What’s next for Tarik? Will he switch to VALORANT like several other tier 1 players? Or will fans see his back on Twitch full-time?
Earlier this month, veteran CS:GO player Tarik stepped back from Evil Geniuses' active roster. Underwhelming results and internal problems within the team pushed Tarik towards benching himself. In a recent tweet, the player hinted at a possible move towards VALORANT or a return to full-time streaming.
North American Counter-Strike was hit hard by VALORANT, covid-19 and structural changes to the esports scene. A significant section of the North American tier 2 scene has shifted to the next big thing, VALORANT. Tarik benched himself on EG but with limited options, is now considering a move to full-time streaming.
Will Tarik switch to VALORANT?
Tarik says moving to Europe to continue his professional CS:GO career is not an option. The European esports scene is thriving with multiple online events as well as a few LANs. But the opportunities in North America are few and far between.
The release of Riot Games’ VALORANT has hit the tier 2 Counter-Strike scene hard. There has been a mini-exodus of players switching to VALORANT. Riot Games provides the structure and has a detailed plan for the game’s future. The game developer will also organize the first International LAN event for VALORANT in Iceland later this year. Tier 1 CS:GO players such as Nicholas “nitr0” Cannella, Timothy “Autimatic” Ta and EG’s Ethan “Ethan” Arnold have all made the switch to VALORANT.
For now, Tarik plans to continue streaming on Twitch. The player has undoubtedly received multiple offers from VALORANT teams but is yet to make the switch. He announced he will stick to streaming for now, but has not ruled out any potential game change.
Problems with North American Counter-Strike
North American CS:GO has had its fair share of problems. But the past year has been a hard one for organisations, tournament organizers as well as players. With no LAN events and the increasing popularity and developer support for VALORANT, CS:GO faced one of its toughest years in 2020. The new league structure with the ESL Pro League and FLASHPOINT also makes it difficult for lower-tier teams to make it to the top.
Both of Valve’s big esports titles, Dota 2 and CS:GO are facing problems in North America. Several players are switching to VALORANT and if the trend continues, it could spell doom for North American Counter-Strike. But hope is not lost yet as CSGO fans await the first Major in over a year. Earlier this week, ESL also announced it will host the ESL One Cologne in a LAN environment, although it will be without an audience.