Newsroom News Breaking Comics Tags RSS
News video games 14 July 2021, 17:26

CS:GO Needs Shorter Matches; Pros Want Changes

Recently, there has been a heated discussion online about the length of pro Counter-Strike: Global Offensive matches. According to many pro gamers and experts, currently the duels last too long.

When starting a match in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive players are greeted at the outset by a sign stating that one match can last up to an hour and a half and that people entering the lobby must be available for the duration of the match (otherwise they will be banned for AFKing). In professional CS:GO that time is often doubled or even tripled, mpossibly aking it a bore for viewers. A recipe for keeping the audience's attention can be shorter matches. This solution has been advocated by many people in the Counter Strike community.

CS and slow spots

Typically, esports matches in CS:GO are played in the BO3 format - until two wins. These matches can end with a score of either 2:0 or 2:1. The duration of a match in a single map varies, and can close in on an hour or so depending on situation. In theory, however, such a match could last indefinitely. CS:GO has no time limits - the team that first reaches 16 winning rounds (MR 15 system) wins. However, if the score is 15:15, the match will go into overtime, which is similar to volleyball - the team with the most points wins. If the match ends with a score of 2:1, and we've seen overtime on every map, it can mean a meeting that may last ip to 5 hours.

Esports organization (ENCE, MIBR, among others.) manager Tomi "Iurppis" Kovanen counted the duration of matches during the recent IEM Cologne. He took a look at the matches minute by minute, including technical breaks and commercials (via Esportnow [in Polish]).

Below is an example of the calculation of the meeting between teams Astralis and FaZe Clan on Nuke:

The game in this particular arena lasted an hour and 45 minutes, of which the audience did not watch the actual game for half an hour due to technical breaks, timeouts, etc. The entire match lasted over 3 hours, and God knows how long it would have taken if we'd got a third map. The length of matches is inconvenient for the players but also, and especially, for the spectators, who often have to sacrifice an entire afternoon/evening to see a match in its entirety. Of course, if everything goes according to plan and the match is not postponed due to organizational reasons, which happens very often.

Shorter matches - better matches?

The solution given by Kovanen is to shorten the single map format to MR 12 (up to 13 rounds won). Such a system is used by CS:GO's direct competitor - Valorant. The duration of a single map in the shooter from Riot Games is from 30 to 50 minutes. This is a much more spectator-friendly system that ensures viewers don't stay up late at night watching their favorite esports team play. Many professional players and coaches are in favor of the MR 12 solution, including CS:GO pro Wiktor "TaZ" Wojtas.

Currently, this discussion remains purely theoretical. Valve is reluctant to make changes, and if it does, the community doesn't like them.

Michal Ciezadlik

Michal Ciezadlik

Joined in December 2020 and has remained loyal to the Newsroom ever since, although he also collaborated with Friendly Fire, where he covered TikTok. A semi-professional musician, whose interest began already in childhood. He is studying journalism and took his first steps in radio, but didn't stay there for long. Prefers multiplayer; he has spent over 1100 hours in CS:GO and probably twice as much in League of Legends. Nevertheless, won't decline a good, single-player game either.