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How To Rank Up In CS:GO

How To Rank Up In CS:GO

Competition lies at the very heart of CS:GO, so it should come as no surprise that many players take the ranking system very seriously. It’s quite simple. Players are ranked based on how good their performance is. Having a higher rank will ensure you’re paired up with better teammates and opponents, leading to more exciting gameplay. Besides, being a Global Elite comes with some serious bragging rights.

  • Guides
  • September 21, 2023
How To Rank Up In CS:GO


Just to be clear, this page will talk about Competitive Rank, not Profile Rank. There’s not much to talk about concerning your Profile Rank – it can’t go down no matter how much you lose, so it reflects how much you’ve played the game more than anything. Let’s be frank. There are players out there who have been playing for years and barely managing to get out of Silver.

As long as you get a few casual games under your belt to qualify for competitive matchmaking, you’re good to go. Additionally, a profile rank of 21 will allow you to access Prime matchmaking. This has some benefits but you’ll get to it naturally just by playing the game, so you shouldn’t worry too much about it.

How CSGO Ranks Work

Experience is really important, so a high Profile Rank is not to be entirely ignored as a factor for determining player skill. However, Competitive Ranking is the true badge of honour that speaks of how good a player is. The ranks, all 18 of them from Silver 1 to Global Elite, are based on a point’s ranking system called Glicko-2. Glicko-2 was originally invented as a way of ranking Chess players and was designed as an improvement to the more famous Elo rating system.

Essentially, each rank has a certain number of so-called Elo points associated with it. Gain enough points, and you’ll reach the next rank. Should you lose too many points, though, you’ll be demoted.

There’s a lot of mathematics involved in determining these scores, but we’ll cut straight to the point. The system was invented to account for “flukes” and good or bad runs. This means that CS:GO’s ranking system rewards consistent quality play, rather than simply winning a bit more than losing or winning decisively with a huge score advantage. As such, the quickest way to rank up in CS:GO is by winning consecutive matches.

However, this is not always viable. You win some, you lose some – that’s just the nature of the game. Still, understanding what impacts your competitive rank and what doesn’t can greatly help you improve.


The ranking system cares about one thing, and one thing only: results. Points are awarded exclusively for winning rounds. It’s always balanced, though. The winners gain points, while the losers have some points deducted from their total.

CS:GO is a team-based game, and you can only rank up with the rest of the team. With that in mind, contrary to popular belief, the following things do NOT affect your point gain:

  • K/D ratio.
  • Accuracy
  • Hostage rescues
  • Bomb plantings/defusals
  • Anything else that is not a round win or loss

However, how many points you gain from a winning round is affected by the relative sum totals of your team and the opposing teams. It’s quite simple – if your team is lower ranked, you’ll gain more points from winning and lose less from losing, and vice-versa. CS:GO’s matchmaking ensures that teams are more or less balanced, though, so the difference is usually not that noticeable.

When your team wins a round, the total point gain is divided among the team’s members. The lower your initial point total, the bigger your relative share. Additionally, the MVP will gain the biggest share due to contributing the most to the team.

Plus, while it doesn’t make an actual difference, having a cool CS:GO skin when you are practicing those spray patterns can really add to the experience!


CSGO Ranks and Distribution

Source: Leetify

Like most other Valve games, the CSGO ranking system places emphasis on trying to group up players into certain ranks. These ranks are usually a good metric of identification for a player’s skill level. You initially start playing at lower ranks and then jump to the Global Elite rank.

Since the ranking system is based on Glicko-2, your skill level and game sense are taken into accord when you start calibrating initially. After a few games, your CSGO rank will be determined. Usually, this will take around ten games, with the enemy team also being placed in the same competitive matches, given that they match your skill group.

Here’s a quick look at the average percentiles and the CSGO ranking system itself:


  • Silver 1 (4.2%)
  • Silver 2 (4.28%
  • Silver 3 (4.38%)
  • Silver 4 (5.29%)
  • Silver Elite (6.57%)
  • Silver Elite Master (7.74%)


  • Gold Nova 1 (8.64%)
  • Gold Nova 2 (8.8%)
  • Gold Nova 3 (8.89%)
  • Gold Nova Master (8.125%)


  • Master Guardian 1 (7.47%)
  • Master Guardian 2 (6.455%)
  • Master Guardian Elite (5.245%)
  • Distinguished Master Guardian (4.11%)


  • Legendary Eagle (3.205%)
  • Legendary Eagle Master (3.195%)
  • Supreme Master First Class (2.625%)
  • Global Elite (0.765%)


Taking a look at these statistics, the average CSGO rank is around the Gold Nova tier, with the Master Guardian II Master Guardian Elite ranks considered highly rare. Silver Elite players and below are considered below average. However, Silver ranks aren’t that far behind Gold Nova players in terms of raw skill. It is just their co-ordination with their team mates that tends to hinder their prowess.


