I am sure most of you are familiar with the infamous M4A4 Howl skin. What if I told you that just like the Howl skin, some very few stickers were removed from the game and would never be able to be unboxed from capsules ever again, leading to soaring prices and utmost supply scarcity. Let me introduce to you these extremely rare stickers:
- Howling Dawn,
- Winged Defuser
- Harp of War (Holo)
- King on the Field.
In this article you will learn the events that took place for these stickers to be terminated from sticker capsules in the first place, the current state of the market for these gems and much more.
Just like it's counterpart skin version, this sticker stands out from the crowd. The bold, fiery wolf is a staple figure within the CS:GO skin universe. The probability of finding a CSGO player who doesn’t know about the iconic howl figure is slim.
Why was the Howling Dawn removed from CSGO?
“Recently we received a DMCA takedown notice regarding copyright infringement with respect to the M4A4 | Howl, and a community sticker, Howling Dawn, claiming that the artwork was not originally created by the stated contributors. This matter is extremely serious, and we have taken appropriate action to resolve it,” Valve announced to the CS:GO community on June 12, 2014.
After this statement was released, Valve completely exterminated the original Howl skin and sticker (showed in the image above) from the game. Valve had to come up with something for the existing skins and stickers in inventories as completely removing them from users with the items would be wrong, so the CSGO team received the task to remake these two items. They came out with an alternative design for each item, which arguably, agreed on by the community, looked stunningly better than the old designs.
Both contributors received Steam Community bans, their proceeds from either item were terminated and all other in-game items that involve at least one of these contributors in their revenue share had also been discontinued (we will get to some of these shortly).
These new designs received the ‘Contraband’ item rarity and would never be produced again, meaning the M4A4 Howl would never be able to be unboxed or be traded up to and that the Howling Dawn sticker would never be able to be unboxed again.
How much does a Howling Dawn cost?
With such a sudden statement that many weren’t expecting, a very limited amount of these items were actually left in inventories before they were replaced by the newer variants, leading to a high-rising long-term investment item with the sticker bottoming out at around half a dollar before the announcement was made and peaking at just short of $2500 on a third-party marketplace during June in 2021. With CSGO being alive and healthy and seeing many more years to come, we should be seeing higher all-time-highs in the years to come.
Winged Defuser, Harp of War (Holo) and King on the Field.
These stickers are definitely unique and the average CS:GO player wouldn’t know much about them. They sure don’t look too special compared to some of the other stickers in the game, and they don’t hold a special rarity like the Howling Dawn does.
With a strong relation in terms of events, these stickers all relate to one another in the same way. There is one important name we need to know to understand the story behind the removal of these stickers, that name is Sic. Sic was the man who unknowingly helped Auzzii (the thief of the original howl artwork) get the howl items into the game (with previous experience of doing so). Sic was known in the community as a friendly person who had the courage to help others in need. Auzzii, having stolen the howl artwork, was rightfully banned from Steam and his earnings from the howl items would be no more. As mentioned above, both creators received the same punishment as both were involved in making and publishing the stolen piece of work.
Are there any banned skins in CSGO?
Sic was not only present in the making of these three stickers. He was very much involved in creating gun skins as well. Many of the skins that he brought to the game were later removed from cases and the only way to trade up to them was to use another set of those skins that had also been removed from the same case. To put it into easier words: the only way to trade up to one of these discontinued skins is to use ten discontinued skins from the same collection in the lower tier. These skins are not common at all these days, making the trade ups extensively more expensive. You’re better off buying the wanted discontinued skin off the market. These are some of the discontinued/banned skins that Sic had contributed to:
Sic was the man behind these three unique stickers. Because of the howl incident, all his work was removed from cases and capsules within the game, which is really a shame for him as he stopped receiving revenue for his work and was no longer able to make any more work for us just because of Auzzii’s selfish behavior.
What is the most expensive sticker in CSGO?
These stickers are now deemed some of the rarest in the game which is understandable considering they have an extremely low and cut supply. People are still applying these stickers on skins till this day, boosting the price of them to sky-high levels accordingly. These stickers are lower in supply than almost all Katowice 2014 stickers, which we’ve seen nowadays reach upwards of $50,000. These discontinued stickers may not have the looks compared to Katowice 2014 stickers, but supply and demand has definitely been a strongpoint within the CSGO skin market, so we may be seeing even higher prices on these in the near future. The most expensive sticker in CS:GO is currently tied between the Titan (Holo) | Katowice 2014 and the Reason Gaming (Holo) | Katowice 2014. Both of these are currently sitting at around $50,000 USD cash value.
As you’ve found out reading this article, there is much more history behind some items than one should expect and learned that you shouldn’t always put all your trust in somebody. As with Sic, he was taken down alongside Auzzii who really was at fault for these events. What happens with the prices of these rare stickers is up to the users and market to decide, but for them to drop in price anytime soon would be a miracle.
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