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PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Someone has recreated Gone Home as a Counter-Strike map">gonehomecounterstrike





Not being able to shoot things really annoys some people. There are few better demonstrations of this enduring truth than Fullbright s first-person exploration game Gone Home. Not only has it spawned an hilarious parody featuring lots of things being killed, but now you too will be able to kill things in the titular home, thanks to this Counter-Strike: GO map.

"Your family is mysteriously missing again," so says the Steam Workshop description. "But you can figure that out later. Right now you have more pressing issues to attend to, like the fact that your house is full of terrorists and some dude has been taken hostage. Rescue him by taking him to the garage where you can make a swift getaway on that old bike thats been sitting there for twenty years."

The hostage map is recommended for less than 32 players, and can be downloaded here. Of course, you could go ahead and play Gone Home again, which comes highly recommended.

Thanks Joystiq.
PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Twitch chat bot plagues Steam users with wallet-emptying malware">items







If you've recently been invited to take part in a raffle for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive items while chatting in Twitch, the good people at F-Secure have a bit of advice: Don't do it.



The messages are being spread by a Twitch bot, according to a recent F-Secure report, which enters channels and invites users to follow a link in order to enter a draw. The link leads to a site that asks for the user's name, email address and permission to publicize his or her name, but once that information is entered, a Windows executable is run that does some pretty nasty stuff: It can take screens, add new Steam friends and accept pending friend requests, initiate trades with new Steam friends, buy items (if there's money present in the user's Steam wallet), send trade offers, accept pending trades and sell items at a discount.



Previous variants of this hack were selling items at a 12 percent discount but it's apparently now running at 35 percent. The software is able to completely empty wallets, armories and inventories. "Being able to sell uninteresting items will allow the attacker to gather enough money to buy items that he deems interesting," the report states. "The interesting items are then traded to an account possibly maintained by the attacker."



F-Prot notes that all of this happens from the victim's own PC in order to get around Steam security checks that kick in when a user logs in from a new machine. It's a good warning to take note of: Steam may be a very secure environment, but nothing is foolproof. Be careful what you click.
PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to The best CS:GO tips I’ve received from angry teammates">csgo-aug







Every Monday, Evan writes about first-person shooters.



Playing a competitive online game means being subjected to a certain amount of unsolicited criticism. I think you receive a bit more of it in CS:GO, though, because your dead teammates form a kind of peanut gallery who can talk to you from beyond the grave. Being the last one alive as four other players hover over your digital shoulder is a quintessential CS experience.



I ve been that digital shoulder hundreds of times, struggling to clutch while a person I ve never met tells me which gun I should grab to retake Nuke s A bombsite, or chastises me for using a grenade in a one-on-one situation. It s annoying, but I m actually grateful for a lot of the harsh feedback that s been handed to me in these moments because it s shaken me out of some bad habits.



Below, a selection of some of the criticism that s been condescendingly muttered at me in CS that turned out to be great advice:





Don t reload.

Shooters, single-player shooters especially, condition us to reload as a Pavlovian response to getting a kill. Resisting that urge is one of the first things most new CS players have to unlearn. Most weapons in CS:GO take between two and four seconds to reload: plenty of time for someone to peek around a corner or move through the space you should be defending. But maybe more importantly, in close-quarters, reloading betrays your position with sound. Consider the trade-off: would you rather have a full mag and an enemy who knows where you are, or a shallow mag and an enemy who s out of position?



Don t underestimate how much you can do with four or five bullets. With a rifle, it takes three or four non-headshots to take an enemy from full health to none and in late-game situations, it s even less likely that the enemy around the corner has 100 HP.





Don t pretend.

A few months ago one of my teammates in a match I d solo queued into called me out on this. What are you doing? I bet you saw that on Twitch or some shit, right? He was right. I was ADAD spamming (quickly tapping A and D in alternation) to hold a corner on de_inferno. There was no purpose or tactical value to what I was doing, I was just miming something I d seen in a tournament. It was the equivalent of doing a bunch of fancy dribbling in soccer with no one playing defense against me.



It s great to experiment with stuff you see in competitive play, but understanding the situational benefits of each maneuver is a huge step toward pulling it off successfully. After the ESL, I started backing away from my own flashbang grenades on entries, something I loved seeing in that tournament. But then I realized that my grenade placement wasn t nearly good enough to guarantee that I was flashing enemies at all I was just imitating for the sake of imitating.





