Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is the fourth game in the main Counter-Strike series, developed by Hidden Path Entertainment and Valve. One of the most popular multiplayer FPS game series of all time comes twelve years after the first release and feels like meeting an old friend. Refusing to change and adapt to the changing FPS genre, it’s safe to say that CS:GO still resembles the brute force pushing and creating a sub-genre of its own.
Counter-Strike: Still the Same Game
Being one of the multiplayer giants of the last decade, Counter-Strike is known for the thrills it provides. The round-based matches preserve all the elements of a fast-paced strategy and skill game its huge player base loves it for. The frustration of repeating your mistakes, the pleasure of finally making your strategy work, killing a skilled player or making a streak, sneaking in to plant the bomb or knifing an AWP all made this game a crowd-pleaser since the turn of the century. The game simply seems like it’s having an industry of its own with ultimate principles it cannot let go, and an enormous customer base that never will let go.
The Game Modes
Counter-Strike GO carries on the popular Defuse and Hostage rescue scenarios. The Defuse maps have the terrorist try and place bomb on the designed sites and defend it until it blows up, while Counter-terrorists will try to prevent them from doing so. On the other hand, in the Hostage rescue maps the terrorists have hostages and the Counter-terrorists have to rescue them by leading them to safety or killing all the terrorists.
There are two new game modes: Arms Race and Demolition. We have seen these before, though, as Valve here puts into use the previously community-created game mod with re-spawns called GunGame, having changed the scenario into bomb defuse in the Demolition mode.
The Dated Pieces Revived
With the changes to appearances of models, maps and weapons available, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive brings in the same old to new life and makes the game appealing to veteran Counter-Strike players and new enthusiasts. The changes to the maps can best be seen in popular maps, such as de_dust with the new stairway making mid more usable for the Terrorist team and cs_office with the cloudy glass in the main hall preventing sniper camping. Such changes are obviously for the good and improve the overall gameplay. The weapons are switched for the newer “versions” and the models for both teams are different on different maps, which all improve the overall experience and bring the game up to date.
CS: GO Advantages Over the Rest of the Genre
Counter-Strike is regarded as one of the greatest multiplayer games and Valve has done their part in keeping the legacy going through a vastly similar yet improved and modernized game. First of all, the game is easily accessible and has no big system requirements, and it’s not too expensive (currently at around $15). It also allows easy to learn modding, with customized servers all around including mod weapons, models, earnings, rankings, and what not. It’s thus very user-friendly and customizable in that regard.
CS: GO is so popular for the near-perfect mixture of fast-paced solo skill and team strategy. While some criticize the “depth of field” when it comes to immovable objects in the maps and the physics, others thrive in the old school and classic Valve playful all-out war in short rounds and small teams. The game is very open-ended when it comes to the strategies you can employ and has an amazingly high individual skill ceiling which allows a lot of ‘grinding’ and learning based on the mistakes that actually got you killed just a round ago.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Tournaments
Counter-Strike tournaments are what the game is practically made for. With no single-player campaign, the game is completely multiplayer-oriented and provides an overwhelming experience with both online and local hosting. As with all Counter-Strike versions so far, there are normal tournament circuits organized by third-party organizations, sponsors, and communities around the world. This brings to speed the professional Counter-Strike teams and CS: GO is no different. The huge interest locally and the Internet craze through media such as HLTV, Twitch, ESL, the prize pools became an important part of a professional events and player careers.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, in addition to these third-party tournaments, also has Valve co-sponsored events called the Majors. Prize pools of $250,000 attract many professional teams to qualifying tournaments, and the prizes are practically crowdfunded by the community with in-game purchases. The live audiences have increased to thousands of viewers while online streams and gaming TVs saw millions of viewers.
Teams such as fnatic, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Virtus.Pro.CS, Cloud9.CS, mousesports.CS and Luminosity Gaming rose to worldwide fame joining the series and showing amazing talent and skill, with players turning literally legends among the gaming communities.
The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive $15 ticket to relive all that we loved about the FSP pioneer was more than worth it. The game does not follow the development of its genre but rather goes about its own series and the end-product is a modernized Counter-Strike experience of teamplay, timing, positioning and strategy, topped with individual skill you can develop to almost no limit.
With relatively small maps, no unlockables, vehicles, iron-sights, the game provides a competitive environment and allows great cooperation as well as individual, critical action that can win matches. The huge player base of Counter-Strike, as one of the massive local and online multiplayer pioneers, will always enable places to play casual and competitive matches. The community itself fills in all the gaps and it’s very easy to develop much-desired mods and maps such as Zombie Mod.
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive was very well received with great remarks on all gaming and review sites including an 8.5 review on GameSpot and 8 out of 10 review on IGN, while maintaining a very positive score on Steam as well. In all that has to do with competitive gaming, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is here to stay for a long time.