PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to The best CS:GO custom maps">best counter strike go maps







As I hoped, CS:GO’s appearance on Steam Workshop eased the map drought irking Global Offensive players since launch. About 700 Defusal, Hostage Rescue, Deathmatch, Arms Race, and other maps now populate Steam Workshop, and all are available for easy download (and auto-updating) through Steam. I’ve played a bunch of them with our community over the past week.



All the maps I’m recommending can be played on our official CS:GO server, “The Psychedelic Den of Map Experimentation,” hosted in St. Louis. Thanks to GameServers for being a helpful provider of our community servers. Download everything that our server is running in a single click by subscribing to our CS:GO map collection on Steam Workshop.



I haven’t tried everything the community’s produced, of course, but I’ll continue to update this list as I encounter CS:GO maps worth your time. By all means, recommend maps that I should take a gander at. (de_library, which released on Monday, is at the top of my list.)





de_seaside

Compact and straightforward, this is CS:GO’s best custom map. The CTs are steps away from covering both bombsites, so the onus is on the Terrorist team to find creative ways to draw attention, distract, or outright outgun their opponents. I love the waterworn surfaces that cover the dock setting—they remind me of The Parish from Left 4 Dead 2.



Bombsite B itself is a miniature siege—a long wooden bridge (and another that passes underneath it) are the most direct routes for the Terrorists, and any would-be bomb-planters taking this path need to be covered from the dock, where snipers can protect themselves behind large boxes as they line up shots on B. Separating A and B is a hazardous middle lane that represents a high-risk flanking route for both teams.



Download de_seaside





























de_conduit

Conduit is conventional and damn good. Like Seaside, its rectangular layout offers a left, right, and sniper-friendly middle lane for both teams. Unlike it, Conduit feels suited (as creator ds- describes) for competitive play.



Bombsite B is a choked concrete room with an aluminum ledge that sits right above the planting point like a hat. Securing B relies on an aggressive push from the Terrorists, encouraging some members of Team T to die for the cause so they can secure a foothold on that side of the map. A is a more open construction yard—a secret tunnel in the middle provides a secondary route to it from the middle of the map. Vibrant colors (yellow paint, neon red and green lights, contrasting light and darkness) give Conduit character against the odds of its industrial setting.



Download de_conduit













de_cache

Cache’s flat, three-lane layout is the handiwork of competitive CS legend Salvatore “Volcano” Garozzo. Its industrial setting borders on boring, but terrific balance compensates. Cache features a middle lane similar to Seaside and Conduit—a coverless no-man’s-land that’s treacherous to cross and can be ignored entirely, but one that opens up flanking routes to both bombsites if you push through.



Bombsite B is overlooked by a nest that CTs have ladder access to, and I love the way fights play out here when Terrorists pop a smoke grenade to make an aggressive entrance into B.



Download de_cache













cs_museum

Museum is GO’s most gorgeous map. Outside, stone arches overlook a street entrance lined with gardens. Inside, golden light filters through an atrium onto carpeted stairs, a T-rex skeleton, and scaffolding. Creator Shawn “FMPONE” Snelling called upon fellow modders to build custom assets for the map, and the extra help is evident in every corner.



In the nearly 50 rounds I’ve played so far, Museum has favored the Terrorists. Raised windows, scaffolding, and an elevator shaft give the Ts some great vantage points for getting the drop on the CT assaulters who spawn outdoors.



Snelling wrote a terrific explanation of his design decisions on Museum (and the research that informed them) for Mapcore.org.



Download cs_museum















cs_motel

It’s a novelty map, but in lieu of a worthy, ridiculous successor to de_rats (de_rats_ol_shack for CS:GO hasn’t impressed me), Motel has been a huge hit on our server, and our go-to for unserious Counter-Striking. Two floors of cramped bedrooms open out into a parking lot and small swimming pool. Four hostages spawn randomly in the rooms, and most rounds play out like hide-and-seek. The Terrorists have an incentive to camp the rooms that hostages spawn in, but this is mitigated slightly by hostages only appearing on the CTs’ radar. I also like that Motel makes shotguns preferable to rifles and SMGs.



Download cs_motel



















cs_parkhouse_go

A port from CS:S, Parkhouse hands the CTs a dozen different sniping options from a rock ledge that hugs one side of the map’s centerpiece, a two-floor modern house moated by a lake. Two pairs of hostages are isolated on a top and bottom floor. With scoped weapons, the CTs have a serious advantage, but there are moments of fun in this asymmetrical siege map that remind me of classics cs_assault and cs_militia.



Against the threat of sniping, turtling is usually the best option for the Terrorists, and things get wonderfully messy when the CTs are forced to take the fight indoors. I wouldn’t call Parkhouse balanced, but I've enjoyed it.



