The announcement of Counter-Strike 2 earlier this week marked the beginning of a whole new era for what is perhaps the most storied shooter in videogame history. It will also mark the end of an era, as Valve announced today that the upcoming Paris Major 2023 will be the last Major Championship event ever played on that version of the game.
The Majors are mostly-annual CS:GO championship events, held in locales around the world and with big money prizes up for grabs. The previous championship event, the Rio Major 2022, had a $1.25 million prize pool, and the Paris Major will offer the same. Like the game itself, the Majors remain massively popular despite its age: It's been running since 2013 and still sells out major arenas, and is broadcast around the world in multiple languages.
But having finally decided that it's time to move on from CS:GO, Valve is wasting no time in moving things along. "The Paris Major will be the final CS:GO Major," it tweeted today. "The following Major will be in March 2024 and the first in Counter-Strike 2."
That's a full year from now, which by rights should be enough time to squash bugs and sand down the rough edges of the incoming sequel. And if not, well, that can be fun too, at least from the perspective of a spectator who has nothing invested and isn't competing for a big truckload of money.
The Paris Major will be the final CS:GO Major. The following Major will be in March 2024 and the first in Counter-Strike 2.March 24, 2023
Counter-Strike 2 is only in closed beta at this point, and Valve is being pretty selective about who gets in. But even at this early stage, there's an expectation that it will not just carry on CS:GO's legacy, but surpass it: As streamer Michael "Shroud" Grzesiek advised when CS2 was announced, "Quit Valorant, it's done. It's fucking over." It's probably not quite over for Valorant and its millions of players, but Counter-Strike 2 is sure to have a major impact on the competitive shooter scene.
The Paris Major 2023—the last CS:GO Major ever—takes place at the Accor Arena from May 8 and runs to May 21.