Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies is a 3D MMO shooter released on October 7th, 2014. This game is the western release of the ever popular, Counter Strike Online. Built on the CS 1.6 Engine, it’s a spin-off that includes classic Counter-Strike team-based gameplay and also features gruesome zombie vs human action.
Type: F2P Shooter
Release Date: October 7, 2014 (NA/EU)
Pros: +Nostalgic CS 1.6 gameplay. +Tons of game modes. +New weapons unique to CSN:Z. +Good ranking system.
Cons: -Dated visuals. -Obtaining new weapons can be tedious (crafting). -Lack of permanent crafted weapons.
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Overview
Counter Strike Nexon: Zombies (CSN:Z) is a 3D FPS, developed by Nexon Corporation with the help of Valve Corporation. The game includes classic gameplay of the older Counter Strike titles such as Team Deathmatch, but it also incorporates new modes that focus on forcing players to band together and defeat zombies. Microtransactions as well as a unique crafting system allows players to heavily customize their arsenal. The game gives players all weapons from the old Counter Strike games, but everything else has to be crafted. Whether you want to just dominate other players in Deathmatch, or become a spooky zombie in Zombie Infection, CSN:Z lets you relive the old days with a twist.
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Key Features:
- Nostalgic CS 1.6 gameplay - The game uses Counter-Strike 1.6 as a base, but features additional game modes.
- Engineer - Unique crafting system; Obtain materials and blueprints to craft new, and powerful weapons.
- Old and new - In addition to previous Counter-Strike content, players have multiple zombie modes, and unique fun modes to play.
- Continuously updated and tons of events - The game is kept up to date and is graced with frequent events.
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Screenshots
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Featured Video
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Review
By, Huy Luong
Counter-Strike, a pioneer franchise for first person shooters, is one of the most popular online games in the world. Pitting terrorists against counter-terrorists, swarms of players compete in objective, round-based gameplay that keeps them on their toes. Quick thinking and instinctive reaction times separate the average players from the rising elites, yet the games are friendly enough that any person can have a blast playing them in a non-competitive manner. While the various games of Counter-Strike are polished gems that boast a popular competitive scene, there is a requirement to purchase the game before one can dive into the goodness that it offers.
But if players are feeling a little reluctant to spend money, they can find a similar, yet unique version of Counter-Strike that’s completely free -- a game called Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies.
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies is more or less the same game as Counter Strike 1.6, although it has added features such as new weapons, maps, and game modes. Like any other Counter-Strike title, the game contains the classics such as Bomb Defusal, Team Deathmatch, and Deathmatch, making CSN:Z an easy enough game to jump into. The catch? ZOMBIES. As the title suggests, the game heavily revolves around the theme of zombies. Players get to enjoy various modes that pit them in gritty PvE and PvP situations against the walking dead. If you’ve ever played any Counter-Strike games, or even any first person shooter games, you’ll settle into the rhythm of CSN:Z in no time.
Not Your Average Zombies, Not your Average Counter-Strike
One of the main marketing points of Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies is, of course, the zombie gameplay. Everyone and their grandmother loves to shoot up waves of zombies, and experiencing that grisly, blood-splattering action can easily give anybody hours of entertainment. CSN:Z capitalizes on this fervor of killing the undead. Yet every shooter nowadays usually has some sort of generic undead mode, so what makes CSN:Z unique? The answer CSN:Z gives is the sheer amount of modes that feature zombies. Not only is there a typical players vs computer-controlled zombies, but there are also games modes such as Zombies Files, Zombie Giant, Zombie Shelter, and Zombie Scenario. While the naming sense of these modes do not reflect the pinnacle of human creativity, the content will definitely provide players with a good time.
Another feature that separates CSN:Z from other shooters is with its mission and family system. Families are essentially CSN:Z’s take on a clan or guild system, as joining one allows players to share items, help each other out, and grant buffs to experience and point gain. Experience assists in leveling players up, while points are used to purchase items from the shop. There’s no real reason to not join a family, as the benefits can really help players out in both the short term and the long run. Missions are another way for players to obtain experience, points, and crafting materials. There’s daily missions, weekly missions, and honor missions. Every mission gives players a set of objectives to be accomplished for the day or the week, and once that objective is completed (such as win three games), a reward will given to the player. There’s plenty of missions for players to do every day, and even more missions for them to do every week, making it so there’s always a way to further obtain experience, points, and materials.
The Sibling in the West
CSN:Z is a spin-off of the enormously popular Counter-Strike Online, which is targeted mostly towards the Asian market. They are nearly identical in the way of containing the same game modes, having the same microtransaction system, and both being free-to-play. CSN:Z is not as popular in the West as CS Online is in the East, yet it does have a moderate following of players. The majority of players in CSN:Z are hardcore fans of the old Counter-Strike games, and or come from CS Online. Unlike CS Online, the weapons in CSN:Z are obtained differently. CSN:Z receive all of the classic weapons from Counter-Strike for free, giving them a great starting arsenal to play around with. But if they’re craving for the latest and greatest in destructive technology, players will either have to participate in Events (which are held often), purchase the items they want with actual money, or take a gamble and craft them. Crafting consumes materials and blueprints to output a random weapon that lasts for a set number of days. Crafting materials and blueprints can be obtained simply by playing the game, and there are options to enhance materials to attempt to get a better result. Players can also disassemble items they do not want to obtain more materials. I personally dislike the crafting system, as I’d prefer to just buy a weapon that I want through my hard-earned points, rather than use them to potentially get a weapon I may not even want. Despite it's success in Asia, CSN:Z isn't nearly as popular as CrossFire in Asia or Counter-Strike: GO in the West.
