When the latest version of Counter Strike came out, not everyone was impressed. Counter Strike- Global Offensive (CS-GO) was panned as an inferior follow-up to the originals, and many pro gamers steered away from the title as a result.
The good news is that games released today are not the finished article and developers now have the capabilities and opportunity to react from feedback and make sharp improvements to the titles post release. The aim; make CS-GO amazing for competitive play. The result; CS-GO is now hailed as the single if not one of the greatest versions of Counter Strike ever released.
What Have They Made Better?
Valve, the developers of CS-GO, have changed the way they handle new titles. The previous version of CS commonly referred to as “Source”, was widely accredited and loved among CS fans. But now with GO, Valve have been able to adapt the game to suit the preferences of its most valued players.
An example would be in terms of the game’s weapon balances. The CZ75-Auto for instance was a pistol that in the early days of its release received huge criticism for being too overpowered for certain styles of play. This was quickly fixed and the community responded with kind appreciation.
Targeting Pro Gaming
Being able to make these tweaks is important for developers like Valve. Traditionally their aim is to create games that make fantastic competitive gaming platforms, so balance of play is essential. You can have a competitive game that includes one style of play or strategy that beats all. In order for a game to be eligible for elite pro gaming, it must be as balanced as possible to allow very wide scope for unlimited amounts of playing styles and strategies.
But balancing is not easy. In terms of weapons and maps, you can’t really tell if a certain layout or weapon power is going to work until you let huge amounts of real people, with real competitive mindsets get down and dirty to play it.
But Normal Players Need Love Too
This is the other side to game development. It’s kind of a vicious circle. The idea is to make as much money as possible and for that you need customers who are in love with the game.
To help build a game’s popularity and love from customers you need an epic pro gaming scene to spread coverage and credibility. In order to gain Pro gaming, you need an ultra balanced game that is complex enough to attract the best computer players in the world.
But if you make a game too “professional”, it becomes harder for normal people to play, and these people make up 80% - 90% of your target market, so you don’t want to develop a game that they won’t enjoy playing.
To solve this dilemma, Valve have paid a lot of attention in developing an experience possible within new versions of CS-GO that specifically caters to new players learning the ropes, and those of lower skill levels.
This is perhaps the biggest key factor in bolstering the game’s popularity, by making it as accessible as possible for both communities; hardcore gamers and less hardcore customers.