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M4A4 and A site of Vertigo in CS2.
Screenshot by Dot Esports

CS2 nerfs incendiary and T-side plant money, adds skin rentals in May 23 update

Big changes.

Some significant gameplay changes have been made to Counter-Strike 2 via the May 23 update, with the biggest being a nerf to incendiary effectiveness and the reduction to the T-side cash reward if the bomb is planted but defused.

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The May 23 update also contains a pretty drastic change to the A site on Vertigo, introduces the first instance of “skin rentals,” and adds several “quality of life improvements and various bug fixes” to CS2.

Patch notes for the CS2 May 23 update

Incendiary grenade nerfs

CS2 incendiary
The brighter flame burns out quicker. Screenshot by Dot Esports

The duration of the CT’s incendiary grenade, as well as its flame spread, has been reduced. The incendiary also has a new visual display, sporting a brighter flame now than the T-side Molotov.

For both the Molotov and the incendiary grenades, the height of the central flame pillar will also now decrease over time. Other than this adjustment, the T-side Molotov has gone unchanged.

CT side economic aid

A small handful of changes have been made to make the effort of sustaining the CT-side economy easier.

  • The T-side players now only receive $600 if they manage to plant the bomb but it gets defused, instead of the usual $800.
  • The incendiary grenade, along with its flame changes, now costs $500 instead of $600.
  • The M4A4 now costs $3,000 instead of $3,100.

While the incendiary grenade cost now reflects the effectiveness of the new incendiary, and the M4A4 is now closer to the other main rifles, the change to T-side reward money for a defused bomb is very impactful. Being able to get a bomb plant down during a pistol round or save now doesn’t carry the same weight as it once did, and this could affect T-side buy rounds later on in a match.

A site of Inferno gets opened up

A site on Vertigo after May 23 update in CS2.
New A site. Screenshot by Dot Esports

The A site of Inferno now has new paths for the CT side to play from. From the back of A, there’s now a catwalk similar to the ones on the B site that wraps around the edge of the bomb site and extends all the way to sandbags. The divide between Elevator and the short/side entrance to A has also been opened up.

Kilowatt case collection rentals

Players with a Kilowatt case key can now rent the entire Kilowatt weapon collection (except for the rare special item) for a week rather than receive one permanent weapon. Rented weapons cannot be modified or sold, and will be replaced with stock weapons after the one-week rental period.

For full patch notes, including the bug fixes and chicken changes, read the CS2 blog post on the Steam website. You can also catch up on the patch notes from yesterday’s update.

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Image of Scott Robertson
Scott Robertson
VALORANT lead staff writer, also covering CS:GO, FPS games, other titles, and the wider esports industry. Watching and writing esports since 2014. Previously wrote for Dexerto, Upcomer, Splyce, and somehow MySpace. Jack of all games, master of none.