Ranking up in CS:GO is often a frustrating process, and there can many reasons why you might be struggling. In this article, I’ll be talking about four things that usually hold back players from ranking up.

The CS:GO ranking system works by evaluating player skills and in-game influence. Different in-game factors such as kills, deaths, assists, damage, and MVPs all build up the value that determines what rank you should have.

#1 – You are solo queuing too much

CSGO matchmaking often shows that when you solo queue, there’s a good chance that one of the teammates is either toxic, trolling, or just playing by himself.

When you decide to solo queue, you accept a certain amount of randomness because you have no idea who your teammates will be. This randomness is often holding you back, as it doesn’t give you the consistency needed to rank up. It might be possible for you to reach the higher ranks, but getting all the way to Global Elite by solo-queuing seems extremely challenging.

How to find friends to play with?

Without any friends to play with it’s hard to rank up. I recommend queuing with some of the players also searching for games. This will decrease some of the randomnesses and you’ll also have a chance to check out your teammate’s profiles before the game starts. Checking their profiles can give a brief idea of whether they are worth playing with or not.

Making new friends to play with online isn’t as hard as you might think. When you play with people you don’t know or haven’t played with before, try to bring some good energy to the game. Tell them when they do something good and cheer them up if they make a mistake or lose a clutch.

Most of the time, you get back the same energy that you put into the game, positive or negative. Focus on the people who also bring positive energy and send them a friend request, if you can see yourself playing more with them. Hopefully, this will increase your friendliest with good people, so you can easily play with a full team who can help you rank up.

#2 – You need a better game sense

If you don’t know what’s happening on the map and don’t apply that information, it will be very hard for you to make the right decisions. Poor gamesense is a massive obstacle for many to rank up. A good gamesense, on the other hand, makes you able to read your opponent and come up with plays and strategies that counter their playstyle.

I often hear that gamesense is something that evolves as you play the game more and that there is some truth to that, but thinking that your gamesense will improve just by playing more is naive. Instead, you should start asking yourself questions, that can help you see in which areas you can improve.

Basic CSGO game sense

Knowing the basic callout positions, pre-aim angles, meeting points, and utility lineups will give you some essential knowledge to start developing a good game sense. If you are new to CSGO, I recommend that you become confident on one or two maps before you increase your map pool. Playing on maps you know will significantly increase the likelihood of you ranking up over time. Trying to master all maps at once is just too much information to handle and will set you up for failure.

How to improve your game sense?

Ask yourself every time you die, how you could have played that round differently and why things played out as they did. Constantly asking yourself these how and why questions, will massively help to improve your game sense and let you know where to look for improvements.

If you want a deeper insight into your playstyle, you should watch through some of your demos, asking the same how and why questions. When watching through your demos, you have all the time you need to take notes and come up with solutions on how you can fix the issues that are holding you back from ranking up in CSGO.

See mistakes as opportunities to learn

The greatest lessons are usually learned from the worst mistakes.
The first step to learn from your mistakes is to be open and take ownership. By taking ownership you are accepting your mistakes which speeds up the learning process.
The next step is to reflect upon what you should have done differently and how to make sure that you are not repeating the same mistake.

#3 – You are playing too much in one session

You might recognize what many CSGO players experience when having long gaming sessions. Over time, you become less patient and struggle more with staying focused, and we know that ranking up in CSGO requires a focused effort.

Maybe you start checking your phone when you die or just start thinking about other things, instead of following the game you are currently playing. All focus away from the game, will not do any good for your mental focus and in-game performance.

Limited mental focus

Our mental focus is limited, so it’s natural to lose some focus and concentration as we play more. Unfortunately, this decreased focus and lack of concentration harm your performance. Reaction times slow down, frustrations and tilt come easier, and you start losing more games. This is not what you want when trying to rank up.

When you experience a lack of focus, it’s best to take a break. Taking breaks in between games can extend the focus available for the gaming session, but you need to stop playing and recharge your body and mind at some point

Things that improve mental focus

  • Regular exercise
  • Meditation
  • Healthy diet 
  • Good sleep habits 

#4 – You are lacking economic understanding

The economy plays a huge role in what tactics and strategies are used in CSGO and without some kind of strategy you can forget all about ranking up to global elite. Knowing when to do an eco buy, full buy, half buy, or force buy is crucial.

Sadly, there is a tendency especially in the lower ranks to force every round, even when it’s completely obvious not to. Force buys don’t give the firepower needed to defeat a team of upgraded weapons and utility unless you have great strategies and teamwork. Force buying when not to will only signal to the rest of the team that you don’t care about the team play. This will often lead to chaos and nobody cares anymore.

If you lack economic understanding but want to improve, you should start by learning and remembering the basic economic numbers. Here I am talking about the reward and loss bonuses. Knowing these numbers will give you information about what you should do in certain situations.

For example, if you win the first round, you should anticipate your enemies having less firepower because of the low loss bonus. Buying SMGs to farm extra money and build a solid economy from the start will be a good choice in this situation.

Final words

Hopefully, these four reasons shed light on why you might be struggling with ranking in CSGO. In the end, you should always play to win the match instead of chasing the kills.

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