The ability of a team to adapt strategies and play based on their knowledge of the opposing team – such as adapting strategy based on the knowledge that the opposing team has a weak economy – is not necessarily an intuitive aspect of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Obviously, playing around not just the opposing team’s strengths and weaknesses, but also playing around one’s own team’s strengths and weaknesses are integral elements of strong competitive play across all esports. The Collegiate StarLeague’s tenth week has come to a close and the battle that took place between the University of California, Los Angeles Bruins (8-0) and California State University, Long Beach Senpai Squad (5-3) had a prominent showing of not only the intuitive aspects of CS:GO – such as coordination and teamplay – but also the less intuitive aspects: adaptation of play to fit the needs of the match.
The first half of this matchup on Mirage kicked off with UCLA starting on the Terrorist team and sporting their the signature maneuver during the pistol round: five armour purchases complimented by a desire for headshots. The CSULB Senpai Squad held onto what little cash they had and the UCLA Bruins picked up additional firepower to work in tandem with their desire to challenge their opposition right outta of the gates Although the matchup was still in its early stages, UCLA’s disciplined and aggressive pushes have demonstrated their ability to employ strong positioning and communication in their tactical endeavors. Not until after round 3 was CSULB finally able to pick up on some firepower.
With the newly acquired guns, CSULB fought back valiantly, but their efforts proved too late. UCLA’s prowess with the mechanics of CS:GO proved to be a formidable force for CSULB, and was a clear explanation of UCLA’s strong ranking so far. It also didn’t help that CSULB tended to keep to the 2-1-2 split while UCLA played all across the map. UCLA’s well-practiced coordination dissected through CSULB’s formation.
It wasn’t until after round 6 that CSULB decided to switch things up. The Senpai Squad outmatched the Bruins in round 8 with some patient and tactical plays. By round 9, they even caught up to UCLA’s economy. This round was slow, methodical, and consisted of a lot of ‘nades. Unfortunately, the last gunfight ended in ULCA’s favor; but, fortunately, the Senpai Squad noticed that adapting their plays was a good idea.
Round 14 was the most exciting to watch with CSULB’s newfound confidence, and UCLA gimp^’s clutch showdown. gimp^ may have had an “oops” moment when he shot down his own teammate, but he redeemed himself by winning a 2v1 and ended the match in Bruin’s favor 11-4.
CSULB had some valiant attempts in trying to deal with UCLA’s aggressive advances; however, it was game, set, and match after UCLA Oni1chan planted the bomb in CSULB’s territory. UCLA made it clear that effective communication and strategy, as well as learning to adapt to opponents as soon as possible, is the best way to go in competitive CS:GO.