Skins, also referred to as finishes, are a new feature in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, introduced in the Arms Deal update. They are weapons with different textures that can be equipped in-game. They are completely cosmetic, holding no gameplay function. However, their different colours and textures can be used as a slight tactical advantage or disadvantage in some circumstances. Valve's Weapon Finishes Guide provides a basic starting point for creating your own weapon skins.
To acquire a skin, one must either:
- Earn them through random drops by playing in online community and official servers.
- "Uncrate" them from opening weapon and promotional crates.
- Trading with other players. Buying skins from the Steam Market is considered a trade.
Also, some variants include a StatTrak™ device, a counter that shows the total amount of kills acquired with the weapon by the current owner. Holding the [F] key (default) will allow the player to 'inspect' the gun in greater detail and allow you to gain a better view of your StatTrak™ counter.
Access to the inventory is unavailable when you are alive and after the warm-up in Competitive game modes for tactical imbalance reasons.
Weapons skins come in different quality grades, generally signifying their rarity and value.
- White (Common) - Consumer grade
- Light blue (Uncommon) - Industrial grade
- Darker blue (Rare) - Mil-spec
- Purple (Mythical) - Restricted
- Pinkish purple (Legendary) - Classified
- Red (Ancient) - Covert
- Gold (Exceedingly Rare) - ★ Melee Weapons
- Light Brown (Immortal) - Contraband (discontinued)
In the Steam Market and in-game inventory, all general skins have a white border around the preview icon, while knives are bordered with Purple, the StatTrak™ weapons with Orange, Souvenir weapons with Yellow, and self-made Prototype skins with Green.
A random exterior quality is chosen when a weapon skin is dropped, uncrated or received from a Trade Up Contract. The exterior quality simulates randomized wear and tear on the skin, and is determined when the skin drops and is based on a bell curve for most weapons.
A weapon's exterior quality will not degrade over time and can never be changed.
The exterior quality hierarchy is the following, from best to worst:
- Factory New (FN)
- Minimal Wear (MW)
- Field-Tested (FT)
- Well-Worn (WW)
- Battle-Scarred (BS)
Opening weapon crates will give the player one weapon from the weapon crate's series.
- At one point during the development process, the exterior quality of the weapon was intended to be worn down over time as a form of showing the weapon's veteran status, but this idea was eventually abandoned after testing and re-evaluating individual skins.
- The rarity of the weapons was established based on what the developers thought would be the more popular skins (lower tiers) as a form of mitigating the risk of bright, goofy or unrealistic skins (higher tiers). This was proved wrong after the weapon skins launched, as it was apparent the Global Offensive community preferred the more unique and brightly colored skins and newer weapon collections have tailored to reflect the community preference.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 Building the Content that Drives the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Economy on YouTube