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Valve launches official de_mirage map for CS:GO with modern graphics

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Plenty of Counter-Strike players are going to be really happy today as Valve issued an update containing a new official map and several very welcome additions to their Global Offensive game.

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There’s yet another map that has been brought out, a very much awaited one: de_mirage. This official Valve version of this classic Counter-Strike map sports a changed look and architecture (to a desert de_dust2-like environment), updated graphics and minimally tweaked elements (particularly a removed box from a Counter-terrorist side defense position, removed canopy from the A site and widened paths in certain areas).

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de_mirage, a bomb defuse map, is playable in Deathmatch, Classic Casual and Classic Competitive modes. The biggest news is this looks like the first defuse map on official Valve servers with NO fog (and even if there’s any, the fog has to be so minimal that it’s practically invisible).

Fog, a semi-transparent mist that overlays distant places, was introduced in CS:GO by Valve to make distant enemies easier to spot. However, this has been contested by many long-time Counter-Strike players who claim that fog actually reduces long-distance visibility and reduces the skill gap between players (something that’s not desirable in competitive games). Could the lack of fog in de_mirage be a sign of what’s to come for future CS:GO official server maps? Time will tell!

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If you want more maps, Valve also announced a sale for the Operation Payback Pass, which gives you access to 7 community-made maps playable on official CS:GO servers in Classic Casual mode. The Operation Payback Pass, which has a usual price of $5.99 and has been selling at half price for the past few months, will have its price slashed further down to just 99 cents from now till Monday (June 17, 2013).

On top of everything else, the ‘retry’ command has been restored to the in-game console and Overwatch, Valve’s crowd-sourced anti-hack program, has now been improved. Overwatch, which is still in beta and launched a couple of weeks back, had 3 options for players reviewing game demos of suspected cheaters (Minorly disruptive, majorly disruptive or insufficient evidence). With this latest update, Overwatchers can input whether there was sufficient evidence to prove suspects in four areas of wrong-doing (Aim hacks, visual assistance hacks, other hacks and griefing).

But wait, there’s more… for everyone else who’s an honest player and looking to improve their CS:GO skills, Valve has added a console command called “sv_grenade_trajectory” (available only with cheats enabled) which shows visual arcs and pathways of throwable items to help improve players’ aiming skills for flashbangs, smoke grenades, molotovs and more.

This latest update for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is available from today for PC gamers. Steam will automatically download and install the update (it takes approximately 2 minutes with a decent internet connection and computer).

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