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Counter-Strike: Condition Zero

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Community Announcements - alfred
Counter-Strike: Condition Zero is now available as a Beta. This beta adds Linux and OS X support.

This beta involves significant changes for all platforms and your testing is appreciated, please report any bugs to our GitHub page.

Linux and OS X users can simply install the Counter-Strike application to access the beta. For Windows users right click the game in your Library, choose properties and then go to the Beta tab. Select the SteamPipe beta to start testing. Under windows to opt out of testing simply deselect the beta option on this same page. If you opt into the Beta under Windows please use the Local Files tab in Steam to validate your install once you have opted into the beta.
PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive updated with two new maps">Counter-Strike Global Offensive Vertigo map







Valve updated Counter-Strike: Global Offensive today with two additional maps and a refit of the Classic Competitive matchmaking system. Vertigo, a classic Defusal map, returns with a Source facelift to its multi-leveled mayhem and shadowy camping nest corners, while Monastery chills things out with an Arms Race among the snowy promenades of a windswept temple.



Classic Competitive matchmaking now involves queuing up until 10 player matches are found before starting a game. Group queuing and matchmaking with friends are also possible through a "Play with Friends" option. Head over to Global Offensive's website for a short FAQ on the new matchmaking.
PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive to arrive this summer, cross platform play dropped">Counter-Strike Global Offensive - confused soldier in suburbia



CS:GO should be with us come summer, according to Valve, giving us a bit of time to train our mouse hand muscles and hone our twitch headshot skills before inevitably suffering repetitive death at the hands of seasoned CS 1.6 pros on release. Those pros can't touch console bros, though. Valve's Chet Faliszeck yesterday told Joystiq cross-platform play is gone from CS:GO. Awww.



There's a good reason, though. "The beta has proved we want to update not just the beta, but the game itself post-launch frequently on the PC," Faliszeck told Joystiq, "To do that we need to separate the platforms so one doesn't hamstring the other. So for that, we have removed the idea of cross-platform play -- essentially make all platforms stronger by not mixing them."



Seems fair. It'll mean more updates for us PC players, most likely. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is currently in beta. You can complete a Steam survey for a chance to claim a spot ahead of release. Meanwhile, let me introduce you to some new CS:GO screenshots. I'm sure you'll get on like a house on fire.















PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Arsenal modes make Gun Game official, new screenshots out">Counter-Strike Global Offensive - scopin'



Valve are incorporating the immensely popular Gun Game mod as official modes in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Arsenal: Arms Race and Arsenal: Demolition are the two new modes. They'll be playable across eight new maps created with help from the creators of the original mod.



Gun Game replaces Counter-Strike's cash-for-guns system with a kills-for-guns system. Everyone starts with a pistol and gets a new weapon for every kill. Those unfamiliar with Counter-Strike might recognise a very similar mode appearing in Call of Duty: Black Ops, but the original CS mod was the real deal, and it will get official backing when CS:GO is released early next year.



Valve have sent over nine new screenshots, showing some lovely jungle areas. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive doesn't seem to be pushing the Source engine especially hard, but it's a significant step up from Counter-Strike: Source.



































Eurogamer


Evidence is building that Valve will announce a brand new Counter-Strike game today.


In a thread speculating about the new game on the SteamPowered forum, Jess Cliffe, one of the original creators of Counter-Strike, wrote "Global Offensive".


Supporting evidence comes from the E-Sports Entertainment Facebook page, which reads: "Counter-Strike: Global Offensive... More info in the morning."


The ESEA's own Craig "Torbull" Levine supposedly visited Valve to help develop this new version of Counter-Strike.


The game is rumoured to be set for release during the first quarter of 2012. It's also said to focus on five versus five competition, and plays on an updated Source engine.


New guns and grenades are expected. Will it be free to play, as Valve's own Team Fortress 2 now is?

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)


A thread on the Steam forums seems to confirm that rumours about a new Counter-Strike game – Counter-Strike: Global Offensive – are true, with commenter “Cliffe” (who is Valve designer chap Jess Cliffe) saying “Global Offensive”. There have been a bunch of other references to it, on Twitter and so forth.

And update on the ESEA Facebook page reads “Counter-Strike: Global Offensive… More info in the morning.” So it looks like we can expect something later today.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (RPS)

This week in our ongoing retrospective series on games journalists’ most formative games, we very proudly welcome Eurogamer‘s god-king and operations director Tom Bramwell to the word-stage. He’s here to tell you about his long years spent with arguably one of the most definitive PC games of all time, and what for one generation of gamers was a global obsession that today’s shooters, no matter how much bigger they might be, just can’t seem to match…>

I also wanted to write this about Grand Theft Auto, and I might still do that another time if RPS will have me back. There were probably other factors, but no one game is so singularly responsible for my being a games journalist (or at least having been one) as DMA Design’s original PC game. But I’m really here today to bang on about Counter-Strike>, and I owe that game a massive debt too, because it’s thanks to Counter-Strike that I don’t play Call of Duty or Battlefield or Medal of Honor or any of that stuff on the internet nowadays for a moment longer than my job requires.
(more…)

PC Gamer
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title="Permanent Link to 10 top tips from a Counter-Strike pro">



Ever fancied yourself as a Counter-Strike master? Ever thought about going pro? There's a lot to consider, even once you're among the best players around. Professional gaming's no easy gig, and there's far more to it than simply knowing how to aim a crosshair at an opponent's face. As such, we've been chatting to Elliot Welsh, aka. 'wez' of leading competitive gamers Team Dignitas, to find out his ten top tips for moving up the ranks in the world of professional Counter-Strike.



