Astralis smoke settings drama explained – Is Astralis cheating?

This week the CS:GO community has seen a lot of drama due to some accusations sent toward Astralis. The community has been split on whether Astralis may or may not have been using a smoke setting exploit that added additional visibility through smoke.

In this article, we explain what happened step by step and give our thoughts on whether or not Astralis were caught cheating or not.

Did Astralis cheat during ECS Season 6?

During the Group A winners match at the ECS Season 6: Finals, a clip surfaced that showcased Xyp9x killing coldzera through a smoke grenade. There have been countless kills through smokes before, but this particular kill looked very calculated and the CSGO crosshair placement was perfect. It looked as if Xyp9x could see through the smoke.



It wasn’t just the viewers that felt something was strange about Xyp9x’s kill. Even NiKo took to Twitter to hint at the fact that he felt something was off. Referencing the smoke abuse glitch, in his Tweet, NiKo said the following:

It had some interesting responses from the community. The first comment came from TACO, a Brazilian player that has played with Coldzera in the past. TACO defended Astralis, claiming that whilst the exploit is being used, he doesn’t think Astralis would use it. TACO mentioned that certain players have been using it for months though.

Unsurprisingly, the community flocked to the drama, and NiKo’s Tweet gained a lot of attention. Gla1ve, an Astralis player, chimed in to say that he can “say for sure that no one from their team would ever use something like this”, in reference to the smoke bug. Gla1ve continued by saying they use their radar and gamesense. We can only assume that the kill Xyp9x got was thanks to some information in-game that we didn’t know about.

Ultimately, we don’t think Astralis would risk their reputation to cheat by using a smoke exploit. At this point, Astralis are already at the top of their game and they’ve showed us consistently that they’re excellent legitimate players.

With the recent news about OpTiC India’s player getting caught cheating during a LAN event, it’s no surprise that players are a little jumpy when it comes to dodgy looking kills. Ultimately, though, the nature of CS:GO means that sometimes lucky kills will look suspicious, but without being a part of the team comms, we will never know the full story.

So, in summary, was Astralis cheating during ECS Season 6? We highly doubt it. But could other players from other teams be cheating under our noses? Absolutely, and it could well be happening. Let’s just hope that none of the players in tier 1 teams are caught cheating because it could cause a lot of damage to the scene.

Whilst people may jump at NiKo for making such a quick assumption, it’s up to the players to keep each other in check, so we should stay vigilant.