We had been suspicious for several days (even weeks) about the rumors of the possible release of Counter-Strike 2. There were discussions about Valve changing the logo and information being leaked on forums, among other things. Now, all of that is in the past for one reason: Counter-Strike 2 is real.
Valve has just announced that the new installment of the million-dollar franchise will be released this same year in 2023. In fact, it will arrive in the summer, according to the information revealed. “Counter-Strike 2 is the most important technical advancement in the history of Counter-Strike, and it will allow us to continue incorporating features and updates for many years,” they comment.
The best part of the announcement is not only that, but also that the limited test for Counter-Strike 2 is now available from today itself. Accessible to a selection of CS:GO players, during the test “a subset of CS2 features will be evaluated in order to resolve potential issues before its global release”. And wait, there’s more: Counter-Strike 2 will arrive this summer as a free update to CS:GO. And wait, there’s even more: all the content that you have purchased for over a decade in CS:GO will be available in Counter-Strike 2.
Among all the new features presented, one of the most striking is that now we will have interactive smoke. From now on, smoke has the ability to interact with other elements of the game, which creates more possibilities in terms of gameplay. For example, bullets and grenades can move it to create lines of sight.
Likewise, the environment is now filled naturally. If an obstacle is encountered, for example, the smoke would mold to it. Additionally, it is also capable of reacting to the lighting of that scenario. If there is sunlight, the smoke will reflect it through the rays.
With this Counter-Strike 2, the maps are being renewed. The team has completely remodeled the scenarios from scratch to take advantage of the virtues of Source 2, the engine that has been used to develop this new installment.
Now we will have a physics-based rendering system that produces realistic materials, lighting, and reflections. The key is that the scenarios have not been modified in terms of design, that is, they remain exactly the same, but with new lighting, reflections, and, in general, gameplay improvements.
In addition, the Source 2 tools will be available for community map creators to help with the creation, experimentation, and iteration of mapping.
All of this is powered by an engine that now incorporates improved visual elements, such as directional blood spatter based on the shot fired and its orientation; environmental effects of fire and the aforementioned smoke thanks to grenades, C4, molotov cocktails, etc., improvements in the user interface, more precise sound, and even a polish on the tick frequency.
The Counter-Strike player knows that secondary ticks are part of the soul of the game. This time, the servers will know when movement begins, when a shot is fired, or when a grenade is thrown. Now everything that appears on the screen is what it is. And for everyone equally.