Please, please don't throw that grenade.

Put the pin back in. I see so much misplaced faith in the frag grenade in CS:GO, partly because I used to be that guy who d start a bombsite retake with a frag toss, often coming around corners while still in the follow-through animation for the throw. Here s what I learned, after someone finally scolded me: your frag isn t going to kill anyone. Even if you re the Joe Montana of grenades and toss directly into the enemy player s mouth, it ll do 57 damage. If you played a lot of CS:Source, where grenades did a max of 72 against armored opponents, take a moment to realize that a perfect toss will only inflict as much as about two bullets.



In almost all situations, but especially in one-on-ones, your rifle is going to be able to kill someone faster and more safely than any sort of offensive grenade. Flashes are handy in a lot of situations in CS, but they re also unreliable: you can t be sure how well you ve blinded someone. If I had just kept my gun out instead of reaching for that 4 key, I would ve won many more rounds for my team.





Don't turn a three-on-one into a series of one-on-ones.

This is the one I ve started to preach most to players that I solo queue in Competitive mode with. It s easy to take a round win for granted when you re in a 3-on-1 or a 4-on-2. The easiest way to give away an easy win, though, is arranging your team in a way that the enemy can encounter you one at a time, on their own terms. When you re defending a bombsite against a shorthanded enemy, your goal should be to guarantee a trade: put the enemy in a position where they must cross the firing line of Player B if they want to kill Player A.





Are you afraid of your own pistol, or something?

Pistols have an amazing amount of utility in CS:GO. In the current build, the CZ75 the only automatic pistol has a ludicrous amount of value as a short-range, spray-and-hope-for-the-best gun when your AWP isn t cutting it or your M4A1-S runs dry. Even with the recent change to price it at $500, the cost of two grenades, it s a strong backup for serial AWPers who fear being rushed.





Dude, why would you ever crouch-walk?

This is ancient, ancient advice, but it s something that I still occasionally see players doing on casual servers. Crouch-walking around a corner will always grant advantage to someone who s watching that corner they ll always be able to see your gun poke out, then your knees, and blast you before you see them. If you need to check around an object, shoulder peek: dart out of cover while revealing as little of yourself as possible, then back in as quickly as possible, purely to see where an enemy is.
Community Announcements - CS:GO Official
As we consider what will be included in the next big Operation, we wanted to talk a bit about community made maps and how they are selected.

The CS:GO workshop community has generated a ton of custom made maps of increasingly high quality. We're currently in our fourth Operation, and so far Operations have featured a total of 21 unique community made maps. On average, each community map has earned over $23,000, per Operation it was featured in.

Deciding which maps are included in an Operation involves much consideration of several distinct criteria. Every map is considered and evaluated on its own individual merits. The final decision is made by carefully weighing each of the following contributing factors:

Theme / Aesthetic Quality

Maps should succeed at bringing players into the game by presenting an attractive and visually appealing space. Strong aesthetic quality should make players happy to spend time in the map, independent of gameplay considerations. This criteria may include a cohesive theme for the map, or a consistent style that helps players fulfill a fantasy. A good-looking map with a high level of polish that matches the quality of the official maps is a requirement, but a map with an interesting or unique core theme with spaces that feel like a real place, is of significant value. Our goal is not to dismiss any map out of hand, but rather to ensure that Operations include great-looking maps with consistent aesthetic quality.

Gameplay / Fun / Retention

If great visuals bring players in, great gameplay gets them to stay. When players are challenged or are having fun on a map, they will choose to play on the map over and over again. This is called Player Retention and is achieved by creating a map that is balanced, has lots of opportunities for a player/team to learn new strategies, develop new skills or have fun, new experiences. Ideally we want CS:GO’s maps to enjoy extended popularity due to strong gameplay even after the initial fantasy has waned. This will ensure that a map will stick around and keep players happy for a long time. Maps that don’t objectively meet these criteria will score poorly in this area.