1. Get your hardware sorted

If you want to compete on an even playing field, the last thing you want is a dated rig or sloppy internet connection holding you back. In a game whose combat is as finely balanced as that of Counter-Strike, just a slight framerate drop can be catastrophic. "Low fps can affect your recoil, bullet registration and smoothness of your game," says Elliot. "If you're stuck with a terrible computer, you don't really have much chance online against someone with a top-end machine. Also, a good computer and connection will be the same conditions you'll be playing on when you turn up to a tournament, so you won't have to adapt to different conditions when you set up on the day."





2. Find a team you get along with

Sometimes in life we're all thrown into a situation where we have to work with people we aren't so fond of. Like at PC Gamer, for example. Bloody scoundrels, the lot of them. But there's no doubting that getting on with your team mates is going to make things a whole lot easier down the line. In fact, it might even be better to pick friendly souls with potential to improve than switching in the cream of the crop without knowing them well. "Playing with people you get along with will make you enjoy the game much more, and undoubtedly be more likely to stick together," says Elliot. "Changing your lineup every month won't do you much good, even if you're replacing a player with someone slightly better."



3. Practice your tactics in the best environments

If you're considering competitive Counter-Strike, the chances are you'll already spend a fair number of hours playing the game. But practicing in the right environments is key to your continual improvement. Deathmatch servers are a good place to start - "You respawn as soon as you die, so you're constantly shooting and it's a good way to improve your gunplay," Elliot explains - and clan war practice is pretty much essential. Use a chat program such as mIRC to search for practice games against other teams, and try out all the tactics you've been mulling over in your head. "I'd advise having ten minutes after each match you play to assess what you did wrong, what you did right, and how you could improve," adds Elliot.



4. Watch demos of other players

Practice might make perfect, but there are numerous intricacies to Counter-Strike play that you may be able to pick up from others. Watching demo videos of other players is a great way to assess their mad skills without fear of being gunned down if you take too long to stop and stare. Professionals will have various different ways of moving, aiming, shooting and reacting to different situations. Just make sure you try out your own moves as well: "All players have different styles," warns Elliot, "and one player's style may not be suitable for you or your team." Demos from Dignitas' players can be found on their website.







5. Forget the rest, play against the best

It's always nice to win, so it might be tempting to select weaker opponents for practice matches. But this can be counter-productive. Unless you're playing at the highest level you're capable of, there's not a great deal of compulsion to improve - and certainly less you can take away from both victories and defeats. "Although playing against people below your own ability will still benefit you in some ways," Elliot explains, "playing against top teams will give you an insight into the level of professional play, and allow you to learn from high level players."



6. Communication is key

As with all team-based games, but perhaps even more so with Counter-Strike, it's important to be in good contact with your team mates throughout a match. A lack of communication can be the difference between a decisive victory and an embarrassing, crushing defeat, so talking to each other is tremendously important. But simply maintaining contact isn't enough: it's imperative to be efficient with your communications. "It's best to keep your calls about what's happening short and quick, and explain everything you know, such as how many enemies you see, if you see the bomb carrier, and what weapons they have," says Elliot. And be sure to get hold of a voice chat program such as Ventrilo or Mumble to utilise during practice: they allow you to speak to your team mates whether you're dead or alive, an advantage not afforded by Counter-Strike's in-game chat system.



7. Embrace the community spirit

You might be tempted to pour all your spare hours into improving your game, but there's more to being a professional Counter-Strike player than simply playing Counter-Strike. Your team could consist of the best players in the world, but if no one knows who you are, you're probably going to end up going nowhere fast. "Playing an active role in your country's Counter-Strike community means that there is more general interest, which means there will be more tournaments and therefore more oppotunities to practice in competitions and under pressure," says Elliot. "Also, it allows you to make friends to casually play with when your team may not be online, so you can still practice even if your team mates aren't around."







8. Master the three pillars of skillful combat

Elliot flags three key things to master in Counter-Strike combat: recoil, flashbangs, and smoke grenades. Counter-Strike's recoil patterns are very different to many shooters, and it's imperative to master the technique: "For most professional players, the general technique is to spray at close range, tap fire at medium range, and tap slightly slower at long range, all while moving in between taps to make you a harder target to hit," suggests Elliot. Meanwhile, good grenade use can make all the difference. "Again, watching a professional player's demo will give you some useful tips," says Elliot, "but it's always best to join an empty server with your team mates and practice them for yourself."



9. Financial advice

Counter-Strike isn't all about the combat tactics. It's also a game in which managing your money is key to high-level success. At a professional level, you'll need to make sure your finances are in check whether you're winning or losing, because ensuring your team is finely in-tune and well-timed with quick purchases is essential. Elliot's top tip? "If you find yourself short on money after - say - losing the pistol round, the best thing to do is save your money by not buying anything for one or two rounds, so you can save up enough cash to purchase a rifle and armour."



10. For goodness' sake, stick with it

It might sound obvious, but the only way you'll reach the dizzy heights of top-level professional gaming is to keep plugging away until you're good enough. It's a lot of work, and something you'll need to treat like a real job as much as play - even during those inevitable times when morale reaches rock bottom. "A lot of dedication is needed to become a professional," says Elliot, "and there will be times when you and your team are trying to improve and results may not always go in your favour. If this happens, the best thing you can do is stick together, and keep playing through it."
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