Counter Strike GO: players without Prime excluded from ranked matches

Counter Strike GO: players without Prime excluded from ranked matches

Counter Strike GO

Counter Strike GO went through several "eras" during its long-lasting activity. The Valve first-person shooter title is still very popular and popular after almost 10 years, although over time it has undergone several and important changes. In 2018, the title dropped the entry cost, becoming in effect a real free to play, and now it seems that Valve is ready to complete the next step in the evolution of competitive FPS.

Now, due to this change, players who don't own the Counter Striker GO Prime will lose access to Ranked Matches. Valve thought about making this change due to the balance issues that arose in matchmaking. New users, in fact, often found themselves against more historical players, who thanks to the transition from paid game to free to play had more experience, levels and received a whole series of benefits such as access to drop or obtaining higher ranks.

For this, now, everyone who wants to participate in ranked matches in Counter Strike GO will need to have a Prime account. For new players who will log in to CS: GO for the first time, or for all those who register on Steam with a new account, they will necessarily have to purchase the upgrade to Prime status, at a cost of € 10.99, in order to play ranked matches in the future.

Players who continue to play totally free will still be able to access the unranked modes in Competitive, Wingman and Danger Zone, which all have the same rules and skill-based matchmaking as ranked matches, but players do not they will gain experience to advance in groups. If you love the world of PC gaming, then this Logitech G Pro keyboard could be for you for your sessions on Valorant. You can buy it on Amazon at this address.

'CS:GO' ranked matches are no longer free-to-play

A newly rolled out CS:GO update removes your capability to access Prime matchmaking for free. In the past, you could get Prime Status by collecting XP until you reach level 21 and associating a phone number with your account. Now, the only way to get the status — and, hence, the option to be matched with other Prime players — is to pay $15 for the upgrade. 

You can no longer earn XP if you don't have Prime status, and you can't earn Ranks, drops or skill groups, as well. Based on people's feedback, it looks like you can keep your status if you've already reached it by taking the free path. However, if you were unable to reach level 21 before the update, you only have until June 17th to purchase the upgrade to reinstate the XP and Skill Groups you've already earned. By implementing those changes, Valve may have increased your chances of getting matched with other players serious enough about the game to pay $15 for it.

In its announcement, Valve explained:

'CS:GO went free to play over three years ago and is still going strong...Along with all the gameplay that we made available for free, new players had access to drops, Ranks, Skill Groups, and a free path to Prime matchmaking. Unfortunately, over time, those benefits have become an incentive for bad actors to hurt the experience of both new and existing players.'

If you choose not to pay for the upgrade, you won't be able to participate in Ranked matches anymore. Valve has introduced Unranked matches for Competitive, Wingman and Danger Zone game modes, though, which anybody on CS:GO can access. It has removed Scrimmage from Competitive matchmaking and replaced it with Uranked that pairs people up from a pool of Non-Prime and Prime players. According to the update's patch notes, Unranked still uses skill-based matchmaking, but it doesn't affect Skill Group and have no Skill Group party restrictions.

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