Here we go again: Counter-Strike 2 has a Half-Life reference

The G-Man looking at the camera.
(Image credit: Valve)

I actually miss the days when I thought Half-Life 3 was being worked on in secret, release was just around the corner, and if only we internet sleuths could unscramble Valve's copious hints we would solve The Mystery and be back in the arms of Gordon. It was something to believe in. Now I'm old, weary, the psychological scars are too much, I can't hold out hope any m… wait there's a Half-Life reference in Valve's brand new Counter-Strike 2?!?

Yep: Valve's decided to tease us all again. Spotted by youtuber and Valve specialist RichterOvertime, the Easter Egg is found on the dual Berettas that can be bought in Counter-Strike's pistols menu.

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The lettering on the barrel reads "PIETA BARDOTTA. GORDON. F. MADE IN ITALY". The first two words are an intentional misspelling of the name Pietro Beretta, in tribute to the Italian weapon manufacturer Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta. But we're not interested in that!

Gordon F[reeman]. Now there's a name I haven't heard since the last Half-Life 3 rumour. Amazingly enough there is even a more direct link to Half-Life with this particular weapon model: Gordon never used a Beretta in Half-Life or the sequel, but the high definition model pack for the original replaced the Glock with the Beretta 92FS. So if you were wondering why there are lots of folk in Richter's replies saying "HD TEXTURE PACK CONFIRMED CANON", now you know.

I suppose, technically, this Easter Egg also makes it canon that Counter-Strike and Half-Life take place in the same universe. Which makes you wonder why humanity ended up relying on a beardy physicist with a crowbar to fight off the Combine rather than an elite squad of Counter-Terrorists. Wait… are they the Combine soldiers?!? Down the rabbithole comrades…

It's a nice nod. Who knows what if anything is going on with Half-Life. I will hold on to my pet theory that, on the day Gabe Newell announces his retirement, Valve will release the Orange Box 2, in which every game ends with the number 3: Half-Life 3, Left4Dead 3, Portal 3, Team Fortress 3, Counter-Strike 3, Dota 3. Hey, a free man can dream.

Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."