With all of the major announcements over the past few months it's easy to forget that Valve is working on a sequel to Counter-Strike for the PC, the Xbox 360, and the PlayStation 3. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive will bring the mostly PC-exclusive franchise to the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC, and it's closer to launch than you might think. In fact, it's far enough along that Valve is planning on flipping the switch to the beta later this month, even if there's a good chance you're not going to be able to play it.(opens in new tab)
The official CS:GO Twitter account posted the news earlier today, confirming that "current key holders" will have access by the end of the month. If you're one of the lucky few (10,000 or so), Valve is saying that you'll be able to jump into the beta on November 30 and start practicing your AWP skills in both "de_Dust and "de_Dust2" – two of the most popular Counter-Strike maps. Sadly, they're also two of the most drab looking areas in the game, so we aren't really going to get a good look at what the new game has to offer in terms of graphics.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is technically due out early in 2012, but we're highly recommending you don't get your hopes up, what with Valve's history of never, ever, ever, ever, ever hitting the release dates it says its going to.