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14 Games Like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) You Must Play

July 16, 2018
12 min read

In 1999, ‘Half-Life’, the widely acclaimed science fiction shooter, was at the peak of its popularity. As part of the game, Minh Le and Jess Cliffe designed a ‘mod’ (short for modification) for the game that gradually began gaining steam. This small mod began to have a life of its own, and Valve Corporation, the parent company, recognised this and bought its rights. The humble mod would go on to spawn a series of wildly popular first-person shooters (FPS), that would redefine multiplayer gaming forever. This was ‘Counter-Strike.’

With ‘Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’ (CS:GO), the series introduced new weapon types, detailed characters, and seamless play, while retaining the familiar and accessible style of the old games. It would be quite fitting to suggest that ‘CS:GO’ is the gold standard of multiplayer gaming, and has gone on to leave a mark on other shooters in the process. Here is the list of video games similar to ‘Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’ that are our recommendations. You can play these open world games like CSGO on mac, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and even online.

14. Ironsight (TBA)

‘Ironsight’ is an upcoming FPS game being developed by Aeria Games that is currently in the beta testing process. We have a lot of expectations from this one and going by the trailers and initial gameplay content, that might be a reality. Set in a dystopian future, you will have access to futuristic weapons capable of mass destruction. In addition, you will also have access to powerful drones that you will control remotely in order to provide your team with certain advantages.

The main focus is on multiplayer and we can expect a lot of game modes on release. It seems this is one title to definitely watch out for if you like playing stuff like ‘CS: GO’ since it has the potential to make it to the top. We are yet to see the final touches before it is released globally and we will have more information for you once it does. For now, you can head on over to their official website and test the game for yourself. However, keep in mind that this is only the beta version and the final version is bound to be a lot more polished.

13. America’s Army: Proving Grounds (2015)

America’s Army: Proving Grounds’ is a first person tactical shooter video game developed and published by the U.S. Army in the year 2015. Yes, you read that right! This is a game that has been developed by our very own U.S. Army! Not only is it developed and published by them, it also happens to be the official game of the army and is played by war veterans. If that is not reason enough for you to play this game, then how about the fact that it is completely free to play?

There are rumors that the army even uses it to provide basic training to their new troops and introduce them to the tough regime of the army! So if you have ever wondered what it takes to be a part of the U.S. Army, this is your express chance to find out. You play as a new recruit who needs to go through the various training facilities within the complex and then take part in elaborate missions. You will understand the basic gameplay once you start playing yourself as it is a bit different from other games in terms of progression. However, the game modes within it are tons of fun to explore and are even competitive to some extent. You should definitely check this one out if you are a fan of FPS games like ‘CS: GO’ mainly because of its unique gameplay format.

12. PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (2017)

Well there is nothing much that needs to be said about ‘PubG’. If you are reading this article and living in 2019, then you have probably played this game already or are living under a rock! Either way, ‘PubG’ is a massively popular battle royale that seemingly exploded into the gaming scene and took the community by the storm. It has become so popular nowadays that countries are even outright banning it due to its addictive nature. So a bit of viewer judgment is advised before you start playing this one. However, if you ask us though, the game is completely fine to play and does not hamper your life if you follow a routine and a strict code of conduct.

Now, for those who are new to the game or the genre, ‘PubG’ places a total of 100 players in an open world with the ultimate aim of becoming the last one standing. How you go about achieving this, is completely up to you though! Loot is scattered throughout the battlefield and you need to be quick on your feet if you want the best of the lot. As you gear up, you progress towards the designated location on the map. A circle of death converges towards that point and any player who remains outside of it will suffer from damage. This way, it ensures that all players ultimately meet at a point and come into contact with each other. Though the gameplay format is not exactly similar to that of ‘CS: GO’, it is still extremely competitive and hence we highly recommend it to fans of the same.

11. Unreal Tournament 2004 (2004)

‘Unreal Tournament’ is a massively popular first person shooter video game series developed by Epic Games in collaboration with Digital Extremes and published for the Microsoft Windows PC, OS X and Linux systems in the year 2004. It is a direct sequel to ‘Unreal Tournament 2003’ and manages to stay pretty loyal to it. The focus is on co-op competitive multiplayer, with teams fighting it out against each other in an arena. If you have played any of the ‘Unreal Tournament’ games, before then you will exactly know what we are talking out. If not, then think of this as a more in-depth ‘Quake III Arena’.

Though there is a complete single player campaign, with a plot and everything, but who really cares for those when you can take part in deathmatches on the moon with 4x less gravity? Multiplayer is where the game shines due to its fast paced action and large user community. In addition, there are more than 9 different game modes for you to try out including a new one called onslaught. This is not the only addition to the game though. This is the first title in the series where you can take control of vehicles and zoom across huge maps, giving you a battlefield-type feeling. This is one of the best arena games out there and we highly recommend it to you if you are looking for something similar to ‘CS: GO’. The best part about this game is that you can still find people playing on the official servers even after 15 years of release! There are very few titles out there that can boast such a feat, so if you plan on checking it out, you better do it fast before they die out completely.

10. Titanfall (2014)

This multiplayer first-person shooter seemingly came out of nowhere and captivated gamers and critics alike, with its fast-paced mobility, its easy accessibility, its futuristic design, and its streamlined control mechanics. Respawn Entertainment delivered a cracking shooter experience that was expected from a developer team behind the ‘Call of Duty’ franchise. Much like ‘CS:GO’, ‘Titanfall’ relies upon cooperation and understanding the game layout to win, and it is much the better for that.

