While most of the skins in Counter-Strike 2 (CS2) look better than they did in CSGO, there ares till some hiccups Valve needs to address.

Do Skins Look the Same in CS2?

Counter-Strike 2 completely replaced CSGO, and it’s built on a new engine Source 2 Engine that’s much more powerful. It has some of the most impressive lighting I’ve seen in a game, the textures are also excellent, and most shiny items really pop in the light. All of the skins for the guns and knives carried through to CS2 but do they look much different with the updated graphics?

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Are Some Skins Broken in CS2?

The sudden change over from CSGO to CS2 has left a lot of bugs in its wake. Some skins looked amazing in the beta but now look muted in color and just kind of off. Others, like the much beloved Printstream skins for the M4A1-S, USP-S, and Deagle have had their whole pearlescent effect broken. That’s a big deal when they’re worth hundreds of dollars and the pearlescent is a big part of the skin.

The good news is that Valve is slowly and steadily rolling out small updates to fix the issues with the broken skins. Each of the recent updates has had a line that noted they made tweaks and bug fixes on a selection of skins.

I can confirm this has yet to fix the Printstream weapons. The original community creator of the Printstream skins has said that in Source 2, the pearlescent value can’t be set to higher than 6, which is why the effect is no longer showing. They’ve reach out to Valve to work alongside the development team to fix the skins, so that’s a positive sign.

CS2 Printstream

One of the other majorly affected selection of skins are the gloves. There are quite a few players reporting muted tones and textures on their glove skins. All we can do though is patiently wait for these to be fixed. In the meantime the rest of the skins really do look incredibly good in the new Source 2 lighting. My AK-47 Voltaic skin has never looked better with the lighting really bouncing off the metallic orange.

This has been a noticeable trend across all the skins. Anything that has a kind of metallic or shiny finish looks notably better in CS2. Most of the skins do look nicer overall than CSGO, but there are those exceptions where the textures are bugged. I’m hopeful that as Valve continues rolling out their fixes, eventually all the skins will look significantly better than they did in CSGO.

For more on Counter-Strike 2, check out our guides for the best graphics settings for FPS, as well as how to play workshop maps.


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Alex Berry
Alex Berry has been a freelance contributor at The Escapist since January 2023. His coverage ranges from funny takes on the latest games to a whole bunch of guide content on such titles as Honkai: Star Rail, Genshin Impact, and various new games. Alex is a jack of all trades when it comes to games, playing almost every new title that shows promise. From RPGs to shooters, all the way through to sports games, he plays it all, although he does have a soft spot for turn-based RPGs having started out his gaming journey with a copy of Pokémon Red on the original Game Boy. Alex has a master's degree in Business and is fascinated by online game economies, often spending a lot of time finding ways to maximize wealth in these games (but he should really be doing that in real life instead).