Many of you here are still betting on Counter-Strike simply out of favoritism or rather on lower multipliers as it is a "safer bet", but that's in my opinion very wrong in the world of Counter-Strike betting. You don't have to trust me, but after applying what I've said, on long term, you'd see that I'm actually pretty right. This thread is not for the ones that are looking for high-risk high-reward bets or for the ones that just bet without informing themselves/strategizing their bets, but rather for the bettors that want to make the odds as much in their favor as possible and have a slow, but more sure winning rate.
There are a few simple rules that you should follow, I'd say that not only on Counter-Strike betting, but rather in gambling in general before starting with the actual thread itself. I do recommend reading and trying to follow these rules if you want to "live from gambling".
1. Don't bet out of emotion. If you just had a big loose/win, calm down, take a break as long as you consider to be enough to get you rid of the strong emotions and then come back. Why? Because when people make illogical choices they tend to take the wrong choice and after a burst of emotion, you'll always make the most illogical choices.
2. Never go all in and the bets should always be proportional to your balance. It's gambling, even if the chance is 1 in 1 million, you still can be that 1, reason why you wouldn't want to loose everything and be left with nothing. Set a percentage you want to win out of your balance, let's say 1% and then just adjust the bet size accordingly so that you'll have a 1% win.
3. Don't use mathematically proposed strategies. These well-known strategies in the gambling world have been invented by mathematicians for the purpose of "never losing", but what isn't often mentioned is that in their theory you'd need an infinite balance for it to work, which we definitely don't have. No matter what, the odds are against any kind of mathematical strategy on the mid-long term.
4. If you feel that the next bet(s) is dangerous/might make you loose money, don't bet or bet really low amounts. In many cases, our instinct might tell us when it might be okay or not to bet normally. If we feel a bet is super safe, that doesn't mean you should bet higher than normal, but rather bet as usual, but if you feel a bet isn't as safe, then you definitely should bet a lower amount than normal.
5. Having an unlucky day is normal and common, what is uncommon is knowing when you actually have a bad day or you're just loosing out of your own mistakes. When you are really certain that some bets should've been a hit but rather you missed, you might have an unlucky day, reason why you should try and not bet anything. It might sound easy, but some people don't know when their day isn't going as it should and even how to stop when they're hitting many walls, trying to break the wall of unluck with a spoon, rather than waiting for a door to open.
Okay, now that we've put some rules of "healthy gambling", we can go into the actual CS:GO betting, shall we?
CS:GO, even if a very dynamic and skill dependent game, with a good informing can also become a highly predictable game, allowing you to know when underdogs can win with a much higher chance than displayed in the sports books. A few assets that I use really often are the following:
https://www.hltv.org/ - the most known CS:GO news website that contains most matches and registered professional teams. This is the first go-to page when doing research for a match
https://www.gosugamers.net/counterstrike/rankings - statistics website with detailed information about teams and their history, plus a nice team ranking system
https://csgobuff.pro/ - another statistics website that displays player performance in various matches, very good to see for individual analysis in a team
Using the websites above in your documentation I'd say is highly recommended and useful, giving good intel on what you should bet on.
------ Match Types ------
CS:GO matches can be of 3 types (2 more common), Bo1, Bo3 or Bo5. Bo meaning Best of.
When betting, you need to be aware of what type of game it will be and therefore, trying to predict which map is going to be played and who should win that match. Let's take each type and see how we shall predict what map is going to be played.
BO1 (usually, these type of matches are of high risk, anything can happen, even on a map that favors a team more than another)
In Bo1, teams will ban maps until only one map is going to be left, map which will also be played by the two teams. In this case, you'd like to know what maps have the highest chance of being played. In order to find out, we'll use our first asset, HLTV. In there, you can go to the team's page and on the "Stats" tab, you can see exactly on which map they perform the best. But don't be fooled only by the winning percentages, I'd highly encourage you to actually click on each one and see, in general, if they won a match on a map, was it a really tight match, with only 2-5 rounds difference? If yes, then that map isn't a map they actually perform that well, as their strategies even if they work most of the times, if the opposite team comes prepared, they can easily counter them. If the wins have at least 6 rounds difference, then I'd say the win statistics apply. The same applies with the other side, if they lost a match on a map, was it a really tight match, with 2-5 rounds difference? If yes, then they aren't doing really bad on that map, but not good enough either. This map can be a potential aim for this team, as if they have a few hidden cards on that map they've been lately training, they can actually get a victory. If no, then the team will most likely ban this map as they will really try to avoid it.
