posted 3/11/2004 by Charles Husemann
other articles by Charles Husemann
One Page Platforms: Xbox
Counter-Strike, oh how I loved thee. With thy realistic weapons, innovative and cool multiplayer options, the classic maps…you were my massive after work time sink. But then, the cheaters came and ruined everything. Even if you didn’t cheat, you were accused of it. Sure PunkBuster came and helped a bit but it was never the same. So, we split up and both moved on with our lives. You became the Number One online game and I moved on to Battlefield 1942 and Desert Combat. Sure, I still have the CD but it hasn’t seen the inside of a drive in several years. Every once in a while, I think about firing it up but I never do. It’s just not the same (plus I’d have to download about one and a half gigs of patch files just to get it to run).

With some trepidation, I fired up Counter-Strike for the Xbox. As soon as I started the game, the memories of the original came flooding back. I hadn’t played the original since the third beta (remember gun-running? Ah.. good times). I was very interested to see how well the game would transfer over from the PC.

For the three of you out there who haven’t heard of Counter-Strike, the game allows you to play as either a terrorist or a counter-terrorist. The Xbox version of the game features two game modes, Bomb Defusal and Hostage Rescue. If you’re the terrorist, it’s your job to either plant the bomb or keep the hostages nice and safe in their cell. If you’re the counter-terrorist, then you’ve either got to stop the terrorists from planting the bomb (or defuse it if they do plant it) or find the hostages and escort them to the safety.

Each game is broken into several rounds (which is set by either the user in single-player or by the person who is hosting the game for Xbox Live matches). A round ends when either side has completed their mission or one side has no players left alive. At the start of the round, each team has an opportunity to purchase weapons, tools, and armor before the round starts. You start out with a pistol and a knife but that’s it. Any additional weapons you want you have to purchase. If you do survive a round, you get to keep your weapons so you have a little extra incentive to keep yourself in one piece. You earn money by completing objectives in the game (planting the bomb, terminating opponents, rescuing hostages, etc) and how you spend it makes all the difference in the game. Just like in real life the nicer the weapon the more it costs (although some players specialize in some of the cheaper weapons). The only problem with this is that teams who dominate are likely to keep dominating, right? Not really, as there are still some cheap weapons that can help keep things close. You can also pick up weapons from dead teammates and opponents, so occasionally, you will luck out and find a nice gun without having to pay for it.
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