A few days ago Valve announced on the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive blog that any new keys bought after this recent update will no longer have the ability to be traded or sold. This new change has sparked a lot of controversy about the game and its future.
The keys that Valve talks about, are apart of the game’s weapon skin system. In CS:GO there are cosmetic skins that you can get when they randomly drop throughout games, or you can buy a key for around two to three dollars and open a case that will give you a random skin. These skins are then tradable or sellable for different things depending on their value. Keys were one of the few items that had a relatively stable price between players, so oftentimes, when trades were made, keys were used to measure an item’s value.
However, a few weeks ago there was a crash in the value of the Argentina peso and people were able to buy keys for a much lower price than usual. A majority of people think that this is the reason why the change was made because Valve lost a lot of money during the time of the crash.
Fortunately, any keys that people have that were before the update will still be able to be traded and sold. However, this also means that tradable and sellable keys have risen in value and are now limited. Some people have been talking about how the game’s popularity will die out since skin trading has been such a large part of the game, and keys were an important asset to the trading community.
After a few days, some alternatives that have come up are using other items that are tradable through Steam. However, I don’t think trading will be the same, and with rumors of Riot Game releasing their new game Project A; it might be possible that CS:GO will lose a portion of its player base.
Overall, I myself am not really affected by this new update since I’ve never really been too involved with trading, but a lot of other people have been. Even if CS:GO loses some of its player base, the skill group I’m in has the majority of players in it, so I don’t think new queue times will be an issue.