Video games are a premier form of entertainment, with a constantly expanding, worldwide audience. Among the millions of gamers out there, playing online is a favourite pastime – and there’s no shortage of multiplayer titles to choose from, including huge hits like Minecraft and Counter-Strike.
If you’re serious about playing PC games online, you may have already considered setting up your own gaming server. The good news is that, with affordable, flexible server hosting platforms, custom gaming servers are now within anyone’s reach.
Benefits of your own gaming server
Servers are essential for hosting a consistent game state for multiple users playing over the internet. The server constantly sends and receives data between players to ensure the game world remains stable, smooth and fair for everyone. But why should you run your own server, rather than just connect to someone else’s?
With your own server, you play by your own rules. You’re free to change the game settings with no limits, and run your favourite maps and modes for as long as you like. If other users aren’t playing nice, the power to ban is in your hands.
If your server provides enough performance, you can also run other applications alongside the game. VoIP software such as TeamSpeak and Ventrilo enables voice chat during gameplay, and it’s totally viable to host it on the same server. And of course, you can use your server for less intensive tasks like website hosting.
Counter-Strike: still pulling in the players
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) is one of the most popular online multiplayer titles, and a mainstay of modern gaming. Developed by Valve Corporation and Hidden Path Entertainment, Global Offensive is just the latest iteration of a series that originated in 2000 as a mod for Half-Life, the ground-breaking first-person shooter released way back in 1998.
The fundamentals of Counter-Strike haven’t changed since 2000. A game pits players against each other in two teams, each competing to achieve distinct objectives or eliminate the opposing side.
It’s a proven formula that’s a huge hit with gamers to this day – even compared to newer, wildly popular titles like Minecraft, League of Legends and Fortnite. CS:GO is among the top three games accessed via Valve’s Steam platform, with concurrent players regularly passing half a million. There’s also a vibrant competitive scene, involving professional esports teams, massive tournaments, and million-dollar prize pools.
Your own Counter-Strike server on CloudNX
As a fast-paced, reflex-demanding shooter, Counter-Strike definitely benefits from powerful server hosting. And with a wide range of settings, modes and maps to choose from, your own CS:GO server is ideal if you want to customise your gameplay experience.
While it’s possible to turn your own PC into a Counter-Strike server, this requires a lot of compromises. You’ll need to keep the machine running at all times, and you probably won’t have the upload speeds for a good gaming experience. A hosting provider like Fasthosts offers excellent connectivity and high-performance hardware in the optimal data centre environment.
Our CloudNX Virtual Private Server platform now offers a pre-configured server template for Counter-Strike. This allows you to create your own CS:GO server by selecting the Counter-Strike app when launching a new VPS in the CloudNX control panel.
Latency is a key consideration on a Counter-Strike server, with high response times critical for tracking players’ lightning-fast actions. On a CloudNX VPS, you get a choice of data centre locations, including the UK. This allows you to select the best data centre for minimal lag in-game.
If you only plan on running your CS:GO server at specific times, CloudNX provides the additional benefit of pay-as-you-use billing. Spin up a server, and you’ll only be billed for the resources you configure, for as long as they remain active. You can adjust your resources at any time, or shut down the server altogether when you’re not using it.
If you need tips on managing your Counter-Strike server, you’ll find a wide range of help resources from the huge community around the game. A good place to start is Valve’s official guide to setting up and running a CS:GO server.
Another essential element of server management is technical support. At Fasthosts we offer 24/7 phone support from UK-based server experts, ensuring that any issues can be resolved as quickly as possible. And if you’re not already a customer, we’ll be happy to discuss how we can provide your ideal gaming server – so get in touch to find out more.