One of the coolest things about Counter Strike Global Offensive is having the opportunity of getting your hands on some good-looking weapon skins to show off in your matches and distinguish your guns from others. Or you can just trade them for some profit, and depending on their rarity and uniqueness, sell them at very high prices.
You may already know how to acquire them. If not, let me tell you. As of yet, there are four ways to earn a new skin, either by opening a weapon crate with a matching key (that you must buy in-game or from someone at the Steam Market), trading 10 of your skins for one with a higher rarity via the Trade up Contract (formerly known as Arms Deal Contract), exchanging with other users or, playing online and receiving them through random drops.
Now this might be the best option for the majority of players with a low budget, or for those who cannot afford to buy anything or just can’t because of money issues, like not being able to convert your local currency to USD or buying a Steam Wallet Code. Whatever the reason is, it doesn’t mean you can’t be lucky enough to see a very rare free skin drop in your next level up.
But here’s where the bullet misses the hole, for their dropping rate depends on certain factors, like the “float value”, a way to measure the quality of the gun that ranges from 0.000 to 1, being 0 for the highest quality (Factory New), and 1 for the lowest (Battle Scarred).
Another influence is the rarity itself of the skin. There’s one quality grade that’s above Gold, known as Yellow Orange (Contraband), and it’s reserved for just one gun: the controversial M4A4 Howl, but that’s a story for another time.
If you have been playing on the official servers of CS:GO for a while, you may have noticed one thing or two: first, you get just one drop every week after a rank up – although there are players claiming to have received two or more – and second, you’re constantly dropped a white or light blue skin, both being estimated at crappy low rates.
Besides, the rarest ones are almost always in the market or found in a crate after you bought the matching key. Or by playing in Operation maps while having an Access Pass (which you’ll have to buy at the Market) that’ll give you some extra stuff, including the possibility of insane rare drops (like the AWP Medusa, or the fans favorite, the DragonLore). So now the question that comes to the mind of many users: Is there any way to get rare and expensive skins for free when playing?
Short answer: Yes, up to “classified” grade. Long answer, you have to be extremely lucky to get an expensive drop while playing for free (and by “free”, I mean after you purchased the game and DLCs). The thing is that, as of yet, the most expensive free drop you’ll find out there is the Classified SCAR-20 Splash Jam and, in order to be expensive, the dropped one will need to be Factory New, for the one being sold at the Steam Market is worth $316,72 USD.
Another possible expensive drop you could get by playing CS:GO for free is the Restricted M4A4 Modern Hunter. Again, it needs to be Factory New, for its value out there is around $292.22 USD. But this is where things get interesting, I mean, if you actually get one of these weapon skins I’ve pointed out, and manage to sell them, you’ll be making money enough to buy a lot of matching keys worthy around $1 – 2 USD that’ll allow you to uncrate those containers you’ve been storing all this time, or even better, you’ll be able to buy an Access Pass for the most recent Operation Event (by the time of writing this article, is Operation Hydra). With it, you have the possibility of being one of those Youtubers who were just playing a good online match, and when the drops came out, their reactions were priceless (a lot of them didn’t expect to get a DragonLore skin).
So, to sum it up, you can play Counter Strike Global Offensive for free, and be lucky enough to get a Factory New, Classified weapon skin drop that may be worth approx. $300 USD. But definitely, the most expensive and rarest ones are in the “Spending Zone”. Hence, you could take my advice and do what I’ve told you in the previous paragraph. Or you can just go spend a few bucks directly to skip the dropping part and go full pass holding in your hunt for the Dlore.