Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is one of the most popular games on Steam, but that hasn’t stopped rumors that the game will soon get a massive update that will transform it overnight. According to a new report from journalist Richard Lewis, sources have confirmed that a hypothetical “Counter-Strike 2” is indeed real, and the planned release date for the beta is March or early April.
The report suggests that this new game will be on the Source 2 engine, rather than the aging original Source engine that powers Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. It will feature an improved match-making system and 128-tick servers, intended to compete with its major rival in the competitive shooter space, Valorant.
It’s unclear if the two versions of Counter-Strike will coexist, or if Valve plans to pull an Overwatch and replace the original Global Offensive entirely. It’s also likely that the move to Source 2 will require higher minimum specs to run well.
Counter-Strike 2 would actually be the fifth Counter-Strike. The original Counter-Strike was a third-party mod for Valve’s seminal game, Half Life. Those developers and the rights to the IP were purchased by Valve in 2000, before launching the mod as a standalone title that year.
4 years later, Turtle Rock Studios would create the original Counter-Strike 2 with Counter-Strike, Condition Zero, with Valve also releasing a remake of the first game later that year built with its, at the time, new Source engine.
While Counter-Strike always had a cult following, it wasn’t until 2012’s Global-Offensive that the series truly took off, with it regularly leading Steam’s monthly charts by number of players, and being only second to PUBG: Battlegrounds in number of concurrents.
Another multiplayer FPS game coming soon to Steam is Arkane’s Redfall, but that isn’t the only store front the title will be releasing on. Starting May 2, the Redfall will also be available on the Xbox Store, both on console and PC for purchase or via Game Pass, as well as the Epic Games Store.
Sometimes when multiplayer game’s have multi platform releases such as this, like last year’s Warhammer 40K: Darktide, players are segmented by store front. I myself, despite being able to play Darktide via a PC Game Pass subscription last fall, had to pick up a copy of the game via Steam just because my friends are a group of crusty tryhards that refuse to do any PC gaming on any other platform, which really made me rethink some of those friendships.