Home Gaming Are professional CS:GO players still cheating?

Are professional CS:GO players still cheating?

3 min read

Apart from spamming “VAC” in Twitch Chat, now and then hackusation’s rear their ugly heads on either Reddit or HLTV.org. Most people knock them off as disgruntled fans of the losing team, but sometimesa case arrives where these actions can no longer be ignored, and more crucially, the same players keep being accused of using third-party programs which aid their abilities.

After each major competitions a number of videos and clips start popping up of players who make inhuman movements and seem to “lock-on” player’s heads behind walls, and out of the field of view. Again, this could be knocked off as mouse movement, but can we continue to ignore these uncharacteristic movements?

This is the latest accusation against G2 eSports player shox who had some uncharacteristic movements in last night’s grand final of ECS. Take note at 15 seconds.

Tinfoil hats on, please

Believe it or not, conspiracy theorists within certain communities believe there is rampant cheating going on within the professional CS:GO scene. A VAC ban wave two years ago caught out a number of top players who perhaps became a little over-confident in their secrecy and slipped up allowing these hacks to be caught. Of course, this lead to an outbreak of accusations which turned the CS:GO community inside out. Theorists then brought forward the idea that major tournament hosts and even Valve are aware of these third-party programs which surpass Valve’s anti-cheat software, and this ring is both profitable for players and the developers of these hacks, with the hosts receiving their cut to turn a blind eye.


This is just one of the larger conspiracies out there, but we can take it with a pinch of salt, as it’s most likely run by the inner gaming circle division of the Illuminati.

However, are Valve and tournament hosts doing anything to put our minds at ease? Unfortunately, no.

Thorin investigates

eSports personality, and CS:GO panel regular Duncan “Thorin” Shields addressed this issue in his latest vlog. Unfortunately, shorter than his usually discussions, Thorin sheds light on the number of clips he’s received and he can’t help but speak on these “freak” movement he’s seen in the past few years keep resurfacing with the same names attached. No longer able to ignore certain individuals in the professional scene, Thorin thinks Valve need a cheating expert, and no your ex-partner does not qualify.

Thorin discusses the lack of experts being present at both tournaments and Valve headquarters who could easily catch these cheats. He goes as far as to say it’s not even the responsibility of tournaments, but rather that of Valve to rid the world of nasty cheats in the professional CS:GO scene, if there are any. We have to add an aura of speculation to this allegation as there is no defining evidence, but rather really suspicious moments within major tournaments. Valve’s Anti-Cheat software (VAC), while it catches universal cheating software, may struggle to catch private cheats as developers remain ahead of Valve in their development. Thorin explains that these cheats may even be made for one player alone, with others receiving similar private cheats which makes detection nearly impossible.

In summary, it’s clear that Valve do need an expert to deal with the accusations flooding public forums after each tournament. Whether this person applies physical methods to catching cheats, such as mouse cameras matching player movement with on-screen, or developing software which catches these programs. It would be an absolute nightmare if a number of players were caught, and I fear this would kill the competitive CS:GO scene in the same way that matchfixing ruined the SC2 scene. Integrity of the game would be ruined, but something has to be done to put everyone’s mind at ease.


Last Updated: June 27, 2016


  1. Darren Peach

    June 27, 2016 at 13:40

    The last line of your article is truth !


  2. VampyreSquirrel

    June 27, 2016 at 13:47

    It would be terrible if they are cheating, but someone needs to look into this and find out. Who that is, I don’t know.


  3. BakedBagel

    June 27, 2016 at 13:47

    “and no your ex-partner does not qualify.”

    if i had an ex


  4. Ottokie

    June 27, 2016 at 13:53

    He snapped onto the head of a guy behind a wall xD


    • VampyreSquirrel

      June 27, 2016 at 14:01

      Seen ppl do it in overwatch.


      • Admiral Chief Maximum Effort

        June 27, 2016 at 14:02

        At least there is SOME sort of explanation (Widow’s Infra-sight or Hanzo-sonic arrow thing)


        • VampyreSquirrel

          June 27, 2016 at 14:07

          You can see if those are on in the replay though.


      • Thinus Swart

        June 27, 2016 at 14:03

        In Overwatch, you have certain player ultimates that allow vision to other players, like a radar-type skill. That what you might be referring to?


        • VampyreSquirrel

          June 27, 2016 at 14:06

          Nope, not at all. You can see if those Ulti’s are on in the replay.


      • BakedBagel

        June 27, 2016 at 14:06

        There was a professional csgo player who did that exact thing.
        The explanation was “He lifts his mouse alot” heh.


        • Dwight Gordon

          June 27, 2016 at 19:29

          You’re talking about Flusha from Fnatic, JW has also had some suspect moments. After the KQLY fiasco, anything is possible and is making the community trust no one. As the author stated, something must be done and I’m not talking about VACations or witch hunts. Valve needs to break its silence on this matter or this scene may be over before it can peak.


  5. Admiral Chief Maximum Effort

    June 27, 2016 at 13:58

    Clearly cheating


  6. Admiral Chief Maximum Effort

    June 27, 2016 at 14:00

    The anti-cheat investigators (ACI) should not be affiliated OR employed by any of the parties


  7. Raptor Rants

    June 27, 2016 at 14:06

    Ok I suck at these things. Is it that the replay at 15seconds shows the guy looking at the railing where the guy was shot but he didn’t really shoot or what’s going on here?

