Esports News

Luci Kelemen
Written By: Luci Kelemen

Telling tales of esports, one word at a time, six years and counting

May 14th, 2019

There’s nothing more exciting in Counter-Strike than a team rising from the ashes in the middle of a map to overhaul a massive deficit. Of course, comebacks are not quite what they used to be in CS:GO due to the economy changes: the resetting loss bonus and the measly $1400 awarded for losing the pistol round meant that it was easier to establish a big lead and keep it going forward. This made comebacks all the more exciting and meaningful – just take a look at some of these historic examples, listen to the casters going wild and enjoy the show.

NiP against VeryGames at ESEA Invite Season 13 Europe

For most of us, this one belongs to the mausoleum of history, having taken place before the very first CS:GO major, but it’s often brought up as the crown jewel of NiP’s glory days. Its impact is somewhat lessened by the fact that it was played on Nuke – a map that used to be even more CT-sided than it is nowadays – but making up for a 2-13 half as terrorists by winning every single CT round against their closest rivals is one heck of an accomplishment. The Ninjas would go on to top their division without a single defeat, eventually winning the global finals as well.

iBUYPOWER against LDLC at the FACEIT League Season 2 Finals

The intervening years didn’t exactly help this series, with iBUYPOWER’s name tarnished by the infamous matchfixing scandal and LDLC falling by the wayside, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a more insane map of professional Counter-Strike on an individual basis. LDLC were no joke back then, just a month away from their major win at DreamHack Winter 2014, which made their loss to the North Americans quite surprising by itself. But you can’t say the Frenchmen didn’t put up a good fight: they made a comeback from 3-12 on Inferno on the first map in a game that went all the way to fifty-eight rounds before steel and co. could finally finish what they’ve started almost two hours before. (Granted, the odd format of a first-to-six overtime also played its part in this one.)

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Cloud9 against Dignitas at ESL One Cologne 2014

While this was “only” a group stage match at the major, the comeback from 10-14 by the North American side was immortalized by Anders’ fantastic moment of commentary we’re all familiar with today. “HIKO ARE YOU KIDDING ME” remains with us to this day.

first csgo major

Luminosity against Team Liquid in the MLG Columbus 2016 semis (twice)

No list of CS:GO comebacks could be complete without this one, the event – and arguably the match – that marked the rise of FalleN’s Brazilian core to the top of the power rankings. 9-15 down on Mirage, coldzera’s insane jumping AWP shot from van was immortalized in graffiti form and marked the beginning of a great comeback as they sweeped overtime to win the map. They did the same again on Cache after losing the first half 6-9 and dropping six in a row as CTs, winning nine in a row to set up another overtime crunch on their way to their first major final and eventual victory.

Fnatic against EnVyUS in the ESL One Cologne 2015 final

You could make a whole list just out of Fnatic’s insane escapades during their glory days – for added credit, look up their performances in the first major final and against Cloud9 at the ESL ESEA Pro League Season 1 finals –, but we’ve gone for the one they’ve made on the biggest stage of all: the final of ESL One Cologne 2015. There’s a reason why the VOD of the map has a whopping ten million views on YouTube. This was pronax’s third and final major win with the side and he went out with quite the bang. After losing the first half of Dust 2 with a score of 5 to 10, it seemed like they could stabilize after winning the pistol round. They were cracked by one of the Frenchmen’s trademark force buys as things spiraled out of control to a 7-14 scoreline in EnVy’s favor. How they managed to bring that game to overtime remains a mystery to this day – but from that point on, Happy’s men crumbled, losing four rounds in a row in overtime before going down in decisive fashion on Cobblestone shortly thereafter.