CS:GO betting is quickly gaining popularity in the eSport scene with the constant and growing demand for skins by the game’s players, and the slot machine-like experience of opening weapon cases in the slim hopes of getting a desirable skin, creating a huge, free-range capitalist market that allows all kinds of gambling, trading, and skin selling to take place outside of Valve’s intended corral for such activity.

Counter-Strike (CSGO)

If you, like myself, are a newcomer to the scene it is often difficult to know where to start and in light of this Telkom Gaming approached one individual that has seen some success in the past.

Guide to CS:GO Betting:

First off here is some betting terminology you will find being used:

ICB – Inventory Cleaner bet. (Betting skins you will never use and are often useless in value).
Sway – When somebody is trying to provide fake information to make you bet on the opposite team to themselves.
Underdog – The team with the lower percentage (odd wise)
Overdog – The team with the higher percentage (odd wise)
Underpay – When you get less return value than predicted.
Overpay – When you get more value than predicted.
Skip – Well pretty simple. A match that is risky is often called a skip.
Ragebet – This is when you lose often and then decide to put a big bet on a game to try win back all your losses.
What motivates people to put their hard earned money into betting?

There are a few types of bettors you will encounter:

1.) The money fanatic: This person will be betting large amounts of money on games where it is a Tier 1 team (highly rated) playing vs a Tier 2 or lower team (rated lower). They bet, for example, $300 to get a small return of let’s say $20-70. However 80 percent of the time the Tier 1 team will win. This person is trying to grow their inventory as much as they can each game in a safer way.

2.) The Inventory Cleaner Bettor: This is your starting or scared bettor (as people say). These people only take little bets of around $0.03 to $2.00 and often only bet on the underdog (the team with lower win percentage). This is all in the hopes of doubling their money.

3.) Your average bettor: This is where a beginner should aim to be. This person often researches ahead of time and spends time looking into games and learning things. This person will slowly learn a good deal about team matchups and will need less information each time. This person is trying to get a little extra money into his steam inventory and maybe get a nice skin to use.

4.) The Analyst: This person dedicates their time to knowing everything they can about the teams. They will look at previous games, the team’s favourite maps, how they do at LAN among other things. This person could probably pull statistics from five months ago out and often places bets to increase their betting pocket.

5.) The Beginner: This is where everybody starts off. They get nervous for the matches and will often spend a whole day thinking about a match and if they should bet. Often they will bet smaller amounts, and on fewer games than bettors in other categories. Often the beginners aim to make a little extra money and, as they gain experience, will slowly increase the size of their bets to hopefully receive some good skins.

6.) The team supporter: This type of bettor is the simplest. They see their favourite team, and they bet on them. This person also tends to watch the game and enjoy the game more than the betting.

How would a beginner, who has never placed a bet, go about choosing how should they bet?

The basics you will be looking for are:

Best of one games:

Look for a team with a strong map pool
Previous best-of-one (Bo1) match-ups of the game
Tier differences. (e.g T1 vs T3)
A team with players always on fire
Upset potential. Some teams are known to upset big teams (e.g. Mouz or G2).
Try predict map picks: In a bo1 the map advantage is the biggest advantage you can get
Best of three

The team with good map picks/map pool picks. (e.g. good on three or more maps)
Teams which have strong comeback potential (requires intensive research).
Teams with great LAN performance (For majors).
Teams who made Quarter finals last major.
Check individual ratings (on hltv or Reddit).
Other things to look for: Often teams go into a sort of “slump” so to speak where they made line-up changes or often just aren’t feeling the game. Even a Tier 1 team can lose to a Tier 3 team when in a slump. Cloud 9 are a good example of this as when they are on fire they can take out teams like fnatic but when they are not they lose to Tier 3 teams.

However, do not let the odds fool you. Some games teams will gain around 5-15% just because of their name. Teams like NiP and VirtusPro for example, even if they should be the underdog, will often will still end up with around 60 percent plus.

How will they know who to bet on?

It is always advisable to bet on group favourites.

This is the team that will make it out of the groups and is often a Tier 1 team. This will be the team who has been preparing for weeks at a boot camp and was in the quarterfinals last major.

It should be noted that you should only bet on games where you know one has a clear advantage (unless you want to dive into risky 50/50 bets). You will often be looking for a team who is better than the other team in map picks and has a good record vs them.

How much should they put down?

When starting off you will be testing the waters so to speak and it is recommended that you putt down around 15 percent of your betting inventory. The recommended betting size for beginners is around $5 to start out and, as you slowly grow your betting pocket, then you can increase it to $7-10.

If you don’t have much, don’t fear as even $1-2 bets on some matches will give you a decent return.

A recommended scale would be this:

ICB: $0.14 – 1.00

Low: $1.00 – 3.00 or 2 percent

Med: $4.00 – 10.00 or 5-10 percent

High: $10.00 – 60.00 or 30-50 percent

What is the best way, in your opinion, to gather the information needed to place a winning bet?

There are a few places you can get your information from.

These are some of the sources I personally use:
reddit/r/csgobetting (this provides team breakdowns from analyst and roster lineups).
reddit/r/globaloffensive (this provides team news and event news).
Twitter (Often you can find substitutes being used, or team feelings so to speak).

There are other sources and often if you know the players/teams you can actually ask them how they are feeling or what they prepared for the match. If you can’t then follow their social media and I am sure you can pick-up on things.

As a last pointer I must remind people that you will always lose some games, you will never have a 100 percent win rate. Expect to lose some games and do not get overly concerned with losses as you will make it back overall.