    Also GG lags for making me click the image play button and not understanding why it wouldn’t play. Trolls.


    • BakedBagel

      June 27, 2016 at 14:08

      at around 15sec you see the yellow shadow of the enemy player behind the wall. His cursor stops for a split second over the enemies head. That should not happen. It looks like he was “snapping” his cursor to enemies.


      • Raptor Rants

        June 27, 2016 at 14:10

        ahaaaa. I see. But surely in a sport where your main aim is to always get headshots, your level of aim is always around head height. Any stopping over a head doesn’t always mean cheating. It could just be incidental.

        But yes, I agree, cheating needs to be investigated and they need an expert just to be sure.


        • BakedBagel

          June 27, 2016 at 14:14

          Of course it doesnt mean he is cheating, but that sort of aiming is really really dodgy. Some explanations are “the player lifts his mouse for a split second” which is understandable. This video was from last year, its almost the same motions.


          • Raptor Rants

            June 27, 2016 at 14:17

            woah that looks legit suspect

          • BakedBagel

            June 27, 2016 at 14:18

            Again, we dont know what was said over team comms, and the likes. But people *have* to be suspect, i mean a couple pro’s last year got VAC banned. and just because of those people, you have to take everything as a possibility. :/

          • Raptor Rants

            June 27, 2016 at 14:21

            the clip in the article is a once off so that I could pass off as accidental.

            But the clip you posted has the guy bounce between multiple enemy through walls all on the head. That’s…. weird

  8. RinceThis

    June 27, 2016 at 15:27



  9. Mohamed Hussain

    June 27, 2016 at 22:17

    “Such as mouse cameras matching player movement with on-screen” that would be great.


  10. Garth Smith

    June 28, 2016 at 00:02

    It’s easy guys (for LANs anyway). The Department of Defense figured this out decades ago.

    You can only truly eliminate cheats for LANs.
    1) Provide all equipment. No personal equipment allowed.
    2) Lock computers & equipment down when not in use.
    3) Keep camera on computers & equipment at all times.
    4) Epoxy all USB ports shut. Allow only two ports for mouse and keyboard.
    5) Provide new steam accounts with fresh CS:GO licenses.
    6) Completely air-gap (disconnect) the LAN from the Internet.

    The players don’t bring anything. There will then be no way to get cheats onto the computer. With millions of dollars on the line, this isn’t that complicated.


    • Don Ziolkowski

      June 28, 2016 at 05:51

      That’s not practical however, the no personal equip and only 2 ports especially.

      sponsorships require they use like razor mouses and such. or corsair keyboards. They can’t just use Valves.

      There is also headsets which are pretty important…..

      The moment you allow personal equipment you allow someone to solder in a usb splitter and insert a usb into there headset earpiece or whatever and silently install cheats onto the pc. I mean a usb stick is actually almost all protective plastic, if you remove allt hat you get something much closer to the size of a phones micro SD card.

      I think the best solution might be to use an additional physical device that is a usb piece that sits between the mouse and computer. you have a device that plugs into the computer that the mouse plugs into and it reads the mouse movement at the raw hardware level before the computer sees it and it then just records it and passes it on.

      Player’s provide one mouse (any mouse) to the tournament and it is inspected, returned to them and retrieved after the game and if cheating is suspected inspected again.

      If you have any questions about cheating you can compare the players raw input with the on screen actions to determine if anything fishy is going on. If they don’t modify the mouse somehow they cannot modify it’s input prior to it arriving on the PC. Even if they use a headphone hidden USB to insert a cheat that cheat is at risk of exposure the moment cheating is suspected because the mouse’s raw input will not match screen motion.

      all you need is to very the mouse is sending legit info and capture it. Then cheating becomes too risky.


      • Garth Smith

        June 28, 2016 at 06:07

        If you want to stop accusations of cheating, you cannot allow players to bring any of their own equipment.

        The last fucking thing you do is let them plug anything into a computer. Have you not heard of Stuxnet?

        These tournaments have purses of over a million dollars. They can spend money on whatever $500 mouse a player wants. What you do NOT do is let that player bring the mouse themselves, holy shit.


        • Fred Haab

          June 28, 2016 at 19:45

          I have no problem allowing them to use their own keyboards, mice, and headsets. I understand your position on it, really, but someone examines the the equipment for modifications beforehand, if auto-play is disabled, and if the computers are remotely monitored during setup, I think that’s good enough. Caught installing anything, and instant disqualification for the team.

          I also agree with Dane (posted below) – this is potentially a lot of money we’re talking about, and cheating is fraud. I do not like that they actually bring their own drives to play off of – it makes no sense to me.

          I know ELeague uses an isolated network with no outside access, so I imagine they probably all do.


  11. Dane

    June 28, 2016 at 09:40

    It doesn’t make me angry that there are few precautions against cheating at tournaments, it makes me sad that professional players opt into it. If a participator is playing for money and they use cheats, they should be jailed as per constitution. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to put them in jail. But just like you wouldn’t want to spank your kids, lessons have to be learned.


  12. Fred Haab

    June 28, 2016 at 19:17

    What’s surprising to me is that the players bring their own SSD drives to the tournaments and plug them into the gaming computers instead of having the gaming computers pre-configured and just having the players log into their steam accounts. I guess it’s too important they have their own “skins.”


  13. gettincrazywithit

    July 2, 2016 at 19:16

    Shoxs really questionable plays came in the earlier round against Liquid, not in the grand final against LG like you stated in your article.


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