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Counter-Strike 2 will drop as a free CS:GO update this summer

Valve has officially announced Counter-Strike 2 and detailed many of the new systems that will be a part of this free Source 2 upgrade to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Those eager to play will either have to get a Limited Test invite from Valve or wait until it launches this summer. 

A promotional image featuring two Counter-Strike 2 soldiers.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Following several leaks throughout March, Valve announced Counter-Strike 2 today and released three videos highlighting some of the new features that build upon the gameplay that still looks very much like Counter-Strike should. First, smoke grenades have been overhauled to be more dynamic. Smoke will interact and change shape depending on the environment around it, and all players see the smoke in the same position. Valve has also adjusted the tick rate of the game, so Counter-Strike 2 will more accurately respond to how players move and shoot. Players will also be able to bring over their entire Global Offensive inventory into Counter-Strike 2.

This next evolution of the Counter-Strike formula is built on Valve’s newer Source 2 game engine, and it looks great. This is best seen in Counter-Strike 2’s maps, which fall into three different tiers. Touchstone maps are classic ones that have only seen updates to lighting, Upgraded maps are ones that game a significant visual touch-up to benefit from Source 2’s physically-based rendering system, and Overhaul maps have been thoroughly redesigned by Valve. Valve also promises to give the tools that let them build these maps to mod-makers so they can create beautiful-looking mods for Counter-Strike 2

Counter-Strike 2: Leveling Up The World

We first caught wind of Counter-Strike 2’s existence earlier this month when a Game Profile for it showed up in the code of an Nvidia Driver update. This was followed up by a report from Richard Lewis, who teased an impending announcement and the confirmed tick rate changes. Now, we know this massive Global Offensive upgrade is real and are waiting to play it. Limited Tests will be held before the game’s release, but Valve will choose who gets to try the game early and will send an invite to those players in-game in Global Offensive

Counter-Strike 2 will be released for PC this summer. 

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Tomas Franzese
Gaming Staff Writer
Tomas Franzese is a Staff Writer at Digital Trends, where he reports on and reviews the latest releases and exciting…
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