How the Ranking System works in CS:GO

The CS:GO ranking system is a competitive ranking system that determines a player's skill level based on their performance in ranked matches. This article will explain the system to you.


Ranking System

How the Ranking System works in CS:GO

What are ranks and why do they exist?

In a skill-based game like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive one of the main difficulties for game designers to overcome is to match players of similar skill level against each other. If they fail to do so, the result will be constant frustration because of uneven matches and an inevitable decline in players that are willing to play the game in the long run. To address this issue, rank systems were invented and come into play in almost every competitive game nowadays.

Most of the time these ranking systems come with shiny badges and other visuals the higher you climb the ranks. Thats why some prestige aspect to those systems are a natural byproduct. That is also a huge factor that keeps players playing the game for a long time.

How does the system work?

The system uses a modified version of the Elo rating system, which is a mathematical method for calculating relative skill levels of players in two-player games such as chess. In CS:GO, the system takes into account several factors such as the player's individual performance, the team's performance, the number of rounds won, and the skill level of the opponents.

Players start off with an initial ranking of Silver I, and then progress through the ranks based on their performance in ranked matches. The ranks, from lowest to highest, are as follows:

  • Silver I

  • Silver II

  • Silver III

  • Silver IV

  • Silver Elite

  • Silver Elite Master

  • Gold Nova I

  • Gold Nova II

  • Gold Nova III

  • Gold Nova Master

  • Master Guardian I

  • Master Guardian II

  • Master Guardian Elite

  • Distinguished Master Guardian

  • Legendary Eagle

  • Legendary Eagle Master

  • Supreme Master First Class

  • Global Elite

To rank up, players need to win matches and perform well in them. The system takes into account factors such as kills, deaths, assists, and round wins, and assigns a point value based on the player's performance. If a player consistently performs well and wins matches, they will rank up to the next rank.

On the other hand, if a player consistently performs poorly and loses matches, they will rank down. Additionally, players who don't play for an extended period may have their rank decay, which means they will be moved down to a lower rank.

Rank Distribution in CS:GO

As we just mentioned, Global Elite is the highest rank and Silver I is the lowestt in CS:GO. But how is the player base distributed across these ranks?

Here's a quick rundown of the rank distribution:



Silver 1


Silver 2


Silver 3


Silver 4


Silver Elite


Silver Elite Master


Gold Nova 1


Gold Nova 2


Gold Nova 3


Gold Nova Master


Master Guardian 1


Master Guardian 2


Master Guardian Elite


Distinguished Master Guardian


Legendary Eagle


Legendary Eagle Master


Supreme Master First Class


Global Elite


As you can see, the most populated rank in CS:GO is actually Gold Nova 3. Only a tiny fraction of the playerbase is at the highest rank. So don't beat yourself up if you can't get to Global Elite just yet. Keep praticing and if you still have trouble to rank up, this guide might help you with that:

How to rank up in CS:GO