Pretty Up CS: GO’s Guns In The Arms Deal Update

By Craig Pearson on August 15th, 2013 at 4:00 pm.

Who is this guy? I don't know, so it must be an ARG.
I have a jar of ball bearings on my desk. For each kill in CS: GO, I drop a ball into a hole in desk. The bearing rolls into a rat’s cage. The rat squeaks in terror, and a noise-activated switch turns on a fan. The fan blows a toy boat across a bucket of water, and the boat’s mast tips a small bucket of sand into another bucket. That bucket is on a string that’s tied to a switch, and it gently tugs at it, releasing another ball bearing from a small cage on a shelf above me. That other ball bearing drops into another jar. If I want to know how many kills I have, I count the balls in the jar. How do you track your kills in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive? You just use one of the StatTrak modules from the now live Arms Deal update? Show off.

Of all the things that Valve and Hidden Path have just dumped on the latest CS, the stat tracking modules are the most interesting. And that’s only because they look so damned cool: the number of confirmed kills can be seen scratched into the blade of a knife, or displayed on an LED screen on a gun. Those modules can only be found through the newly added crate drop system, that I speculated on earlier in the week.

Those rumours have largely been corroborated: CS:GO can potentially drop one of two styles of crates during games, filled with skinned guns for the game. The effects are cosmetic. The E-Sports Crate will give a cut of the unlock money to a prize pool, while the standard crate’s cash will go to Valve. Valve are augmenting that with a weapons drop system as well, so just playing will fill your inventory with new skin options for your personal armory.

The update also drops in two new weapons for everyone: the Silenced M4A1 and Silenced USP Pistol will be in your inventory right now. Enjoy!


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  1. Bull0 says:

    Hmm… the silenced weapons have smaller magazines than their unsilenced counterparts. Because REASONS

    • Craig Pearson says:

      Its because of all the cotton wool.

    • lasikbear says:

      Actually there is a lot of science behind this. It turns out guns are very loud, but particularly when firing bullets. By reducing the number of potential bullets to be fired, Valve found they could reduce the potential amount of noise the gun could make.

    • RiptoR says:

      Actually, the silenced weapons are supposed to be a bit more accurate and they have less recoil than their unsilenced counterparts. Their magazines were made smaller to balance this out a bit.

    • Elevory says:

      Critical thinking time: Why would anyone use the regular M4 if its silenced version had the same magazine/reserve capacity?

      • Bull0 says:

        Yeah, obviously, my disquiet on this is purely from a realism standpoint (although if you want to talk about game design, they actually made the decision to remove silencers from the stock M4 and .45 – they were in 1.6 and Source).

  2. Reefpirate says:

    It’s about damn time we got the silenced M4 back.

  3. VelvetFistIronGlove says:

    This comes as no surprise at all. Stat-tracking weapons have been around for a long time in TF2 now, and they are surprisingly (to me) popular. They’ll probably be even more popular with the CS audience.

    The crate drop system sounds identical to TF2, too. Ordinary weapons drop at random into your inventory, but the stat-counting ones (“Strange” quality in TF2 terms) only come from crates. Which means if you want one, you’ll either have to spend actual money on keys to unlock crates for a chance at something good (yes, this is gambling), or you’ll have to spend actual money in the store for a specific stat-tracking part.

    Interesting times.

    • Reefpirate says:

      I don’t think that counts as gambling… You’re not winning money. At least as far as a legal definition goes, paying money for a random chance to get a virtual item doesn’t count.

      • VelvetFistIronGlove says:

        The legal definition (in whatever jurisdiction) is irrelevant. I wasn’t talking about the regulatory situation, but the social and commercial one.

        • Reefpirate says:

          So I guess buying Magic: The Gathering booster packs counts as gambling too?

          • HothMonster says:

            Kind of. You put in a set amount of money and you receive a random prize. It may be monetarily worth more or less than you put in. It might also be worthless or useful to you in terms of the game.

            The point is you don’t know what you are buying or what value it will have once it is unwrapped. You are buying something and taking a chance that it is what you want. You are not buying a product you want you are buying a chance at getting a product you want. Depending on how specific your needs are there is a good chance you will get nothing or nothing you need and the monetary value of the “nothing you need” will be worth less than you paid for the chance to get something you need.

            Paying money for a chance to receive something more or less valuable then what you paid for the chance is in essence gambling.

          • sirflimflam says:

            Absolutely. Your example is pretty much the defacto definition of a gamble.

