Operation Riptide may seem like a CS:GO update that focuses primarily on quality-of-life changes. But, in fact, it alters the meta quite a bit with its in-game equipment nerfs and buffs. In this article, you will find more about the main features of this patch and how it might affect professional tournaments.

Source: http://counter-strike.net/

Operation Riptide’s Most Important Features

This is what Operation Riptide has brought to the game.

Shorter Matches

One of CS:GO’s biggest problems used to be the long match duration. On average, maps used to last anywhere between 40 and 60 minutes. Sometimes even more. Because of that, playing a ranked game was a significant time investment. And if things went badly, you were stuck in a game for another 20 or 30 minutes even though you already knew that you couldn’t win from that score and with those teammates.

The short match option eliminates these issues by giving you the ability to compete in Bo16 games instead of the usual Bo30 ones. These games last on average 25 minutes and are perfectly suited for those who want to take a short break from some other activity or play one more match before going to bed.

Private Queues

Operation Riptide offers you the ability to create private queues for your friends and their friends, or a Steam group of your choosing. With this option, you can eliminate the problem of bumping into strangers who might be cheaters or toxic players. In effect, private queues allow you to reduce the total player pool to a much smaller number of carefully selected competitors.

This change will most likely give people more confidence to compete. As you probably know, cheating is a big problem in CS:GO and Operation Riptide’s private queues feature aims to make it less demoralizing. 

New Skins

Operation Riptide comes with a weapon case that contains 17 community-made skins. The full list of skins that can be found in it is the following:

  • Glock-18: Snack Attack
  • MAC-10: Toybox
  • Five-SeveN: Boost Protocol
  • FAMAS: ZX Spectron
  • Desert Eagle: Ocean Drive
  • AK-47: Leet Museo
  • SSG 08: Turbo Peek
  • M4A4: Spider Lily
  • MP9: Mount Fuji
  • MAG-7: B183 Spectrum
  • XM1014: Watchdog
  • G3SG1: Keeping Tabs
  • Dual Berettas: Thread
  • AUG: Plague
  • USP-S: Black Lotus
  • PP-Bizon: Lumen
  • MP7: Guerilla

Operation Riptide also includes a collection of 14 gorgeous stickers.

Upgradeable Mission Coin

Another nice feature of Operation Riptide is the upgradeable mission coin. This coin gradually levels up, starting from being made of bronze and going all the way up to diamond. To upgrade it, you must complete missions in the Casual, Competitive, Guardian, and Danger Zone game modes. You can earn a maximum level of 10 stars per week and each coin level requires a certain number of stars. For example, to reach the 3rd level (Gold), you need 66 stars.


Gameplay Changes

By far, the most important changes introduced by Operation Riptide are the ones that modify the game itself and can cause a shift in the meta. These are the changes that you must keep in mind when betting on CS:GO. And there are only 4 of them worth mentioning:

  • The body damage of Desert Eagle has been nerfed
  • The body damage of M4A1-S has been buffed
  • Players can now share grenades with their teammates
  • Post-death vision got reduced from 1s to 0.5s in the case of a headshot death and from 3s to 2s in the case of a body shot death

The big change may not seem huge, but it actually is. In CS:GO, many teams try to win a round in which they start with a huge money handicap by buying Desert Eagles. Before the nerf was introduced by Operation Riptide, it was enough for players to land 2 body shots at close range to kill someone. Now they need to land 3 body shots. The good part, however, is that the headshots haven’t been nerfed. Only one is needed to get a kill.

The M4A1-S buff is just as important as the Desert Eagle nerf because it gives players the ability to kill their opponents with just 2 – 4 bullets instead of 2 – 5. If you can land perfect headshots, this weapon is just like before. But in most cases, you won’t. And that’s where the 1 bullet difference becomes significant. Because you might miss that 5th bullet by losing control of your aim. But you’re far less likely to miss the first 4.

The fact that players can now share grenades with their teammates may lead to some highly original executes in the long run. But for now, we shouldn’t expect to see this change impact the game that much. It’s not easy to find a truly advantageous way of utilizing grenades by giving a lot of them to a single member of your team. In fact, at least at first glance, the opposite seems to be true: the higher number of players that have and can use grenades on your team, the more likely you are to utilize them effectively and efficiently.

The post-death vision nerfs will most likely bring important advantages to teams that have better entry-fraggers. Thanks to this change, less information is available to the player who died and to his team.