Master SMGs in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

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So you’ve won the pistol round, and you’re now looking to get an even bigger advantage over your opponent. It’s enormously important that you manage your economy correctly at this point: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is a game where you can lose a match because you bought too much or underspent at the wrong moment.

Having won the pistol round, the second round is when you’ll want to start building your economic advantage. You do this by investing in SMGs. All of them except the P90 have a kill bonus of $600, which is twice as much as kills with pistols or assault rifles. Only shotguns offer better bang for your buck, with $900 per kill. While shotguns can be very effective at short range or in tight corridors, however, you’ll find yourself in a bad position when either taking or retaking a bomb site.

For this reason, SMGs offer a better deal most of the time. One thing to remember, particularly on the T side, is to work together during this crucial round. If the CTs have bought Five-Sevens, for instance, they might headshot you before you get in close. This results in a valuable gun lost and a chance for them to win the round. 

 When to use each SMG

The MP9 is exclusive to the CTs. It does low damage and has poor armor penetration but only costs $1250. However, it’s easy to control while moving around and has insanely high rate of fire. Even if every bullet does little damage on its own, you can easily melt an unarmored enemy. Against armored enemies, the key is to stay very close.

If you win the pistol round but the Ts managed to plant the bomb, they’re likely to save in the second round in order to go for a full buy the round after. In this scenario the MP9 is a great choice. Just make sure you have a teammate ready to clean up in case you get overrun. The MP9 is also good for aggressive play.

The T counterpart to the MP9 is the MAC-10. At $1050 it’s the cheapest SMG in the game. Its properties are pretty much the same as the MP9’s, which makes it an excellent weapon to use if you’re the first player in when you attack. You create distraction and spray down enemies who happen to be too close to you. This creates more space for your teammates with more powerful weapons to clean up the site. 

The MP7 ($1700) has slightly lower rate of fire than the MP9 and MAC-10, but its first bullet accuracy is a little higher, making it possible to strafe and burst heads at medium range. Other than that you should use it like you use the SMGs above. It is a bit heavier, which slows you down to 220 units per second as opposed to 240 for the MP9 and MAC-10. You’ll rarely use the MP7 as it’s an awkward mix of the cheap SMGs and the UMP-45. It’s more effective to have some players go for the UMP-45 and others the MP9 and MAC-10 than to go for a hybrid.

The UMP-45 is a badass weapon. If it weren’t enough that it does a lot of damage and has great armor penetration, it also fires at 666 RPM. It’s considerably slower than all of the above mentioned weapons, but it’s a lot more accurate at medium range. If you expect your enemies to buy armor, the UMP-45 is an excellent choice. It costs $1200, which is insanely cheap considering you can hold on to it going into the first weapon round. 

The P90 is by far the best SMG when it comes to killing enemies, especially armored ones. It does however cost $2350 and only gives you $300 per kill, which makes it a good choice for those rounds when your team wants to buy full but one player can’t afford armor and an assault rifle. I strongly recommend that you use the $600-bonus SMGs in the second round even if you can afford something more expensive. 

 SMGs on the first gun round

This topic has been widely discussed within the competitive scene. If you’ve won all rounds leading up to the first gun round, the other team will go for a full buy. Should you keep your SMG or upgrade to an assault rifle? In my opinion it’s often wise to stick to your SMG. Why? Because the more consecutive rounds you lose, the more money you get at the start of a new round (this caps out at $3400). The first round you lose will give you $1400, which isn’t a lot.

There are two possible outcomes of the first gun round: you either win or you lose. If you win, that means you’ll get $600 per kill and you won a round without investing in a new weapon. If you lose you still get $600 for every kill you get, but more importantly: the other team wins. Because you didn’t buy an assault rifle you’ll have more than enough to buy one following that lost round. If you manage to win that round it means the other team’s economy has been reset and they’ll have to force buy or eco. Basically, keeping your SMG going into the first gun round is a low risk, high reward gamble. 

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

Inferno Counter-Terrorist guide
Inferno Terrorist guide
Cache Counter-Terrorist guide
Cache Terrorist guide
Overpass Counter-Terrorist guide
Overpass Terrorist guide
Cobblestone Counter-Terrorist guide
Cobblestone Terrorist guide
Train Counter-Terrorist guide
Train Terrorist guide
Mirage Counter-Terrorist guide
Mirage Terrorist guide
Dust2 Counter-Terrorist guide
Dust2 Terrorist guide
Support role guide
Entry fragger role guide
Lurker role guide
AWPer role guide
Team leader guide