Counter-Strike 2 Announced, Launches in Summer 2023

Changes to Smoke Grenades, tick rate and maps are also detailed in three new videos, highlighting the impact of the Source 2 engine.

Numerous rumors and an official trademark later, Valve finally announced Counter-Strike 2 for PC. Described as an “overhaul to every system, every piece of content and every part of the C-S experience,” it’s received three new videos detailing features like Smoke Grenades, map upgrades and overhauls, and sub-tick updates.

First up are Smoke Grenades, which are now dynamic volumetric objects. All players see the same smoke, regardless of position, and it reacts naturally to lighting. It even fills spaces naturally, while bullets can create little holes through it, revealing an enemy briefly.

As for maps, there are three kinds – Touchstone, maps which are fundamentally the same with lighting improvements; Upgrades, which use new Source 2 lighting (including physically-based rendering); and Overhauls, maps that have been rebuilt from the ground up. The Overhauls will be available to community map makers to build on and experiment with.

Instead of ticks, set time intervals which the server relies on, Counter-Strike 2 uses sub-tick updates for responsive shooting and movement regardless of the tick rate.