The game update, which has been in development for quite some time, is likely to follow the same launch schedule as Dota 2 Reborn – the update that brought Dota 2 onto the Source 2 engine.
CS2 is set to replace Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), which launched in 2012.
It will be a free upgrade to CS:GO, and all of players’ CS:GO items will transfer over to the new iteration of Counter-Strike.
The updated version of the game will run on Source Engine 2 and promises to be “the largest technical leap forward in Counter-Strike’s history, ensuring new features and updates for years to come”.
Valve has highlighted several new features, including upgraded and overhauled maps, game-changing smoke grenades, tick-rate-independent gameplay, redesigned visual effects and audio.
All of CS2’s overhauled maps “have been fully rebuilt from the ground up, leveraging all of the new Source 2 tools and rendering features,” says Valve. The updated grenades now have the ability to interact with other gameplay events, expand to fill spaces naturally, and react to gunfire.
Valve has launched a limited beta for Counter Strike 2. Players are selected based on a number of factors deemed important by the development team. Eligibility depends on recent playtime and Steam account standing. Players who have been selected will automatically get an invite via CS:GO’s main menu.