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Was Counter-Strike 2's Release Rushed?

Was Counter-Strike 2's Release Rushed?

Counter-Strike 2’s release has been an underwhelming one for multiple reasons: a lot of bugs are still in the game, no new content has been released, and subtick, the system Valve uses to replace regular server tickrate, still doesn’t feel great. But maybe the worst part about it is that some content present in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has been removed. All of these problems with the release point towards a rushed launch.

vac live

To begin with, CS2 promised us a better anti-cheat, but VAC is still awful. It doesn’t detect most cheaters, and barely any games get cancelled because of VAC Live. Now, personally, I don’t support intrusive anti-cheat programs, and I think that Valve refusing to make one is good — but the current one could still be improved without crossing that line. Right now, it feels like there are even more cheaters than there were in Global Offensive, which is a major issue in a competitive game. There were theories of Valve planning on using an AI trained by the Overwatch System to act as an anti-cheat, and I think that’s a great idea; it could make the ranked experience a lot fairer while still respecting players’ privacy.

And, of course, it’s impossible to talk about this game without talking about subtick. So, I’m a defender of subtick as a system — I think it’s a great technology that can be used to improve responsiveness in a competitive shooter like Counter-Strike. The problem with it is that half of the actions are still registered via 64-tick. Because of that, visuals are unsynchronised with what is actually happening in the game, and that can cause issues and frustration for players. You can get killed behind walls now because the enemy sees a different position from the one you see.

There are major game modes that are missing from Counter-Strike 2 — the most notable being Danger Zone. This battle-royale version of the game was removed from the files and is nowhere to be seen. Even after data-mining the updates for a bit, all I found was that references to it in the code were removed, and I didn’t see any information on what might be the reason for that. Other small matchmaking modes, such as Arms Race and Retakes, are also gone now, but there were a few mentions of them in the game’s code. Global Offensive had different player models for each map, and they all had semi-unique voice lines and their own distinct looks. Now, though, every map has the default CT agent and T agent, making the world feel less authentic and lived in.

Most notably, some maps are completely gone, and we don’t know what happened to them, from competitive ones, like Cache, to wingman maps, like Shortdust. The weirdest one to be missing is Tuscan, though, as a little before the CS2 closed beta came out, Valve had bought the map for $150,000. Not only are Valve-approved maps not in the game, but it is also impossible to download and submit Counter-Strike 2 ones in the workshop. The tools to make a map are publicly available for everyone, and with a little bit of playing with the game files, you can play custom Source 2 levels, but it’s a hassle and more complicated than most people will care to do.

Overall, I think Valve wanted to build on the hype of Counter-Strike 2 and rushed it too early, resulting in the game being unfinished and lacking a lot of important features. Valve is hard at work, though: a new update is pushed almost daily! I do think the game would eventually be amazing, and I have high hopes that it would be even better than Counter-Strike Global Offensive ever was. Remember that compared to Counter-Strike: Source’s and Global Offensive’s releases, this is a huge improvement.

Ariel Chloe Mann

Ariel Chloe Mann

Staff Writer

Plays too much Counter-Strike 2, unless you count her alternate account then hardly any

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