I had 11 shots of whiskey while playing Counter-Strike – This is what happened

Alcohol consumption drastically reduces your ability to drive safely, make calculated decisions, and slows your reflexes.

Professional gamers therefore avoid drinking before practice sessions and matches.

However, gamers regularly drink at LAN parties while playing highly-competitive titles like Counter-Strike and Dota 2.

To see what effect this has on their performance, I enlisted the help of a professional Counter-Strike player, purchased a bottle of fine whiskey, and fired up Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).

CS:GO has a high skill ceiling and is one of the most competitive esports titles in the world.

As my CS:GO skills are a bit rusty, and I heard it is never a good idea to drink alone, Matthew “dffiaNt” Morris offered to take part in the experiment.

dffiaNt has played competitive Counter-Strike for numerous teams at the highest level in South Africa, taking second place in the 2014 Telkom DGL Championships and third in the 2015 DGL Championships.

The experiment

The experiment would involve us measuring our gameplay performance as we became increasingly intoxicated.

To measure our results, we played through the Weapons Course in the CS:GO tutorial, which sees the player run a set gauntlet of obstacles in the quickest time possible.

Everything in this course is the same in each run, so the trend we expected if we were not drinking would be that our times would continually improve with each run.

After completing a run of the course sober, we would then have a single shot of whiskey before waiting five minutes and running the course again.

We would both run the course three times between each shot of whiskey, and continue the experiment until we reached an acceptable number of shots.

Running the course three times would allow us to record accurate average times.

We also did not use any config commands which affected gameplay and ensured that cheats were disabled.

The weapons course can completed in under 30 seconds by a decent CS:GO player. Below is a record-breaking run of the course by YouTuber 8ballu.

Results

In the end, we managed to drink 11 shots of whiskey each, recording results between each shot and waiting five minutes before playing the next round – with a few exceptions.

After the sixth shot, we opted to wait 10 minutes as we required a break from the constant drinking.

We also waited 10 minutes before and after taking the 11th shot, to better monitor the effects of extended alcohol intoxication.

Despite a few outlying blunders and lucky rounds, the results show a decline in performance as intoxication increased.

As expected, our times continued to improve the more we ran the course, but as the alcohol took effect, our times began to even out – and even increase.

The results are detailed below.

Drink Number Jamie dffiaNt
Sober Round 1 – 31.7s
Round 2 – 29.6s
Round 3 – 28.6s
Average30.0s
Round 1 – 30.5s
Round 2 – 24.9s
Round 3 – 28.9s
Average28.1s
1st shot Round 1 – 27.5s
Round 2 – 29.1s
Round 3 – 29.2s
Average 28.6s
Round 1 – 26.1s
Round 2 – 26.0s
Round 3 – 23.6s
Average 25.2s
2nd shot Round 1 – 31.9s
Round 2 – 28.4s
Round 3 – 31.4s
Average – 30.6s
Round 1 – 23.0s
Round 2 – 24.5s
Round 3 – 25.3s
Average – 24.2s
3rd shot Round 1 – 27.8s
Round 2 – 33.8s
Round 3 – 27.4s
Average – 29.7s
Round 1 – 25.2s
Round 2 – 24.7s
Round 3 – 24.5s
Average – 24.8s
4th shot Round 1 – 28.7s
Round 2 – 26.2s
Round 3 – 31.7s
Average – 28.9s
Round 1 – 23.7s
Round 2 – 24.9s
Round 3 – 25.9s
Average – 24.8s
5th shot Round 1 – 28.2s
Round 2 – 29.4s
Round 3 – 28.1s
Average 28.6s
Round 1 – 24.0s
Round 2 – 25.4s
Round 3 – 25.1s
Average24.8s
6th shot Round 1 – 28.9s
Round 2 – 33.7s
Round 3 – 29.3s
Average 30.6s
Round 1 – 24.2s
Round 2 – 30.0s
Round 3 – 25.1s
Average26.4s
7th shot Round 1 – 28.9s
Round 2 – 32.5s
Round 3 – 27.9s
Average29.8s
Round 1 – 25.5s
Round 2 – 23.7s
Round 3 – 27.7s
Average – 25.6s
8th shot Round 1 – 30.1s
Round 2 – 29.3s
Round 3 – 28.2s
Average – 29.2s
Round 1 – 23.6s
Round 2 – 28.7s
Round 3 – 23.3s
Average – 25.2s
9th shot Round 1 – 30.5s
Round 2 – 27.4s
Round 3 – 30.8s
Average – 29.6s
Round 1 – 24.6s
Round 2 – 32.8s
Round 3 – 25.9s
Average – 27.8s
10th shot Round 1 – 28.5s
Round 2 – 28.5s
Round 3 – 32.9s
Average – 30.0s
Round 1 – 27.9s
Round 2 – 25.2s
Round 3 – 23.8s
Average – 25.6s
11th shot Round 1 – 32.7s
Round 2 – 30.3s
Round 3 – 28.4s
Average – 30.5s
Round 1 – 24.9s
Round 2 – 25.5s
Round 3 – 29.1s
Average – 26.5s

Performance

Initially, our times improved in the beginning rounds, as neither of us felt any effects from the alcohol.

As the drinks continued, we found ourselves focussing on completing the course in an acceptable time – rather than pushing for better times.

Due to the nature of the course, we began relying more on a “muscle memory” of the targets’ locations.

Around the 8th shot of whiskey, however, we were making more errors and unnecessary mistakes, and were finding it more difficult to recover from them.

Both of us ended up failing simple tasks like a moving grenade throw under a beam, causing the grenade to bounce back and detonate in our faces – losing us valuable time and dignity.

The objective of the exercise had quickly moved from pushing for the best time possible, to running the course as we remembered it while avoiding serious mistakes.

In the last few rounds, we also noticed a major lapse in our shooting accuracy.

dffiaNt was firing short bursts into each target instead of one-tapping them in the head, and I was missing simple shots and having to turn back and shoot them again.

We also noted that our slowed reflexes and reduced recovery from mistakes would cost us more performance in a dynamic environment like a multiplayer game.

The experiment showed that while a small amount of alcohol will not have an impact on your PC gaming, drinking heavily reduces your performance.

Now read: Installing a liquid CPU cooler in my gaming PC

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I had 11 shots of whiskey while playing Counter-Strike – This is what happened