Relaxing with Counter-Strike: Global Offensive may sound counterintuitive, but collegiate research proves it’s a valid option.
Scientific research has discovered that CSGO is the most relaxing major esports to play. While player heart rates soared during key moments of the match, the researchers found that players’ heart rate significantly decreased after playing a match. This is due to a variety of factors including CSGO’s slow pace and frequent downtime.
The independent study was a joint venture between betting operator BetVictor and the University of Leeds. The study tracked the heart rate of 32 gamers as they played four different games: Apex Legends, PUBG: Battlegrounds, Call of Duty: Warzone, and CSGO. Scientists then examined players’ heart rates before, during, and after their gaming sessions.
CSGO saw the biggest decrease in heart rate among the four esports titles. Players started with a heart rate of 79.5 and ended with an average of 77. That might not seem significant, but every other game actually increased their players’ heart rates before and after playing. Apex Legends boosted heart rates by almost three beats per minute even after the game was over.
The researchers stated a few reasons why CSGO is the most relaxing esports. Each round begins with a lengthy buy period, which introduces a regular pattern and gives players a chance to cool down. CSGO matches also take a long time compared to the other titles. Valve’s tactical shooter also has times where the player is not in any immediate danger. In battle royales, players must constantly be on the lookout for enemy players.
The most stressful moments in CSGO
In addition to using heart rate to determine which esport is the most relaxing, the University of Leeds study also found which in-game moments lead to the most stress. They monitored a player’s heart rate during key moments to determine the results.
The first massive spike happens during a gun round near mid. The player spotted a T going catwalk and secured the pick. Afterward, he rotated to B and scored two additional kills. During the fight, the player’s heart rate spiked when he spotted the first player and went even higher during the duels on B site. His heart rate escalated to 105 beats per minute during the round.
Another big moment was during a one-versus-three clutch situation. The player started out calm but became extremely excited after taking down two enemy players. The heart rate monitor detected a sustained pattern of 100 beats per minute during the final stretch.
The player notably calmed down back to 70 almost immediately after dying in the one-on-one. CSGO fans shouldn’t be surprised that being in the clutch produces the highest heart rate of any moment in CSGO.