Counter-Strike 2 is officially announced, coming out later this summer, and will be a massive upgrade from the original game

A new arena for competitive play.

Image via Valve

Following heavy speculation about another Counter-Strike game, it has officially shared that Valve will be releasing Counter-Strike 2 later this summer. Valve shared the information on its Twitter page and confirmed that those who already own the original Counter-Strike game would receive Counter-Strike 2 as a free upgrade.

Not only will Counter-Strike 2 be a significant upgrade for players already playing the game, but all in-game items will also be transferred over. This feels like a similar situation to Blizzard’s switch from Overwatch to Overwatch 2, with multiple existing maps getting overhauled and upgraded, game-changing dynamic mechanics, and redesigned visual effects and audio.

Related: Nvidia drivers may have leaked Counter-Strike 2

Those who went through the change from Overwatch to Overwatch 2 might be wary about the final result. Blizzard experienced multiple problems, such as several launch day issues where players could not get into the game, obtain items from their original Overwatch account, and have stats transfer over. This will be a challenge Valve needs to tackle to assure fans that many of the cosmetic items they’ve purchased over the years will appear on their new account and that there’s a smooth transition.

Leading up to the release, we can expect to hear much more information about how Counter-Strike will be changing in this new engine. The original game came out in 1999, followed by Condition Zero in 2004 and Global Offensive in 2012. It’s been over a decade since Global Offensive arrived, and fans are likely eager for an updated format for the highly regarded competitive first-person shooter.

Beyond the official announcement, we do not have an official release date or an idea of when the new game will come out. So far, Valve has only shared that Counter-Strike 2 will release sometime this summer. The company has started a limited test in the meantime, and outlined how those players are being selected.