Written by: Zach McGinnis
Once known as Friberg’s palace, de_inferno’s banana is one of the most ruthless, exciting, and iconic choke-points in Counter-Strike history. Of course, now that it’s been widened in the map’s newest iteration it’s somewhat less of a cold mistress for a T-side to flirt with; however, just a few quick nades or molotovs from the CTs could mean huge damage or even an early pick if the attackers aren’t careful. While an execute style banana control play is attractive, teams don’t always have a ton of resources to run this sort of play round after round – that’s where this article comes in. This piece is going to explore how to abuse T-side spawns to take control of top banana.
This strategy requires nothing more than one or two decent spawns and a small $200 investment into a flashbang. In the latter case where the T-side has two valiant soldiers with forward spawns, a molotov for car bolsters this banana take nicely. The molotov can be thrown by one of the straggling attackers from bottom banana but by that point it likely will be too late for it deter pesky AWPers from peeking car on a forward spawn of their own. Below are picture examples of four of the best forward spawns one can have as a T-side player on de_inferno. Spawns #1 and #2 are ideal for the entry/flashing player, whereas #3 and #4 are better suited to supporting with a molotov or being in position to trade.
It’s surprising how strong a single flash bounced nicely off the upper right side of the car barrels (as shown below) can be in making the CT-side uneasy and unsure. If the flash surprises the B-site defenders, they’ll either take a gamble trying to cross to sandbags, counter-flash and peek from corner together, or simply fall off and play reactively in site. In the first case one can assume the flash blinded the CT-side enough for them to either lose their bearings, or put themselves in an unfavourable position for a gunfight with the rushing player(s). The second situation is more likely to occur once you’ve done this a few times and forced the CTs to work out a contingency plan for fighting you. The third is optimal as the play is designed primarily to take control of banana and car while forcing CTs to either fall back or invest far more in utility than the $200 flashbang and bit of RNG it cost the attacking side to get there.
Taking car control on banana helps with the bigger picture on the T-side strategically. It allows for fakes, denies the CT-side information, and helps the attackers control the pace of play. If a team steers clear of banana for one reason or another, the defending side gains enormous advantage. This advantage comes in the form of information and rhythm. This flash play ensures that CTs know if they want banana control for those aforementioned advantages, it won’t come easily and without cost.
Naturally, there are occasions where forward spawns will be elusive to a T-side. In this case, there is a simple smoke and flash play a team can do to maintain the uncertainty they’ve instilled in their opponents banana players. As shown in the pictures below, this smoke will block off vision for both you and the CTs. If properly flashed using either a basic barrel flash as shown above or a more intricate one from spawn, the CTs again will either have to gamble and hope they regain vision before the attacking pressure arrives, or simply fall back through the smoke and in doing so will give the attackers room to work down banana and control car. There is a lot more to the conversation of banana control from both an attacking and defending perspective, but this simple combination of nades is good to know in the event that forward spawns evade you round after round.
It is important to know that this play can be made individually, but with help from your team and overall coordination it can be a huge difference maker in a map. Pace is important in Counter-strike, so having the ability to control it in a round with a little luck and a simple flash and molotov combination is a great tool to have for a T-side. De_inferno has long been known as one of the harder T-sides in the active duty map pool, and this simple yet effective play can help level the playing field by overwhelming the banana defenders and forcing them respect the pace and aggression of attackers or risk being overrun.