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Counter-Strike Preview for Xbox
Posted on Sunday, September 28, 2003 @ 04:38:12 pm E.S.T

Over 2 million gamers have this insanely fun action game installed on their computers. Counter Strike, arguably the most popular online action game ever, is headed to the Xbox. Despite the fact that the game is quite outdated, it still remains one of the most played games ever. Gamers are just obsessed with the Terrorist vs. Counter-Terrorist action that Counter Strike brings.

The premise of Counter Strike basically pits counter terrorists vs. terrorists in multiple game modes. The terrorists’ main goal in all game modes is to accomplish some evil plot, whereas the counter terrorists’ goal is to stop them. This is all accomplished with an amazing amount of realism, which adds to the tension the game creates.

Counter Strike for Xbox will include the original Counter Strike PC game, and multiple missions from the forthcoming sequel, Condition Zero. The Xbox version will also include many exclusive features, such as 7 exclusive levels and several new weapons. The controls will much mimic those found in Halo, so Halo fans [which most Xbox owners are] will feel right at home when they pick up CS. An excellent exclusive to Xbox CS is the ability to use LIVE headset to chat with your allies to help coordinate your attacks and strategies.

Other new features include the ability to system link and play cooperatively against bots. On the other side of the spectrum, when you play on your own, you’ll be able to issue commands to your AI teammates using the D-Pad. There are several commands to order with such as Report In, Follow and Hold Position.

One of the main reasons that Counter Strike is so popular and has managed to hang around for so long is due to the large amount of modifications, such as player skins and levels, that are available for download. This feature won’t directly be in Xbox CS, but there is a possibility that the director, Valve, will allow gamers to submit mods to be approved and posted for download by Valve.

Throughout your missions you’ll equip more than 20 weapons such as shotguns, rifles, pistols, not to mention exclusive Xbox weapons such as the blowtorch and riot shield.

At the beginning of each mission or best of X games you will be given a minute and a half to buy any equipment or weapons you may need. You’ll navigate through these menus using a pie-like menu which is easy to navigate, so you’ll easily be able to get what you need.

There will obviously be graphical updates to the game, including many interesting environmental effects. You’ll notice new buildings and trees which sway with the wind. An awesome feature that Xbox CS has is dynamic gamma ramping. What this does is alters the effect lighting has on your vision. If you enter a dark tunnel or passage way, your eyes will slowly adjust to the darkness allowing you to see more, just as your eyes would in real life. When you travel back out into the light however, everything will be overly bright until your eyes adjust back. While this most likely won’t drastically effect any gameplay mechanics, it certainly is a cool feature to keep you distracted. Xbox CS runs at a steady 30 FPS so you won’t notice much slow down when playing, and you can expect a smooth game online.

Further enhancing the realism of CS is the actual gameplay. Whereas in most games you can stand to take quite a beating, if you take a few bullets you’re likely to die. Your weapons also sway towards the direction your character moves in to get the feel that your character really is moving quickly. The computer AI is also much enhanced over CS’s PC brother. Your enemies will react more life like to situations - if they’re outnumbered they’ll fall back or form groups to take you out.

Counter Strike is clearly Microsoft’s golden online gem of 2003, and for good reason. This is more than a mere port of the PC hit, it’s much much more. Expect to be playing it this holiday season.

Preview By: Chris Pereira - 3896 Reads

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