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Why you’re still silver

As someone who’s been lucky enough to climb the ranks of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive all the way from Silver, I’ve encountered my fair share of players. From the professionals who hold the same angle for fifteen rounds to the non English speaker who doesn’t know what ‘eco’ means. 

Getting out of ‘silver hell’ seems daunting, especially if you’re newer to the game. You get teamed with incompetent players who decided to unbind their ‘walk’ key and are matched against the silver equivalent of Cloud9. So, let’s walk through the steps you need to take in order to get that Global status.

1. You’re not running with your knife.

Running with scissors is bad, but running with a knife isn’t. CSGO uses a velocity system, meaning that you carry momentum with you as you run. To achieve max velocity, you need to run with your knife equipped (or the bomb – but you can’t hit people with a bomb.) This will keep you at a speedy 250 velocity. Holding the AK-47 will let you move at 88% of this. It might not sound like much, but when you need to get onto site quickly, your teammates will get endlessly frustrated with you blocking the corridors. Just remember to equip the appropriate weapon before turning that final corner!

2. You’re not aiming the right way.

Cursor placement is one of the harder things to learn, but once you do, it becomes second nature. This requires an understanding of how your weapon works and where enemies will appear on the map. The best way to practice this is to play offline and figure out which angles you should be aiming at while approaching corners. That half a second it takes you to aim at an enemy could mean the different of life and death.

(Top tip – When aiming at a corner, aim slightly to the side. Your reactions aren’t good enough to snap a head shot the moment they appear around the corner, so allow them to move into your cross hairs.)

3. You’re not buying properly.

There are many economy strategies in CSGO and it’s sometimes hard to coordinate a team to buy and save together. As a general rule of thumb, try to keep your money above $2000 each round, regardless of what team you’re on. It’s not perfect, but if you’re solo queuing, it should be enough to keep you in the green. Speaking of solo queuing…

4. You have no friends.

Go find some people who are at a similar skill level to you and play together! You’ll be able to stragegize your economy, retake sites and deliver information like a team rather than a group of hamsters. Take time to learn how each other play and accept the criticism they give you. True friends flame each other.

5. You’re not warming up.

‘I don’t need to warm up before a game, that’s what the warm up time is for in competitive!’ No, it’s there so you don’t sit in a menu for five minutes while everyone loads in. Even if you played the day before, it doesn’t hurt to jump into a casual lobby and get that muscle memory to work. It doesn’t need to take an hour, but getting a few frags will do wonders to improve your early game.

Of course, this article is a little tongue in cheek. The only way to rank up is to practice. Try not to let it frustrate you too – at the end of the day, it’s only a game. Sure, it’s difficult when people are yelling at you for missing a vital AWP shot, but don’t be afraid to mute random players. Chances are, they don’t know much more about the game than you do and any advice they offer will just be pointless to you.