Counter-Strike 2 is now officially available on Steam and has replaced CSGO. Hence, an upgraded CS is now live which means some significant changes happened behind the scenes.
Among them are the source 2 engine and the compatibility changes that have resulted in a new error when the game is launched. In some cases, CS2 won’t even launch but in other cases, it might show the following error:
“Unable to load “engine2” Error: (0x0000045a) A dynamic link library (DLL) initialization routine failed.“
In this guide, we will explain to you the possible reasons for this error to pop up and the fixes you can try.
Why does “Unable to load Engine2” pop up?
Some players who have recently upgraded from CSGO to CS2 have reported this error. While they were running CSGO pretty normally, switching to CS2 made the game unable to launch.
Generally, the error 0x0000045a is related to the PC’s processor. Counter-Strike 2 needs CPUs with instructions SSE4A1.0 and SSE4A2.0. This is why it is common to see the game throwing this error on PCs having older processors particularly the AMD ones.
It has been confirmed on Steam forums as well as Reddit where the majority of the players had an AMD Athlon or Phenom CPU.
How to Resolve the Load Engine2 Error?
There are a few ways through which this error can be fixed. However, the conditions are different. In case you have an old AMD Athlon or Phenom CPU, you will have a hard time resolving it. It’s possible but we will talk about it later.
On the other hand, if you are seeing this error even after having a relatively newer processor, try the following fixes:
Verify Integrity of Game Files
This option lets Steam verify the game files and restore/repair any files lost/corrupted.
Simply, right-click on Counter-Strike 2 from Steam Library > Properties > Installed Files > “Verify integrity of game files”.
This should take a couple of minutes and might fix the issue.
Run in Compatibility Mode
This is another good method to run CS2 if the game doesn’t launch.
Right-click on Counter-Strike 2 > Manage > Browse Local Files > Game > bin > win 64.
Find the CS2 program and right-click > Properties > Compatibility tab > Check “Run this program as an adminstrator“.
Update OS and GPU Drivers
Lastly, if nothing above worked, update your operating system as well as GPU drivers. Sometimes there is a conflict between OS and Programs which can result in various errors.
In case you are using Windows 10 and 11, simply search for “Check for updates” and install any latest updates available. For GPU driver update, head to the official manufacturer’s website of your GPU and download the latest drivers.
In case you have an OS older than Windows 10, CS2 might not launch as it doesn’t support older Windows officially. Similarly, if you are running an old AMD Athlon or Phenom processor, you may need to upgrade your processor.
However, there is an alternative method to run the game even on such old processors but the performance can be horrible.
Download Intel Software Development Emulator > Extract and Copy to CS2 folder.
Now run the game with this command in cmd(Run as Adminstrator): “sde -ivb — cs2.exe“.
The game will take around 10-15 minutes to launch but it will give you horrible FPS. This is why we don’t recommend this method unless you are dying to run this game. Make sure you read our guide on the best settings in CS2 for best performance.
As of now, Valve hasn’t released an official patch for supporting older processors or older Windows OS. The only way you can run the game is through troubleshooting and alternative methods. It’s best to upgrade your OS and hardware if you don’t want any error but if you can’t do that, wait for Valve to release a patch.