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Counter Strike 2 developer Valve will apparently be making some changes to how teams are invited in future tournaments. In past events, organizations that had existing relationships with tournament organizers often gained a spot in the competition without having to qualify for it. However, the new guidelines now prohibit these automatically provided slots as “invitations to all tournaments will use [Valve’s] ranking system, or otherwise be determined by open qualifiers.”
Ahead of the Counter Strike 2 release date window, a detailed message posted through the storied FPS series’ official blog disclosed the developers reason for this decision. Apparently, it was made because “Counter-Strike is at its best when teams compete on a level playing field and when ability is the only limit to their success.” “Over the past few years, we’ve seen professional Counter-Strike drift away from that ideal,” the message continued. “The ecosystem has become gradually less open, with access to the highest levels of competition increasingly gated by business relationships.”
Historically, most of the big CS tournament organizers like ESL, IEM, and BLAST often reserved spots for legacy teams like FaZe, Na’Vi, and Astralis, which meant that smaller groups, such as TheMongolz and Bad News Eagles, were frequently left on the outside looking in. This crucial change to tournament guidelines, however, will ensure that every team runs through the same grueling gauntlet and no organization is safe from being axed ahead of a particular competition’s main event.
Unfortunately, these updates won’t take effect immediately as Valve also stated that “since tournament organizers have existing long term commitments, these requirements will take effect as of 2025.” This means that if you’re looking forward to seeing more up-and-comers shine in big matches, then you’ll have to remain patient for a long while before you can watch David vs. Goliath matches regularly.
As always, you can check out the official statement from Valve through their game’s website. Alternatively, you can take a look at the Counter Strike 2 tick rate changes, Counter Strike 2 system requirements, and Counter Strike 2 smoke changes instead.