csgo ranks guide

CSGO Ranks – Competitive Ranking System Explained

November 27, 2020

Counter-Strike Global Offensive or CS:GO was released2020 way back in 2012, and since then its popularity has pretty much gone only upwards, so much so that today, CS:GO is one of the most popular video games in the world as well as the biggest competitive eSports title. As such, a huge part of CS:GO has been its matchmaking system which assigns each and every player a certain rank.

Each rank has its name and discerns the skill level of an individual player which is then used to get a more balanced matchmaking system. Today we will be taking a close look at the ranking system of the game, as well as different CS:GO modes and ranks for each of them. We will also provide you with a guide that will start you on your journey through the CS:GO ranks, so without further ado, here is everything you need to know about CS:GO ranks.

CS:GO Ranks Explained

Before we get further into detail with any CS:GO ranks, it is important to clearly distinguish the differences between CS:GO ranks and CS:GO levels. These two subjects are completely different and have nothing to do with each other, but are often confused with one another, especially by new and inexperienced players.

CSGO consists of 18 different ranks that determine the skill level of each individual and use that information to provide said individuals with more balanced matches and better overall gaming experience.

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CS:GO Levels on the other hand have nothing to do with the ranks, skill groups, or matchmaking and only serve as indicators of much time and effort a certain gamer has put into playing CS:GO. These levels are often referred to as “Profile ranks” and can be increased by doing various in-game activities. New users will start with Private Rank 1 and work their way to Global General. Other ranks in between these two include different stages of Colonel, Captain, Major, and Lieutenant.

All CS:GO Competitive Ranks List

As we mentioned above, ranks and the ranking system are a huge part of Counter-Strike, and many players who play competitively, regardless of their skill level, wish to rise through the ranks and obtain a rank that they desire. At the time of writing this, there are 18 ranks in the game and each has its own icon, name, and requirements that players can obtain.

Players can accomplish this simply by playing the game and achieving good results by winning competitive game matches. Below you will find a list of all ranks that are currently in CS:GO and that both new players and veterans can earn. The CS:GO ranks are listed from the lowest to the highest in the CS:GO ranking system.

All CS:GO Ranks List

  • Silver I
  • Silver II
  • Silver III
  • Silver IV
  • Silver Elite
  • Silver Elite Master
  • Gold Nova I
  • Gold Nova II
  • Gold Nova III
  • Gold Nova Master
  • Master Guardian I
  • Master Guardian II
  • Master Guardian Elite
  • Distinguished Master Guardian
  • Legendary Eagle
  • Legendary Eagle Master
  • Supreme Master First Class
  • The Global Elite
all csgo ranks

How do Ranks work in CS:GO?

Counter Strike Global Offensive uses the Glicko 2 system when it comes to determining the official competitive CS:GO ranks which are then used to determine the skill level of players and provide better balance in competitive matchmaking.

The Glicko and Glicko 2 rating systems are widely used to get an approximate idea of player’s strength in chess and Go, as well as many other video games such as Dota Underlords. Team Fortress 2, Splatoon 2, and of course CS:GO. The Glicko 2 system was invented by Mark Glickman and its concept of determining the skill group of an individual was based on an improved Elo rating system.

How to Get Your First Rank in CS:GO?

Getting your first CS:GO rank is not that difficult and everybody can get it in the game, however, it is a process and there are a few things that you will have to accomplish in order to get your first rank and then continue to rank up in CS:GO.

In order to receive your first ranking in CS:GO, every player will need to play the game enough to reach the second level of experience which will then allow them to open ranked matchmaking. In order to do this, players will need to participate in different CS:GO modes such as Death Match, Casual games, etc.

Once this is done, every player will need to complete 10 ranked matches, and upon completion, they will receive be graded according to their performance. This means that you will need to win as many games as possible and keep in mind that your Kill count, your Deaths as well as the number of your Assists will affect the rank that you receive so make sure that you are always one of the best players in your skill group.

How to Rank Up in CS:GO?

After receiving your ranking in CS:GO, the next logical step in your progression would be asking how to rank up in CS:GO so here is what you need to know. In every game that offers ranked matchmaking, there are different things that affect your rank and the way to rank up, however, these things are never really revealed to the players.

Luckily, most of the time, and CS:GO is not an exception, the only way to rank up is to win matches. It is that simple. Sadly, there is no official information on how many games you need to win to rank up, and while speculation differs from one source to another, many agree that you gain a rank after you win around ten matches.

CS:GO Rank Distribution 2021

When it comes to the CS:GO ranks distribution in 2021, various different charts that are available provide generally similar statistics of the Counter-Strike ranking system. If we take a closer look at the data, we can see that around 50% of the entire player base is concentrated more or less within the middle CS:GO Ranks ranging from Silver Elite Master to Master Guardian Elite, with the other 50% of the player base is either in the lower or higher level of ranks.

