Counter-Strike: Global Offensive star Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev tweeted out that he unknowingly logged into a VAC-banned account when trying to play with friends.
When trying to play CSGO’s matchmaking with his friends, Natus Vincere‘s s1mple ran into a problem. Being a pro, all of his Steam accounts happen to be very highly ranked CSGO limits the difference between the ranks of players in a party so that highly-skilled players can’t stomp on those who are just starting out, but the restrictions also mean that friends sometimes have trouble playing together.
To get around Valve’s cutoff, many professional players have or borrow other accounts with lower ranks. This is called smurfing, and it is generally disliked by CSGO fans. That said, pro players often get a pass since there isn’t really any other way for them to play with their friends from outside the industry.
Some pros simply start another account and play the required matches in order to unlock CSGO’s competitive queue, but even then they’d have to try not to win in order to be placed at a lower skill level. And s1mple isn’t the kind of player to try to lose on purpose. To get around Valve’s restrictions, s1mple says he asked a friend to borrow a silver-ranked account. According to s1mple’s tweet, the friend delivered on the request, but there was a serious issue therein.
just asked a friend to find an random account with a silver rank to play together, went into it and there is a VAC BAN (CS:GO), hope they won’t ban me LOL
— Sasha (@s1mpleO) January 1, 2021
VAC-banned accounts might be the scariest thing a player can run into when exploring CSGO’s secondary account market. Accounts like these are often stolen, used to cheat with, and then sold again to unsuspecting buyers. s1mple’s tweet implies that he had no idea the account had a ban associated with it. Valve takes a hard stance on VAC bans as the company needs to publicly project confidence in its anti-cheat software, meaning s1mple has good cause for being worried.
Twitch, however, is a different story. Na`Vi’s star player has been banned from the popular streaming service several times since August 2019. While Twitch doesn’t publically comment on the reason it bans accounts, several of the bans are thought to have been connected with the player’s use of homophobic slurs while streaming the popular first-person shooter.
s1mple’s long history of Twitch bans
Given Valve’s response to ENCE pro player Elias “Jamppi” Olkkonen, who claims he transferred an account that later received a VAC ban, s1mple’s tweet was likely an admission in case Valve ever caught wind of the pro player logging into a banned account. If the account was banned prior to s1mple logging into it, it’s likely that not much would come from the incident. This isn’t the first time that s1mple has run into a ban, but it is the first time he’s been associated with a ban from the CSGO developer.
s1mple should find out what Valve’s reaction will be soon. CSGO’s 2021 season kicks off in a little over two weeks when Na`Vi takes the stage at the BLAST Premier Global Finals starting on January 18.