CSGO Spray Patterns

Toby Marshall
29 December 2021
CSGO Spray Patterns

In all first-person shooter games, it is important to be able to control weapon recoil – so that’s what we will be looking at in this article. We will look at what spray patterns are in CSGO, why you need to learn them and how to do so effectively.

What are Spray Patterns in CSGO?

A spray pattern is the way a bullet goes when firing continuously. In the game, every weapon has its own recoil pattern – although some are pretty similar. In order to see a particular weapon’s spray, you just need to keep on shooting whilst standing still and without moving your mouse. If you want to control a spray pattern, all you need to do is mirror it… and move the mouse in the opposite direction from the pattern.

The Importance of Learning Spray Patterns in CSGO

If you can skillfully control the recoil then you can shoot more exactly at your target. So, at a basic level, if you have no recoil control then your bullets will fly erratically past the location of your crosshair.

You may think that because you have already reached a decent level without learning recoil patterns that it’s unnecessary, then you are wrong. You have learned them but have done so subconsciously. If you play the game a lot, then your muscle memory will pick it up automatically. However, you shouldn’t just rely on muscle memory – as this may mean that you have deficiencies that will stop you from reaching even higher ranks.

CSGO Spray Patterns

As we said earlier, every weapon has its own and unique recoil pattern – and we have put them together here so that you can start learning them – with all our handy tips. Some patterns might also help you understand why you can’t score a frag with certain weapons and what you need to focus on in your next practice sessions.

Pistols Spray Patterns

Glock-18

To control a Glock-18 spray pattern in CSGO, you will need to shift the mouse down a little – and maybe even crouch if you think you start to lose control of the recoil. A practical way to outplay your enemy during a pistol round is by using the A and D keys (moving sideways gently). Because the pattern goes sideways, this improves your accuracy and also makes it more difficult for your opponent to shoot you.

P2000

This has a slightly different recoil issue. The bullets follow one single line – although going towards a slight upward trajectory. The AD method can also be effective here, but you will also need to move the crosshair sideways.

USP-S

This has a practically identical spray pattern to the P2000. This also has bullets fly in a single line, which makes it a pretty easy to use gun. However, don’t use the same movement with this as you do with the Glock-18 as the bullets are in a single line, so a sideways move won’t work as well.

The Desert Eagle

Many consider this pistol to be the toughest to master in the game. Your first bullet will hit exactly where you aim but every shot that follows will move further away from your crosshair. When you learn the Desert Eagle, you need to practise standing still and firing single shots that are aimed directly at your enemy’s head.

Tec-9

The Tec-9 doesn’t have the most stable recoil – but that isn’t the importance of this weapon. The real power of this weapon can be felt the most when at close range – because the main advantage of the weapon is the speed of its shot. The further away you are, the more important recoil control is – which makes it harder to control.

The Dual Berettas

This is probably the least popular pistol in CSGO. It offers plenty of bullets, but it also has a very erratic recoil pattern. If you look at how fast its spray pattern is, you will need to lower your crosshair in nearly every situation – even close range.

Five-Seven

A Five-Seven is a very stable pistol in the game and when you look at the recoil pattern, you will understand why. Even if you are shooting at full spray it isn’t turbulent, so it’s great as a pick for an eco round.

P250

When looking at the P250, it’s important to look at the vertical recoil of the gun – which will force you to slightly lower the crosshair as you shoot. The P250 (similar to the Tec-9) is a better close-range gun than long-range gun.

R8 Revolver

If you shoot your R8 revolver using your left mouse button then you will encounter practically no weapon recoil. This means you will hit your aimed target. However, it’s different when you hit the right mouse button – as the recoil takes us to the right and down.

CZ-75 Auto

If you played Counter-Strike back in 2014, then you might think of it as a mini rifle with practically no recoil – but could cause plenty of damage. However, it’s different today – and the gun is a slightly less stable Tec-9  (although faster). It also has a pretty similar spray to the Tec-9, apart from the shots going higher and further to the right.

Assault Rifles Spray Patterns

AK-47

This is quite possibly the most important weapon in the game. It starts with the spray pattern going up, then, after shooting ten bullets it starts moving to the side. Lots of players think that shooting a single shot is preferable to shooting full auto, but it won’t always work for you. This will likely mean that although your single headshot accuracy may be close to perfect, your KD ratio will probably be lower as well. That doesn’t mean to shy away from single shots but just learn the spray pattern as well.