Now, there will be 3 bans for each team, the 7th map remaining. Usually, the teams will ban 1 or 2 of their worst maps (1 if the other team banned the 2nd one) and use one of their votes to ban the map the other team performs the best on as you'd never want to let the opponent win even before the match has started.
If I'd have to give a "general" answer to which map might be played, I'd say that if you look at all the 7 maps, in winning % order for each team, maps 3-5 will have the highest chances of being picked. Again, this is a general answer, meaning that sometimes this might not apply and can be predicted with the strategy above, but most of the times you'd need to prepare for more than 1-2 maps.
BO3 (this kind of matches are the most common in competitions as they provide both teams the opportunity to win)
In Bo3, out of the 7 maps, the picking is done this way: each team removes 1 map each (usually the map the other team performs the best on, but also can be the map that the removing team performs worst on, it highly depends on who the teams are and what is their opponent), after the 2 map bans (1 from each team), each team will chose 1 map that WILL be played (these are maps that the teams have been doing really well on recently, or that the opposite team did really bad on), now there are 3 maps left, from which, each team will ban 1 map, making it that only 1 map will remain. (again, the two picks can be maps the teams do bad on, or the enemy does well on, but are pretty hard to predict, so the 3rd map isn't that easy to be predicted).
The information needed for this type of matches is pretty similar to Bo1, but I'd say it is a little easier to predict. Out of the 7 maps, in winning % order for each team, maps 1-2 and 6-7 have really high chances of being played, as each team wants to play on the maps they did the best on, but in the same time the maps the opponents do the worst on.
BO5 (this kind of matches are really rare, only a few competitions actually do these types of matches as they favor the more skilled and trained team and also are really exhausting for the players, as they can last for more than 5 hours, making them even more unstable than Bo1 matches; the risk of this type of matches can be medium to high)
In Bo5, out of the 7 maps, only 5 are played, each team banning 2 maps that are not going to be played. These 2 maps tend to be really random, as high tier teams don't usually join these types of competitions and the lower tier teams don't actually have a map they do the best/worst on, but rather they are pretty linear with these maps (meaning they either do well on all of them, are really bad on all of them, or simply they toss a coin when it comes to the outcome of the maps). Knowing which 2 maps will not be played is pretty hard to predict, reason why you'd want to think that any map can be played.
------ Maps ------
Now that you have predicted on which maps the teams might play, it's time to actually gather information about how the teams actually perform on these maps and what are their chances of winning the matches.
Going again on HLTV, in the Stats section, you can select the wanted map and press the "Stats history on *map*" button. This button will lead you to a page with a more in-depth statistics as of how the teams played the given map. From these, the important fields would be: Pistol rounds (number of pistol rounds played), Pistol rounds won (number of pistols rounds won), CT win percent, T win percent, Round win percent after first kill/death (good for live bets), Matches (looking only at scores).
Now, let's break them apart:
Pistol Rounds and Pistol Rounds Won - seeing what the percentage is for the team to win a pistol round, you might consider on betting on the first round too; this is usually not a really good idea as it isn't easy to predict and can depend on many variables, but a really small bet with a high reward might be welcome if the odds might be in your favor
CT/T win percent - now, if we look at these stats, if the differences of these stats on both team is really big, there's not much explanation that I can do, as it can be easily determined which team can win; what these stats can also tell us, even if they are better than one team, is: if a map is more CT-sided (this is already Counter-Strike knowledge, I can't really explain here which map is better for which side as it can chance from a patch to another, but this information can be found on statistics on various websites) but the team has better stats on T-side, then this might mean the team can actually loose the match; having a higher win rate on the different side than the one the map is oriented on means only that they managed to surprise the other teams with unusual tactics and so they made their winning rate higher, but these unusual tactics, as they are unusual, they can be very hard to predict, making the bet a High risk one
Match Scores - in this section, you shall look at each score and see again how well the teams did on the maps; did they have a hard time winning, or won easily? Or maybe they lost with no chance of winning, or were on the edge to win.
This category is really important and also really hard to analyze as teams can secretly train on a map and come with a victory even on a map they perform really bad on. There were many times in the past where underdogs won on the best map of their opponents, just because the opponents were known to be good on that map and they didn't come with new strategies, reason why the underdogs prepared for counter strategies to the ones of their opponents so that the opponents had no chance of winning on their own home map. In the past, there were websites that showed which maps the players have played recently and so you could see if a team actually trained on a map or not, but these sites don't really work anymore as players now tend to put their profiles on private and so these statistics aren't so easy to gather anymore as they used to be.
