In CS:GO Suggestions, we lay out changes we think would benefit the game. In this edition, we look at the old school AWP.
Remember the days when kennyS would clutch 1v4’s on Inferno with only his AWP and his ability to walk peak angles? It feels like a long time ago when the young French Prince showed us what a true connoisseur of the AWP could do with the right mindset and skill.
Just watch kennyS’ slick flicks and crazy quick in this highlight compilation. It’s one I always return to. It’s vintage kennyS. But we won’t ever see plays like this anymore. Why? Well back in 2015 on Dec. 3, Valve implemented an update that nerfed the AWP—as well those players who liked to use it.
This nerf may not sound like much, but it basically eliminated the ability to walk around a corner while scoped up to get a quick shot off. During the golden days of 1.6, quick scoping and no scoping were a more reliable. In CS:GO, anybody who has touched the AWP knows that you have to be completely still to get an accurate shot due to the randomness of how the sniper works in this rendition of the game.
This nerf also played a major part in the neutering of Titan and Natus Vincere’s star players: kennyS and Guardian. These two, still playing at a professional around today, were the most dangerous players in the game solely because of how deadly they were the scope in their hands.
In late 2016, Valve squashed another bug that also affected the deadliness of AWPer: the crouch spam. This bug was a must-fix for sure. But it was another blow to those sick-quick AWP kills from the back of Dust 2, where players would pop up for an instant and kill helpless terrorists.
These two nerfs crippled the AWP for a time. But players today still prove that it is a great weapon for either side of the map. We’ve seen the AWP, however, be used more as an opener for rounds and bomb sites alike, instead of being left until last.
Because of these two nerfs to player movements and the weapon itself, it has severely decreased the chances of an AWPer in an unfavorable position to actually clutch it. I can think of a few awesome clips, such has FalleN’s AWP clutch on Overpass where he effectively won a 1v5, and a few Mirage setups, where an AWPer would place themselves on short and have the bomb planted for them.
The AWP as a whole is a high-risk, high-reward weapon. It costs roughly the same amount, and a raw CT side buys with the price tag at $4,750. You could buy an M4, armor and a defuse kit for less at $4,500 so it is a heavy investment. This weapon can get you the early pick seconds into the round or take apart the defense or offense of a site.
But now that this crouch nerf has been in place for a while, why do we need the walk speed so slow? Reverting the walk speed back to its original would make the AWP great again, meaning that after half a round it would no longer be a hindrance to your team. The knowledge that you could effectively retake a site with an AWP without the worry of sluggishly strolling round the corner or risk the no scope could revitalize the superstar AWPers. And it would add a fresh yet familiar dynamic to our games.
We could see more intricate setups including the AWP when it comes to T side inferno. Picture this: You have control of banana and you are preparing for the charge onto B. You know that an AWP will be stationed there. So, with a clever flash and a Molotov, you could force him away and use your AWPer up front to help clear the rest of the angles and the utility burns away, meaning you no longer have to risk two riflers charging headlong into a potential killer crossfire. Additionally, the CT AWPers would now be more effective against those pesky T’s shoulder peeking and hiding behind impenetrable walls. This small revert would allow in-game leaders to mix up the meta a little, giving a little extra space for AWPers to do their things and overall be a more efficient part of the team.
I reached out to Dust Mouret, the analyst and caster, on this topic. His response was short and sweet, “Would be a low priority for me compared to other things I think need tweaking.” That’s a fair point: The pistols, the UMP, and tournament rule sets are two big problems in CS:GO. It does, however, bring me to the next topic in this series, those dreaded pistols.
Is there anything else you think needs to be tweaked? Shoot me an email and let me know.