Fox Reviews the Dust 2 Remake
Fri 20th Oct 2017 - 11:49am
Dust 2 has left a gap in the hearts of CS:GO players and pros all around the world as Valve removed it from the Active Duty mappool in order to rework the iconic map that was present since CS 1.1. On the 10th of October 2017, Valve introduced the new and reworked version of Dust 2 in a beta branch, allowing players to catch a first glimpse of what the map looks like. Dust 2 has now been re-introduced into the Active Duty mappool.
Especially pros who spent a big part of their life on Dust 2 were interested in what the new Dust 2 looks and feels like. We asked Ricardo "fox" Pacheco about his opinion about the map in general, the small changes, and its dynamic. Be aware that fox gave his thoughts before the map was officially released. Without further ado, here are fox's thought about Dust 2!
The first impression
Much like many others, fox was stunned by the new look Dust 2 was rocking.
"I like the new visual aspect of the map. I think a visual update for it was long overdue.
Secondly, I think the layout hasn't changed much. For me at least, I got the feeling that the dynamic
of the map will be very similar. Of course, with a few new nuances that we will only get to know
a lot better once it "officially" comes out after beta and we start practising on it."
The new Dust 2 stayed true to its predecessor, keeping the layout the same and only changing the Textures on the most of the map. The overhaul of the aesthetic style of Dust 2 gives the map a long-needed, if small, breathe of fresh air that sits well with the current stylistic evolution of all the other maps that Valve reworked. The colourful, yet faint look allows for easier identification of enemy models while looking natural in the overall environment of the map. Only time will tell how the small changes throughout the map, like the scaled down plateau beside Pit compared to old Dust 2, will influence pro and casual play.
The uneven ground and grenades
One of the bigger change is the uneven and slanted surfaces all throughout Dust 2 and their impact on the difficulty of finding and throwing grenades.
"Using grenades is an incredibly important part of competitive CSGO, so of course, they should
give the pro players a hand, if you will. It's already hard enough to remember 20 different smokes
and flashes per map. Please don't make it harder, Volvo."
If the uneven ground and slanted surfaces stay, the players will have to adapt and find either more difficult and potentially less reliable smokes or leave safety to throw an easier smoke. One of the best examples of this is the CT Spawn. In the old version of Dust 2, Terrorists could just stand behind X-Box and throw one of the easiest, yet effective smokes to completely cover the CT Spawn and to be able to execute an easy B-Site split. It is not that easy to smoke CT Spawn safely on the new Dust 2 due to the uneven ground, yet people have already discovered smokes where you are slightly exposed or jump-throws from safety. It remains to be seen how much this will affect low- and top-tier play.
Bombsite B, the tunnel and the open ceiling
Bombsite B is often cause of hot debate between people of any skill group, and one of the most suggested changes to the B-Bombsite is the removal of the Tunnel ceiling or the skybox above B to allow grenade line-ups to be thrown into B.
"I think it kind of depends on if you want to mess with the map's dynamic at all because this
would completely revamp the Dust 2 T-side. I think B-Site Dust 2 is the only bombsite in CSGO
where you can't fully execute onto it. You can throw a simple smoke against the wall of Tunnel
or something, but nothing like you can do on basically every single site in the remaining maps.
For me personally, I wouldn't allow that, or at least severely limit it. Don't let them completely change
the map's dynamic, I liked it as it was. So for me, either they limit what kind of smokes and flashes you throw
through the ceiling or none at all."
This tweak would definitely change the way Dust 2 would be played. Will the Ts even go to A anymore? Would the B take be too easy, and would CTs abandon B in order to go for the full retake? Fox highlights correctly that, if you want Dust 2 to stay as it always was, you cannot do such a drastic change. If you want to try it out, you should start with a limited possibility to throw grenades onto the B-Bombsite and see how it works.
The dynamic of Dust 2
Right now, without playing the new Dust 2 too much, people can't really be sure how the dynamic of Dust 2 has changed, if at all, but fox knows what he wants Dust 2 to be.
"I think Dust2 was always a very aim-heavy map and it should stick to its guns."
We have a broad variety of maps in our Active Duty mappool, which caters to the casual audience and the pro scene. Tactical maps like Overpass and execute-heavy maps like Mirage, as well as the aim-heavy Dust 2, leave nothing to be desired for a specific playstyle of a single player or a whole team. If we would remove the aim-heavy style from the new Dust 2, there would be a big gap in the mappool for aim-heavy players and teams.
The accidental Wallbangs
Valve first introduced the map with many wallbang spots on the B-Bombsite, which would've made hiding way less effective. They have now changed it again, so you are not able to wallbang through almost all the boxes on B anymore
"I'm not particularly a fan of being able to wallbang every single surface. I like my boxes to be impenetrable,
only at the edges of the boxes should you be able to wallbang people. Get people to play more aggressively and
peek to try to make a difference."
If Valve decides to revert those changes and to make the B-Bombsite prone to wallbangs again, they should know that this would change a big part of the Dust 2 dynamic, as information peeks will gain an enormous amount of importance compared to hiding and waiting for your cue.
The frequency of the map rotation
With the introduction of the remove-rework-reintroduce circle by Valve, they have indirectly started a constant, yet slow, map rotation in the pro-scene, always exchanging one map with a reworked one.
"I think maps should be changed every 6 months or every 2 Majors. It makes the teams
try a bit harder, leave their comfort zone. And it also gives an idea that the game isn't just stagnant;
that it keeps evolving and getting better.
[After being asked if he would want to see a change in the current mappool]
Yes, I do: I'm not a fan of Nuke at all. I just don't like the map altogether."
By introducing a bi-yearly or yearly map rotation, the meta and the playstyles would be constantly changing, giving the viewer more exciting matches and stories, and an overall fresher competitive scene to follow. This could, however, impact the quality of the games and the teams.
Valve and their new approach
Valve was quite silent from the beginning of CSGO, never really talking about their inner workings or plans. This has since then changed, Valve employees started to talk with the community and Valve seems to react to criticism from the community directly now. They even wrote in their official blog post that they will listen directly to feedback to improve Dust 2 before the official release.
"I think they are trying to make an effort and that's always worthy of praise,
but I want them to hear us more. And not just on map changes,
but also on structural problems that CSGO's competitive scene has. I do think that this Dust 2
is still a bit off from the final version they'll release in a few months (probably).
I'm guessing B-site especially will still see some changes, and that terrain thing needs to be addressed."
This change of approach has long been requested, and people are delighted that Valve is currently trying this, to them new, route out. They, as well as we, still have a lot to learn to be able to communicate properly and address problems as a unit, like the mentioned structural problems in the competitive scene.
Be sure to voice your opinion about the new Dust 2 on our social media, here on our site, and on Reddit.
I'd like to take this chance to thank fox for answering our questions and giving us an idea of how he thinks about Dust 2 and Valve, and I wish him and our CS:GO team all the best in the future.
Be sure to check out this fox fragmovie!