CS2 Game Modes

CS2 Game Modes

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Looking to learn more about CS2 Game Modes available? You’re in the right place. With the release of Counter-Strike 2 (CS2), hundreds of thousands of gamers are jumping in via Steam, ready to practice and compete in Valve Corporation’s new tactical first-person shooter (FPS). Despite the huge influx of players, there are only a handful of game modes available.

Join us as we discuss all the CS2 game modes, including Classic Casual and Competitive as well as Deathmatch, Wingman, and Premier Mode. Then, we finish proceedings by sharing the game modes we would love to see added to CS2, including wargames.

While waiting for new CS2 game modes to be released, there are other ways to enjoy the CS2 action. At Thunderpick, we provide users with opportunities for CS2 betting as well as other beloved esports titles.

Classic Casual

The Classic Casual game mode is a perfect starting point for new players. There’s no team damage or collision, and you can purchase weapons each round. Players start with Armor each round, and the CTs also start with a bomb defuse kit. These features make this game mode perfect for practicing your aim against real opponents and learning the intricacies of every CS2 map.

In Classic Casual, players enjoy all the Active Duty maps, the Reserve Group maps with Defuse Mode, and some Hostage Rescue experiences in Italy and Office. It’s all about honing those skills before your next venture: Classic Competitive!


Many players consider the Deathmatch game mode in CS2 as a great proving ground for their aim. If you love clicking heads and dislike waiting for a round to finish before you respawn, this is the mode for you! All maps are available in Deathmatch, and players instantly respawn at a random location once killed.

Each Deathmatch game lasts 10 minutes, and the player with the highest kill score when the timer reaches zero wins the match. You can purchase any gun you want in Deathmatch with no economic restrictions. It’s a perfect way to get a quick fix of CS2 action with fast-paced gameplay.

Classic Competitive

Once you practice enough with your favorite weapons and learn the ins and outs of each CS2 map, it is time to jump into Classic Competitive. In this CS2 game mode, team damage and collision are enabled. As the name suggests, players get to experience what the game’s competitive matches are like, with Ts attacking bomb sites and CTs attempting to stop a plant or defuse the bomb in a retake attempt.

In this mode, players are considered “Unranked” until they complete their first 10 matches. Players can rank up their profiles once the initial placement matches are complete. The Classic Competitive mode features Active Duty, Reserve Group, and Defuse maps.


Grab a friend on Steam and jump into Wingman—CS2’s 2v2 game mode—for some Ranked competitive play. Wingman games feature smaller maps than the other game modes. The maps (reduced in size) available in Wingman for CS2 as of October 2023 are:

  • Nuke
  • Overpass
  • Vertigo
  • Inferno

Wingman also features shorter matches, with rounds lasting one minute and 35 seconds, which is 20 seconds shorter than standard 5v5 game modes. Teams switch sides at eight rounds played instead of 12, resulting in intense gameplay.

Premier Mode

Premier Mode is the cream of the crop, with the same match ruleset and maps as the biggest CS2 esports tournaments and Majors. Players can climb the regional and global leaderboards in CS2 Premier Mode by earning CS Rating. It is a highly competitive mode that CS2 players can queue for in a group or alone. Premier Mode features all the maps from the Active Duty group.

Active Duty Map Pool

  • Inferno
  • Nuke
  • Mirage
  • Overpass
  • Anubis
  • Ancient
  • Vertigo

In CS2, Premier Mode distinguishes itself from regular Classic Competitive with a map veto process at the start of a match. Furthermore, Premier Mode also incorporates the MR12 match rule (Max Rounds of 12 per half), lower than the MR15 of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO).

Please note: You can also select “Practice” for Wingman, Deathmatch, Classic Competitive, and Casual to play against bots if you don’t feel ready to face others in multiplayer. However, we suggest practicing against other players, as bots cannot mimic real player movement.

CS2 Game Modes We’d Like To See In Counter-Strike

With CS2’s release on Sept. 27, 2023, Valve had all the bread-and-butter game modes ready to go. However, some game niche modes are missing from CS2, and we’d love to see these added in future updates.

Arms Race (Wargame)

Arms Race is a fan-favorite in CS:GO, also known as “gun game.” This mode features instant respawns and a gun-progression system. Players swap weapons automatically after two kills. The victor is the first player to make their way through the entire arsenal and get one last kill with a knife.

Flying Scoutsman (Wargame)

The Flying Scoutsman game mode is sorely missed in CS2, primarily because it was one of the most entertaining and unique modes in CS:GO. All players in this mode only have a knife and an SSG 08 (aka the Scout) available.

To make things even better, you can jump higher and almost float as the mode lowers gravity. We hope to see the Flying Scoutsman return in CS2, because we can’t wait to see the low gravity effects taken to the next level with Valve’s Source 2 engine. 

Danger Zone

Valve’s take on battle royale in CS:GO, Danger Zone, is nowhere to be found in CS2. The mode divided the Counter-Strike community, as some hated it, while others enjoyed the experience, flying around with jump pads and clicking heads. We would love to see a CS2 version of Danger Zone in a future update, especially if the developers rebuild it from the ground up and make adjustments while considering community feedback.

What’s Next For CS2?

The three game modes discussed above are just the tip of the iceberg. For example, Valve could also add the Demolition wargame! Plus, the developer could consider allowing in-game access to new Workshop maps and Community Servers, which would open up the possibility of new Surf, Aim Bot, and Retake game modes for players to enjoy.

Of course, CS2 is still a very young game, and we’re sure the dev team will continue to push out updates. Undoubtedly, we’ll see some new CS2 game modes in the future!

Written byTHP

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