites for CS:GO along with a guide to game play and bet types.
Best Betting Sites For CS:GO
- Widest selection of eSports covered.
- Plenty of markets per event.
- Biggest opening account bonus.
- Highest possible review rating.
- Twitch integration alongside live odds.
- £10 weekly in-play free bet club.
- Uniboost bet boosts (3x daily).
- Solid welcome offer – easy to claim.
- Great bonus for smaller deposits.
- 5/5 Cheeky Punter review rating.
- Wide range of eSports bets.
- See trending & most popular eSports bets.
- Wide range of esports markets.
- Weekly free bet club (£10).
- Welcome bonus a little small.
- Only option for trading eSports.
- Back & lay bets.
- Decent sized welcome bonus.
- Good range of eSports markets & bets.
- Plenty of eSports markets.
- No eSports specific promotions.
- 300% welcome bonus.
- Better eSports options above.
- eSports betting available.
- Lacking some markets
- Can request odds.
- eSports feels a bit of an after thought.
How Does Competitive CS:GO Work?
Developed by Valve as the fourth edition of their globally popular Counter Strike series of games, CS:GO was first released in 2012. It is a multiplayer first-person shooter and has six diverse game modes known as Casual, Deathmatch, Arms Race, Demolition, Weapons Course and Competitive. It is Competitive mode which is used for the eSports competitions run by Valve themselves and other companies, and favoured by serious players looking to make significant prize money.
Unlike the other CS:GO game modes, competitive mode always pits two teams of five players against one another in a 30 round match. For a team to win a match, therefore, they must be the first to win a total of 16 rounds, with each round typically set to last a total of one minute and 55 seconds.
Game Settings for Competitive Play
Whilst competitive CS:GO tournaments are run by a variety of different companies and organisations, the game settings and general rules stay remarkably similar. As well as always being a best of 30 rounds contest, CS:GO matches also typically involve a switch of sides within the match after 15 rounds. Starting money is also generally set at $800 for competitive play, whereas for casual play it is often set at fully $1000.
Whilst the gameplay and gameplay settings for competitive CS:GO stay remarkably similar for almost all competitive tournaments and events, the actual format of the tournaments as a whole does differ. Often tournaments feature an initial group stage which is used to rank teams and to set up playoffs or a knockout stage which forms the final part of the competition. For a more in-depth look at CS:GO tournaments and competitions, however, let’s switch our focus to some of the major events on the competitive CS:GO calendar.
What Are the Big Events?
The professional scene around CS:GO is diverse and includes a large number of tournaments and competitions run by various different companies and organisations. The biggest and most widely recognised and respected tournaments, however, are those organised and run by Valve, the software developer behind the Counter Strike series of games.
Those tournaments are known as CS:GO Majors and can take place anywhere around the world. There’s also a regular league competition to look out for and prize pools are building year on year making CS:GO one of the most lucrative eSports to be involved in as a player.
ELEAGUE & ELEAGUE Major’s
Organised and run by ELEAGUE, a company who began broadcasting eSports events from 2016, the ELEAGUE & ELEAGUE Major’s are about the biggest events on the Counter Strike yearly schedule.
The ELEAGUE itself consists of 24 teams who compete across a schedule spanning 10 weeks finally producing an overall winner in the Championship event. If you’re in the United States you can watch all fixtures live on TV station TBS every Friday night. Otherwise you can catch the same broadcast streamed via online platforms Twitch and YouTube.
Prizepools for the Major’s have now reach the $1,000,000 mark on several occasions which 16 teams compete for, the eight teams to have finished in the top eight of the previous CS:GO Major, and eight further teams who qualified via a separate competition.
After an initial group stage, eight of the teams in the field qualify for the playoffs and then play down to a grand final and eventual winner.
ESL League & Major’s
Much like ELEAGUE, ESL (Electronic Sports League) are now running an offline Counter Strike Global Action professional league with a weekly schedule and major events on the calendar as well. Recent prize-pools haven’t been able to match those offered by ELEAUGE but as the company has managed to grow their audience and competition prize’s have also been on the up.
ESL streams their competitions live on YouTube and regularly hit impressive viewer figures with over a million people following the events they run. Given the widespread interest in their events you’ll find a number of different betting markets available to punters with betting on the overall tournament results as well as all specific matches.
What Bet Types are Available?
Now that CS:GO Majors and other tournaments have garnered such popularity and attention, a good number of online bookmakers have started offering betting markets for them. Those markets include outrights for the tournaments themselves and special bets relating to each individual match, and we’re going to describe and explain a few of the most popular below.
Match Winner Bets: As well as allowing you to bet on the overall winner of a CS:GO Major, many online bookmakers will also offer match result markets for each individual contest. These markets generally price up each team fairly closely, unless one of them has a far superior prior tournament record.
Over/Under Markets: For some CS:GO matches some bookmakers will also offer a range of over/under betting markets. These are markets through which you can bet whether there will be over or under a certain pre-determined number of a specific event or statistic during a match. The most common such markets refer to the total number of kills or points scored.
First Blood Bets: A first blood bet on a CS:GO match is a bet on which of the two teams will be the first to score a kill in any given game round/set. As such, the bets are in no way influenced by the ultimate result of a match or even of the individual round/set.
Total Rounds Markets: Offered by a number of different eSports betting sites, total rounds markets let punters bet on whether a match will go over or under a certain number of rounds (out of the total possible 30). The exact figure for the over/under is set by the individual bookmaker and will differ from one match to the next.