Counter-Strike 2 is bringing a plethora of changes to what fans have come to know with Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.

In this article, we’ll be going over all the big changes from CSGO to CS2 when it comes to the game.

Some major changes from CSGO to CS2 have fans excited

Players gain CS Rating in CS2 ranking system
Screenshot by Steven Cropley/ONE Esports

With a new game, comes new mechanics, graphics, user interface, and much more. Now, let’s get into the specifics.

Better graphics

Immediately, fans will notice the updated graphics when loading into the new iteration. It’s a welcome change, as CSGO was released back in 2012, over a decade ago.

While the game isn’t the worst to look at today, some updated graphics definitely bring it more into the modern age, and the updated engine allows for more changes when it comes to gameplay.

New Premier system and CS Rating

CS2 ranking system based on CS Rating, earning new CS2 rank colors
Screenshot by Steven Cropley/ONE Esports

Valve refers the new CS Rating as “a precise display of your skill in Counter-Strike 2. With regional and World Leaderboards, you’ll know exactly how you stack up.”

The CS Ratings will feed into seasonal leaderboards, allowing you to always give the next season a try.

You can filter the leaderboards by season, region (or world), or by just those on your friend list. It will also show you how many total wins you have and what percentile you fall into across the world.

As you move up the ranks, you’ll also move into different color thresholds. These symbolize a new tier within the CS2 ranking system.

  • Grey: 0-4,999
  • Light blue: 5,000-9,999
  • Dark blue: 10,000-14,999
  • Dark purple: 15,000-19,999
  • Pink: 20,000-24,999
  • Red: 25,000-29,999
  • Gold: 30,000-35,000

New buy menu, loadouts, and sellbacks

CS2 loadout menu
Screenshot by Steven Cropley/ONE Esports

Unlike Valorant, Counter-Strike has long been unforgiving when it comes to making mistakes with your purchases. If you mistakenly bought an HE grenade before armor and now don’t have enough cash, well, too bad.

Those days are over. Similar to how Valorant does it, players will now be able to return purchases during the freeze time of each round should they wish to change up their plan or fix a mistake.

In addition to the reselling, players can now choose loadouts heading into matches. Previously you were limited in some regards, like being able to take either the M4A4 or M4A1-S, never both.

Now you can choose “any 5 pistols, any 5 mid-tier weapons, and any 5 rifles. Today’s update introduces a revised loadout system where players select 15 weapons from 3 categories on CT and T-side to bring with them into matches,” according to the tweet.

Responsive volumetric smokes

Next up is one of the more game-changing aspects of C22, responsive smokes. Now, when you throw a smoke grenade, you’ll see something new and unique. According to Valve, “smoke grenades now create volumetric 3D objects that live in the world.”

The smoke bloom has been updated visually, but wait, there’s way more. You can also see your bullets penetrating the smoke, making it easier to spot players spamming their bullets through it. In addition, if you or the enemy shoot through the edges, rather than the center, it will remove the smoke momentarily, giving a line of sight to the other side.

If that’s not enough, you can also throw an HE grenade into the smoke and blow it away briefly. This will open the door for many counter-plays to smoke executes and another reason not to waste your grenades.

Oh, and you know how previously each player saw smoke a little differently? That’s not a thing anymore.

Visual audio feedback via the mini-map

fREQUENCY shows off audible footsteps indicator on radar in Counter-Strike 2
Screenshot by Steven Cropley/ONE Esports

Something Valorant players will be familiar with, the mini-map in Counter-Strike 2 will now feature an audio ring.

For those who aren’t sure what that means, essentially now you will be able to see just how far the sound you’re making is traveling.

For instance, if you know a player is in the middle of Dust 2, you can see how close you can run before you need to walk, or else your steps will be heard by looking at your radar and keeping an eye on your audio circle.

Counter-Strike enthusiast fREQUENCYCS provided an example on Twitter.

Max Rounds 12 (MR12) replaces MR15

Counter-Strike 2 A site on Inferno
Credit: Valve

When it comes to competitive Counter-Strike, MR12 has been long in the past. No longer, however, as MR12 returns with CS2.

This means when playing the competitive modes, including Premier, the first team to hit 13 rounds will win the game instead of the previously needed 16 rounds in CSGO.

This will work to shorten the amount of time spent in games, giving you the opportunity to play more games and commit less time per match.

When it comes to overtime, it will be three rounds on each side unless one team wins four rounds first. For example, if you go 3-0 in the first half of overtime, then you only need one round in the second half to secure the win.

Sub-tick replaces 64 and 128-tick servers

Moving on to one of the more confusing new features, the sub-tick server system. Everyone who has played Counter-Strike knows that the official matchmaking system being 64 tick has been an issue.

This was one of the big selling points of Riot Games’ Valorant, it had 128 tick servers at launch. The tick rate is how frequently the server is receiving your actions. The more frequent, the more accurate moving and shooting is.

A higher tick rate can quite literally change the way you can move in a game. Bunny hopping, for instance, is wildly more accessible in 128 tick than 64 tick. Certain jumps are simply inaccessible in lower tick rate servers.

For most of us, we assumed the Source 2 update would bring 128 tick to Counter-Strike matchmaking. Instead, we were met with a new idea, sub-tick.

According to Valve, this new feature will allow Counter-Strike 2 to “know the exact moment you fired your shot, jumped you jump, or peeked your peek.”

The jury is still out on how this feels based on the limited test. Some players claim movement feels more similar to 64 tick than 128, while others believe it’s a step in the right direction.

No more sky boxes means crazy nade throws

In CSGO, you were limited on where you could throw grenades from based on sky boxes. In addition, some nade throws used the invisible barriers in the sky to bounce off of.

In CS2, those are no longer there, opening the sky for tons of nade throws while no longer allowing you to use them as a deflection point.

There are already tons of cool new smokes, and there will certainly be more found as more people jump in and seek them out.

And there you have most of the major changes from CSGO to CS2. The game has fans excited for a new era of the popular first-person shooter, and that includes us.

Thanks for everything, CSGO.

READ MORE: How to fix VAC unable to verify game session in CS2