New allegations of bug abuse in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CSGO) emerged today, shared by Aleksey "OverDrive" Biryukov on social media. The allegations relate to a game from the ESEA Cash Cup, where 1shot Nikita “LostDF” Babalykov is seen, allegedly using what appears to be a bug to fly around the map.
While there is no official edict or statement from ESEA on the incident yet, Overdrive himself has a perfect recent record, having successfully called the bans for Sergey "hally" Shavayev, 9z’s Rafael "zakk" Fernandes, and Imperial’s Luis “Peacemaker” Tadeu prior to them being announced. More information on the bug was provided on Twitter by Kyryl “marat2k” Samsoniuk.
According to marat2k, this is not the first time this bug has been exploited, with the issue exacerbated by ESEA’s setting for their Cash Cup events. In a Twitlonger posted earlier on May 8, he gave an example which he alleges is a team called BIT eSports abusing the same bug to gain an advantage, on May 7-8.
CSGO has a culture of cheating?
With 1shot being a top 100 ranked team, and Overdrive having brought the case into the light, it seems understandable that the reaction was more swift than we’ve seen in previous cases. Renowned CSGO referee Michal Slowinski replied to the tweet, asking for more details, so with any luck, this bug can be identified quickly and the crackdown on abusers can happen in a more timely manner than it has in the past.
While the incidents are not directly linked to the higher-profile cases that have affected tier 1 CSGO in the last couple of years, the fact there are still such blatant examples of bug abuse going on has an impact on the wider scene. When governing bodies like ESIC are deciding on punishments, they must not just consider the crime itself, but also whether the news will deter others from trying the same thing, or scare them into thinking twice.
Like athletics, professional cycling and certain other pro sports, it has got to the point where cheating, and bug abuse in particular, is no longer rare in CSGO, and examples are now starting to stack up. The effect on competitive integrity and fan interest can also not be ignored, as viewers will struggle to get invested if they can’t trust the result.
This may even be part of why ESIC are so keen on banning borderline cases in their attempts to clean up CSGO, with the situation so bad that they need to send a message, as well as remove cheats from the game. With Dust2.us reporting that as many as 97 coaches could be implicated in the coaching bug situation, it’s clear CS has a long way to go before we can be confident in results, especially from smaller events.