Is CSGO Gambling Legal?

“Counter-Strike: Global Offensive” was first released in 2012. More than 10 million devoted gamers have played this game since that time. It gave a rise to independent skin gambling as well: thousands of players bet on CS GO in-game skins by using third-party websites for gambling.

Why did CS GO betting spread so fast?

  • World-wide gaming cult of CSGO.
  • Features of CS GO item drop system that has no option except trade.
  • Steam market for purchases and sells of skins, which is indirectly stimulated by gambling.
  • Programming interface that leaves room for gambling websites to bet on CS GO matches.

Attention is drawn to legal and moral aspects of CSGO skin gambling while gambling industry continues to grow. For example, one of the game developers — Valve Corporation — had to react to two class-action lawsuits in 2016.

As a result, the most abusing gamers were banned, some gambling sites officially declared their shut-down, cease and desist letters were sent by Valve Corporation. Nevertheless, lots of popular eSports bets CS GO websites claimed that they got technical support from Valve, and gamers were using them. It looks like what is not explicitly prohibited is permitted.

The issue of gambling remains controversial. CS GO game community is interested in gambling opportunities, and there are no signs of its decline.

Popular kinds of CSGO gambling:

  • unique case sites;
  • CS GO casino games (roulette, dice, jackpot, lottery, coin flip, and so on);
  • eSports betting at which encourages players bet on Counter Strike GO.

Many games offer items for trade and fight with their reselling, but case of CSGO is very special. Valve Corporation does not put really high pressure on third parties that use CSGO skins as tokens for casino-type games. However, law can be violated because of, first, non-regulation of gaming and, second, absence of age limitations. Despite this, betting has grown as an inseparable part of CS GO community.

CS GO bets are not in serious danger from the legal point of view at present. As long as skins are recognized as virtual goods of value, their use in gambling is mostly compatible with state law. Gamers must take responsibility for real age confirmation. In theory, CSGO betting should not contradict the national law of player’s country. As for general legal opinion on betting industry, the justice is more worried about regulation of gambling than about its total prohibition. Valve Corporation is not a scapegoat. CS GO gambling will stay alive and acceptable until the whole industry of games introduces restrictions for third-party gambling websites, which is a matter of the distant future.