Gameplay - The Classics of Counter-Strike
As mentioned before, players can experience the nostalgic gameplay of earlier Counter-Strike titles, such as Team Deathmatch and Bomb Defusal. As with any other FPS, Team Deathmatch is a gold standard because it’s simple, easy and fun. Players are divided into two teams, and the only goal is to slaughter each other. Bomb Defusal is the most renowned game mode in the Counter Strike franchise. Players are again divided into two teams: Terrorists and Counter-Terrorists. Terrorists are to plant a bomb at either of the two locations, and the Counter-Terrorists must either prevent that or defuse the bomb. The mode is played through many rounds, and each team can win a round through their respective objective, or by completely eliminating everyone on the opposite team. Tactics and teamwork are key in this game mode. It is possible to carry alone, but working together as a team pays off much more. Most of the time, I find myself communicating a lot with my teammates with who is going where, and calling out locations of enemies. Personally this is my favorite mode, and what many people think of when they hear Counter-Strike. Playing this made me reminisce about big LAN parties with friends in the past, where everyone is playing Counter-Strike and friendships are made and broken. Also, they include the map, Dust 2. No Counter-Strike game is complete without it!
Every Zombie Mode You Can Dream Of
For a game that has the word “zombies” in its title, players would think that there would be a massive focus on battling the undead. They aren’t wrong, as Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies offers its gamers a heaping amount of zombie modes to choose from. From shooting up waves of mindless zombies to being pitted against other undead players, CSN:Z fulfills every scenario a person could think of involving the undead.
One of my favorite zombie modes to play is the one called “Zombie Giant”. In the Zombie Giant mode, there’s a set amount of players (with bots filling in the empty spaces) that go against a handful of massive behemoths that are labeled as “Zombie Giants”. These hulking masses of rotting flesh are players who are chosen throughout the match. Once one of the giants die, another player is randomly selected to take its place. Players are usually occupied with trying to survive as well as dealing as much damage as they can to the lumbering giants. The mode measures players through a point system, where points are gained for the following: killing a giant, assisting someone else kill a giant, and demolishing other players as a giant. There’s a point limit, which when achieved, ends the match and crowns the winner. In terms of the actual gameplay of the mode, I find it to be especially entertaining. As a giant, players are given three special skills to start off with, using them to rack up as many kills as possible. In one of my games, I turned into a fireball-slinging, meteor-calling monster that could charge like a bull, and also perform some sort of earthquake move that killed all those around me. In another game, I tumbled all over the map like some sort of rolly polly insect, throwing tendrils all over the place and spraying acid. There’s a variety of zombie giants the player can turn into, all having their own special look and skills. After reaching a set amount of kills as a giant, players can upgrade themselves into a more powerful version, unlocking their “ultimate skill” that destroys a massive amount of enemies if used correctly. Giants do have a set amount of health and their skills utilize stamina, so it isn’t as if they’re unkillable. But if the zombies had all the nifty features, then this mode wouldn’t be any fun. As a regular, puny human, the goal is to get as many shots on the giants as possible, for both score points and “support” points are awarded upon a successful kill or assist. Score points get players closer to winning the match, and support points offer a variety of uses so that the human players do not feel so pathetic. These support points can be spent on getting armor, regaining health, resupplying ammo, or being used to activate a special skill. Human players can use them to either bomb the zombie with a satellite missile, or turn themselves into a walking mech that looks like it came straight out of a Matrix film. The robot will consume all of the player’s support points, but allows them to do more damage and be more durable. Mechs can stand toe-to-toe with the zombie giants, so its usually best to save the support points for that perk. Scattered around the map are UAV controls which players can use to do a quick aerial bombing of the mutants also, allowing the humans to effectively fight the massive behemoths. The only qualm I have for this game mode is how clunky the movement can be, both as a giant and as a human.
Overall, the Zombie Giant mode gives a glimpse to what players can expect when trying out the various zombie modes that CSN:Z has to offer. They’re all fun to play, and players will never feel like either side is too overpowered (unless there’s an exceptionally good player on the other team). Other notable modes include: Bot Zombie, Zombie Shelter, Zombie Hero, and Zombie Scenario. Bot Zombie allows players to experience the joy of shooting up mindless zombies, Zombie Shelter plays like a tower defense and forces players to work together to create a safe zone from the undead, Zombie Hero separates players into zombies and humans that both have special skills, and Zombie Scenario grants players some delicious storyline-focused action. There are plenty of modes out there for both PvE and PvP gameplay, and all of them are great to delve into.
