In less than four months, we will all experience the event of a lifetime, the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Major in Atlanta. Not only will the production quality be top notch, but it will also be the first televised major in CS history. As usual, the best teams in the world are already attending as legends and other teams will look to qualify. The qualification for the eight challenger teams will be a spectacle with so many former legends in attendance. NiP, G2, Fnatic, EnVyUs, Cloud9, Dignitas, Mousesports, FaZe and many more, all look to be one of those challengers. The event looks as promising as ever, yet we are currently missing a crucial element of Counter-Strike that has existed for 15 years: Inferno.
Having been a staple in every form of CS, Inferno has provided some of the most memorable displays of skill and teamwork in Global Offensive history. Fnatic vs. NiP in the ESL One Cologne 2014 Final saw NiP close out their first and only major title in CS:GO. Two months later, we saw the triple overtime marathon of LDLC vs. iBP at the FACEIT Season 2 Finals. Even though this particular match wasn’t at a major, it is one of the best performances by North America to date, on that map.
In early 2015, Fnatic got their revenge against NiP in the grand final of ESL One Katowice to win their second major, which was their first at the time since 2013. Finally, no one can forget the slugfest that was G2 vs. EnVyUs at DreamHack Cluj-Napoca in late 2015. If you ask nearly any longtime fan what their most memorable pro performances are, it’s likely that some, if not all of these, will be on that list.
What to Replace?
That begs the question, what map in the active rotation would it replace? Long term, it’s about time Dust II is removed and retired. While controversial, considering it’s the most recognizable CS map, it is as stale as it gets in terms of strategy. This is best described by the fact that no one team is dominant on it; the map style and layout just doesn’t allow for it. Whoever aims better that day is most likely going to win, which often leads to group stage upsets that would hardly ever happen otherwise.
Short term, if Valve is to add Inferno back, Nuke should be dropped temporarily. Nuke is just about the worst competitive map CS:GO has ever seen and hardly any teams enjoy playing it, banning it at nearly every opportunity. Anyone who argues that it’s more enjoyable to watch than Inferno is out of their mind. Many pro players agree with its removal, as it is terribly optimized and is nearly impossible to rely on sound in game to make proper reads and calls.
There is nothing wrong with implementing Nuke permanently, but it’s just not ready. What’s that? Valve doesn’t cater to pro players, you say? Just ask the casual player who averages 100 FPS less on Nuke than any other map, they don’t like it either.
I dunno what is worse about removing inferno:
-getting rid of one of the best maps
-that they will change it if it ever returns
— Thorin (@Thooorin) May 23, 2016
When are we removing nuke to play other map? Lot of games already and almost no one wanna play it. Give inferno back
— Gabriel FalleN T. (@FalleNCS) October 1, 2016
The Time is Now
Come time for the major qualifier, nearly nine months will have passed since the removal of Inferno from the active duty map pool. If there was ever a time to bring it back in its new and improved state, that time is now. I’d even go as far to argue that I’d rather see the old version, than watch nearly every team ban Nuke and play maps they aren’t comfortable on.
The ELEAGUE major deserves the best teams, with the best players, playing on the best maps in the game. Valve, bring Inferno to the ELEAGUE major in Atlanta and you’ll have the event of a lifetime.
Do you agree that Valve should bring back Inferno? Let us know by commenting below or tweeting us @GAMURScom.