Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is a game that, even after being released over a decade ago, still sets the standard for newer competitive first-person shooters. Upon its initial release with Counter-Strike 1.6, it brought some of the most iconic maps on the franchise that are now blueprints for new developers on how to do level design.
The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive franchise is known for maintaining loyalty to its roots while keeping fresh gameplay and an enjoyable experience for newcomers, which is why it remains one of the most played first-person shooters in history even to this day.
Even though Counter-Strike has various maps, and the community prefers some over others, all the maps are unique and unforgettable. Therefore, we decided to rank all the active duty maps in the current rotation from worst to best.
Some maps be more accessible for newer players, and others are more complex and challenging that are best suited for veteran players.
Find out which maps in CSGO are considered the best by the community, and which ones are not well-liked.
Counter-Strike Global Offensive Maps are Unique and Memorable
Counter-Strike maps are unique not only because they have established standards on level design in the industry, but also because they remain popular due to their balanced design and passion.
Allows Tactical Gameplay
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is a game known for its focus on teamwork and strategy that can be molded around the map, facilitated by the excellent level design of each. CS: GO maps are symmetrical, with multiple paths and chokepoints providing various gameplay possibilities.
As mentioned before, Counter-Strike maps tend to be symmetrical and balanced for both sides, allowing for a challenging and competitive play style. They aren’t exact mirror replicas like you see in other games like League of Legends, but they are well-balanced and fun to play on.
Even though Counter-Strike: Global Offensive maps are challenging and carefully designed, they are not difficult to learn. New players won’t be intimidated by them at first sight, allowing them to quickly learn critical points and paths.
Ranking Every CSGO Map
There are many different maps in CS: GO. Some are loved by the community, while others are played much less often. Check out which maps are worth your time, and which needs some TLC by the game’s devs.
7. Ancient – A Spiritual Successor of an Iconic Map that Falls Short of Expectations
Even though Ancient is a gorgeous-looking map and the spiritual successor to one of their classic maps from older titles, de_aztec is one of the less loved maps among the community.
While the map design is reasonably good, inexperienced players feel the map is CT-sided, which can provide many disadvantages to the opposing team, making matches feel unfair. Even though Valve is known for knowing how to design balanced maps, Ancient feels like a one-time mistake that has constantly had players of the game begging for a rework.
On higher competitive levels, players have shown a preference for these maps, as, thanks to their skill, they have managed to work around the disadvantages; however, this only sometimes works for the general community.
Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that Ancient has received a few changes over the years but still remains one of the less-picked maps in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
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6. Anubis – A Relatively New CSGO Map Trying to Prove Itself
Anubis was one of the newest maps added to CSGO from a specific game mode back in 2020, but it was later included in the competitive map pool and was generally well-received by the community.
While this map was loved for some time by the community, it became somewhat disliked when it replaced the most iconic map in the franchise in the active duty map pool, Dust II, back in 2022. Because of this, Valve made some changes to the map that some of the community considered unnecessary.
Even though Anubis’s appreciation is sitting in a weird spot, there is no doubt that the map is excellent, balanced, and loved by those who have played it a fair amount of times. Anubis feels excellent for both sides of the match, with plenty of paths, choke points, and great spots for gunfights.
Anubis may become one of the franchise’s most beloved maps, but it still needs to cover some ground as it is not even a year old.
The Overpass map was introduced in 2013 and has become a staple of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, as it was explicitly designed around competitive play.
Even though, at the beginning, some claimed that the map was very T-sided and others said the opposite, as people learn how to play the map, with some minor adjustments, it is now one of the most picked maps in the game.
Currently, this CSGO map is sitting in a comfortable spot, as it is often played by the CS: GO community and is appreciated for its balance, unpredictability, and general design. Overpass is one of the most dynamic maps in the game, allowing players to perform specific actions that keep it unique.
Vertigo, a map created by Chris “Narby” Auty–the same creator of Inferno back in Counter-Strike 1.1–impressed everyone when it was added back in 2019, replacing one of the most beloved maps in the active pool. While replacing a beloved map was not necessarily bad, the community received Vertigo very well and it instantly became one of the most picked maps in everyone’s queues.
