Counter Strike: Global Offensive is an extremely popular first-person shooter that is part of a franchise that has been around for almost twenty years. It is a highly strategic and skill oriented game. It takes A LOT of practice to get good at it. Its popularity has made it one of the leading eSports with tournaments having prize pools upwards of a million dollars. With teams from all around the world competing it is a very diverse game that appeals to many different people. Despite all of these great attributes, the game is plagued by one the most terrible community of any online multiplayer game. From squeakers, trolls, hackers, smurfs (higher level player playing at a lower rank), ragers, to seasoned players harshly discouraging new players, this game has got it all.
The leading factor for this constant spread of hate in this game is the feature of communication through a microphone. As soon as things can be said, everything goes downhill. A simple example is if a new player gets stuck in a one vs five situation and they lose the whole rest of the team will yell the most demeaning insults and abuses through the microphone. Players also get into the most immature conversations over the microphone instead of playing the game which leads to even more fighting. Many people have said on forums that the things that a person will hear on this game, they will never hear anywhere else in their lives. I can confirm this to be true through personal experience. Good communication in this game is KEY! Correct callouts have to be made and strategy has to be formed. Whenever I have played a match and my teammates are arguing and being a “typical CS:GO” player we always lost the match. The most annoying part of the microphone system is the squeakers. These are people in the community who yell in a very high pitched voice into the microphone that deafens everyone. Also, they play loud music into the microphone that is usually highly inappropriate.
Smurfs and hackers are the worst part of the game in terms of gameplay. Smurfs are very high ranked players who make second accounts and play are ranks below them. What this does is it ruins the game for beginners. They get annihilated and the smurfs rank up insanely fast. This is a huge problem. When I was in the lower ranks of the game 90% of my matches had smurfs that just made the game unplayable. Another gameplay related issue is the hackers. Every game has its hackers, but not like the ones in CS:GO. These hackers have hacks like aimbot that automatically locks their shots onto someone instantly killing them, the ability to see around walls and shoot you through them, invisibility, and the ability to turn them on or off at the touch of a button. This is called toggling. When people try to report someone for hacking it is impossible because they will toggle off so fast there is no way to get proof, and also they change their names in game every minute with programming hack that doesn’t allow your report to go through because the name always changes.
Despite having all of these issues, this game gets about eleven million monthly players. It is tough at first to gel into the the community, but once you do it doesn’t bother as much. All of these characteristics make CS:GO the game that it is today. Without them it may not have reached the stage it is on today. In the end, the games highly competitive nature and feel keeps players like me and the other 11,999,000 players coming back every single day.