Download cs_parkhouse_go













PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to The best CS:GO custom maps">best counter strike go maps







As I hoped, CS:GO’s appearance on Steam Workshop eased the map drought irking Global Offensive players since launch. About 700 Defusal, Hostage Rescue, Deathmatch, Arms Race, and other maps now populate Steam Workshop, and all are available for easy download (and auto-updating) through Steam. I’ve played a bunch of them with our community over the past week.



All the maps I’m recommending can be played on our official CS:GO server, “The Psychedelic Den of Map Experimentation,” hosted in St. Louis. Thanks to GameServers for being a helpful provider of our community servers. Download everything that our server is running in a single click by subscribing to our CS:GO map collection on Steam Workshop.



I haven’t tried everything the community’s produced, of course, but I’ll continue to update this list as I encounter CS:GO maps worth your time. By all means, recommend maps that I should take a gander at. (de_library, which released on Monday, is at the top of my list.)





de_seaside

Compact and straightforward, this is CS:GO’s best custom map. The CTs are steps away from covering both bombsites, so the onus is on the Terrorist team to find creative ways to draw attention, distract, or outright outgun their opponents. I love the waterworn surfaces that cover the dock setting—they remind me of The Parish from Left 4 Dead 2.



Bombsite B itself is a miniature siege—a long wooden bridge (and another that passes underneath it) are the most direct routes for the Terrorists, and any would-be bomb-planters taking this path need to be covered from the dock, where snipers can protect themselves behind large boxes as they line up shots on B. Separating A and B is a hazardous middle lane that represents a high-risk flanking route for both teams.



Download de_seaside





























de_conduit

Conduit is conventional and damn good. Like Seaside, its rectangular layout offers a left, right, and sniper-friendly middle lane for both teams. Unlike it, Conduit feels suited (as creator ds- describes) for competitive play.



Bombsite B is a choked concrete room with an aluminum ledge that sits right above the planting point like a hat. Securing B relies on an aggressive push from the Terrorists, encouraging some members of Team T to die for the cause so they can secure a foothold on that side of the map. A is a more open construction yard—a secret tunnel in the middle provides a secondary route to it from the middle of the map. Vibrant colors (yellow paint, neon red and green lights, contrasting light and darkness) give Conduit character against the odds of its industrial setting.



Download de_conduit













de_cache

Cache’s flat, three-lane layout is the handiwork of competitive CS legend Salvatore “Volcano” Garozzo. Its industrial setting borders on boring, but terrific balance compensates. Cache features a middle lane similar to Seaside and Conduit—a coverless no-man’s-land that’s treacherous to cross and can be ignored entirely, but one that opens up flanking routes to both bombsites if you push through.



Bombsite B is overlooked by a nest that CTs have ladder access to, and I love the way fights play out here when Terrorists pop a smoke grenade to make an aggressive entrance into B.



Download de_cache













cs_museum

Museum is GO’s most gorgeous map. Outside, stone arches overlook a street entrance lined with gardens. Inside, golden light filters through an atrium onto carpeted stairs, a T-rex skeleton, and scaffolding. Creator Shawn “FMPONE” Snelling called upon fellow modders to build custom assets for the map, and the extra help is evident in every corner.



In the nearly 50 rounds I’ve played so far, Museum has favored the Terrorists. Raised windows, scaffolding, and an elevator shaft give the Ts some great vantage points for getting the drop on the CT assaulters who spawn outdoors.



Snelling wrote a terrific explanation of his design decisions on Museum (and the research that informed them) for Mapcore.org.



Download cs_museum















cs_motel

It’s a novelty map, but in lieu of a worthy, ridiculous successor to de_rats (de_rats_ol_shack for CS:GO hasn’t impressed me), Motel has been a huge hit on our server, and our go-to for unserious Counter-Striking. Two floors of cramped bedrooms open out into a parking lot and small swimming pool. Four hostages spawn randomly in the rooms, and most rounds play out like hide-and-seek. The Terrorists have an incentive to camp the rooms that hostages spawn in, but this is mitigated slightly by hostages only appearing on the CTs’ radar. I also like that Motel makes shotguns preferable to rifles and SMGs.



Download cs_motel



















cs_parkhouse_go

A port from CS:S, Parkhouse hands the CTs a dozen different sniping options from a rock ledge that hugs one side of the map’s centerpiece, a two-floor modern house moated by a lake. Two pairs of hostages are isolated on a top and bottom floor. With scoped weapons, the CTs have a serious advantage, but there are moments of fun in this asymmetrical siege map that remind me of classics cs_assault and cs_militia.



Against the threat of sniping, turtling is usually the best option for the Terrorists, and things get wonderfully messy when the CTs are forced to take the fight indoors. I wouldn’t call Parkhouse balanced, but I've enjoyed it.



