The first time I tried this, you didn’t believe me. I’ll try again: play Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies [official site] to marvel at the weird grab bag of modes Nexon have smashed into a free-to-play version of Valve’s dear FPS. You’ll find survival with scavenging and base-building, arena battles with floods of monsters and huge bosses, racing a chasing horde, Splash Damage-style vehicle escorting, co-op story missions, and so much more. I had a fun six hours just exploring what’s in this weird thing.
Heck yeah I’m excited a big update’s out with even more modes! One reminds me of Evolve.
To rattle through the obvious disclaimers: yes it’s janky; yes the UI is awful; yes it’s flooded with microtransaction guff; yes some modes are pants; yes it’s baffling that all these things are in Counter-Strike. But! All that wonkiness aside, playing it is a stroll through a wonderland of ambition and oddity. Join random servers to be awed and confused by what the mode you’re playing even is. Server-jumping feels like rummaging blindly in the contents of a PC Gamer cover disc from 2001. It gave me a delightful afternoon and hey, the game’s free to play.
Yesterday’s update, ‘Into the Darkness’, brought new single-player, PvE, and PvP modes and they sound similarly weird. Modes will be unlocked one by one over a couple of days, starting with Zombie Giant.
That one-versus-many mode sees a player join the zombie hordes as a boss. It has three classes of boss, and killing enough humies will let you evolve to get a new skill. I know, right? Also, the human team can call in drone strikes and giant robots. I know, right!
And check out the description of this upcoming mode:
“Zombie Files is a new single player mode that puts brains over brawn, as players must use whatever tools and weapons they can scavenge to survive. Sneaky techniques and tactics take a front seat in this tense mode – new Stealth mechanics, such as using sound to lure zombies, and silently brutal executions have been implemented. While, those that players that succeed will uncover the secret origins of CSN:Z’s undead.”
What is this doing in Counter-Strike? CS Nexon: Zombies is such a weird thing, and I’m delighted it’s continuing to grow. I’ll certainly dive back in to see what’s new.