“Demos” or replays are excellent tools for understanding the intricacies of gameplay and discovering new tricks in CS:GO. With demo recordings, any player can review their own or others’ match recordings using the in-game player.
In simple terms, demos help analyze the micro and macro aspects of opponents and improve one’s own movement. Additionally, watching demo recordings allows for a detailed examination of individual players’ movements on the map and their decision-making in various situations.
The usefulness of demos in CS:GO
Anyone aiming to improve and become stronger in CS:GO cannot rely solely on their shooting skills. While having a consistently positive K/D ratio is great, it’s crucial to develop a deep understanding of the game. Demos offer a significant opportunity for growth in this aspect by thoroughly studying both personal gameplay and recordings of professional esports players.
In today’s CS:GO teams, which are often featured on HLTV, there is usually a dedicated analyst or even multiple analysts. Their main task is to review demos, identify interesting moments and opponents’ weaknesses, and analyze mistakes with the team members. By reviewing and analyzing rounds, the analyst highlights shortcomings and key moments of matches. Based on their study of opponents, they formulate a clear strategy for the game, allowing the team to prepare for the opponent’s actions in upcoming matches.
One obvious advantage of watching demo recordings is the ability to switch between different players, such as a sniper, and closely examine their gameplay style, movements, rotations, aggressiveness, and positions taken.
Considering all these factors, several clear benefits of watching replays can be highlighted:
- Finding and addressing personal mistakes: If you often die in the same spot, it’s likely that the issue lies in predictability and simplicity of your actions. Demos allow you to review such moments multiple times and understand areas for improvement. Switching to the opponent’s perspective also helps evaluate the effectiveness of flashbangs used.
- Reading opponents through studying their strategies: Each team adheres to a certain style based on timings, movements, decisions, and more. This overall approach is known as strategy, which is a crucial element of team coordination. By studying demo recordings, you can identify characteristic traits of opponents’ gameplay and come up with counterstrategies for the next match to secure victory.
- Discovering new grenades and setup strategies: Grenades play a vital role in winning rounds and matches. However, relying on setups created a couple of years ago won’t take you far. Therefore, every team is constantly searching for new grenades and setups. By watching demos, you can observe interesting opponent setups and understand how to execute specific setups on different maps.
- Showcasing gaming skills: Demos are a favored tool among video bloggers who share various instructional guides on CS:GO mechanics on their channels.
- Identifying unfair play – detecting cheaters: Perhaps the most straightforward way to find out why your opponent scored 40 kills and won the match is to review the replay. This is commonly done by matchmaking players who suspect every second top fragger of cheating. However, even on the professional scene, you may come across “interesting” players who don’t mind resorting to third-party software. But with the help of replays, you can dispel your doubts or substantiate your arguments by pointing out cheats.
How to record demos in a local game
To record demos on a local server, you can use the following console commands:
- record “filename” – Starts recording a demo and saves it with the specified name.
- stop – Stops the demo recording.
Since these commands are considered cheats, you need to activate cheat mode by entering sv_cheats 1 before using them.
By default, the recorded demo file is saved in the following directory: C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Counter-Strike Global Offensive
How to open demos for viewing using the CS:GO Player
To view demos, press Shift+F2 in the game interface. This will bring up the player control panel.
Click the Load button. In the opened window, select the desired demo file.
After that, the file with games replay will open for viewing. Use the player control buttons to navigate through the demo file.