How to defend on CS:GO’s Dust2 map

Dust2 Defense

Call outs

Here's an overview of the map, including helpful call-outs.

Dust2 has been immensely popular ever since it was introduced in the Counter-Strike 1.1 patch. To this day it's by far the most played map. Even though Dust2 slightly favors the terrorist side, it must be considered one of the most balanced competitive maps in the current map pool. Because of the map's popularity people have found lots of different ways to defend the two iconic bombsites.

What I, along with many others, have found over the years is that it's usually easier to go for retakes rather than to stay on the sites and fight to the death. This is especially true for the A-site as there's basically nowhere to hide if you get pushed from both long and short at the same time. Over at B you have more options and a sole player can, with assistance from the mid player, work wonders.

The set up

Pop flash

A flash that you throw that 'pops' just as it enters your opponents field of view.

I like to take control over long early in the round by sending two players over there. The second player can throw a pop flash just around the corner to allow the first player to get over to pit. If the terrorists haven't shown any sort of aggression towards long after a few seconds the second player can rotate back to either A-site or mid, depending on what information you have.

The third player will hold short from above the stairs, ready to drop down to CT-spawn if he spots terrorists. If not and the player in mid has a clear view of catwalk, the short player can push a little bit and go for a quick peek towards lower tunnels for information.

The fourth player will hold mid. Their job is to give the A-players information about anything happening at catwalk, as well as delaying that infamous B-split through mid and tunnels. If the terrorists have an AWP, this can be a bit tricky as you can't peek catwalk without putting your life and the round at risk. Just remember to call out that you don't have control over catwalk anymore.

The fifth player is obviously the B-player. I like to place them either on platform or on the site so that he can fall back after the initial duel. If the stars align and the mid player is ready with a flash, the B-player can pick up two kills, making the retake a lot easier.

Some neat tricks

Dust2 differs from other maps in that you will have to put yourself at risk just to reach one of the sites. I'm of course talking about the doors in mid. A skilled (or lucky) AWPer can take you out just seconds into the round. One option is to put up a smoke screen, but a lot of the time you want to save your smokes for later. Another way to do it is to use a grenade. The black smoke from the explosion works just as good as a smoke grenade, but you'll have to time it right.

Sometimes you want to get a player up on short faster. Those times you can simply boost them from the boxes just outside CT-spawn. The downside is that you'll only have one player over at long for a couple of seconds. Fortunately you can use this smoke to assist them.


Unless the terrorists decide to go for a rush, the retake starts long before the bomb goes down. The more information you gather early on, the better decisions you'll be able to make later. Let's say your player on B has spotted some terrorists in tunnels and your friend in mid saw someone peeking from the top of mid. You're on long and it's been all quiet so far. Now you have three options. You can push towards T-spawn which, given the information you have, is a risky play but with great potential reward. You might be able to backstab the terrorist in mid or you can run through T-spawn and be in a great position for a B-retake.

Your second option is to fall back towards the A-site, so that you're closer to B when the attack happens. The risk with that play is that your opponents might decide to go long after all and you won't know until they're around pit. Lastly, you can decide to stay put and wait for more information. However in this case it'll take you ages to get to B when the terrorists execute their strategy in that direction.

That's the general idea. Assess the information you have and make an educated guess as to what your opponents will do next.

This flash can be really effective when you try to retake bombsite B:

If you time it properly with a teammate flashing through tunnels it can work wonders. Remember to communicate: who's going to clear what angles?

This next retake flash is another one that allows you to push right after it pops:

Aim at the sloped area next to the stairs, run and throw. Simple, yet effective. That flash will make it a whole lot easier for your friends in CT-spawn to get closer. And if you're lucky you might pick up a kill if you catch a flashed enemy off guard.

Find all of our Counter-Strike: Global Offensive map guides here:

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