October 18, 2021 3 min read


ESIC Concludes the Saga Around Heroic’s Exploit

The Esports Integrity Commission has released the full version of its verdict against the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive esports team Heroic. Back in 2020 Heroic were found out cheating through a so-called “spectator bug”.

HUNDEN Had an Accomplice

The spectator bug is a CS:GO exploit that lets a spectator (usually a team’s coach) gain crucial intel on the positions of enemies and communicate it to the team. This, evidently, results in an unfair advantage for one of the squads in the game as it provides its players with an edge over their competitors.

Heroic was one of several teams that used the bug to get an advantage. The main culprit behind this was the team’s coach, Nicolai “HUNDEN” Petersen. In the beginning, HUNDEN was the only one sanctioned by the ESIC. The coach tried to cover for his team and claim he was cheating without informing the others. However, HUNDEN later changed his mind and revealed that the whole Heroic roster was an accomplice.

Now, the ESIC has reached a conclusion, confirming that one of the team’s players, Nikolaj “niko” Kristensen indeed knew about the bug usage. This was further confirmed by a voice recording of a dialogue between niko and the coach. In the end, the player decided to come clean and has admitted his guilt in having a part of the esports fraud.

Niko was sanctioned in accordance with Articles 2.4.4 and 2.4.5 of ESIC’s code.

The Two Cheaters Were Reprimanded

Niko’s ADHD and Asperger’s Syndrome diagnosis helped him avoid being suspended from professional CS:GO.  According to the ESIC, HUNDEN exploited the player’s condition to make him an accomplice in the spectator exploit.

In the twelfth section of ESIC’s report, the commission said:

“Mr. Kristensen has ADHD and Asperger’s Syndrome. Upon consulting with the ADHD and Asperger’s Team at the National Autistic Society and the ADHD Foundation, ESIC was informed that this would have significantly impacted his ability to know right from wrong, make values-based decisions on his own and communicate effectively in a conventional way.”

ESIC report

Although he won’t be suspended, like HUNDEN was, niko will be reprimanded and will have to attend an education session with an ESIC Commissioner. Should niko refuse to accept his punishment, he risks getting suspended for 30 days or more.

In comparison, HUNDEN received an eight-month ban for the spectator bug and an additional two years for leaking sensitive team strategies to a competitor team.

Despite HUNDEN accusing his team, the ESIC was unable to find convincing evidence to incriminate the other players as accomplices.

ESIC’s final verdict will likely put some relief to the team who was involved in this whole drama for more than a year.


Yasmin is an iGaming and gaming journalist with over 10 years of writing about various publications. Her experience spans the entirety of iGaming, traditional sports, as well as online poker. She is well-versed in every aspect of online gaming and her wealth of knowledge provides additional substance to our coverage.

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