A beginner’s guide to the CS:GO economy—buy rounds

Familiarize yourself with the buy round meta to keep your money in check.

Image via [Perfect World](http://www.csgo.com.cn/data/images/weapons_collection.jpg

Good weaponry is important to have in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, but a poor knowledge of the economic system can hinder you from getting the guns you need.

Players must save up enough money so that they can invest in valuable weapons. It’s kind of like saving up money in real life for investments and other things that you think will pay off in the long run. In CS:GO, those weapons will help you sway rounds in your favor and ultimately win the 30 round contest if you’re thinking long-term. The buy system is why CS:GO is more than just a simple aim game, like Call of Duty.

Related: A beginner’s guide to the CS:GO economy—the basics and the meta

Players who manage their money well will prosper the most and those who don’t know how will be a drag on their team. If you’re short on money, you’ll have to save money at least one or two rounds so that you can afford to make every win count. This is why, In the grand scheme of the game, costly players who willfully choose to not save money are considered to be griefers, or match-throwers. Don’t be that kind of player.

Here’s a comprehensive guide to how you should use your money during buy rounds. To learn the fundamental basics of the CS:GO economy, check out this guide to how the money system works.

CT side

There are two types of ideal full buys that you can execute depending on how the other team’s economy is. You can buy helmet and kevlar with the weapon of your choice, or you can just buy kevlar with a helmet.

  • Kevlar ($650) + M4A4/M4A1-S ($3,100) = $3,750 spent
  • Kevlar with Helmet ($1,000) + M4A4/M4A1-S ($3,100) = $4,100 spent
  • Kevlar ($650) + AWP ($4,750) = $5,400 spent
  • Kevlar with Helmet ($1,000) + AWP ($4,750) = $5,750 spent

If the offense has high money, you can opt to go without a helmet because they can one-tap you with an AK-47 regardless of if you have a helmet. The money saved ($350) can be used to buy one or more grenades and/or a defuse kit. If the offense has low money and is expected to be on a save round, you’ll definitely want to buy a helmet so they can’t one-tap you with any pistol except the Desert Eagle.

T side

As a Terrorist, you’re going to want to buy a helmet with your kevlar whenever you’re able to. Since none of the CT side rifles can one-tap you with a helmet on, you’ll want to buy a helmet during your buy rounds to prevent the CTs from killing you with their weaker weaponry in one bullet.

  • Kevlar with Helmet ($1,000) + AK-47 ($2,700) = $3,700 spent
  • Kevlar with Helmet ($1,000) + AWP ($4,750) = $5,750 spent

Weapons on the T side are generally much cheaper relative to CT side. Theoretically it makes sense to have the T side arsenal cheaper because a majority of the maps in CS:GO are structurally CT sided.

Decision making

An example loadout might be M4 Buy with no helmet, an incendiary grenade, a smoke, two flashes, and a kit. This amounts to a total of $5,450. On T side, you could choose an AK-47 Buy with a helmet, a molotov, a smoke, and two flashes. This amounts to $4,800. When you don’t have enough money to afford this these items, one option is to skip buying an incendiary grenade or molotov, followed by either a flash, a smoke, or a defuse kit if necessary. But if you can’t afford an incendiary and still have some money left, buy an HE grenade instead. Below are the notable money reference points during full buy rounds.

Image via Jamie Villanueva

As a rule of thumb, you’ll always want to buy at least a rifle with either kind of kevlar purchase. If you don’t have enough money for a rifle, you can always opt to buy an SMG like a UMP-45 or P90, because they can also do some serious damage at close range.

If someone says “last round buyout,” then that means it’s the last round of the half and you can buy whatever you need for the round without worrying. Money doesn’t carry on to the next half.

Grenade usage

Image via Jamie Villanueva

The possibilities are almost endless when it comes to grenade selection. Grenades should be used wisely. Smokes should block off vantage points, molotovs can flush out enemies from positions, grenades are used to chip away at enemy health or finish them off. Ideally, you should be selecting grenades based on what your opponents are doing during the round and what you can do to minimize their chances of winning. You don’t have to buy molotovs and grenades every round. You should buy whichever grenades you think will help your team the most.