[[Counter-Strike : Condition Zero]]
Counter-Strike is the number 1 online action game in the world. After a one-year public Beta, Counter-Strike was commercially released in Fall 2000. It has sold over 1 million copies worldwide, been named Game of the Year by several gaming publications, and is the headliner at competitive gaming tournaments around the world.
Counter-Strike: Condition Zero is a co-production by Gearbox and Valve. In the collaborative spirit of CS, Gearbox and Valve tapped the creative talents of mapmakers and technology designers in the CS community. And several of the tools and technologies created in the making of CS:CZ will be released to the MOD community after launch
The game is scheduled for a Q2(May) 2002 release.
Counter Strike was originally developed by Rogue, a company which at the time faced deep financial troubles. Desperation led them to some strange, to say the least, design decisions. This forced Valve Software, Half-Life developers and current Counter-Strike owner, to attempt to save the day. Following various negotiations Valve decided to pass the fledgling game to Gearbox.
Gearbox Software was founded in January of 1999 by a group of experienced 3d game artists, designers and engineers in Dallas, TX. Previously, the developers at Gearbox Software have contributed to many of the most acclaimed franchises in computer entertainment - including Civilization, Duke Nukem 3d, Quake and Half-Life.
Gearbox could be referred to as experts on creating games using the Half-Life engine. They have made Opposing Force and Blue Shift, both add-ons to Half-Life. Counter-Strike: Condition Zero is their first stand alone game.
Condition Zero is not Counter-Strike 2. It was never meant to be a sequel to the original but it will rather serve the purpose of a retail expansion for Counter-Strike.
Some of the original, ridiculous weapons such as a Yoghurt cannon, which were dropped from Counter-Strike when Valve took over, will not be appearing now.
The multiplayer option will not be exclusive to those who actually buy the game. Condition Zero will be firmly based on Counter-Strike, in time CS add-ons will be released which will feature CZ weapons and other extra's.
Counter-Strike: Condition Zero (CS:CZ) advances this award-winning series by introducing single-player action and special enhancements for online play. CS:CZ is a tactical action game that challenges you to compete with and against cunning computerized opponents in mission-based campaigns across the globe.
As a squad leader in an elite counter-terrorist operative, use specialized maneuvers and weapon skills to complete over 20 brand new missions, each containing numerous objectives. Drop into challenging scenarios -- from harsh jungle environments to severe arctic terrains, unforgiving deserts to dangerous international city streets. Rescue hostages. Escort VIPs to safety. Locate and defuse bombs. A collection of entirely new episodes challenge your ability to think quickly and strategically.
Success depends on fine-tuning your squad units, each with unique weapons, combat styles and resources that enable fresh approaches to every mission. To improve your chances in the field, learn elite skills and enhance player attributes in special training missions for weapon accuracy, bomb defusal, and other specialized expertise. Each completed mission earns players cash rewards that can be used to purchase equipment and weapon upgrades
[[Engine and Technology]]
Powered by an enhanced Half-Life engine, Counter-Strike: Condition Zero introduces new game technologies including highly-detailed models; atmospheric enhancements, such as snow and rain; and more dynamic special effects -- taking the #1 online action game into new territory.
Snow and Rain
The new rain/snow effects will be available in CZ but server admins in multiplayer mode won't be able to turn the effects off. The density and detail of the effects however, will be controllable in order to increase FPS.
Another new set of effects will be those which will allow feedback reactions when materialS are hit. In true "Halo" fashion these are said to make the game look much better. In the same way as the rain/snow effects less intensity on material damage will help increase FPS.
Condition Zero also introduces never-before-seen elements to the game series. New, sharper character models and locale-specific skins enable detailed squad customization options, over 160 character combinations in all.
Counter-Strike models have 750 polygons each. CZ models will feature a 66% increase in polygons, 1250 each.
All models will carry lip-synching with sound and will also have some facial animation.
The new model system supports alpha blending. Along with RGB values in colors, systems that allow for 32-bit rendering have 8-bits set aside for an alpha channel, which controls attributes like transparency or opacity. One use, obvious from the screenshots, is in the eye-holes on a mask or through the gap of a shield.
Condition Zero level detail will allow for the high detail of models to be scaled down to in order to increase framerate, while more capable systems will be able to fully utilize the detail possibilities.
Soon after the game launches, GearBox will release improved level design tools, allowing for some interesting geometric shapes, improved environment lighting, more accurate texture mapping, and more efficient building time.
Chris Jensen, the music producer behind Half Life: Oppoosing Force will also create the CS:CZ score. Each episode will have its own characteristic music.
All sounds have been upgraded to 16-bit quality.
In single player mode the player will be a member of a counter-terrorist unit.
According to speculation, total game time will be longer than Half-Life: Opposing Force and Half-Life: Blue Shift combined.
30-40 single-player missions will be available. In 6 episodes, each containing approximately 4 maps. Each episode will take place in a different part of the world with very different terrain and weather. Locations will be classed as Jungle, Urban (US), Asia, Desert, Europe, and the Arctic. Each move will laos cause an increase in difficulty. Every location will have its own gear including combat fatigues, specialized weapons and tools. Each mission will have at least ten objectives.
There will be three modes for each mission in single player.
Narrative This present players with some specific objectives. The more you accomplish, the more money you earn. You will be assisted by teammates. After you beat narrative, you unlock the next mode, endurance.