          • VelvetFistIronGlove says:

            Indeed, and it’s the exact same thing.

            What I dislike about these things is the calculated offer of much less value (overall) in exchange for a greater value (overall) of customers’ money—knowing that many people will respond positively to the thought of winning. It’s a rational calculation to exploit an emotional response for a one-sided benefit. It’s basically the same reason I dislike casinos (who are still worse offenders).

        • Bull0 says:

          I wouldn’t say irrelevant. I was kind of thinking the same thing; gambling’s the wrong word for it

      • Veeskers says:

        It’s gambling without even offering anything of actual value in return for the money that’s being gambled away. Real-money gambling for “rewards” on which the scarcity is entirely artificial.

        And people will get ensnared by it, that’s why it exists. It’s incredibly sleazy.

  4. Utsunomiya says:

    There are three visible symbols on the crates…. The guy sitting there, looking like a shaved Gordon… I think I might be onto something here!

  5. Leb says:

    Or spend nothing and trade for it

    Edit: meant to reply to velvet

  6. sharkh20 says:




  7. strangeloup says:

    The idea of bringing TF2′s Strange weapons to CS:GO (as the StatTrak is the same thing in all but name) seems pretty neat, but looking on the marketplace, the weapon reskins are going for a surprisingly large price. Surprising because they’re both not very noticable and almost universally hideous.

  8. Writhe says:

    I have a jar of ball bearings on my desk.
    No, you do not. You have a jar of bearing balls. Ball bearings are where they came from. Sheesh.

  9. Limes says:

    What happened to the days of skinning whatever guns you want into the game, with whatever animations you want? The days when FPSBanana was king of this scene.

    • HadToLogin says:

      Valve happened. And people hating Horse Armor while praising TF2 Keys.

      • Ringwraith says:

        Wait, there are people who think they are a good idea?!

        • Ernesto25 says:

          People will defend anything in tf2 despite the most logic and reason which is a shame as i was enjoying cs:go but no valve couldn’t leave well, enough alone. F2P seems an inevitability for yet another game i paid for, with updates i (really wanted to say noone ) asked for.

    • HothMonster says:

      People can still host dedicated servers and swap textures on those servers. But you can’t take those to other servers. You can still swap your personal textures. But other players can not see them. These are skins that will be available on all servers visible to all players.

      It’s “in addition to” not “instead of”

  10. jellydonut says:

    I don’t get it. They removed the silencers from those guns? And they’re now added back as separate weapons?

    Why didn’t they just pull a Dota 2 and copy the game entirely but with better graphics? Why change CS?

    • Skeith says:

      They probably feel like experimenting is necessary because CS’s popularity has been waning for years now. It has gone from a multiplayer juggernaut to the walking dead. Valve caught Dota while moba as a whole is still getting more popular. Nothing is wrong with Dota so they have no motivation to change for the moment. Remaking CS would seem like beating a dead horse.

  11. cardboardartisan says:

    Valve at launch: “Your PC’s not so hot? Well, just buy the console version! We’ll be updating it shortly to support cross-play, so you can play with your friends!”

    Shortly later: “Haha, JK about cross-play, but we just released a patch for the PC that adds stuff and fixes balance issues. We’ll get that out to consoles real soon now.”

    Now: “We released a version for consoles? Weird. I guess with all this new, awesome stuff we’ve been doing for the PC version, we kinda forgot.”

    • reddeaded says:

      You do know, that even if they could/would update the console, you would have to pay for it, because Microsoft doesn’t allow it to be free.

  12. Juan Carlo says:

    This is awful. I don’t play CS:GO, but I do play L4D2 religiously and Valve adding micotransactions to CS means that L4D is only a matter of time.

    • basilisk says:

      It’s more or less confirmed they’re working on L4D3. I think that’s where the hats will be; no need to backport them to L4D2.

    • Jimmy says:

      Yes, they should have put the picture of the bullshit in this post, not the other one. You pay for a personal copy of several products, but then they force you to accept new conditions stating you have unlimited subscription, even though they clash with EU regulation. Then you subscribe for a new game like CS:GO, and you get a very well executed CS game, true to the series, by Hidden Path. And then later you are forced to accept the new F2P product instead with microtransactions, unnecessary customisation, and gambling.

      • KillVolume says:

        It’s not F2P. All of the microtransactions are cosmetic, so it’s not the same as TF2. I think valve recognizes that the TF2 model can’t work with CS:GO 1:1.

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