------ Head to Head ------
Now, what we should look for, is how these teams have played in the past one with another, of course, if they ever had. Looking at this, can give you good information on whether a team is more favored or not, on which maps they perform better and on which maps they'd avoid playing on. This can be useful to find out, but should not be a deciding factor. Teams might sometimes prepare for their "long time enemy" so that they will make a show, winning a match that they were not expected to win due to their past with the opponent. So bear in mind that this should only decide as of if you are undecided if a match is Low-Medium-High risk (having to decide between Low-Medium or Medium-High).
If two teams have never played one against another, there still is a workaround. Try to see if they both played against a 3rd team. Analyzing how they did against another team(s) might be even more useful than comparing the two teams head to head. Again, this shouldn't be a deciding factor, but a stronger one than the one above, as it shows how a team can apply their strategies on maps against different teams with different approaches on the game.
After seeing how these teams played, we might also look at the second asset provided on the top of the thread, which is gosugamers. In here, you might want to see first, where these teams are positioned in the rankings. If the difference is high, then you might give a few more chances to the team ranked better, but you can also consider: does one team actually compete with another for a higher place? For example, if one team is on 2nd place and the other is on 9th place, maybe the 2nd place won't really give their all in this match as it won't affect their ranking, but for the 9th place, winning can decide if they can go to 7th-8th place or going back to 10th or above. The will to win can be also important here, so you might also want to look at the Rating, so that you can know how close these teams are to being promoted/demoted in the leaderboard. Also, on this website you should look on their morale, what winning/losing streak they have and the win rates in the last two months.
------ Team composition ------
Another factor that I'd say can be pretty decisive is the team composition. If there has been made a big change in the recent past (such as a change in the roaster, like picking a new member, or selecting another in-game leader, or even a new coach), then this might make the result unpredictable, making the match at least medium if not even high risk. Having a change in the roster means that the team is still accommodating with the changes and might need some time to bond together and get used to the new play style. These changes can be found on each team's social page or on news that can be googled. The social pages of the teams are to be found on the third asset, CSGObuff, going to the team, you can see under their avatar a link towards their Facebook/Twitter/VK/etc. page.
------ Individuals ------
Now another influencing factor is how the individuals perform and how well they have trained recently. For this, you can use both HLTV and CSGObuff to find out details about the players. On HLTV, in the match's page, at the Lineups section, by default the best player from each team will be selected. Knowing that, you can make a comparison between them both and also check out other statistics such as the average impact on the round, the kills per round, etc. I'd recommend checking out each member's team and making a comparison between both teams. These statistics can display the strengths/weaknesses of a team. On CSGObuff, searching must be done for each player one by one, but in there you can actually check how they have performed in previous matches on each map, what their score was, the K/D and the HS%
------ Competition ------
One last factor that can influence the outcome of the match is the competition. You should check out whether this is a casual competition, made by an "unknown" or if this is a pretty serious competition such as Katowice or DreamHack, that the teams will give everything in order to win.
Besides the competition, you also need to know how the team itself is being placed in the advancing table. Does this match determine whether they will go home or not? Will they go home even if they win this match? Will they advance even if they loose this match? The competition just started and they have no matches played or it isn't yet determinable whether the team will or will not advance?
These are some questions that you should definitely ask yourself, as they can tell you if a team is going to throw a game as they don't really care about it and will give the opposite team a chance to win more money, or they will give 110% to win this match as it will decide who will go home.
------ Risk ------
Knowing all the above, I'd say that you should be sure what the risk of the match is, reason why you'd have to analyze what amount you should bet on this match or if you should bet at all.
I'd put the risks in three categories, but you might put them in four, five or ten, it doesn't really matter as long as you have a logical reason behind it and it can be proven to improve your winning chances. My categories are:
Low Risk - this bet should definitely be taken and I can be sure there are little to no chances that I will lose
Medium Risk - this bet can have an unexpected outcome due to various reasons, but I'd still bet normally or slightly less
High Risk - this bet can be either really unpredictable and anything can happen, the chances of winning being really hard to determine, so I'd either skip this bet or bet really low amounts
In the end, all I can say is that this thread isn't supposed to make you win 100% of the time, but rather maximize your chances of winning. It should be normal for you to get informed about the teams that are playing, but some might have never thought about it or don't even know where to gather these information from, reason why I gave three websites of high value with really solid statistics.
I'd encourage you to write below what other factors do you consider while betting that I didn't think about? (well, I might have, but I didn't put more factors as this thread already gives the most important ones and has enough information for you to have a starting point as of to how to get informed)
Wish you all good luck and to bet with caution and never in rush.
All people will be hidden for that race, and then exposed for the last minutes.
Prize will be the same actually since I don't even know about the prize distribution and also for the EV of the Casino.