MFA1-S

This is pretty similar to the AK-47. If you are looking for effective control over your spray pattern then you will need to pull your mouse down a little and then towards the right. If your spray gets long, then you will need to make your left turn a bit later. It isn’t easy, but if you get enough practice then you’ll get the hang of it.

M4A4

When looking at the M4A4, it has a pretty chaotic recoil after its first ten bullets. As such, it’s worth considering shooting in short bursts of between 5 to 7 shots – especially if you are shooting long-range. However, if you do want a long spray, then you will need to bring your crosshair down a little and then gently over to the right, then hard left and hard right again.

Famas

This is a great choice for a short-range shot and has a very underrated feature… which is its burst mode. If playing just the burst mode, then this could be considered the most accurate assault rifle in CSGO. However, there is a big time gap between every shot and although it is very accurate – the time gap cancels out a lot of the weapon’s overall potential.

Galil Assault Rifle

Similar to the M4A4, short bursts are the most stable option as it has an erratic spray pattern. In comparison to other assault rifles, you will need to move your crosshair down a lot more after you fire your first bullets.

SG 553

This AR isn’t that accurate if used without scope. However, if used with scope then it’s a whole different story. Simply pressing the right mouse button improves your accuracy no end. However, bear in mind that the SG 553 scope will limit your field of view a lot. This is the reason we rarely see the weapon used in the major tournaments.

Aug

Similar to the SG 553, there is practically no spray pattern if you use it with scope. The Aug spray pattern is pretty similar to the AK-47 pattern, which many players are already familiar with and which makes it a comfortable choice for many. 

Sniper Rifles Spray Patterns

AWP

This is another weapon that has almost no recoil if you use it at short range or with a scope. If not, then expect the bullets to fly randomly. It will only be the first shot that is accurate. It’s also worth remembering that whether you use a scope or not, if you move when using your AWP, your accuracy will be compromised.

SSG 08

This is another sniper rifle that has practically no recoil. This is such an accurate rifle that it shoots exactly at your target spot – even if you are moving and jumping. However, we don’t have a crosshair for it, which means that we can only see where we are aiming when we use the scope.

G32G1

This one is famed for being one of CSGO’s most annoying weapons – because it has such an accurate spray pattern that all you need is a minimal aim downwards in order to keep it under control. We do recommend that you only shoot using the scope unless it is a short-range shot.

SCAR-20

This is another of the game’s most hated weapons. That’s because it is super accurate – more than any other – although occasionally you might need to move the crosshair down a tad to control the recoil.

SMGs Spray Patterns

MAC-10 and MP9

These two weapons have practically identical spray patterns- with both going up slightly, lightly to the left and then quickly moving to the right. It does have a slightly disorganised recoil – however, it is a relatively effective weapon in the short-range because it is super quick. When close-range you can shoot your enemy full-auto. However, if shooting long-range, we would suggest shorter bursts of between 5-7 at a time.

MP7

This weapon has a similar spray pattern as the MAC-10 and MP9 but instead of going left initially, it veers to the right. So, if you control the full-auto the same as you would with previously mentioned weapons then you will get the opposite effect and you won’t get far. As such, we would recommend shooting short bursts on a long-range.

P90

Although the way we usually kill using the P90 would suggest that there is no recoil. However, in reality, it does – and it has one pretty similar to the AK-47 spray pattern. That’s why lots of players often find these relatively easy to use… especially lower-ranked players.

PP-Bizon

This is another one with a crazy spray pattern. However, if you don’t manage to control it at the right time, then it will be a great benefit to you. Near the end of your burst, it will move only slightly sidewards which means you can control it quite easily with a gentle mouse movement.

UMP-45

This is currently one of the most bought weapons after a won pistol round. With this weapon, the recoil isn’t quite as dynamic as the other SMGs – moreover, it isn’t a very fast shooter, which makes it easier to handle. For a more long-distance shot, we would recommend a single shot. Then, for a close distance, you can spray to your heart’s content.

MP5-SD

This is another weapon with a similar recoil to the AK47, whilst being slightly more organised. The bullets generally fly at the same point without spillage and it is probably the most stable SMG in Counter-Strike.