Playtime / Interest

Community play time for workshop maps is a primary driving factor for determining map popularity, but community interest also plays a factor. Interest is a combination of a bunch of components including workshop ratings and community discussion, but (if applicable) we value how many people are currently playing a map and how much they play it as the most important factor in this category. The Playtime / Interest category is considered a wildcard category for us and will multiply the value of the first two categories, but can't make up for a map that scores very low in them.

Maps that excel in all three categories have a higher likelihood of being included in an Operation.

FAQ
My map wasn’t selected for this Operation, is it possible it’ll make it into a future operation?
Yes. If a map meets the bar on the criteria above, but did not get selected, it is still eligible to be included in future operations.

Will my map be considered for an Operation if it is not uploaded to the workshop?
No. Maps need to be on the CS:GO workshop to be considered in an Operation. Additionally, they need to be in a “shippable” state before Valve make the map picks for the upcoming Operation. Ideally, the map has also been played a bunch by the community and has gone through a lot of rounds of feedback and iteration.

But if it meets the bar and was submitted to the workshop on time, why wasn't it selected?
When the group of maps are selected for an Operation, the maps are selected so that they work as a collection. Our goal is to provide a collection of strong maps that have good gameplay variety and unique visuals that appeal to different groups of people. If your map meets the bar, but wasn't selected, it may have not fit well with the group selected and will be considered next time.

How important is “theme” in a map?
We consider theme to be very important. We tend to see a lot of maps that all have similar themes (warehouses, generic industrial, generic factories, etc) or maps that tend to heavily share themes with maps we’ve already shipped. Creating a map with a unique theme will help your map stand out to the community and will increase your chances of getting noticed/selected.

Will non-Classic (arms race, demolition etc.) maps ever be included in an Operation?
There are a lot of great non-Classic maps on the Workshop and we’re working on ways to include them in future Operations while still generating enough revenue for the map authors, but for now, we’re only including maps that support Classic modes.

What’s more important: New and novel features or tried and true familiar gameplay?
The short answer is that they are both equally important and different types players will value them differently. Players who have been playing for a long time have built up a lot of skills and expectations and playing a map that feels “familiar” to them is very important. But on the other hand, there are a lot of players who value new experiences which they can share with their friends and have fun. Producing a map that is both new and incorporates familiar things from classic maps is a good goal when producing a map.
Community Announcements - Gautam ☁
The CS:GO workshop community constantly amazes us with weapon finishes and stickers of increasingly high quality. We have currently shipped over 70 weapon submissions made by the community and all together, CS:GO weapon finish creators have earned over $3 million, with each finish earning over $40,000 on average.

Since shipping the first community case, we've gathered and responded to a variety of contributor questions. Common questions include "how do I get my submission in a case?", and "what can I do better to get my work noticed?". These are useful questions to answer for all contributors, so we've outlined our answers in the form of contributor tips below:

Tips for Contributors

  • Submit only high quality designs that were made by you. The entirety of the submission must be your creation; no clip art. It must be original content and if the work is the result of collaboration then every contributor must be listed in the contributor revenue share. The designs that you submit must be of high quality in execution. Showing your process is a great way to stand out and demonstrate the quality and originality of your work.

  • For weapon finishes, consider making finishes for weapons that have few high quality submissions. Some weapons don’t have a lot of high quality finishes submitted for them (Duel Berettas and Negev for example). Making high quality original finishes for those weapons is great way to stand out and increase you chances of making it into a case. Keep in mind each item in a case gets an equal share of the revenue.

  • Vary the techniques, themes and finish types, and try to experiment with new ones. When putting together cases and capsules we look for items that vary in technique and theme. Technique is the type of artwork that is used. Graphic patterns and hand painted designs are examples of different techniques. Example for themes would be finishes that look Sci-fi or Military. If you are making finishes for a particular weapon you may want to make one with a technique or theme that is under-represented, or hasn't been attempted yet. Certain types of finishes are also underrepresented in the workshop. In particular finishes that allow for flexibility in the way a pattern is applied to a weapon. These offer players a chance to get a unique version of a weapon finish.

  • Don't fixate on bold designs. Cases and capsules also contain designs that vary in saturation and contrast. Currently on the workshop we see many high contrast highly saturated designs. These designs can be identified from a distance but equally important are designs that are subtle enough to only be noticed when held, as different players have different preferences when it comes to broadcasting their weapon finish choice. Try making designs that vary in saturation and contrast. Sometimes making a subtle design is actually harder than a bold one.

