The History of CSS Servers
Just about any gamer knows what Half Life and CS is both the original game and the â€œnewâ€ source engine version CSS servers. Its become almost a house hold name like Quake and Doom were in the 90â€™s.
CSS Servers in the beginning
Counter Strike rolled off the development line way back in June 1999 as a mod to half life. But was not until November 2000 that Valve retailed the game, the game had 19 beta releases until version 1 was made available and even then there were 7 major updates to the game, one of the biggest and most talked about with the update from 1.5 to 1.6 but the current CSS servers is still a little way off.
Introducing STEAM servers
Many people believed that this update ruined the game as 1.6 was only released on Steam, after the WON platform was shutdown in 2004, there is still a group of hard-core players still playing 1.5 but these mainly consist of people who are too cheap to buy a genuine copy of the game. Like all good games this carried the ability to add custom content like: new maps, mods, sounds and graphics to it to change the game play, there is still a large active community of developers supporting this game after 10 years! This proves just how big this game still is.
Valve also released Counter Strike Condition dubbed as CS:CZ in 2004 which was a slightly facelift version of the game but still ran on the now 6 year old Goldsource engine which is a modified version of the Quake II engine, this did not have the success that was expected with only 2.9 million retail sales of the game as of December 2008 compared to the 4.2 million by the end of the same period.
Source server engine is introduced with CSS servers
When Valve released Half Life 2 in November 2004, they also released a new up to date version of the game called Counter Strike Source, or CSS servers for short, this version now had the same level of graphics of other games for its age and so was making older PCs struggle to run the game, even in beta testing we saw an influx in CSS servers influx. When Half Life Episode One was released they also released an update to the Source engine in June 2006 which improved CSS servers. With the original engine needing a reasonable powerful pc for the time did mean that it took a while for people to start getting into CSS servers, and when they did many did not really look back, some people still prefer 1.6 to this day after playing CSS for many years. Like 1.6, CSS servers maintained the ability to change the game content with mods and maps etc.
CSS servers and cheaters
All three versions of the game have been plagued with issues of cheaters and hackers, the Valve anti cheat system (VAC) works well but is not the best thing and so there are groups like Steam Bans that work better as this is ban submissions by real people. But still there is no substitute to good old fashioned human admin but for many servers this is just unrealistic to haveadmins on their servers 24/7, and to help this many mod developers have coding kick and ban scripts in to allow people to start votes to get rid of people from CSS servers.
CSS Servers the Future
As of the time of writing there is still little word on the future of Half Life and CSS servers, and the market is becoming increasingly competitive with the likes of EAâ€™s Battlefield seriers of Games and Activision with the Call of Duty games.Â We will have to wait and see what Valve do with new CSS servers.