History of Counter Strike: Full Timeline [Infographic]

Note: reading this will give you some major feels!

It’s been a long time since Gordon Freeman’s first train ride through Black Mesa in Half Life 1. Some of you may be too young to remember but it is, nevertheless, a unique piece of gaming history.

It paved the way for the evolution of FPS and brought gamers together over a common cause. What once seemed like a perfectly scripted, single-player goodness, quickly spun off into one of the most played video games of all time. We now play its latest rendition (CS:GO) for hours and sometimes without even blinking.

But what made Counter Strike what it is today?

Simple. Its community.

Players played during the day and programmed during the night. As a matter of fact, it took 17 beta versions for Counter Strike to become alive as an independent entity. That was in 1999. Eighteen years later and here we are: professional players are rock stars 2.0 and millions of people are playing, watching and even betting on CS:GO.

As an avid gamer, there are some things you just have to know. One of those is the history of Counter Strike. Check out the infographic below and travel once again through the 18 year development history of one of our most favorite games.

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History of counter strike

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1998, Half Life – Valve develops their debut video game Half-Life, which Sierra Studios releases with a bang. People love the game so much that the community around it soon explodes and the players start making individual mods.

1999, Counter Strike Beta –  Canadian programmer Minh “Gooseman” Le releases a beta version of a new Half Life mod: Counter Strike, with just 4 maps and 9 weapons. Open development paved the way for 17 more beta’s, before the official release.

2000, Counter Strike 1.0 – After 2 years of community built mods, Valve releases Counter Strike for PC. It could be played only on LAN, however it featured two maps that fans were very fond of: cs_assault and de_cbble (now de_cobblestone).

2002, Counter Strike 1.5 – In the updates that followed version 1.0, Valve introduced Valve Anti Cheat (VAC), one of the most popular maps de_dust2 (version 1.1) as well as several new weapons. However, version 1.5 was the last version before the big bang.

2003, Counter Strike 1.6 – Considered the last major update in the original Counter Strike series, version 1.6 featured a brand new, sparkling tactical shield, snipers with crosshairs and several backend updates.

2004, Counter Strike: Condition Zero – Developed by Gearbox and Turtle Rock Studios and Valve, Condition Zero features both singleplayer and multiplayer modes. The game performed poorly, after which it was followed by a single mission campaign called “The Deleted Scenes”.

2004, Counter Strike: Source – Valve uses their new Source engine to overhaul the original Counter Strike. The graphics were drastically improved, however the community around 1.6 was so strong that the large majority wasn’t interested in switching over to CS: Source.

2012, Counter Strike: Global Offensive —  The dawn of a new era. CS:GO uses a brand new engine to completely recreate the game and introduce matchmaking. It now boasts with over 10 million monthly users and 2,000 professional tournaments.