2022 is going to be the best year of Counter-Strike yet, I can feel it in my waters.
G2, NaVi, Vitality, FURIA, Gambit, VP and FaZe are all looking mad spicy, and it feels like we’re on the cusp of greatness.
But they can’t all be great, so someone is going to be disappointed. That’s an honourable mention for something I’m looking forward to; here’s the three big ones.
Brazil’s triumphant return
While saffee to FURIA has gone a little under the radar, it’s perhaps the most impactful move of the winter. FURIA have always been the bridesmaid, but never the bride; but the closest they came to greatness was with HEN1 on the AWP.
They’ve struggled to find consistency with any other AWPer, but somehow, the perfect player fell in their lap. saffee is a clutch, consistent and, yes, safe AWPer who will get the 99% frags all day. That’s exactly what FURIA needed, and he happens to be Brazilian and available.
It’s like if you needed an unvaccinated, greedy point guard and Kyrie Irving just got kicked and nobody else wants him.
With Brazil back in the upper echelons, it can help elevate the rest. 00Nation look like a scary team if malbsMd and try join, with an almost limitless ceiling but a potentially extremely low floor, and GODSENT are similarly scary. They might not be top 10 yet, but they’ll be an absolute blast to watch, if nothing else.
00Nation might have ruined the team by taking on coldzera - I’m with kNgV’s mother in law here - but malbs and try are two of the most exciting players in the world right now, and that team has so much goddamn potential.
While the fall of MIBR had plenty laughing at Brazil’s downfall, they might just have the last laugh.
Or at least the Last Dance, but I’d rather not talk about that.
droparias a AWP? pic.twitter.com/EWTtkJv9mH— FURIA (@FURIA) January 7, 2022
The downfall of Heroic
This one might look bad on paper, or on a phone screen, as it were.
It’s hard to feel anything other than anger at Heroic - re-hiring HUNDEN should have been a huge red flag, but we were willing to allow him a second chance at first, and thought little more of it.
Putting it on a billboard, maybe in hindsight, was a bit much.
Then it came out that the players knew about it, and were still on board to bring him back on, and it’s very hard to feel sorry for them for getting screwed by the leopard and his unchanging spots.
The good news is that the org appears to be treading water as others reach for oars, boats and propellers. Everyone around them is improving, moving forward, while Heroic stand still - perhaps this will be a masterstroke, but more than likely it’s a case of history leaving them behind.
Do you really think this team is going to be better than the new G2, or FaZe with ropz? I find it very hard to believe. cadiaN’s rating is slipping and Heroic’s results are sliding.
Goodnight, sweet prince.
The Astralis - Vitality - NiP trinity (and NiP losing)
...they’re basically the Arsenal of CSGO...
Oh man, this one’s obvious, but you can’t not be licking those lips of yours at the prospect of these grudge matches.
If Astralis vs device wasn’t good enough for you, what about Astralis vs dupreeh, Zonic and Magisk?
The shards of Astralis are spread all over the world, like the Chaos Emeralds in Sonic Adventure 2. The greatest team of all time (maybe) has splintered into three factions, and those factions are going to war.
If you tried to write this, it would sound too dramatic. Zonic’s second book is going to be a BANGER.
Just, one small thing. NiP are clearly the losers, right? Their team looks pathetic next to the hulking giants of Vitality and, in blameF’s case, literally, Astralis. device as the carry without a system behind him has been lacklustre so far, while k0nfig has shown an ability to drag Astralis kicking and screaming through games.
And Vitality have ZywOo, so it’s pointless even debating that one. That team would have to implode pretty badly to be worse than a team with es3tag and Plopski on it.
It might seem, once again, a little mean to want NiP to lose, but in this case I have no real qualifier. I just like watching them lose - they’re basically the Arsenal of CSGO, and they spent £30m on a guy who is no better than Olivier Giroud again.
That’s two for one on the edgy takes, right there.