Endurance No more teammates for you. Players will have a time limit in which to kill a certain amount of enemies. Completing this mode will allow players to have a crack at the challenge mode.
Challenge In this mode players have to use specific weapons, within a time limit, in order to accomplish their objective.
Each time a mode is completed players will receive a cash reward. All cash you earn is stored in your bank. Players start off as a lowly counter-terrorist commander with an inept team. As you move on, you'll gain more teammates, weapons, equipment, and skills. Limited by your abilities, you can only attempt low scale operations until your success can get you up the counter-terrorist mission ladder.
All Counter-Strike game types such as VIP, bomb, hostage will be available in CZ, but most of the scenarios will be brand new. The aim is not only to progress however, quite simply, more missions more cash and a better trained team. This system is like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater. You can progress by only achieving half the objectives, but you can earn more skill points by taking all of them on.
The game will use a heavily updated version of the PodBot. PodBot highly regarded for its great AI and will definitely do well in Condition Zero. Your team will rely on your orders through radio commands, but will have the intelligence to assess each command and will not obey if the risk seems too great.
If a teammate dies, you will still be able to use him in the next mission or shortly thereafter.
The money earned through missions can be used for the purchase of weapons but can also be used in order to better train and equip your squad members. It is up to the player, when selecting, to choose which skills your team will need in order to better tackle the objectives.
The AI in Condition Zero guarantees that each teammate is unique. Skills and even looks, are teammate specific, you will get to know and rely on your teammates.
Enemies in CZ will not wait for you to find them. They will all have their own specific objectives and will attempt to accomplish them. They will assess the magnitude of the threat you present in order to decide whether to confront you or let you get away. Enemies and teammates share a common AI system which means that specific enemies will also have specific skills.
Counter-Strike : Condition Zero will not feature an autonomous multiplayer mode. It will rely on the available CS version. Obviously, owners of the CZ will benefit from the extra features but there will be 100% compatibility. Special add-ons, later on, will allow CS players to add weapons, maps etc.
Condition Zero will ship with a cheat detection/prevention tool, from Valve.
Machete (Terrorist Only)
More deadly than the regular knife this larger bladed weapon will prove extremely useful in the jungle missions. Its price will represent its status in the weapon world.
Galil (Terrorist Only)
Manufacturer: Isreali Military Industries
Isreal made this weapon to compete with the AK-47 on the battle field, this weapon actually costs less than the already cheap AK-47. Currently the Isreali's "official" weapon, it can be used with either 5.56 (M4A1) or 7.62 (AK-47) millimeter (NATO) rounds. The Isrealis use the 5.56mm version. It's unknown which version CS: CZ uses, but it will probably be the 5.56mm version because it meant to be between an SMG and a full-on rifle. Gearbox describes the weapon as like the AK, only heavier and thus more accurate. It holds 32 rounds. This weapon has been seen near the end of the movie The Way of the Gun.
Fusil Automatique, Manufacture d'Armes de St. Etienne (FAMAS) (Counter-Terrorist Only)
Manufacturer: Groupement Industriel des Armements Terrestres
Put into CS: CZ to rival the Terrorist's powerful AK-47, this weapon is known from its role in Metal Gear Solid. It will cost less than the M4A1 and its alternate fire will be burst fire (a three-round burst). A three-round burst fires three rounds faster than the auto-mode can fire the same amount, but has a delay between bursts. This is the official weapon on the French GIGN and will likely play that role in the single player side of the game. It uses the same 5.56mm NATO rounds that the M4A1 uses. It's supposedly fairly accurate and powerful. Nice combination.
Chemical Gas Grenade (Counter-Terrorist Only)
This weapon unleashes a bit of "green smoke," which will have some adverse effect on those nasty terrorists. The effect is unknown. The smoke cloud will dissipate after a short time. If you're exposed to the gas (without a mask), you'll take plenty of damage. If you plan on using this grenade, be sure to pick up a gas mask from the equipment stand near the juggling clown.
This item can be used to illuminate dark camping spots, so enemies cannot use them later in the round. Presumably it lasts for a longer period of time than, say, the smoke grenade. Perhaps it has an adverse effect on the not-so-popular night vision goggles. Perhaps. Not much is known about this 'weapon' (it's included in this section because of its placement in the grenades menu).
Molotov Cocktail (Terrorist Only)
First used by a Russian General, this weapon may be ignited and thrown in order to create a large fire that dies down fairly quickly. This weapon is bought under the grenade menu, hence its placement in the weapons section. CZ developers claim that the Molotov cocktail can prove to be a very significant weapon in CZ
Light Anti-armor Weapon (LAW)
A rocket launcher had been long missing from CS. CS: CZ brings this idea home by introducing the LAW. It's unknown if this weapon is terrorist only, but hopefully this will be so. This weapon is single shot (no reload, no ammo). Once fired, it flies on a straight course to where you aimed it and explodes on contact. This weapon is bought under the grenade menu and fills up your grenade slot. You cannot have a LAW and any other grenade at the same time.
M-60E3 (Terrorist Only)
Manufacturer: Phoenix Armory
The longer you hold down the fire button, the more accurate the weapon is. Dealing out 7.62mm (AK-47-ish) punches very rapidly should make this weapon pretty useful. It costs more than the M249 PARA but is more powerful.