Would BLAST Paris Major 2023 Be That Good?


The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive community has been asking Valve to let BLAST host the Major for a long time. And finally, their prayers were answered: after months of rumors, the Danish tournament operator officially confirmed that in May 2023 in Paris, they will hold their historical Major. Moreover, it will be held in one of the country’s best arena and be the first-ever CS:GO Major in France.

How was it years ago? Why do people love BLAST? What French President Emmanuel Macron has to do with it? CS.MONEY Blog tried to answer these and several other questions below.

BLAST Had Issues Five Years Ago…

Today BLAST is very different from what it was in 2018. And all because of the BLAST Pro Series format and not as strong production.

2019 was the last season of the BLAST Pro Series: several tournaments around the world with a familiar GLOBAL FINAL in the end of the year. Then, the problem was the format: a hard-to-understand system for accumulating points, only a few teams per regional tournament, Bo1s (!) during these regionals, technical pauses, and huge delays due to poor scheduling. In general, in 2018, they were perceived as an unnecessary tournament with good prize money and, well, average product quality.

But in 2020, they had a total reconstruction: Pro Series became Premier, and the state has undergone significant changes with a wave of layoffs and subsequent hiring of new employees. Also: a new but familiar format yet a little simplified; normal tournament system with playoffs and groups (and Bo3s!); more prize money, but evenly distributed across the calendar. 

Now that they have the Major and the Valve-legalized tournament format in their hands, all they need is to do what they do best in esports: production.

…But People Still Respected Them

The strength of BLAST as a tournament operator is the ability to show viewers an incredible level of content. Everything that concerns production, they are the world’s best.

Breaking down a tournament into components, BLAST does everything almost perfectly.

  • Design and graphics. Both the general visuals and the stream overlay look simple but amazing.
  • Almost no technical hitches and errors: everything is verified and perfected to the limit.
  • They have music and no audio problems! It turns out that it is not the most obvious point by which TO can be assessed. Also, their playlist is balanced: epic, trendy, dramatic, and whatever you may like.
  • Replays are on time and to the point, breaks are shorter, they have unique characters (Freya only works with BLAST), and full media days
  • They are good at memes: as an example, they used ASMR gunshot sounds recorded by players in replays instead of the actual sounds.
  • Last year’s LAN World Finals confirmed that they could do high-quality offline events, even considering the early post-covid era.

Yes, in 2018 and 2019, everything was not so great, but even then, CS:GO fans began to notice a distinctive approach to technical stuff, quality of graphics, and content. And over the past two years, BLAST have taken what they do best to the limit.

Macron Has Nothing To Do With It

While everyone is hyped about the video message from French President Emmanuel Macron, in fact, it is very unlikely that he in any way influenced Valve’s decision to give BLAST the first Major of 2023. Surely, Macron did a very clever thing by promising young voters to host esports tournaments in his country. Surprisingly, election promises can be kept!

Accor Arena

However, there were leaks about BLAST Major at the end of 2021. And a couple of months ago, Richard Lewis’ source said that Valve had already decided on Major TOs for 2023: BLAST and Perfect World. Wow, a Major in China?

Nevertheless, BLAST themselves were ready, judging by the interview with their director, Charlotte Kenny: “We are always interested in hosting a Major.” However, the same Richard Lewis had previously pointed out that BLAST was in no hurry with the Majors because they are absolutely unprofitable, in contrast to the ready-made solution of the Danish TO: there are only 16 teams in the official tournament, it does not last long enough, and all this is not very balanced by views on streaming platforms.

So, Macron just successfully offered his services, and everyone won in the end.

The French Love Esports

And although this will be the first ever CS Major in the country, the French have already proved that their arenas are in no way inferior to the Swedish, Danish, and American ones and almost reach the Brazilian and Southeast Asian crowds. So for example, the MDL Paris Major for Dota 2 was held at Disneyland in 2019, and everyone was satisfied.

And this, for example, is how the events are held in the Accor Arena, the home of the Karmine Corp esports organization.

Even with the fact that the arena is filled with home fans in the video, there will clearly not be fewer (or less passionate) people at the Major.

France + BLAST = Success?

Probably yes. Summing up all the above facts, it’s hard to imagine that something could go wrong: the arena to suddenly be empty and silent or BLAST conduct a sad broadcast.

BLAST has been ready for the Major for a long time. And the schedule for next year has not yet been announced: they only have the closing BLAST Premier World Finals in December, and only the Major in May. Maybe they will do a couple more online tournaments in the spring to focus entirely on the Paris Major afterward.

Speaking of accessibility, France is a great country. There should be no visa problems since the president initiated the esports process. The arena is one of the best in the country. Paris is the capital, and albeit a bit expensive, its communications are excellent. And this is the first major of the season, so the teams will be energized. 

In general, it’s hard to find any disadvantages for BLAST as a tournament operator if you don’t know the behind-the-scenes. This is a company that loves the game and does a good job. What else is needed?

Meanwhile, we at the CS.MONEY Blog will provide you with the best content. Just recently, for example, we interviewed new Team Vitality coach Danny “zonic” Sørensen.


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