What is Counter Strike Global Offensive?
Mark Register explains
Counter Strike Global Offensive or CS GO is a first person shooter game developed by Valve & Hidden Path that pits 5 players on a terrorist team against 5 players on a counter-terrorist team in different scenarios such as trying to prevent a bomb from going off, rescuing hostages, or just a good ol fashioned deathmatch.
CS GO averages 300k concurrent players, 8MM monthly players, $3.6MM has been given away in “major” tournaments co-hosted by Valve, and next year TBS, Valve, WME, and IMG are partnering up to do two, ten week televised CS GO tournaments on TBS, a first of its kind.
So how did CS GO become so popular?
In 1997 Minh Le “Gooseman” built “Navy SEALs” a mod on Quake 2’s engine then in 1999 moved & upgraded the mod on Half-Life’s source engine with some inspiration from Rainbow Six and christened the new mod “Counter Strike,” it was a hit.
Minh Le then partnered with Jess Cliffe who created the CS forums that would inform Le on how he would improve the game and the community provided a pool of custom maps, the best of which Le would include in the game’s regular patches.
In 2000, Valve gobbled up Minh Le & Jess Cliffe packaged with their intellectual property rights to Counter Stike and put them in charge of leading development of Counter Strike on their source engine.
Valve hired Turtle Rock Studios to help develop the second iteration, CS: Condition Zero built on the Half-Life engine in 2004 but it flopped internally and publicly.
To make up for it a few months later Valve released CS: Source built on Valve’s source engine and it brought success for 6 years until Valve started development on their follow up title CS: Global Offensive in 2010 with development help from Hidden Path Entertainment.
Beta opened November 2011, and the game was released August 2012, again, it was a hit and it’s still gaining popularity and revenue.
To diversify their revenue streams and enhance engagement, Valve created a marketplace for creators to sell maps, weapon skins, game scenarios, and music
They also bring in revenue and fan loyalty by co-hosting CS:GO Esport tournaments called “Majors.”
And if that wasn’t enough they still make $15 bucks a pop for the initial game purchase.
Valve not only kept a 16 year old game alive they are continuing to grow an empire around it.