Not all modes include shooting each other up, or defending earth from zombies. CSN:Z offers some entertaining, “Fun” game modes for players to mess around in. One of these “Fun” game modes is called Bazooka Battle, which should be pretty self-explanatory. Since rocket launchers are not common in other game modes, this mode equips all players with bazookas, allowing for chaotic and crazy fun. Note, do not try to rocket jump. It’ll end badly for you.
Once you’re tired of blowing up other players, you can move on to the Soccer mode. Again, the name reflects the game. Players are split into two teams, and thrown into a soccer field type of map. The ball is obtained by touching it and lost when hit by an enemy player. Everyone is limited to only melee attacks, and players have the ability to pass it back and forth between their teammates, making for some wonderful FIFA World Cup action. I played this mode with a random group of players and we basically recreated the infamous Germany vs. Brazil match from the last World Cup. Sadly, my team was Brazil and we lost horribly. Other modes include Hidden and Item battle. In Hidden, one player is randomly selected every round to become a ‘Hidden’, a creature that is invisible and goes around assassinating other players. In Item Battle, hilarity ensues. It’s a pretty standard team deathmatch, but with items included. These items give players boosts and perks varying from speed boosts, knock-back bullets, the ability to super jump into the sky, or even turn into a creepy clown. Whichever ‘Fun’ mode players decide to play, they can expect to have many good laughs, and a great time.
The Good and the Bad
As a fan of the zombie genre, I enjoyed the numerous game modes CSN:Z has to offer that allowed me to wreak havoc against, and as zombies. Having played and enjoyed the older Counter-Strike titles, this game will give players a slice of history with it’s CS 1.6 gameplay, as well as more modern additions such as family systems, microtransactions and their crafting system. There's something for everyone. Those not interested in zombies can take to the Deathmatch modes, while those who want to mess around can jump into a Soccer match. CSN:Z also contains a ranking system similar to many other FPS, where players can obtain ranks related to soldier ranks (2nd Battalion, etc.), but these are merely bragging rights and do not accurately reflect skill level. If anything, it just shows how long you have been playing.
Despite the various positives that Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombie has, it also possesses a number of negatives that cannot be ignored. Firstly, the microtransaction system plagues this game to an unreasonable extent. To seriously become the best of the best, or even to get a good gun, players will be prompted to either pray to the RNG gods of the world or use real money to better the chances. Some of the better guns in the game are locked behind items that require money to purchase, and even then the gun is randomized. Thankfully, most of these items that cost actual money aren’t expensive, usually being a dollar or two in price. Another negative to me is the crafting system, as it is the only way to obtain new weapons. It’s purely RNG based, and the weapons that players can receive are not always good. I’d prefer if I could just raise enough points to purchase a permanent weapon, even if the cost of it was rather high. Instead, CSN:Z gives players guns with an expiration date, so that no matter how much work players put into upgrading and crafting a weapon, it’ll be gone eventually. However, some weapons are able to be upgraded into having a permanent duration, but the luck of doing so is purely up to chance. The final issue that this game has is its client interface, as it’s extremely cluttered, making it sometimes complicated to use. Others may also complain about the dated graphics, over-the-top sound effects, and sometimes clunky movements, but these issues aren’t on the top of my list.
Final Verdict - Fair
Overall, I believe CSN:Z is a well-packaged game that boasts a plethora of game modes and fun things to do, and would be immensely popular, if it were released earlier like Counter-Strike online was. CSN:Z was released in 2014, while Counter-Strike: Global Offensive was released in 2012. Already, CSN:Z was lingering in the shadows of its more modern sibling. Its dated graphics alone may drive away a lot of players, and lets not forget it IS a spin-off of Counter-Strike online, which is immensely popular in Asia. As we all know, most spin-offs pale in comparison to the original. CSN:Z is targeted towards hardcore fans of older Counter-Strike titles. This is evident once in the game, as many of their servers are empty, and the occupied ones are filled with non-native english speakers. Overall, this game is a blast from the past with intuitive additions from the zombie genre. It’s not something I see myself playing a lot, but it’s definitely worth a try if you are a fan of classic Counter-Strike. As always, it’s more fun with friends.
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Videos
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Links
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies System Requirements
Operating System: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8 / 10
CPU: Celeron 2.13 GHz
Video Card: GeForce 4 TI 4200
RAM: 512 MB
Hard Disk Space: 2 GB
Operating System: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8 / 10
CPU: Pentium 4 3 GHz or better
Video Card: GeForce 6600+
RAM: 1 GB
Hard Disk Space: 3 GB
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Music & Soundtrack
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies Additional Information
Engine: GoldSrc / GoldSource (Developed by Valve Corporation in 1998)
Release Date: October 7, 2014
Development History / Background:
Counter-Strike Nexon: Zombies, called CSN:Z for short, was developed by the South Korean game developer Nexon using Valve Corporation's older GoldSrc Engine, which powers the original Counter Strike 1.6 game. CSN:Z is the Western version of "Counter-Strike Online", but with an emphasis on Zombies. The game has an eSports scene in the East, but not nearly as large as CrossFire or other popular Asian FPS games.