Examining the data further, we can conclude that around 4% of the entire player base is distributed between the silver I and Silver III, while Silver IV has about 5% of players. The Silver Elite rank has a slightly higher player count with a bit over 6% and within the rank of the highest Silver Elite Master there is around 8% of total players who play CS:GO. And that was it for the Silver Ranks.

The middle ranks that range from Gold Nove I to Master Guardian Elite seem to include around half of those who play CS:GO competitively and a majority of those players are included in the lower tiers. Gold Nova I, Gold Nova II, Gold Nova III, and Gold Nova Master all have a similar amount of players with each and every rank having between 8-9% of the entire player base.

The level two specter of the middle-rated player base which includes the rank of Master Guardian I, Master Guardian II, and the Master Guardian Elite rank gradually decrease in size by 1% each from 8% in the lowest rank to 5% in the highest.

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Lastly, we have the highest tier that ranges all the way to the Global Elite starting with the Distinguished Master Guardian with around 4% and then gradually decreasing as the rank increases. Above that we have the Legendary Eagle rank with 3.7% of players, then the Legendary Eagle Master which consists out of 3% of players.

Finally, we reach the Supreme Master First Class which is the second higher rank in CS:GO with 2.5% of players who play CS:GO games competitively only behind the Global Elite rank which is reserved only for the best players and consists out of less than 1% of the total skill group.

csgo ranks distribution infographic

CS:GO Danger Zone Ranks

CS:GO Danger Zone is essentially a battle royale mode of CS:GO and while the new mode itself has received mixed reactions from the community, it is still a decent way to get some practice and play some interesting and different CS:GO games. Regardless of whether you like to play the CS:GO Battle Royale mode or note, it is important that every player know that the ranks and the ranking system for this mode are completely separate from both the standard CS:GO ranks and the ranks of the CS:GO Wingman.

While CS:GO Wingman ranks are separate yet similar to standard CS:GO game ranks which we will discuss later, the CS:GO danger zone competitive game ranks are completely different, not just systematically, but in name as well. So each of the CS:GO competitive game modes that you can play will give you a separate rank that you can show off to your friends and if you play good enough, even improve.

CS:GO Wingman Ranks

CSGO Wingman is a special four-player mode in CS:GO that allows competitive matches in which players are divided into two-player cells and compete against the other team. While the standard five versus five mode is a lot more popular, CS:GO Wingman has its own dedicated player base as well as its own ranking system.

While all of the Wingman ranks in CS:GO are the same as the ones in standard competitive matches, due to a smaller player base, it is a lot easier to rise through the ranking system and achieve your own desired rank in CS:GO. As far as the CS:GO ranks themselves are concerned, there are a total of 18 ranks within the Wingman CS:GO ranking system and they are exactly the same as their regular CS:GO counterparts.

As far as the Wingman mode is concerned, players can only choose to play on a couple of different maps, and each of those maps only has one site. The entire experience of Wingman games is different but is a great way for new players to get some practice and improve their skill level. Hopefully, players will get more maps to play on and get more practice on their through the ranks to the Global Elite.


This article contains detailed information about the CS:GO ranking system and CS:GO ranks in general as well as rank distribution in CS:GO in the year 2021. The article also covers all of the different ranks in both Wingman and Danger Zone modes, as well as a general guide on how to obtain your first CS:GO rank, and then proceed rising through the ranking system of the game.


What is The Highest Rank in CS:GO?

Currently the highest rank in CS:GO is Global Elite.

On Which Level Do You Get a Service Medal in CS:GO?

In CS:GO you will be rewarded with a Service Medal after getting 40 experience levels.

What are Service Medals in CS:GO?

Service medals are special rewards in CS:GO that you get after getting 40 experience levels in any playlist.

How Do CS:GO Ranks Work?

It’s simple – you increase your rank when winning competitive matches and lose rank when losing matches.

How Many Ranks Are There in CS:GO?

Currently There are 18 CS:GO Ranks for the competitive playlist. There are also 40 experience levels for service medals.

What Ranks Can Play Together in CS:GO?

Everyone has to be within five ranks of each other to play together in CS:GO. The limit is 5 ranks.

What Rank Can Unraked Play With in CS:GO?

Unranked players can only play together with others that are between Silver 1 and Master Guardian 1.

What are The Best CS:GO Ranks?

Currently the 5 Best CS:GO Ranks are Distinguished Master Guardian, Legendary Eagle, Legendary Eagle Master, Supreme Master First Class
and The Global Elite.

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