When you’re looking for the right mouse setup for Counter-Strike, you want to focus on its Dots Per Inch, or DPI. This is a reflection of accuracy and the higher the DPI, the more accuracy (in theory; we’ll discuss more about this later). We’ll also be looking at refresh rates for a mouse. This is how often the mouse can record the tracked data.
Theoretically, one would believe the higher the DPI on the mouse, the better suited it is for FPS games. However, you have to be very careful when inferring this data. For instance, the G400 states it can achieve a max DPI of 3600. When further investigating though, we learn that it achieves this by interpolation to increase the DPI. Interpolated DPI means it simply takes the 800DPI scan and multiplies it by four. This is not ideal for FPS games, because you now have fake interpolated data points being scanned. Because of this, you want to use a native mouse with an ideal 800 native DPI.
Refresh rate is even more critical than DPI for FPS games. With a lot of low tier mice that have low refresh rates, drastically moving the mouse across your mouse pad will not register. When looking at refresh rates, and when the CPU hardware is not a limiting factor, 1000Hz mice is ideal, although 500Hz is sustainable with the right sensitivity.
Now that you’ve found the right mouse, it’s time to change the biggest in-game config for your mouse, the sensitivity. A complete swipe of the mouse should result in a 120-150 degree turn. Over 90% of your targets will be directly in front of you, or directionally to your left or right. If your sensitivity is too high, then you begin to lose control of your motions, and it requires more precise momentum swings in order to be accurate. An ideal sensitivity setting will increase your accuracy above any other configurations.
Lastly, you need to find the right mouse pad. The cheaper, cloth material mouse pads will offer resistance. Slick pads offer less resistance and can increase accuracy, especially with flick shots. However, each style has a benefit, and finding a high quality cloth mouse pad can offer more control for starting players. Finding the right keyboard is entirely up to the player’s preference. Finding something comfortable, with easy access to the keys 1-5, WASD, R, the CTRL key, SPACE BAR, and SHIFT key are very important.
When looking for the right headphones, you first want to prioritize what you’re looking for. Are you looking for a headset with a mic attached, or headphones with no mic and a standalone mic? A lightweight headband with extremely comfortable ear cushions is a high priority, especially for those heavy playtime gamers. Finding headphones that have surround sound support should be a top priority as well. Surround sound will allow the player to pick up on even the minutest sounds, like player footsteps, and a better directional feel of where the sounds came from.
Lastly, we’re going to look at game configurations that can improve your gameplay. There’s a lot of discussion about rates, and what rates are. Rates are a network setting that measures how many units you can send/receive per second. These units are referred to as tics, and the more tics you can obtain, the more accurate the game play is. The max tic rate that a server can theoretically obtain is 128 tics.
So how does this pertain to Counter-Strike? When you fire a weapon in CS, your client sends the data to the server, and the server compares this to the data it registers. If the server has a low tic rate, it may overrule your client side hit as a miss. Hence, when you see blood erupt from a player, but that player still displays 100% health. That’s because the client side registered your shot as a hit and displays the blood decal, but the server overruled it as a miss. This is why we want our client side perception of the game to be as close to the server’s side.
Find your config.cfg in the cfg folder within the game directory (default install location C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\Counter-Strike Global Offensive\csgo\cfg) and open it with an editor, like notepad. The configuration cl_updaterate sets the maximum number of updates per second we can send to the server. Since the max we can theoretically obtain from a server is 128 tics, we will set cl_updaterate to 128 tics.
The configuration cl_interp sets the interpolated data for models. Setting cl_interp’s value to 0 will automatically set the interpolation to the lowest possible setting allowed by the server, and is the ideal setting for competitive gameplay.
There are of course a lot more configurations then just the ones outlined above. However, the ones discussed typically will increase your performance the most, especially for client/server side communication. The Counter-Strike community has a plethora of forums
posts related to these configurations.