Saturday, February 2, 2008

How to clutch (a guide for counter strike source and 1.6)

The ability to clutch is an important one. Winning a 1v2 or a 2v4 not only gives your team an additional round and extra money, but it can also be very demoralizing. Many teams will fall apart after losing a 1v3, while your own team will be inspired to play harder.

For this writeup, I am going to focus on how to clutch. How to prevent being clutched is just as important, but would require more writing then I am willing to do at this point. If there is enough demand, I will write it up later.

Know thy enemy. By this, I mean that by the third or fourth round, you should have a good idea of how the other team plays. You should know who plays where, what guns they use, and how aggressive they are. Then, when it comes down to a 1v3, you should know roughly how they rotate and where they will be on the map. A recent example of this happened on inferno - only the ct side, there was one player who loved to play behind the yellow generator. After switching sides, it came down to a 1v1, with him having the bomb planted at banana. Because I knew he liked to play there on ct side, I naded the generator and then strafed out spraying. He died quickly, and I got called a hacker.

This knowledge of where the other team is important for the next part: splitting their forces. Unless you are playing a bad team, you will not be able to kill 3 players at the same time. Instead, you want to utilize the form of the map to split them so that you may kill them one by one. For example, lets say that on dust2, your team killed 2 players at A, but all of your teammates died except for you. Instead of running to plant the bomb, you may walk to cat to kill a counter terrorist rotating too quickly, and then go into mid. From mid, you may go to B - or, you can wait 30 seconds, and then go back to A, hoping to fake them out. This brings me to my next point - time management.

Whenever you are in a situation where the other team outnumbers you, you should be considering the clock. If you have a lot of time and are on the offensive, then your goal should be to confuse your opponents about your location. Doing this forces them to guard two sites at once, splitting their attention and their forces. If you take over an area controlled by the other team, instead of advancing to the bomb site, you can stay there and hope to catch kill chasing ct's by surprise. By planting the bomb, you are announcing your location and allowing the cts the chance to group up and force you into an unwinnable situation. Also, you can move into places where you will not be suspected. For example, after taking the b bomb site, you may go into ct connector to kill rotators, then advance to plant at the a bomb site.

If you manage to get the bomb planted without any counter terrorists in the immediate area, you must consider how many players they have left. If they have 3 players left, then most likely your best course of action is to attempt to peek them as they rotate to the bomb site, because otherwise they can have 1 player defuse while the other two guard. If, however, they only have 2 players left, then you can attempt to hide, then flashbang peek the defuser. Remember, you don't have to kill all of them - you just have to make yourself so hard to kill that they cannot defuse the bomb in time.


One thing that can help your team learn how to clutch, and to deal with clutch situations, is by practicing. Have 1 player join the terrorist side, 3 on counter terrorist. The 3 ct's go to one site, the terrorist goes to the other. When the terrorist announces he is in position, the ct's begin to do what they would normally do to retake the site, while the terrorist tries to win. Or, have the terrorist drop the bomb in front of the counter terrorists, and then he has to try to take it back. Practice like this improves individual skill, and puts your team in important match altering situation, that may only occur once or twice per scrim.

The basic plan when forced into a clutch situation is this: Break up their team by not allowing them to know where you are, force them to rotate to sites where you are not, whittle away at their numbers. It can be surprising how quickly a 1v3 situation becomes a 1v1 situation.
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