Posted by fire on Mon, 05 Dec 2005.
It's true to say that Counter-Strike is a FPS legend. From its origins as a basic HL2 mod, back in the summer of 1999, the game has taken popularity and quality to become the giant of FPS online gaming that it is today. The simplistic terrorist vs. counter-terrorists scenario the instant action, the necessity for teamwork, the depth of tactics possible, and of course the possibility of just playing it as a team deathmatch - all these have ensured Counter-Strike's constant fame even several years after its initial release
As important point is that the game did not stay still. Newer versions of CS have constantly been developed, adding new scenarios, new weapons, improving graphics and gameplay, and continuing to deliver a sharp, and fast, quality game.
CS: Source. It's important to press that, as many anticipated, it's not a sequel to 1.6 as such, but rather the next phase in the journey of the games, with the original weapons and maps transferred to the modern Source engine.
Valve has updated a massive selection of the maps from CS 1.6 - Office, Havana, Italy, Aztec, Chateau, Cobble, Piranesi and of course Dust and Dust 2, and revolved them for source gameplay. This means all new textures and major aesthetic changes with more advanced models and scenery. Also, the maps are covered with objects that react realistically with the new physics engine. Generally, though, all the map layouts are faithful to the original versions. Whilst visually CSS is indisputably at the front of FPS, I’m pretty certain it isn't using the limits of the new Source engine..
Searching for a server in CS: S is done through Valves loathed steam network. However, in use it’s surprisingly easy to use and most people will find it easy to find a game to suit them. In terms of actual in game changes, it's pretty much the same story as the older versions. At the beginning of the match you purchase weapons and other tools, then you have to complete a goal. On a De (Demolition) level the terrorists must bomb a target or frag all the counter-terrorists, whilst the CTs must disarm the bomb (or own the Terrorist before they can get near), whilst on Cs levels the CTs must release the hostages or kill the terrorists, and the terrorists must stop them.
However, the best new feature in CSS is the physics, and its contribution to a growing sense of realism. The fact that items in the level can be moved by gunfire and grenade explosions means that the weapons feel far more powerful than ever, the headshots that have become Counter-Strike's trademark are now all the more believable. The new engine has minor effects on tactics in almost every level except Cs_Office, where you’ll discover filing cabinets. These can become fantastic shelters from gunfire. Equally, you can move them into a superior tactical position, turning the table on the enemy by creating cover they don't expect. Its a bit of a pity other levels don’t offer this amount of cover to be created. However, the physic’s primary enhancement to the game is the sense of realism they convey. Source gorier than its predecessor, and the blood flies more convincingly than ever seen before, smearing surfaces chillingly (or satisfyingly, depending on who got pwned). All corpses become rag dolls upon death, and there is little more shocking than hearing the explosion of a grenade, followed by the sight of your team mate flying through the air. Counter-Strike: Source seems far more 'exhilarating' than its predecessor, and is never less than a joy to play…
CS:S - De_Nuke addon
For several long gruelling months now steam have been promising the re-release of De_Nuke, revamped on the Source engine… And finally it has arrived, to reclaim its title as one of the many gems in the source crown.
Even before I played the map I knew it was going to put a lot of strain on my PC through the new HDR feature that even managed to cause many machines to crash under the immense detail. But it ran surprisingly well. The first thing that hit me was the colour! The map looks so bright and vibrant when compared to it predecessor, it really is a credit to the steam engine. The main design of the level hasn’t changed much though. Other than a few extra barrels and crates to seek cover behind it’s true to the original. The map also makes it hard to for ever more frequent Awp n00bs to work by implying many twist and turns to the out door and indoor areas.
I’m also glad that steam has been able to create a level playing field for this map, unlike the recent Cs_Assault (The Unofficial Official Map) in which the terrorists have a distinct advantage. Steam is also promising the release of classic “De_milita” some time in the near future. Lets hope they do as good a job on that as they’ve done on this…