  • Don't forget about popularity. Getting your finish upvoted and noticed is a great way to demonstrate desirability and collect feedback that will help you iterate on it. One of the factors we use to gauge community interest is the popularity of a submission.

Hopefully this information is helpful when you are making decisions on what to work on. We look forward to seeing even more amazing work from the CS:GO Community.
PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to de_dust2 duel: Watch a competitive CS:GO match fought entirely with knives">csgo-knife-fight







CS:GO s competitive mode is where serious, hardcore Counter-Strike players congregate to test their aim and strategic smarts in a best-of-30, five-on-five format. There s a lot on the line: your pride, your matchmaking rank, your kill-death ratio. One does not simply agree to put down their guns and agree to 45 minutes of playful knife-fighting: it s hard enough to wrangle the tactics of your own team, let alone negotiate a no-guns treaty with five other online strangers who want to kill you.



Unless you re cyborgcommando0, who was a lucky participant in a CS:GO competitive knife match. For almost the entire bout (it was inevitably broken near the end as the losing team tried to regain the lead), 10 players slashed their way through de_dust2, commemorated above in cyborgcommando0 s entertaining highlight reel.

PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to de_dust2 duel: Watch a competitive CS:GO match fought entirely with knives">csgo-knife-fight







CS:GO s competitive mode is where serious, hardcore Counter-Strike players congregate to test their aim and strategic smarts in a best-of-30, five-on-five format. There s a lot on the line: your pride, your matchmaking rank, your kill-death ratio. One does not simply agree to put down their guns and agree to 45 minutes of playful knife-fighting: it s hard enough to wrangle the tactics of your own team, let alone negotiate a no-guns treaty with five other online strangers who want to kill you.



Unless you re cyborgcommando0, who was a lucky participant in a CS:GO competitive knife match. For almost the entire bout (it was inevitably broken near the end as the losing team tried to regain the lead), 10 players slashed their way through de_dust2, commemorated above in cyborgcommando0 s entertaining highlight reel.

PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to The best highlights from CS:GO’s ESL One Cologne 2014 tournament">csgo-esl-one-highlights







The ESL One Cologne 2014 CS:GO championship went down as the most-watched Counter-Strike event in history, with over 400,000 combined viewers watching live in-game or through the ESL stream over the weekend. There were plenty of memorable frags, clutches, and comebacks during the 16-team, four-day event, the best of which I ve collected here.



Every ace (one player notching five kills) from the tournament





The final moments of the last in the three-match series between Cloud9 and NiP





LDLC s apEX notches a 3K on a terrific eco round





Dignitas dupreeh walks through smoke and is rewarded for a moment





A disgusting jump-USP headshot at the end of this clip





Semphis with an amazing stealth retake on de_dust2 s bombsite B





One of our favorite matches of the tournament, an incredible double-OT comeback





The moment of victory for Swedish team Ninjas In Pajamas



PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to CS:GO ESL One Championship: watch these two amazing matches">csgo championship







The group stage of the ESL One Cologne 2014 just wrapped up today, whittling down the beginning 16 teams to an elite eight. We've already had two incredible matches out of Group D, and both have featured American team Cloud9, which faced Titan (France) and Team Dignitas (Denmark) as an underdog.



Read the full tournament breakdown on the Kniferound wiki.

WEDNESDAY

Cloud9 (USA) vs. Titan (France)

Map: de_dust2





Watch live video from esltv_cs on Twitch

THURSDAY

Cloud9 (USA) vs. Dignitas (Denmark)

Map: de_mirage











With the quarterfinals beginning tomorrow, there's no clear contender for the tournament win. Cloud9, the remaining American team and "comeback king" of the group stage, faces NiP, the team that dominated 2013 and took second at the EMS One Katowice 2014. Before that, the Katowice 2014 winner Virtus.Pro, who crushed US challenger iBuypower, is matched against Team LDLC from France. Epsilon, who beat out NiP in its group match, will face a rebounding Dignitas. Fnatic is favored in its match with Na'Vi. Check the full tournament bracket for schedule information. All matches can be watched live through CS:GO's in-game client or on the ESL Twitch channel.
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