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9. Killing Floor 2 (2016)

‘Killing Floor 2’ perfected the formula of multiplayer first-person zombie shooting from the admirable first game in the series. There are multiple modes on offer here, all of which provide very different perspectives. Players can play by themselves, but the game is meant to be played with others, either ganging up on ‘Zeds’ or the monsters, or players can fight against each other, with one player adopting the role of a ‘Zed’ while the other fight him. There is great emphasis on cooperative strategic play, akin to ‘CS:GO’, as the players need to carry out a plan to defeat their monstrous enemies.

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8. Call of Duty: Black Ops III (2015)

While the entire ‘Call of Duty’ series can be said to similar to the core FPS mechanics of ‘CS:GO’, the ‘Black Ops’ subsection goes closer than the rest owing to their focus on covert operations, and robust multiplayer content. The multiplayer contained links to the main story, and players were rewarded with detailed backstories of the characters they had come across in the story campaign. The crowd favourite ‘Zombies’ mode was perfected with its blistering pace, choice of weaponry, all in a thoroughly unique setting removed from the war-torn scenes of the main games.

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7. Doom II: Hell on Earth (1994)

The sequel to perhaps the most significant FPS of all time, ‘Doom II’ came onto its own through a brutal story in the footsteps of its predecessor, larger and more detailed levels and by substantially improving its multiplayer capabilities. All of this was accomplished while retaining the core mechanic of the previous game. The game supported a large number of dial-up modems, the latest internet technology available then. This allowed players to team up or play in deathmatch-style combat. LAN was also supported, making this multiplayer experience arguably the best of the 1990s, and all these reasons are why its similar to ‘CS:GO’ which would arrive several years down the line.

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6. Battlefield 1 (2016)

EA and DICE struck gold with 2016’s ‘Battlefield 1’ praised across the world for its riveting storytelling in an anthology format, its fidelity to World War I that extended to weapons and vehicles, and its comprehensive multiplayer modes. In a fashion similar to ‘CS:GO’, the game’s multiplayer emphasises teamwork and cooperation. According to lead game designer Daniel Berlin, the new squad system allows players to join and leave game servers together, and that playing would be difficult without joining a squad.

The game’s belief in its multiplayer content is backed by an ability to support 64 players in one game, nine maps at launch with more that followed, and six separate, unique game modes, such as Conquest and Rush, to name two. ‘CS:GO’ fans would do well to give this one a go.

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5. Quake (1996)

‘Quake’ is a fabled name in the FPS genre, being one of the first 3D games to incorporate detailed levels and wider variety of multiplayer options. The game rendered its surroundings in full real-time 3D, and made online multiplayer gaming extremely accessible to thousands across the world.

Modern multiplayer games owe a lot to id Software’s proprietary QuakeSpy software for making matchmaking in online matches easier. The game prioritised multiple approaches to playing, encouraged level exploration, and allowed players to either play the main story in cooperative (co-op) mode with each other or in deathmatches against each other. The fact that its multiplayer was arguably the first to be recognised as an electronic sport (e-sport) brings it extremely close to ‘CS:GO.’

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4. Left 4 Dead 2 (2009)

‘Left 4 Dead 2’ is a co-op FPS that takes place in a zombie-ravaged wasteland. Utterly graphic and bloodcurdling, the game attracted some controversy but deservedly garnered acclaim for its intelligent enemies, and the innovative multiplayer modes. With 5 game modes as diverse as Campaign, where upto 4 players can play simultaneously, to Versus, where players adopt the roles of the Infected themselves, the game offers a wide range of co-op activities. It is also developed by Valve, so in a way, ‘Left 4 Dead 2’ is essentially ‘CS:GO’ but with zombies.

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3. Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege (2015)

Ubisoft’s ‘Tom Clancy’ franchise has lent itself capably to multiple genres, from stealth to tactical shooting. ‘Rainbow Six Siege’ was, and still remains, a blistering success in co-op tactical FPS gaming. The game was designed to encourage close quarters combat and fast-paced battles. Its main focus is on co-op gameplay, with players able to choose from counter-terrorist units such as the SAS, the Spetsnaz, the GSG-9, and the GIGN, among others. A variety of modes that include rescuing hostages to defusing bombs, and of course, vice versa, ensures that this is a must-have for all ‘CS:GO’ fans.

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2. Overwatch (2016)

Blizzard Entertainment blew its competition out of the water with its team-based multiplayer FPS game, ‘Overwatch.’ The game’s vibrant presentation coupled with accessible shooting mechanics and fluid gameplay endeared it to gamers and critics alike. Blizzard banked upon the growing popularity of online-based multiplayer shooters, a large portion of which was due to ‘CS:GO’ incidentally. The game consists of around 20 characters, each possessing unique abilities that make a difference on the battlefield. The result is a comprehensive game that takes playing with friends on a whole other level.

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1. Team Fortress Classic (1999)

Much like the original ‘Counter-Strike’, ‘Team Fortress Classic’ also started life as a mod for a more popular game. In this case, the game was ‘Quake’ and after the success of the mod, Valve Corporation released it as an independent game. It was met with great success, with its multiple scenarios, and nine separate character classes, each with their own skills, particularly praised. ‘Team Fortress Classic’ would go on to play a pivotal role in bringing the online multiplayer FPS genre to mainstream audiences, and as such, any ‘CS:GO’ would do well to revisit the game, which forms such a crucial part of the genre’s storied history.

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