The map is considered heavily CT-sided, as objective areas are hard to take; however, a well-organized team can quickly overtake them. Even with the slight imbalance this map suffers from, there is no doubt that it is enjoyable and one of the most picked maps in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
3. Nuke – One of the Oldest and Best CSGO Maps
This is one of the oldest maps in Counter-Strike, having been introduced back when the franchise was only a mod for Half-Life. If you are a long-time fan of the franchise, you already know how iconic this map is, similar to its relatives Inferno and Dust II.
Nuke has received several adjustments, but fortunately, it still maintains its original essence and style that everyone loves. Thankfully, the changes were made in order to fix some flaws that the whole community agreed upon.
Some players consider this great CSGO map to be CT-sided, but it has been proven, from time to time, that a somewhat organized T-team can stifle their opponents and turn the maps balanced with good strategy and tactics.
Nuke is one of the most beloved maps ever, and it will remain the same. If you haven’t tried this map, do yourself a favor and add it to your queue.
2. Mirage – Runner-up to the Current Best CS: GO Map
Mirage is a map introduced back in Counter-Strike 1.6 by a community fan called Michael “BubkeZ” Hull. It was modified and introduced to the game in 2004.
For Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Mirage was reworked and introduced to the game, quickly becoming a CS: GO fan-favorite map. It has even been featured in a lot of CS: GO Major Championships to this day.
Mirage offers unique visuals, strong balance, and accessibility for new players. Even experienced players find Mirage to be a fun map that requires many matches before they start feeling tired of it. This map provides many boost spots, a variety of grenade lineups, and unpredictable tactics.
If you want to play a classic map – and one of the most memorable ones – in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, do yourself a favor and select this map in your next play session.
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1. Inferno – The Best Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Map in 2023
Inferno is another map created in the early days of Counter-Strike that has been included in every Counter-Strike game, including Global Offensive. It has been seen frequently in the competitive scene due to its legacy and well-designed layout.
Despite several adjustments, Inferno remains one of the maps that maintains its loyalty to the original map, as little has been changed to fix a few flaws. Inferno is the most picked map in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. The map is exceptionally balanced for both Terrorist-Side and Counter-Terrorist-Side, offering a tense and fun experience where players must employ strong team tactics to succeed.
One characteristic of this map is that it is hard to learn, as countless strategies can be applied by both sides.
Inferno is a highly replayable map that CS: GP [layers will enjoy playing for hours.
Honorable CSGO Map Mention – Dust II
It would be unfair not to mention the most iconic map of the franchise in this review of the best CSGO maps. Dust II is both hated and loved by players, with half of the player base feeling one way and the other half feeling the other way.
Some claim that the map is unfair whenever an objective is well-protected, making it hard to take or retake; however, it has been proven from time to time that the map can be highly balanced for both teams if they play their cards correctly.
Dust II will live forever in the memories of veteran players as one of the most complex and entertaining maps the franchise has ever seen. Love it or hate it, Dust II is a staple of this fantastic franchise.
If you struggle on this iconic CSGO map, you may want to check out our guide covering all Dust 2 map callouts.
Last Thoughts on the Best and Worst CS: GO Maps
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive maps are something to admire, thanks to the dedication and constant attention to detail that the developers have put into them.
Something that Valve does amazingly is reworking and adjusting their maps while maintaining the essence and elements that CSGO players love about them.
We hope you found this helpful article and that it helped you understand which competitive maps you want to select for your queue in your next play session with your friends. Let us know down below in the comments which one is your favorite Counter-Strike: Global Offensive map.
If you are more into fan-created content, you may also want to check out some of the best surfing maps in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and if you aren’t already a great in-game surfer, feel free to check out our guide on how to surf in CSGO.
Also, feel free to leave suggestions in the comments of what topics you would like us to cover for this or other excellent games. Meanwhile, check our other content, such as our guide for the best CS: GO cases to open in 2023.
Good Luck and RUSH B!