Hosting your own Counter-Strike server lets you control almost every detail of the gameplay. From the player count to the game modes that are being played or even what mods are installed onto the server.
The best part about choosing a VPS with Game Panel is that all of the Counter-Strike additions use the exact same setup, meaning that you can use this article to host any Counter-Strike server!
Choosing the Right VPS Server
While Counter-Strike 2 does not demand excessive RAM, it's still the main point to consider when selecting the best VPS plan for you. As a general estimation, consider at least 100 MB of RAM per player for classic game modes like Public, Competitive, Gungame, etc. That is, if you plan on inviting up to 40 players, a VPS with 4GB of RAM is a good alternative.
However, if you plan on using mods and plugins, the recommendation is to go for a plan with higher RAM limits in order to ensure peak performance at all times.
Generating Game Server Login Tokens
To make your server public, Valve requires you to generate an authentication token. Without it, your server will remain in LAN (Local Area Network) mode, meaning that no one will be able to connect.
Before generating the token, confirm that you meet the following requirements:
You own the game for which you are creating a game server on the Steam account
Your Steam account may create 1000 game server accounts
Once all the requirements are met, head to Steam Game Server Account Management Console. There, you'll find two fields:
App ID of the base game
In the first one, enter the ID of the game for which you want to create a token. On the second field, name your token so you can easily identify what it was created for. In the following example, we've named it CSGO TEST:
Click on Create to generate the token. Here is a list of IDs for Counter-Strike:
Steam App ID
Counter-Strike: Condition Zero
Installing the Counter-Strike Server on Game Panel
The Game Panel is the main console to create and manage your Counter-Strike server. The Game Panel is easy to use and updated frequently to make it secure and user-friendly. To install Counter-Strike on your server, follow these steps 👇
1. Log in to your Game Panel.
2. Click on Create Instance.
3. Choose Counter-Strike 2 from the Select Application dropdown list:
This will create an instance or a container where your server files and configurations will be stored.
4. Click on the instance and choose the Manage option on the right side menu:
You will reach the Counter-Strike server management page.
5. For the game setup options, go to Configuration → CS2 Server Settings and paste your generated Game Server Login Token (GSLT):
6. Next, edit the game settings according to your preference: server name, map, server password, enable or disable VAC Anticheat, and change game modes.
7. Once you have completed the initial server configuration, head back to the status page or console and click on Start. At first, you will get a "Could not complete action" error. This is normal, as server files are not yet installed:
8. Click on OK, and the Game Panel will start downloading the required files automatically. You can see the progress in the console:
The download might take up to 15 minutes to complete. When the download is completed, you'll get the following message in the console:
Success! App '730' fully installed.
9. Click on Start once again to start your first Counter-Strike Server! The following messages will be displayed in the console, meaning that your server is up and running and you can now connect to it:
10. To open Counter-Strike, go to the console and enter the following command:
Make sure to replace the example IP and port with your own server IP and port!
That's it! Now you know how to host a Counter-Strike 2 server.