May 9, 2023 3 min read


Gambling Plagues Counter-Strike with Players Raising Concerns

One of the world’s most wagered on electronic sports is in fresh trouble as players in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive are speaking up against rogue operators

According to a number of prominent community members, gambling websites that are being promoted on Twitch have been failing to offer basic protections to players, such as failing to carry out mandatory background checks on consumers and verifying their age for one.

Is Counter-Strike Gambling Sprawling Out of Control, Again

The situation as of today reminds the mid-2010s when clandestine esports betting sites were focused on player acquisition and sought to onboard as many paying customers as they could. A Reddit post that has accumulated more than 320 comments has discussed whether the CS:GO gambling scene was becoming too big again and whether Valve would intervene to attack gambling websites again.

Many players pointed out the fact that such gambling websites have been promoted on Twitch and they have led to an unhealthy uptick in the number of bettors. Some suggested that Valve would have to intervene as well and “destroy” the sector or shutter websites. This is easier said than done.

For one, many of the operators that are running today are legitimate and licensed establishments. Betway, Rivalry, Pinnacle, and bet365 are just some of the examples of companies that provide players with betting on Counter-Strike, among dozens of other video games.

They are licensed and have the legal right to operate. Fans were mostly referring to the case of CS:GO skin betting, which was clamped down on Valve, the developer and publisher of CS:GO following a class-action lawsuit against the company by parents whose children had spent, in some cases, thousands on digital cosmetics for the video game.

Interestingly, according to some prominent organizations, including the Esports Integrity Commission, esports does not necessarily appeal to underage individuals, with the ESIC confident that betting on video games is mostly reserved for people of the legal gambling age which is 18 or 21 years in most jurisdictions.

Esports Betting Dynamics Are Much More Complicated

However, the community’s criticism towards content creators who spent ubiquitous time on creating gambling content makes a lot of sense as these influencers have prioritized gain from gambling partnerships over the well-being of their followers.

xQc, who used to stream Overwatch, has been a passionate supporter of gambling and has vituperated against gambling streams being restricted on Twitch. Much of what is said on Reddit is conjectural, and it doesn’t fully grasp the dynamics and realities of what esports betting has become – a regulated vertical within the growing sports betting ecosystem.

However, fans do have a point – the CS:GO gambling scene is growing and this is not always done in a way that is best for fans and consumers. For one, fans know when they are seeing too much gambling content promoted to them on stream – and they are right about this.


Although Fiona doesn't have a long-spanning background within the gambling industry, she is an incredibly skilled journalist who has built a strong interest in the constantly growing iGaming network. The team at is glad to have her on our roster to help deliver the best stories as soon as they hit. Aside from writing, she loves to dabble in online casino games such as slots and roulette, both for her own enjoyment and also as research to better improve her understanding of the industry.

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