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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive update goes live with new maps, Classic Competitive mode changes

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Valve has released two new maps for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive as part of today's update to the Steam version of the game, one that also includes substantial changes to the way "Classic Competitive" matchmaking is handled.

The two maps, announced late last week, are bomb defusal map Vertigo — which returns from the original Counter-Strike — and arms race map Monastery. They arrive alongside a long list of tweaks and bug fixes, as detailed on the official Steam web site.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's new matchmaking rules for Classic Competitive do away with "join in progress" connections in favor of a queue-based system. No longer will players have the option to simply hop into Classic Competitive matches already in progress (unless they've been disconnected from a Classic Competitive match, the one exception). They'll have to join a queue and be paired with other players, as selected by Valve's matchmaking rules.

The game will also penalize players who abandon their games in Classic Competitive mode, locking them out from Classic Competitive matches for 30 minutes. There are more details on Classic Competitive's new rules at the official Counter-Strike blog.

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