With all of the above in mind, it should be clear that the most important thing for reliably ranking up is a good team. No matter how good you are personally, one player is not enough to consistently win rounds. So here are a few tips for raising your competitive rank.


In competitive matches, especially in lower ranks, you are going to notice that a lot of players try out new strategies every time. But, in order to rank up fast, sticking to the same and ultimately the same lineups can lead you to secure a bomb site efficiently and also nets you round wins that you wouldn’t be able to get otherwise.

It’s quite simple, how many games do you need to play on a map before you get used to its lineups? Usually, after you start to watch pro games, you’ll start developing a semblance of understanding after 3-4 games as players in a similar ranking system as you show patterns that you then recognize.

For instance, if you know the enemy team on Eco rounds tends to Rush B, you can immediately set up smokes or get a lineup ready that counters their play. Macro judgments like these are integral to getting your Elo points up in Counter Strike Global Offensive.


CSGO ranks in post game

Solo queueing is not likely to get you good results. You never know who you’ll be paired up with, whether they’re willing to play as a team, and how good their skills are. So try to find a full team of communicative, able players with whom you’ll play regularly. The importance of team play cannot be stressed enough.

You’ll be able to find similarly ranked players in competitive matchmaking by either queuing up a solo game and making some friends along the way or heading onto training maps and finding players who’d like to play competitive mode with you there instead.

There’s also the CS:GO official Discord and Reddit pages, where you’ll often find players willing to party up for a competitive match.


This one goes hand-in-hand with our previous statement. Winning rounds and matches is all that should matter to you, and this cannot be achieved if all of you just go running around without a sound goal or strategy. As we mentioned earlier – either the whole team gains rank points or the opponents do.

If you don’t have a microphone in the Gold Nova Master Guardian ranks, get one immediately! Voice communication is essential in higher ranks since it allows you to do pop flashes, for instance, without blinding your own team.


A lot of gamers enjoy boasting about impressive K/D ratios, but flashy kills and impressive scores are not going to get you to Global Elite. Keep your eyes on the prize, and play to win rounds and matches rather than to show off how many headshots you can get. If you can get MVP in the process, great, but it shouldn’t be a priority.

This concludes our guide to ranking up in CS:GO. If you have any additional tips or pointers, we’d love to hear them in the comments below.


CSGO ranks can be bifurcated on the basis of how willing the players are in those respective ranks to improve. For instance, a Global Elite player would have memorized the spray patterns on their AK-47 by now, while a Silver Elite Master would just be going on sheer luck.

Aimlabs Spray Patterns

So, learning recoil control, and developing muscle memory is an integral part of climbing CSGO ranks. There are a few ways you can practice your aim and overall Counter Strike game sense. Here’s how:

  • Deathmatch: The best way to warm up your aim on fellow CSGO players before you play competitively, Deathmatch lets you get a feel for your gun and the map and helps you place your movements before you start playing ranked.
  • AimLabs: AimLabs is the defacto standard when it comes to a platform that helps you improve your CSGO skill set. It is an absolute must, with the game being free to download via your Steam Account.
  • Workshop Maps: Workshop Maps are community-created maps that consist of various training drills, and also include various bomb plant scenarios, letting you practice lineups and particular strategies that differ as you climb CSGO ranks.


Once you start dropping elo points in a day, there’s a high chance that you’ll keep dropping them. The way the CSGO ranking system works is that it rewards you if you suddenly go on a winstreak, but it also throws you down multiple skill groups if you keep losing.

While a loss may not always be your fault, in Silver ranks, you’ll often find uncooperative players who end up running your matches. When in that mindset, you’ll often keep queuing up and lose a lot more CSGO ranks than you initially intended.

Getting skins is a part of the fun

To remedy this, utilize the 2-1 rule. Here, you should immediately stop playing the game or play unranked instead after two matches. And, if you’ve won one game, proceed to queue the next one but immediately stop if you lose that one.

With the 2-1 rule, you won’t be playing more than three competitive matches, no matter what the result is on any given day. This allows your elo points to remain relatively stable throughout multiple gameplay sessions rather than fluctuate in an erratic manner.


The pace at which your CSGO ranks increase depends ultimately on your skins, your current rank, and the highest rank that you have achieved on that account. So, if your skill level matches Global Elites, it’ll take you around 10-20 matches to get to that rank if you are playing your calibration matches.

However, if you are playing on a Silver account while you actually have the skill level for a Global Elite, it might take you around 40-50 matches before the CSGO ranking system identifies you as an outlier and places you in smurf queue, where you’ll be matched with other outliers who have the same CSGO ranks.

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