The New CS2 Premier Mode: Explained

Is this the end of FACEIT?

Anwell Patdu
Anwell Patdu - CS2 & Valorant Expert
8 Min Read

Valve is slowly shaping CS2 by introducing new features through regular updates. However, none have been as impactful as the Patch released on September 1, 2023. The update revealed massive changes to the ranking system and a thrilling competitive game mode called “Premier.” Join us as we discuss CS2’s Premier mode.

What Is the New Premier Mode

Premier is a new game mode introduced to CS2 which fully embodies the game’s competitive spirit. It features a new rating system, better matchmaking, and a pick-and-ban phase, allowing players to embrace their CS pro-player side.

Unlike CS:GO’s system, Premier will feature publicized ratings for everyone to see. This includes the addition of a global and regional leaderboard showcasing the top players in the world. Furthermore, there will also be a friends-only leaderboard, so you can finally claim those bragging rights.

The new CS2 Premier mode.

Matches are getting a slight tweak with their switch to MR12. This means there will only be twelve rounds per side instead of the usual 15. Of course, the change also comes with a new winning requirement of 13 rounds rather than 16.

Similar to Valorant’s game mode of the same name, Premier will likely act as an avenue for aspiring pro players to reach the big leagues. Valorant’s own Premier mode was met with great praise and had a successful beta phase, which led to a full release in August 2023. The best teams from Premier will be able to compete in the VCT Challengers leagues and possibly in VCT Masters in the future.

While Valve hasn’t confirmed anything related to Premier to Pro yet, the groundwork is already there. At the very least, it will help hopeful players and teams to get the attention they deserve. The leaderboards will definitely lead to potential new recruits and the development of new talent by established organizations.

How Will Matchmaking Work

As mentioned, Premier will be bundled with a new MMR system. This new mechanic will highly rely on a metric known as “CS Rating.” Your CS Rating is a visible number that quantifies your skills as perceived by the game.

CS Ratings can range anywhere from 0 to 35,000 points. Premier won’t be shipping with traditional ranks. However, it will have different color-based tiers depending on your CS Rating. These colors can be used to classify the players’ individual skill levels within the game.

CS Rating RangeRating Color
0 – 4,999Grey
5,000 – 9,999Light Blue
10,000 – 14,999Blue
15,000 – 19,999Purple
20,000 – 24,999Pink
25,000 – 29,999Red
30,000 – 35,000Yellow/Gold

All CS2 players are obligated to win 10 placement matches. These games are analyzed and will be used to calculate your starting CS Rating. From there, you’ll be matched with players with similar CS Ratings, and your journey to the leaderboard officially starts.

How Can You Improve Your CS Rating

A photo showing the CS Rating you gain or lose.

I’m sure a question lingering in everyone’s mind is, “How can I get a higher CS Rating?”. Well, the straight answer is by winning games. The vagueness of the old ranking system is gone, and your CS Rating will always increase on wins and decrease on losses.

There are no fixed values, and the rating you gain (or lose) will primarily depend on your performance for each match. The better you play, the more points you can earn. Additionally, winning against players with a higher CS Rating than yours can also result in higher gains.

Winning consecutive matches will reward players with more rating points, making it one of the fastest ways to rank up. So, it’s probably a good idea to grab a friend or two and grind Premier games to rapidly build your CS Rating.

Map Selection and Pick-Ban Phases

A photo of the pick and ban phase.

Unlike the Competitive mode in CS2, your CS Rating in Premier will be your global classification, regardless of the map you play on. Aside from that, players can’t choose which maps they want to queue for. Instead, a pick and ban phase will initiate once a match is found.

The distinct map selection process creates a competitive ambiance that allows gamers to lock in. It also provides players with a glimpse of how professional teams start their matches. Overall, it encourages mastery of all CS maps rather than just queueing up for the ones you like.

These are the maps currently available for play in CS2’s new Premier mode:

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

Once a match is found, the map pick and ban phase will commence.

  • Phase 1: Team 1 chooses 2 maps to ban.
  • Phase 2: Team 2 selects 3 maps to ban.
  • Phase 3: Team 1 decides what map to use from the 2 remaining choices.
  • Phase 4: Team 2 picks whether they want to start on the Terrorist or Counter-Terrorist side.
  • Phase 5: Final preparations before loading into the server.

How Premier Affects Other Game Modes

A photo of the CS:GO game modes.

Premier was well-received during its initial release and stood out as the best update Valve applied to CS2. This begs the question of how the Premier mode will continue to develop and impact other game modes.

It’s looking to completely replace Competitive as the primary mode for intense battles and thrilling matches. I guess it won’t be long until we forget about the CS ranks, and flexing your CS Rating will become the new norm.

This likely demotes Competitive to more of a “training ground” than anything else. There’s really no reason for players to grind their individual map ranks anymore.

Premier will presumably replace FACEIT as well, in the long run, at least. There’s no question that Premier copies FACEIT, from its point-rating system to its leaderboards. I don’t think Premier will directly replace FACEIT, especially since FACEIT features a better anti-cheat system. However, I do believe that Premier will at least try to overthrow FACEIT.

I don’t see everyone jumping ship yet. But once CS2 gets released to a broader audience, players will start to hop on Premier like there’s no tomorrow. Only time will tell how successful the new CS2 Premier mode will be, but it’s definitely off to an excellent start.

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By Anwell Patdu CS2 & Valorant Expert
Hey, awesome game enthusiasts! I'm Anwell, diving into the gaming world from the days of the Game Boy Advance SP with Pokémon FireRed, evolving into a pro strategist in the intense showdowns of Valorant and CS2. It's a thrill ride I never want to get off!But hey, I'm not all about the competitive scene. Sometimes I'm kickin' back with the latest indie farming sims, where my farm designs—though not award-winners—bring a quirky kind of peace.As for the tech side, yeah, I've put together a PC or two, and it's a blast. But let’s park that for now; we're all about the gaming vibes here!All this joystick joy turned me into a wordsmith in the gaming universe, with a sea of articles to my credit. And the journey, with you all by my side, just keeps leveling up. So, stay tuned, stay connected, and let’s keep this game-night rolling! Ready for more action and less talk? Onward to our next virtual adventure!
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