Counter-Strike 2 competitive changes: CS rating, Premier mode & Leaderboards explained

Jeremy Gan
Counter-Strike 2 gameplayValve

Counter-Strike 2 has locked in an abundance of competitive changes, so here is an explainer on CS Ratings, Premier mode, and Regional and World Leaderboards. 

It seems that Counter-Strike 2’s full release is nearly upon us as Valve, on September 1, finally announced some long-awaited changes to Competitive, alongside inviting more players into its Limited test beta

The changes previously teased, adjust how Competitive will work, with a new rating system, a new global leaderboard to see where you stack up against other players, and changing match length to 12-round halves (MR12). 

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All wrapped up in a Premier mode, a new Competitive mode specifically built for players to climb the leaderboards. So here is an explainer of all the new changes. 

Counter-Strike 2 Competitive changes: MR12

The new update changes the rounds played in CS2, shortening it from 15 rounds in a half to 12. Each half will now have 12 rounds, a maximum of 24 in regulation time, and a 6-round overtime in case of a tie which would repeat in the case of another tie until there is a winner.

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These changes will be applied for Premier mode, Competitive, and all CS Majors. 

As explained by Valve’s blog post, “Because of these changes, exciting competitive matches can be resolved with fewer rounds. And shorter matches mean players can play more, and more often.”

Counter-Strike 2 Competitive changes: Premier mode

Another massive change is the introduction of Premier mode. Premier mode will function differently from average Matchmaking, as there is a map ban phase before games, players can rank up their CS Rating, and ranking up their Rating will raise them higher on a leaderboard. 

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Valve announces cs2 premierYouTube: Valve
Premier mode will allow players to climb a Regional and Global leaderboard

Not too different from FACEIT, Premier mode will be different from Matchmaking as Valve is aiming for the mode to be more competitive with the integration of leaderboards and CS Ratings, only climbable through Premier. 

Counter-Strike 2 Competitive changes: CS Ratings & Leaderboards

When playing Premier, players can rank up their CS Rating, a new rating system by Valve. As you play Premier, your Rating will adjust to your performance. Naturally, the higher your Rating, the higher your position is on the Regional and Global leaderboards. 

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The Regional and Global leaderboards will allow players to see where they stack up against the best players in their region and around the world. Leaderboards will reset seasonally. 

Valve introduces leaderboards in cs2YouTube: Valve
There will be a Regional and Global leaderboard based on CS Rating

Additionally, there will be another Friends leaderboard to see how you’d stack up against your friends Ratings-wise.

As explained by the devs, “Your CS Rating is a visible measurement of your Counter-Strike performance, and it will determine where you stand on global and regional leaderboards.” 

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Counter-Strike 2 Competitive changes: Map-specific ranks

Another change is the addition of map-specific Ranks. The concept is players will have individual ranks for each map in the pool, with their ranks going on a per-map basis. This means you could be Global Elite in Mirage, however Gold Nova on Nuke. 

Valve introduces map specific ranks in cs2YouTube: valve
Players will now have map-specific Ranks based on their performance on a per-map basis

The goal is to allow players to develop their map pool, letting players have a good look into how good they are on a specific map, and allowing them to easily improve on the maps they have a low rank on. 

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About The Author

Jeremy is a writer on the Australian Dexerto team. He studied at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, and graduated with a Bachelors in Journalism. Jeremy mainly covers esports such as CS:GO, Valorant, Overwatch, League of Legends, and Dota 2, but he also leans into gaming and entertainment news as well. You can contact Jeremy at or on Twitter @Jer_Gan