Valve has overhauled its rules for the 2021 season in CSGO and that is bad news for nine coaches who have been handed lifetime bans for their abuse of the infamous ‘Spectator Bug”.
The nine that have been banned indefinitely from CSGO Majors are
- Ricardo “dead” Singalia
- Aleksandr “MechanoGun” Bogatyrev
- Alessandro “Apoka” Marcucci
- Allan “Rejin” Petersen
- Slaava “Twista” Rasanen
- Arthur ‘prd’ Resende
- Ivan “F_1N” Kochugov
- Bruno “ellllll” Ono
- Morgan “B1GGY” Madou.
Update Adds To Punishments
Back in the autumn of 2020, the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) announced that it had found evidence that 37 professional coaches had exploited the ‘spectator bug’ to gain an unfair advantage for their team.
Those coaches were then handed bans from ESIC tournaments.
If that was bad enough for many of the coaches, things worsened on January 27 when Valve upheld ESIC’s current band and then went a step further. Those coaches that were deemed to be the worst culprits of the abuse were banned indefinitely.
It is the first time Valve has issued a lifetime ban from CSGO esports since iBuyPower.
Other Coaches Sanctioned Based On ESIC Demerits Issued
Alongside the nine indefinite bans, the other 28 coaches that were named in the report have also been additionally sanctioned based on the number of ESIC Demerits their behaviour.
If the manager received 2 ESIC Demerits, they will miss one Major. Three they miss two Major events, four Demerits and they miss three Majors. Five and they miss five Majors.
All the managers banned indefinitely received six or more ESIC Demerits in the investigation back in the autumn.
As well as missing out on those events, Valve went further than many analysts expected by also imposing a blanket ban on anyone, including coaches of the teams, from being physically inside a room where players are competing in any online match.
And, perhaps even more surprising, is the fact that Valve has banned coaches from being the server’s coaching slot during an online game.
The upshot of this decision means that essentially when players play in an online tournament, they will not be able to receive any input from coaches.
Change Of Approach From Valve
The news of Valve’s punishments meted out to coaches is a surprise to many given the laissez-faire approach that Valve has taken with CSGO esports in the past.
If anything, Valve has been notable for not becoming embroiled in these types of scandals over the years, often criticised for their perceived lack of action.
Back in the autumn for example, when news of the ESIC investigation and sanctions broke, Valve remained coy on the matter. Only now have they revealed the extent of the punishments they have imposed, and this is seen by many in the industry as a clear indication that teams need to take cheating more seriously.
Other Rules Changes For 2021 Season
Alongside the disciplinary action for coaches, Valve has also revealed additional information regarding the CSGO Regional Ranking Tournaments set to take place in 2021.
The company has reset the RMR points heading into these regional tournaments, however teams that would have made it to last year’s cancelled Major will be given the benefit of starting this year with points already credited to them for this year’s qualification schedule.
- Legend Teams will start with 600 points each and these are Evil Geniuses, FURIA, Team Vitality, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Team Heroic, Team Spirit, 100 Thieves and Natus Vincere.
- The Contender teams start with 300 points each and they are: Virtus Pro, ESPADA, FaZe Clan, TYLOO, Gen.G, Boom Esports, Renegades and North.
- The eight Challengers team will start with 100 points each: Astralis, Fnatic, GODSENT, Team Liquid, BIG Clan, OG, G2 Esports, Nemiga Gaming
Teams will also be able to use substitute players too. However, if a substitute is used during an event, teams will face a points penalty for the substitution, but unlike last year, Valve won’t deduct points when the original player returns to compete for the team.
It promises to be a very different 2021 season in CSGO with coaches influence now eradicated meaning that players that lead their team effectively will be very much in demand.