Download cs_parkhouse_go













PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Why cs_office is an awesome map">cs_office counter strike







Through more than 12 years of Counter-Strike, I continue to play cs_office tirelessly. Here's why I consider it one of the best multiplayer maps ever.







Thanks to Tyler for editing this video, he's a hero.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Get more Counter-Strike maps in the CS:GO Maps Workshop">counter strike maps



Another moment by the water in fy_pool_day. Click for download link.



More people—maybe twice as many—seem to be playing the original version of Counter-Strike than Global Offensive. Look here. Why hasn't CS:GO inherited its elders' popularity? I'd blame the map drought GO has experienced. New official maps have been hard to come by since the game launched in August, and the fresh ones introduced by GO were restricted to Demolition and Arms Race modes.



Adding CS:GO to Steam Workshop is one step toward a healthier multiplayer scene. Debuting today, the Maps Workshop has 157 entries at the moment, including remakes of stuff like de_piranesi, fy_iceworld, and fy_pool_day, which I have vague-but-fond memories of playing in LAN cafes.



Pop over to the CS:GO Map Workshop to start downloading directly through Steam. After that, you'll have to find a server hosting matches on the levels you've downloaded. Alternatively, you can take a map for a spin with bots by typing "map " in console.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Do video games make people violent?">game violence







The debate over the relationship between violent games and violent behavior continues inside and outside the United States. In its initial response to the tragedy in Newtown, CT, the US government said it intends to ask the Centers for Disease Control to “study the root causes of gun violence, including any relationship to video games and media images.” Critics cite studies that link aggression and violent games, claiming that interactivity as a component of games makes them unusually potent. One politician labeled games as "electronic child molesters."



It's an enormous and serious topic—one that we believe gamers shouldn't shrug off, but take it upon themselves to engage critics and fellow citizens on. In the interest of that, Logan, Evan, and Tyler hopped into our podcast studio (inappropriately, the room that most makes it look like we're inside an insane asylum) to talk about their personal relationship with violence in games.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Valve launches Steam Guides: browse and create user-made walkthroughs and tips">Dota 2 Steam Guide overlay







Someday, Valve will eventually run out of wonderful features to pack into its mega-gaming-hub Steam. Let's hope it's a long way off, because we'll all be busy poring over the user-written manuals, walkthroughs, and tips for our various games in the newly launched Steam Guides section of Steam's Community area.



Anyone can create and submit a guide for the game of their choice by clicking the new Guide tab on a game's Community Hub page. You can pretty up your words with images and embedded YouTube videos as well, and the guides also appear upon Steam's overlay whenever you're running a program. Neat. I can finally whip up my "How to avoid tigers" guide I've been planning for Far Cry 3 quickly and easily.



Head over to the Steam Guides page to take a look at the over 1,000 guides already created.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Far Cry 3 map maker recreates Battlefield, Call of Duty, and Counter-Strike maps">Far Cry 3 Wake Island







Far Cry 3's included level editor provides all the tools and textures necessary for crafting unique multiplayer maps, but one tinkerer has instead taken to recreating some very familiar locales with uncanny accuracy. As reported by MP1st, user ShadowZack has shared a series of maps fashioned after popular arenas from Battlefield, Call of Duty, and Counter-Strike.



You can nab ShadowZack's works through Far Cry 3's in-game multiplayer map search simply by typing his name. You'll find Battlefield 3's Noshahr Canals and Wake Island, Counter-Strike's Dust and Aztec, and Call of Duty's Nuketown all carefully recreated right down to the placement of crates and convenient slabs of concrete cover. ShadowZack also released some flyby and progress videos for the maps as they were constructed, which you can watch below.



Far Cry 3 itself has two gigantic jungle island environments. We got lost. We shot animals. We drank weird potions. We wrote a review, so have a look.



















PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Steam Big Picture mode launches with controller-friendly deals">steam_big_picture







Steam's Big Picture mode, a full-screen interface with controller support, has left beta and entered the top-right corner of your client. To use it as intended, I'd have to run an exceptionally long HDMI cable from my bedroom to my TV and use a wireless controller, but I'm starting to think a mid-range PC in a small case might look real nice in my living room. In the meantime, I'll just use it to launch Peggle from bed.



Along with the launch, the Steam store has been overrun with "controller-friendly" deals. I'm distressed by the inclusion of Left 4 Dead 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive in the list—just because they can be played with a controller doesn't mean they should be—but my typical WASD elitism aside, a sale is a sale. Mark of the Ninja seems more appropriate to me, and I've been enjoying it a ton. At least, I was, until PlanetSide 2 happened, but I'll go back once this match is over. It does end, right?
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Black Friday deals: the best PC game and hardware sales on the web">black_friday







Good news, everyone! Steam, Amazon, Blizzard, and more have kicked off Consumer Season by booby trapping the web with potent spending bait such as 33% off XCOM: Enemy Unknown, 50% off The Walking Dead, and 66% off StarCraft II. We spent the morning stumbling through the minefield to compile a list of some of the best seasonal discounts, but stay vigilant: more surprise server-busters are bound to go live as we approach the spendiest weekend of the year.







