Is Counter-Strike 2 Esports Ready Yet?

Mehraj Mahdin
By Mehraj Mahdin
5 Min Read
Credit: ESL

Valve’s premier FPS game has launched with mixed feelings. Is Counter-Strike 2 really Esports ready?

Released at the end of summer 2023, Counter-Strike 2 wasn’t as well received as most people would’ve hoped. Now, more than a month has passed, and there is a lot of skepticism about whether the game was fully prepared to be released or not.

Valve gave themselves a deadline with the reveal trailers, and maybe they felt pressured to follow through with their promise. Nevertheless, the game was released in a barebones state, with constant updates that are constantly polishing it. However, there are still concerns about whether the game is Esports-ready right now or not.

Read More: Counter-Strike 2 New Rating Changes

Valve’s Early Release of Counter-Strike 2

Work started on Counter-Strike 2 back in 2020. The biggest reason to upgrade was the port from Source to Source 2, Valve’s preferred game engine going forward. Developers can easily update the game if it is moved to a new engine, and with that, the successor to Global Offensive started its development.

Developers for Counter-Strike 2 gave an exclusive interview on PCGamer about the state of the release and the future of the game. The reasoning behind the release can be well understood from their statements in the interview.

For sure, there are some features that would have been included in CS2 at launch if we had a longer beta. But over time, it’s not clear what the priorities should be when you have an ever-shrinking and self-selecting subset of the community participating. And without everyone playing the same game, we couldn’t make much progress on the most critical systems like networking, performance, and core gameplay. “

CS Dev Team via PCGamer

This hints towards the game not being fully ready to launch with all the features of Global Offensive. However, the game needed massive public feedback in order to iron out any errors and issues. This can be one of the reasons why the release felt very basic.

Is Counter-Strike 2 Esports Ready?

The primary game modes that the game released were the premier mode, the competitive game mode, and the casual. Mostly, the game favored the competitive side more than the casual player base. The game is being polished every week with constant updates. Despite that, players have reported issues with hit registration and animations that hamper the game experience.

The CS2 Developers are aware of such instances, and they have also stated in the interview that these are not.

They show a different bug (an animation-hitbox mismatch when looking down), but the important thing is that those clips helped us isolate the specific bug and ship the fix to customers quickly. Bugs like that are unfortunate but detailed community feedback is incredibly helpful.”

CS Dev Team via PCGamer

Counter-Strike 2 Esports

For Esports, we only have to take a look at the most recent large-scale LAN event. IEM Sydney 2023 gave us the first taste of what Esports will look like in this version of the game. While viewer-wise, it is difficult to gauge what happens on the server, some of the players have given their piece about the game. Ropz has posted in a comment that “there is barely a difference LAN vs Online.”

Is Counter-Strike 2 Esports Ready Right Now?
Credit: ESL

While professional players have expressed concerns about the state of the game, it has not even been two months since the full release. So, there is ample time for the developers to fix any potential issues. The landscape is only going to get better as the first Major in Copenhagen draws near.

Read More: How Long Does a Counter-Strike 2 Match Last?

Mehraj is an FPS writer at GameRiv. He is an Esports Enthusiast and studying Finance in his senior year. He is also an active professional CS:GO player, having a particular affinity for FPS and RTS titles