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Questions I Ask Myself


What game mode do I want to go with?

  • Classic (Hostage Rescue and Retrieval)


What is the objective, the premise of the map?

  • (T) Don’t let CT’s take hostages to extraction, kill enemy team.

       (CT) Rescue hostages, kill enemy team


What is the aesthetic going to be?

  • The map will be based on a small district within Agen, France. It will share very similar architecture, textures and props presented in Agen. It is based on a small ‘backway’ to an office complex. It is a mesh of contemporary and old world architecture, which is quite common in Europe.


What is the size of the map, will it support the flow/balance/gameplay?

  • The size I am going for is considered large for a Classic (cs_) based map in Counter Strike. It will support the flow through ‘lanes’ which are spread throughout vital areas in the map. I want to go with a more defensive vs offense approach to combat, instead of everyone running around gun’s blazing. This layout will help teams organize complex tactics, and the map will have enough different routes for countering, and pushing.


How will affordance play a role – is it already apparent in the game itself?

  • Affordance for Counter-Strike is fairly straightforward, however not as common. Affordance in this level would relate more to advantage points and why certain obstacles, and/or buildings are present in that location. For example, in my east alley, there will be a balcony which sits a few feet above the foundation, which provides cover and an overall vantage point for the player. This is what I consider ‘general affordance’ because it is a common-sense rule of why something is there, and why it is beneficial.


What’s the spacial agency going to be like – crowded, slightly congested or super open?

  • The spacial agency for this map will be considered slightly congested, with minor areas being crowded. I want to diversify the map based on sections, and each section will have disadvantages and advantages. Therefore, the ‘clutter’ and set-design in each section will be diverse.



Being a competitive CSGO map, I had to think about flow and sub-elements slightly differently – taking into account various ways that players could use a variety of weapons, and how certain areas would provide boons, and detrimental effects based on weapon choice, and overall team composition. That being said, I wanted to give the Terrorists more places to move to (at least in the beginning of the match), because they play a defensive role in this situation and will have to prepare themselves, while the CTs move in, attempting to flank, out-maneuver them, and rescue the hostages.


I also wanted to keep the elements somewhat evenly distributed, and not have strict "chokepoints” because that would provide terrible gameplay, and would be considered unfair. Therefore, I do have some areas, such as East Alley as a “loose chokepoint” in the sense that you can outflank, and go to East Apartments, but still have to go through that alley. I wanted to give players huge advantages, but also huge disadvantages based on each element.


For example, in West Apartments, the Upper Balcony has a clear view of the hostage office room. A CT player can cover his allies, and pick off Terrorists in Mid, and also the top floor of the office (taking out campers). However, this position is easily flanked from behind, and is also easy to spot by Terrorists in Mid – it is also considered risky to get to, because Terrorists can get there faster, and therefore camp this area for CTs.



There have been some slight additions to the map since this topdown has been created, but not enough to make an imperative difference in flow, and overall gameplay.


Since this is a multiplayer map, and CSGO tends to have minimal trigger based objects, I went with a simplistic and easy to understand topdown that illustrated the flow, and overall spacial agency (without statics present). The green labeled areas are interiors, and the tan color is the base ground. The CTs spawn to the south, in a parking lot just outside of the small district. The Ts spawn on the 2nd story of the office complex, just outside of the hostage room overlooking the small town.


This topdown, like all topdowns helped me incredibly when greyboxing the level. I was able to understand the layout for the architecture, and the overall flow (based on relative measurements from the pre-production). I wanted to keep the map ‘lane’ based in the sense that both sides could push hard, and flank the enemy. If you take a look at the topdown, you will notice there are 3 main lanes.


  • West Apartments

    • West Alley

    • Exit to Road

  • Mid

    • Road

    • Buildings Mid

    • West Apartment Balcony (hybrid spot – good control position)

  • East Alley

    • East Apartments

I went into this project thinking I could tackle it, and complete it in about 2 months, but this was false. This map was a pivotal moment in my life, because it was one of the first maps to ever give me such a headache.


Do not focus on detail too early in the project. I started my grey-boxing and got caught up in minor details along the way, which later gave me difficulties. 

Below are some Developmental screenshots


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