Steam: Like the Summer Sale, the Steam Autumn Sale rotates deals daily, with even more fleeting Flash Sales lasting only 10 to 15 hours, so serious shoppers should check in at least twice a day. As a bonus, you get to follow Steam's adorable doodle story: currently, it seems a turkey is being forced to enter a Felix Baumgartner-inspired high diving competition.



But don't just look at the front page: Steam isn't promoting most of its deals, so scan the full list now and then. Here are some of the better discounts at the time of writing:





33% off XCOM: Enemy Unknown - $33.49 / £20.09

50% off The Walking Dead - $12.49 / £10.49

25% off Borderlands 2 - $44.99 / £22.49

75% off ARMA II: Combined Operations - $17.99 / £14.99

25% off Dishonored - $44.99 / £22.49

50% off Counter-Strike: Global Offensive - $11.24 / £8.99

33% off The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - $40.19 / £23.44

75% off Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II - $2.49 / £1.74

75% off Limbo - $2.49 / £1.74

25% off Torchlight II - $14.99 / £11.24

75% off Cave Story+ - $2.49 / £1.74

More Steam Deals











Amazon: (Some deals are region-specific) Amazon hasn't been quite as liberal as Steam with the big games, but it has conjured a storm of Lightning Deals on desktop PCs, components, and peripherals. The scattershot selection below should give you an idea of what to expect.



HARDWARE:



17% off iBuyPower AM699 Desktop - $579.99

18% off CyberpowerPC GUA890 Desktop - $499.99

39% off Dell S2330MX 23" Ultra-Slim VGA Monitor - $139.99

40% off Samsung Series S24B30BL 23.6-Inch Screen LCD Monitor - $119.99

33% off Corsair Vengeance C70 Mid Tower Case - $97.45

31% off Logitech Optical Gaming Mouse G400 - $34.49

19% off Logitech G600 MMO Gaming Mouse - $64.62



GAMES:



50% off The Walking Dead - $12.49 (Steam code)

80% off Dungeon Defenders - $2.99

10% off Hitman: Absolution - $44.99

75% off all Assassin's Creed games (excluding Assassin's Creed III)

More Amazon Deals









Blizzard: Blizzard has joined the party with Diablo III for $40 / £33 and StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty for $20 / £17.







GOG: GOG's current sale nets you five games from a list of 20 for a mere $10 (just over £6). The list is loaded with some great indie adventure and puzzle games, so if you don't already own them, now's a good time to prepare for that "it's cold outside, so I'm going to drink tea (whiskey optional) and not leave my screen for the next forever hours" feeling.







Green Man Gaming: While Green Man doesn't celebrate consumerism with a morbid-sounding Friday, it is offering its usual voucher code. Enter GMG20-1FYLZ-EDG8R when purchasing a PC download for 20% off any game, except those already on sale. At the time of writing, GMG's daily deal (North America only) is Mass Effect 3: N7 Digital Deluxe for $15.99.







Newegg: (US and Puerto Rico only) Newegg has taken this whole "Black Friday" thing awfully far. Not only has it preempted Black Friday with "Black November," it's re-preempting it with a Pre-Black Friday Frenzy sale. How about a 500 GB Western Digital WD Blue hard drive for $50? A Samsung B350 Series LED monitor for $180? Keep in mind that if you visit Newegg from now until December 1st, you should not expect to then purchase other things, like food.



If you find any great deals as the weekend progresses, we'd love it if you shared them in the comments. And if all these sales combined with a poorly-timed lack of funds has you feeling down, remember that buying stuff is only briefly thrilling, while instead you could be continuously thrilled by PlanetSide 2, MechWarrior Online, Tribes: Ascend, or many of the other new free-to-play games we're thankful for this year.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Pro Tip video shows how to become a noob camping AWPer">Counter-Strike Global Offensive Pro Tip AWP







At least, that's probably the sort of nomenclature you'd reap from public servers after applying the skills picked up from Team Dynamic marksman Keven "AZK" Larivière for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's one-hit wonder AWP sniper rifle. As part of Valve's Pro Tip video series, Larivière spills the bullets on the best uses of a sniper's superior oversight, when each of the two zoom levels come most in handy, and how shooting the legs off a careless opponent equates to a high-caliber "tsk-tsk."



The real secret of a successful AWPer, however, probably lies with mastering quickswitch tics in a cacophony of deployment noises, as Larivière's lightspeed weapon swapping both defies and defines efficiency. Its mesmerizing effect probably lulls unaware victims into an easy kill like a rubber-armed spider.
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