Heavy Spray Patterns

Shotguns

XM1014

When spraying the first three shots with this weapon, they are quite accurate – but everyone goes a little higher than the last one. Although the weapon suggests spraying bullets, we would only recommend just those first three shots. However, there will be times when you might need to fire your entire magazine, but should you already be buying the weapon then you might try holding a favourable position on the map. As with any CSGO shotgun, it works best for close-range shots.

MAG-7

If you are someone that likes watching the tournaments then you will know that plenty of pro players buy this after they win the first round. It used to be that the most common strategy used by the losing team of the pistol round would be to rush – and you could easily counter this by hiding in a small area with the MAG 7 and then quickly score 3-4 frags. Although this gun fires slowly, you will hit the spot you aim at – even if jumping. This isn’t great for a long-range encounter but it works well if positioned properly.

Nova

This is another weapon without a spray pattern – and you will hit exactly where you aim. However, if you jump, then the shot won’t be as accurate as when you use the MAG-7. It is also worse for a long-range encounter. However, this is a decent option if you win a pistol round if you are playing the support role and take your position where you are able to encounter an enemy at short-range – as it costs just $1200.

Sawed-Off

This is another cheap weapon that will give you a deadly accurate aim. It is a bit quicker than the Nova, but only Terrorists can use it – who rarely play defence, which makes it hard to guarantee close-range. A Sawed-off can be effective if you are expecting your enemy to be in a certain position and want to do a pre-fire – and take a better gun.

Machine Guns

M249

Given the speed of the bullets with this weapon, it’s tricky to control the recoil. You first need to fly the mouse down quickly, turn it left then gently to the right. If there is just one enemy in the location then this shouldn’t be too much of a problem, but it gets harder with more opponents.

NEGEV

If looking at a NEGEV, everything is about speed, which makes it hard to control the recoil. You need to drag the crosshair down quickly – or maybe even crouch if necessary. If you want to be an effective shot with this weapon then you will need to move your mouse gently side to side at the latter part of the spray.

How to Learn Spray Patterns in CSGO

There are so many spray patterns, it’s not surprising if you are thinking how the heck you can learn it all – and so we have some handy hints to help you learn spray control in CSGO…

  1. Set Your DPI. If you play on a lower DPI setting then you will have better control of all your in-game movements. Often, to handle your weapon’s recoil. You will need to make a tiny movement in each direction. A high DPI setting will make it harder to be accurate. The most popular setting is DPI 400 with Sensitivity 2.0, but find what works best for you.
  2. Make Use of Workshop Maps. The Steam Workshop offers maps that you can use to help hone your skills. In terms of recoil control, the best map to try out is the Recoil Master Map, which allows you to practice all your sprays with whatever CS GO weapon you want.
  3. Practice Regularly. No matter what skill you are learning, it is hugely important to practice regularly. The more practice time you fit into your schedule, the easier you will find controlling spray patterns, as it will seep into your muscle memory. It doesn’t matter how long your sessions are, as long as you fit them in often. Even if you are super busy, just ten minutes each day will help massively with hitting those headshots.
  4. Try HS-Only Servers. If you play a headshot only deathmatch session, you will have to learn to aim at small moving targets. If we reduce the enemy to just his head, it becomes even more important to control your spray pattern. However, you shouldn’t do this every day as it can sometimes warp your aim – encouraging you to only ever aim for the head, which can often fail with a quicker and better enemy. Find a server where you can have a low ping and do this type of training for 30 minutes, 2 to 3 times each week. Use your trickiest weapon and start practising.

CSGO Spray Patterns Conclusion

So, you have started to learn all of the CSGO weapon spray patterns – and are gaining a better understanding of them. Just remember that this doesn’t mean you are ready for the Global Elite rank quite yet. Ultimately, the most important thing with CSGO is regular practice – and focusing on your weaknesses rather than strengths. If you aren’t strong in pistol or eco rounds, then don’t spend all of your time with AK-47s in a deathmatch – try practising playing with pistols or SMGs only and teach your muscle memory how to remember and control the recoil of the less popular weapons.

Hopefully, this article has helped you to understand how to make your practice session more productive and hopefully, your game will get even better than before! Happy playing and check out our other CSGO playing guides!

Author Toby Marshall