I know that the player rating system for Counter Strike: Global Offensive is based on Glicko 2, and I know that the details of the algorithm isn't made public as one would expect.

However, I'm wondering if there are any details that somehow showed up on public domain, either through official channels such as blog posts or through unofficial channels like developer comments in Reddit, etc. Ideally one would want to know the whole algorithm, or the formulae used for calculating the ratings, but of course it's out of the question here. Instead I was hoping to get any bits of information that may have found their ways into public domain.

I'm particularly interested in what kind of tweaks have gone into the algorithm that powers the rating system, and hence the ranks, in order to make it better handle the team based nature of the game. Especially any mechanics that attempt to compensate for teams composed of players that have extremely different ratings.

Note: This question is not covered by the How do you progress to a new rank on the CS:GO Elo system question, and the information provided on ELO rating algorithm (which is not used in CS:GO) in the answers of that question do not address the specifics asked here. This isn't about how one can go up the ranks in CS:GO, and it's not about ELO at all. I'm asking if there are any specifics available on the tweaks that went into the customization of Glicko 2 as it's implemented by Valve.

Note 2: I believe the question How does the CS:GO ranking system work? is way too generic in regard to my actual question as it simply asks an overall summary of the ranking system behind CS:GO matchmaking. Furthermore, the only acceptable answer provided over there is also a generic answer, summarizing what one would expect from a rating system (heed, it is also referring to the ELO rating system which is not used by CS:GO).

In all honesty, my question here is quite specific, and I'd expect anyone reading my question and comparing it to the suggested duplicates to come up with the same conclusion as well, easily. However, I'll leave the final decision about duplication to the mods.

  • Folks down-voting the question would be better off leaving a comment for their reasoning as well.
    – uygar.raf
    Feb 12, 2016 at 16:21
  • I think I've made it clearer by specifically explaining why it's not a duplicate of the aforementioned question with this little edit.
    – uygar.raf
    Feb 12, 2016 at 20:46
  • 1
    I believe this is essentially a duplicate of How does the CS:GO ranking system work? - it's not specifically about the Elo system but about how the CS:GO ranking system works, in general. Feb 17, 2016 at 4:54
  • Upvote for the comment, @galacticninja. However, my question is quite specific, and I don't believe the generic question over there would cover it.
    – uygar.raf
    Feb 18, 2016 at 16:02

1 Answer 1


No. Nothing like that exists.

The only thing that has been released is the following:

When competitive matchmaking as we know it now was introduced in CS:GO in late 2012 we switched all non-competitive game modes to use simple ping-based matchmaking. For Competitive, we built a CS:GO-specific competitive ranking system that is significantly different and more complex than Elo.

The CS:GO competitive ranking system started with ideas based on Glicko-2 rating model and improved over time to better fit the CS:GO player base. All computations are performed on our matchmaking backend and multiple matchmaking parameters describing scientific set of rating variables of a player are represented to players as a their Skill Group. You should be able to find papers on rating systems involving rating volatility and rating deviations online to get a better idea about why our complex competitive matchmaking parameters cannot be represented as a single numeric value.


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