Counter-Strike: Global Offensive coming to XBLA, PSN and Steam early 2012 [update]

Update: Looks like we didn't have to wait too long at all for confirmation of the project: Valve and Seattle-based developer Hidden Path Entertainment just distributed a press release announcing Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, an updated and expanded version of the seminal team-based shooter.

Slated for an early 2012 release on XBLA, PSN and Steam, the downloadable title will add "new maps, characters, and weapons," renovated versions of classic maps (what's up, de_dust) and a plethora of new modes, matchmaking options, leaderboards and other modern shooter mainstays. Best of all, it'll be playable later this month at PAX Prime. Check out the full press release after the jump!

Original post: A heaping pile of evidence is growing in support of a future installment in the thoroughly-played Counter-Strike universe -- this one subtitled Global Offensive. The most promising tidbit is the Facebook page of anti-cheat gaming community ESEA, which revealed the name of the game, and promised more info later this morning. The post was preceded by an image of ESEA's Craig Levine at the offices of Valve. (You can tell it's legit, because hey, there's a giant valve.)

Valve designer Jess Cliffe corroborated the title on the Steam forums, correcting an earlier poster who labeled the game "Global Operation." Also, Electronic Sports League manager Bastian Vieser claimed on Twitter that he "Just spend [sic] all day playing the new Counterstrike Global Offensive" at Valve's HQ. It certainly seems like a real thing -- now there's just the small matter of whether it's a port, expansion or an entirely new game altogether. We've got our freakishly elongated fingers crossed for the latter.
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Next Gen Console, PC, and Mac Release Targeted for Early 2012

August 13, 2011 - Valve, creators of best-selling game franchises (such as Counter-Strike, Half-Life, Left 4 Dead, Portal, and Team Fortress) and leading technologies (such as Steam and Source), today announced Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS: GO).
Targeted for release via Playstation Network, Xbox Live Arcade, and Steam (for PC and Mac) in early 2012, CS: GO will expand upon the team-based action gameplay that it pioneered when it was launched exactly 12 years ago (CS beta 1, August 1999).
CS: GO features new maps, characters, and weapons and delivers updated versions of the classic CS content (de_dust, etc.). In addition, CS: GO will introduce new gameplay modes, matchmaking, leader boards, and more.
"Counter-Strike took the gaming industry by surprise when the unlikely MOD became the most played online PC action game in the world almost immediately after its release in August 1999," said Doug Lombard, VP of Marketing at Valve. "For the past 12 years, it has continued to be one of the most-played games in the world, headline competitive gaming tournaments and selling over 25 million units worldwide across the franchise. CS: GO promises to expand on CS' award-winning gameplay and deliver it to gamers on the PC as well as the next gen consoles and the Mac."
CS: GO is being developed by Valve in cooperation with Seattle-based Hidden Path Entertainment. The title is targeted for release in early 2012 and will be playable at this year's PAX Prime and London Games Festival.
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This article was originally published on Joystiq.