A couple days ago Valve released the new Operation Broken Fang when people were already speculating an upcoming update. This update is another one of Valve’s big updates where they include operation missions, skin collections, new game modes, and more. Operation Broken Fang brings a lot of interesting new things to the game, but I’ll just be covering the things I find the coolest.
The first thing that I really hope sticks around is the Broken Fang Premier mode which is basically a different kind of matchmaking system similar to Faceit. The premier mode works by matching 10 players into a game, but before it starts, there’s a pick and ban phase for maps. One team gets to choose whether they’d like to get the first two bans or pass in order to get to choose the side they start on. After that, one team will ban the first two maps, followed by three maps by the other team, and then one more map by the first team. Since there are seven maps in the pool, one map is left, and the team that banned second gets to choose their starting side. This system is one that probably should’ve existed a long time ago. Third-party services have already been doing this kind of matchmaking, and it makes for a more competitive experience. The only thing I feel is missing though are 128 tick servers, but it doesn’t seem like Valve is quite there yet.
A second feature that I also hope stays is the new Retakes game mode. This is another thing that third-party services like community servers have already been doing for a long time now. However, it’s still nice to see Valve making their own official game mode for it now. The idea of the game mode is that it puts the players in a situation where the Terrorist side has already planted the bomb at a site and the Counter-Terrorist side has to play out a retake in order to win the round. Each player can select from a few predetermined loadouts of equipment at the start of each round and sometime’s you’ll be given the option of a special kit that has a better gun or extra grenades. The only thing that I could probably see improving is a half time kind of system where players can switch sides because right now you’ll continually play on the same side for the duration of the game.
On to less of the gameplay side of things, there’s the new stats page associated with the operation. The stat page shows your own statistics on things like map win percentages, weapon stats, and heatmaps for things like damage and locations on maps. Personally, I feel like this is another feature that third-party websites already do a better job of, and it feels weird having this as a temporary thing just for the operation. I’d assume they also have plans of permanently integrating this into the game as they make improvements, but if not, it’s still cool that they added it for the operation.
One last feature that will probably help a lot in-game is a ping wheel where you can communicate things to your teammates without using your microphone. You can choose different preselected options for things like asking for a weapon, suggesting a certain bombsite, and even just pinging locations on the map. This is something that other games like Apex Legends and Valorant have done, and I think that since it’s worked out in those games, Valve probably thought it was a good idea to add it to CS: GO as well. Obviously, a ping wheel will never provide the same level of communication as voice chat, but it’s a good alternative for people who don’t want to talk or are just playing casually.
Overall, those were the main new features that stood out for me in Operation Broken Fang. There were other new things like the three new skin collections, graffitis, and the return of the operation missions, but I don’t really care too much about those things. In the end, I feel like Valve should definitely consider integrating some of these features and game modes permanently, even if they’re operation exclusive right now. Despite not receiving a lot of updates this year, I think this one definitely brings a lot of really nice additions to the game.