Counter-Strike VR Is (Basically) Here And Its Name Is Pavlov

by Joe Durbin • May 10th, 2017

A new update to the indie-created multiplayer team shooter, Pavlov VR by davevillz,  is making the game like new. And by like new I mean like another game. And by another game I mean Valve’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Pavlov is now basically CS:GO in virtual reality and it rocks.

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Much like its chief competition for the title of top VR shooter, Onward, Pavlov was designed and published by a one-man team. The title’s enigmatic creator — known online by his Steam tag, davevillz, has released an update that is chock full of compelling new features. Most notably of which now makes Pavlov feel like a VR-ified version of Counter-Strike.

The full list of updates is as follows from the developer:

New Map

First Search and destroy map is fully added, there’s been some major changes for balancing reasons. I hope you enjoy this as much as i did making it!

Workshop (Custom Maps)

Aside from the new map I’ve worked really hard on getting custom map support as early as possible. The reception has been overwhelming and there’s already maps ready to download and play. I‘m so grateful to have such dedicated community members. Many thanks to you guys!

If you’re interested in making custom maps, take a look here.

5vs5

For a better S&D experience player cap has been increased to 10 players per server. It’s fun, I’ll leave it like that.

New Servers

I’ve migrated to another provider, please let me know how these servers feel and/or if you’re having issues connecting, lagging, etc.

The first three changes are the ones that have essentially brought the CS:GO gameplay experience into VR. The new map, dubbed Sand, is highly reminiscent of CS:GO’s most iconic battlefield: Dust II.

CS:GO's Dust II

CS:GO’s Dust II

Both of these arenas are located in sun soaked, vaguely Middle-Eastern environments. Both of them feature two separate bomb sites labeled “A” and “B.” And both of them feature plenty of choke points, cover corners, tunnels, switchbacks, and other layout challenges that force strategic, team-focused gameplay.

 Pavlov’s Sand map has been on the server for several months as a textureless test area labeled “S&D Map.”

This stood for search and destroy map — a Pavlov game mode that saw two teams of four competing to either place and detonate an explosive, or intercept said explosive and/or eliminate the opposing team. Sound familiar? That’s exactly how CS:GO’s most popular game mode works.

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If all of that’s not enough, this Pavlov update is also making the game usable with Steam Workshop and letting players build their own maps. In less than 24 hours, someone has already literally built Dust from CS:GO.

Pavlov has had Search and Destroy since early in its life cycle, however, when it was being played inside the game’s only finished map — an office building — the similarities were noticeable, but not completely overwhelming. Now, inside the modded maps and patrolling Sand’s dusty alleyways, seeing the graffitied A and B circled on the sandstone walls, it can no longer be overlooked: Pavlov has essentially become CS:GO in VR.

And it’s an absolute blast.

I played the new and improved Pavlov for about an hour last night and you can see some highlights of that session in the gameplay video at the top of this post and embedded above. CS:GO is one of the most popular games in the world because of its addictive, strategic, and atmospheric gameplay. With all of that essentially being translated into VR via Pavlov, it ends up being one of the best experiences you can get on an Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.

All of the CS:GO positives are present in Pavolov’s homage. There were so many satisfying moments of taking down an enemy in a nail biting firefight or managing to diffuse the bomb at the last minute. You need to play as a team, understand the map, and aim accurately to win.

And, most importantly of all, never, ever peek.

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