Counter Strike: Global Offensive, more commonly known as CS:GO is a game that’s been around for quite a while. However, it’s still actively getting new players, and those who are just now starting out may not be aware that there is much more to this game than quick reflexes and coordinated teamwork – there’s also the skin market. Below, we’ll be explaining everything you need to know when getting into this world.
How to Get Skins
First things first, how do you even get skins that you could possibly trade? By playing the game, of course. At the end of each game played on a secure server, you’ll be awarded a random container that will have skins of varying rarity. In order to open such a weapons chest, you need a corresponding key, which you can purchase on the Steam Market.
While this is the most common way of getting skins, you can also employ the Arms Deal contract within the game, which lets you trade ten skins of a lower-tier for one that’s guaranteed to be of the next better rank. Both of those methods provide a small chance that’ll get you an extremely rare skin, and in this sphere, rare means expensive, as the most expensive CS:GO skin can go for thousands of dollars. Or you could just go onto the market and buy them, but more on that in a moment.
Selling and Buying Skins
While on the subject of buying skins, what’s to prevent you from selling your own rare skins and earning some money quickly? Literally nothing; the market is open to anyone that wants to engage in a trade of any kind. You can trade, sell or buy just about any skin in the game, and it’s all contained by the expansive community that’s very active both in competitive matches and in the skin market.
Certain skins’ prices can widely vary depending on the rarity, condition, and current supply and demand. So, when thinking about buying a skin you really want, or about selling your rarest one, you should definitely do some reconnaissance first, to learn what’s the current going rate for it, and see if you can expect it to go down or up in the near future. To some players, this aspect of the game is more important than the gameplay itself.
Most Expensive Skins
The most expensive recorded transaction in the world of CS:GO has to be the souvenir Dragon Lore AWP skin sold for over $60,000. We won’t go into other examples, but we will explain why people would spend that kind of money on a cosmetic upgrade and how the price got to be that high.
The first notion of understanding is – the rarer the skin, the more expensive it is. Now, in addition to just the rareness of the skins, there are certain factors that can greatly impact the price, like the state of the gun, limited edition stickers, and simply the number of those skins that exist out there. That all came together in a perfect storm to create that monster transaction we mentioned above, as the skin in question was in pristine condition, with a very rare sticker tied to an ongoing eSports event and simply a limited edition that wasn’t available for too long.
Different Tiers of CS:GO Skins
The most important factor when it comes to tiers is a rarity, the tiers of which are distributed into several levels:
- Covert – Extraordinary
- Classified – Exotic
- Restricted – Remarkable
- Mil-spec – High grade
- Industrial grade
- Contraband – Discontinued
Once again, the notion is very simple, the price goes up with the skin’s rarity. We’d also like to mention the skins for melee weapons (knives) which are considered to be among the rarest and most expensive loot you could get in the game.
Every tier has a specific color assigned to it and a special sound that it makes when the chest is opened. An experienced player can recognize it right off the bat and get excited over the contents of a chest before even seeing what it actually contains.
Wears and Floats of CS:GO Skins
We’ve already mentioned the skin condition above, but perhaps it’s best to explain the concept to those that might be uninitiated. Skins in CS:GO have different wear and tear levels, which play a big role in the price of the acquired skin. The levels of wear and tear are as follows:
- Factory New (0 – 0.07)
- Minimal Wear (0.07 – 0.15)
- Field-Tested (0.15 – 0.38)
- Well-Worn (0.38 – 0.45)
- Battle-Scarred (0.45 – 1)
The names of the tiers are pretty self-indicative so we won’t be explaining it too much; all you really need to know is that the fewer scratches on the skin, the bigger its value is. The conditions also have numerical values assigned to them, and that’s what’s commonly known as floats, so don’t be surprised if you come across the state of the desired skin in that form as well.
There you have it; these are the very basics of getting into the CS:GO skin market, whether you’re a new player or an experienced one that just didn’t get into this aspect of the game until recently. It’s fun opening chests and getting excited over what you find in them, and you can even make some money on the market if you play your cards just right and cash in the skins you’ve acquired. If this sounds like something you might enjoy, you can get started right away, and with less valuable skins, only to work your way up to some rarer and pricier ones.
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