In tough times like this, gaming has proven to be an adequate time killer, dare I say, an escape from the daunting reality of the world. With most of us required to stay at home, Steam, the popular game distribution service has seen a rise in its users. There is no doubt that this spike is partly owing to the massive appeal of CS GO matches. As we know, anything that involves games will have regular updates. Let's dive in!
CS: GO vs. VALORANT: The Battle Heats up!
Since the release of its closed beta back in April, Riot Games’ Valorant has been buzzing. At the time, it seemed like a major gamble, given that the tactical shooter was going up against CS: GO, which is an established title with a massive fanbase. However, as the fanbase of Valorant steadily increases, it seems that the gamble has paid off.
One would not find it surprising that fans of Counter-Strike have also been playing Valorant, seeing as both games are similar. The rivalry between the two games is well known in the gaming community. An occurrence that sent sparks flying was when professional CS: GO player, Hunter Mims, popularly known as "SicK", announced that he was stepping away from the game. He took to Twitter to announce his exit from competitive CS: GO. He said, “After 5 years and almost 800 official maps played, I'm taking a step back from competitive CS: GO. The game has become incredibly stale and tedious for me. Valorant comes at a perfect time, but it was inevitable anyway. I've spent my entire adult life in this game, it's been fun.”
Riot Games are looking to end the monopoly CS: GO has in the tactical shooter genre. Their advertising campaign has been tactical and efficient. They started by targeting established gamers and former Counter-Strike pros like Pasha and Shroud. They also got friendly with popular streamers like summit1g and Ninja by permitting beta drops on their streams. Even one of the top CS: GO players, S1mple, loves to play Valorant. Riot Games’ plan seems to be working exceptionally well as there has been massive hype around the game ever since they rolled out the closed beta.
In what appears to be a response to this, Valve has been pushing out updates for CS: GO recently. Fans are all for this healthy rivalry, seeing as it forces both companies to be at their best.
Despite the massive hype surrounding Valorant, CS: GO remains at the top of the tactical shooter scene. As a matter of fact, with over 1.3 million active concurrent players, Counter-Strike has broken Dota 2’s record.
With Valorant set to be released this summer, Valve would have to be at the top of their game to maintain their spot on the top of the hill.
Team Astralis Looking to Bolster Their Counter-Strike Roster
It is no doubt that the recent performance of the Danish team Astralis is of a mixed variant. Astralis finished in the last place at BLAST Premier: Spring 2020 and secured third place at ESL Pro League Season 11. They also finished in second place at IEM Katowice.
Despite their irregular form, things seem to be taking the right turn. In the on-going CS: GO tournament, ESL One: Road to Rio, Astralis have performed well with an extremely decent record of 4-1 in Stage 1 of the competition. With this record, they have reclaimed their #1 spot from team Fnatic, according to Half-Life Tv's world rankings.
Despite this turn for the better, sources close to the team claim that the Danes are seeking to bolster their team with two players. It appears to be a solution to their irregular form earlier this year. It is still uncertain whether they are looking to replace a first-team player or seeking a better squad depth.
Back in March, Astralis confirmed their future acquisition of Patrick Hansen, popularly known as “es3tag”. He has not officially joined the team, but reports say that a deal has been agreed in principle. This deal would allow es3tag to officially join Astralis on July 1, when his contract with fellow Danish team Heroic expires.