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What is Source 2 and How Will It Impact CS:GO?

We’ve been waiting for this for quite a long time, and it feels like the transition of CS:GO to Source 2 is actually happening. The community is filled with rumors, and they are more than random tweets from unknown people. We have pretty clear hints from Valve and pro players — the new game engine is quite inevitable at this point, and just a bit of patience is needed.

Still, some questions about CS:GO Source 2 remain. Let’s try and answer them in this article on DMarket. And first of all, let’s figure out what is Source 2 engine and what will happen with your collection of skins and the trading industry in general.

What is CS:GO Source 2?

The game Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is built on the game engine Source, an internal product of Valve. It was released in 2004, and the engine is widely considered outdated. Games such as Half-Life 2 and CS Source use it. CS:GO is also among them (for now).

In 2015, Valve officially announced Source 2, a newer and better version. Soon after the company updated their MOBA to this engine — and now, Dota 2 is on Source 2.

Many players have been expecting a similar step for CS:GO so the community is eager to hear news on this topic at any moment. We don’t have much info beyond hints and rumors, but most people use the term CS:GO Source 2 to name this potential updated version of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive on the game engine Source 2. Check out all the new features in Counter-Strike 2.

What Is CS2?

With the transition to the engine Source 2, the developers from Valve decided to name this new version of the game Counter-Strike 2, or CS2.

Basically, this is the next step in the evolution of our favorite shooting series. The list of main games looks like this now:

  • Counter-Strike
  • Counter-Strike: Condition Zero
  • Counter-Strike: Source
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
  • Counter-Strike 2

CS2 gets improved visuals thanks to the advanced features of Source 2. Various mechanics work better in this game, and it generally feels like a very good technical update. CS:GO skins will be available in CS2, and some of them even look better in that environment. We’ve published an article on DMarket about CS:GO skins in CS2 — please, check it out for more info.

Why Is Source 2 Better?

The community is pretty hyped about Source 2. The reason is that the engine brings better physics to the virtual world. Basically everything feels more realistic in Source 2. The visuals are better. The engine brings cross-platform support. For the developers, Source 2 is just a modern tool to implement various game ideas.

Players don’t need to dive into technical comparisons. Source 2 games feel and perform better.

How Will Source 2 Affect CS:GO?

As a final result, we can expect to have the game improved in most aspects. The very environment of this engine offers players a better experience. But still, there is a downside to mention.

Considering the example of Dota 2, it might be logical to expect some technical issues during the transition and in the beginning of CS:GO Source 2’s lifespan. It’s not a new product, created from scratch. The game has significant luggage which should be optimized. After some patches and updates, we will have a better game, that’s for sure.

dota source2

One more point to mention is that the current game has some weird problems, and Source 2 is a way to solve them. The developers will not be stuck with outdated code, so they will be able to address players’ complaints with a better range of solutions.

Eventually, the game will reach an improved level of playability and performance, but you will need the same skills to succeed in those matches. And articles such as the CS:GO economy guide will help you be great at any game version.

What Will Happen to CS:GO Skins?

We could have a long (and perhaps even deep) discussion about the technical advantages of Source 2 and how it will affect the playing process in CS:GO. But many DMarket users have another, very practical question: “Will I be able to use/trade skins from the current version of the game?”

csgo skin

To make it absolutely clear — only some people in Valve know the ultimate answer. The rest of the community should wait for the actual switching to CS:GO Source 2. On the other hand, we sure can use logic and examples from the past to make our assumptions relevant.

CS:GO skins should remain as they are in the Source 2 version. Most analysts and professional traders agree on this. The main points are:

  • Valve is interested in this industry. The company doesn’t want to close down this multi-million industry and prevent traders and players from making further investments. You may have only a few skins in your inventory. But the items are countless among all players. No one is interested in leaving that capital behind, including the developers.

  • We had a good experience with Dota 2. The game was moved from Source 1 to 2, and the transition did not affect the items. The process took quite some time, and for this period, the players and tournament organizers had a choice of two engine versions. In the end, the trading industry and all the particular items were safely teleported into a new reality.

Check out our new post with the answers to the most popular questions about CS2 skins.

Will CS2 Be Paid?

According to Valve, Counter Strike 2 will be available as a free-to-play game. It’s also worth noting that Counter-Strike 2 will embrace the free-to-play approach, offering an update for current CS:GO players, as it was a beta test.

How to Get CS2 Beta?

The release date for Counter-Strike 2 is still unknown (it is promised for summer 2023). But some players already have access to the game, or at least to its beta version. CS2 Beta testing is up and running, but it’s not an open one. Only a limited number of players get access to it, and Valve has specific criteria for choosing the lucky players. They take into account such factors as:

  • your playtime on the official CS:GO servers;
  • trust factor;
  • general reputation of your Steam account.

It is pretty obvious that the developers conduct beta testing not to bring extra fun to players. They want to test the game and get as much valuable data as possible — to try and make the final product flawless.

No additional steps are required from your side for getting an invite to CS2 Beta. If the developers decide you are the right person, they will reach out to you through the game interface.

Just enjoy CS:GO, and perhaps you will see an invite in the game menu. If you get the notification, select ENROLL, start downloading, and then play with the Limited Test option.

There should be a few waves of testing, but to be honest, only a small percentage of active players will get the invite (some sources say around 1% only). It’s pretty much natural to see esports professionals and streamers getting their access to beta. And then — the more active you are in the game, the more chances for CS2 Beta you have.

Counter-Strike Source 2 Release Date

Counterstrike 2 became available to everyone on September 27, 2023. Check more details about CS2 release in our post.

Which Games Use Source 2

The game engine is a product by Valve, and it’s natural to see their game using it.

So, Source 2 games are:

  • Dota 2 — after the transition from Source 1
  • Dota Underlords — an auto-battle game with the heroes from Dota
  • Half-Life: Alyx — a VR game

Valve also used Source 2 for two tech demos: Robot Repair and Aperture Desk Job.

It is reported that the upcoming game Sandbox by Facepunch Studios will be built on Source 2. You may get the idea behind it thanks to the other game of the same developer, Garry’s Mod.

We sincerely hope to add CS:GO to this list really soon, but let’s be patient and wait for the official announcements.

So that the game brings only pleasure and not problems, you should know the system requirements for the most productive sessions in Counter-Strike 2.

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