Assault (cs_assault) is a popular hostage rescue map with good reasons. This map is medium sized and offers good footground for players that have a specialty in sniper weaponry or other types of weapons and there are many infiltration choices to implement for players to sneak behind enemy lines.
This map is medium sized and is relatively easy to memorize for newcomers. Although the structure design of cs_assault is considered to be unbalanced, it has strong popularity among Counter-Strike players. Furthermore, there are many ways both teams can infiltrate through concentrated enemy lines.
As for hot spots in this map, the outside and the interior of the warehouse contains plenty of combat so be sure that you are well armed to participate in or withstand a siege. However, the roofs of the building and at the Counter-Terrorist Spawn Zone contains some activity as well, especially when a gunfight results in a handful of survivors.
Sniper activity is concentrated around the warehouse roof and the bridge/train tracks. Basically, the CTs should maintain control of the bridge/train tracks while the Terrorist team can focus on the warehouse roof for sniper support. Sometimes however, at least one member of an opposing team can control both sniper spots thus causing an imbalance for that round.
In the older Counter-Strike games, all of the hostages were found within the security room. However, in Global Offensive, the hostages can be found within the security room, in the hangar, or even at floor level (although they are always found at least near the hangar).
In this map, take note that the Terrorists can rush through any area fairly quickly if your team does not keep their guard up. If the entire enemy team cooperates together, they can effectively eliminate the Counter-Terrorists by either trapping lone players, creating confusion, and forcefully induce retreating by firing bullets in every direction.
To avoid suffering this fate, be sure to remember that cs_assault is a very unique map as there are two ways you can fight against enemy players. You will engage rushing or camping Terrorists throughout the inside and the outside of the warehouse as your team will attempt to rescue all of the hostages or eliminate the opposing force.
Breaching through the warehouse can be quite a challenge as there are three entrances. They are the ventilation shaft, the main entrance, and the side door. Be careful in how you traverse through these entryways as the Terrorist team will also keep an eye on these vulnerable routes.
If you take the vent, this infiltration route has a bug in which your feet could partially stick outside and is visible for other enemy players to see (fixed in Source). Furthermore, movement and noise is easily noticed thus leading assailants to "wallbang" (the act of shooting through penetrable surfaces) through the vent and may lead you to being killed. As a consequence, human players will only use the vent at the beginning of the round (as a Terrorist) or as a last resort.
The main entrance may be tempting enough to enter but this is where the Terrorists can eliminate you as they will have the upper ground. Instead, use smoke grenades and flashbangs to stun and distract enemy players while the rest of your Counter-Terrorist squad can infiltrate through the side door and the ventilation shaft. If done properly. the enemy team should no longer maintain position of the warehouse.
As for the side door, this entry point is only recommended to take when the entire Terrorist team is distracted or have left the warehouse (which is very unlikely). This door emits a loud squeaking noise when being opened or closed so be careful in how to breach through this area.
In Counter-Strike: Source, the upper side door offers better foot ground as it will lead you directly to the upstairs within the warehouse. This is important to consider as you can then relay information on the activity of the enemy team to your team members. If you are armed with a sniper rifle, such as the AWP, and have excellent reflexes, it is feasible to take down Terrorists at the lower ground sections of the warehouse. In this version of the map, the hostage room is more complex, so watch out for potential Terrorist campers inside the room, use a flashbang for safer entry. In CS:GO, prepare a smokegrenade in case the Terrorists use Molotovs to cover the entrance.
In Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, the rooftop has some windows that can be broken to ambush Terrorists inside the warehouse. Use this advantage to kill all Terrorists below. However, breaking windows will alert the Terrorists so be sure break all three windows from a distance so Terrorists will have a harder to know exactly which window the player is currently using. A window can give a player almost a whole overview of the warehouse and it's best implement an ambush when your teammates have distracted some of the Terrorists.
As a conclusion, cooperation and coordination with your fellow team members are essential factors to remember if you and your team would like to emerge as the victorious team in cs_assault.
The warehouse offers many suitable places for campers and snipers, especially in the upper floors of the building. Furthermore, ambushes can be designed throughout the building thus reinforcing the Terrorist team's defenses aganist the Counter-Terrorists. In many situations, the round will favor your team as you and your fellow team members can easily win without exerting any effort.
However, while it is tempting for the Terrorists to sit back and camp inside the warehouse, the CTs will be vigorously and skillfully plan their infiltration routes. To prevent the enemy team from surprising you with a nasty ambush, you are required to remember that there are three main entry points throughout the warehouse which are the ventilation shaft, the main entrance, and the side door. Normally, if there are enough team members, guarding these entrances should easily identify any suspicious activity, especially when there is a Terrorist informant on the upper floor.
Since the Spawn Zone of the Terrorists are inside the warehouse, your team will be the first to reach and guard the roof. This is a very crucial factor to consider, especially when the security cameras provide additional detailed information on the movement of the Counter-Terrorists (only in Counter-Strike 1.6) However, be warned that the roof offers very little protection from enemies, including snipers, so be sure to use "hit and run" tactics or quickly eliminate assailants in every opportunity.
Note that if your team does not follow this tactic or is forced to retreat, the CT operatives can then control the roof and perhaps infiltrate through the ventilation shaft without alerting your trapped team. Basically, once after the enemy takes complete control of the warehouse and has surrounded your team, the Counter-Terrorists will then have the upper hand for that round.
This is where the Counter-Terrorists will most likely seize control as their Spawn Zone is located from the outside of the map. If they are able to coordinate a successful rushing strategy, it is possible for them to surround the Terrorist team by guarding all of the entrances and exits of the warehouse. However, if the Terrorists overwhelm the CTs by reaching the roof of the warehouse first and eliminate enemy players with sniper weaponry, the Counter-Terrorists will then either greatly struggle to regain control or will lose their chance to win on that round.
Close ranged weaponry is nearly meaningless in this open-spaced area, unless you are given the opportunity to use a flashbang or a smoke grenade and receive the chance to eliminate enemy players who are close enough. Generally, players will usually switch to their pistol to fight against opponents at longer ranges (if they are armed with a shotgun) or provide suppressive fire for their respective team. Snipers from both teams will play an important role of controlling this area.
In many situations, it is recommended to have an allied sniper to position themselves on the highway (CS 1.6), the train tracks (CS:S), or the roof of the warehouse to provide cover for team members. Take note that the Counter-Terrorists will primarily use that area to fight against enemies on the warehouse roof. However, the Terrorists can also control the highway/train tracks and prevent a CT in escorting the hostages to the rescue zone. As for counter-tactics, players will use Smoke grenades and suppressive fire to intimidate enemy snipers and will use any given opportunity to breach through enemy lines.
It is important to mention that the front entrance of the warehouse is only used to escort the hostages since they cannot efficiently move through the side nor the vents. This area is commonly avoided by many players who are wise enough to not rush through recklessly as there are better infiltration routes to take.
Snipers will prefer to hang around in these sections as it offers the highest footground in Assault. Furthermore, the roofs of the warehouse and at the CT spawn zone (CS 1.6) can provide support for teams if they are traversing around the outside. However, there are no areas that can offer cover thus players should not stay in the rooftops for too long (unless they have a team member guarding their back), this area is very dangerous for players on CT team if Terrorist snipers make their way to the warehouse roof first.
The Terrorists will normally have control over the warehouse roof but the CTs can engage them from the train tracks/bridge and distract the enemy long enough for their team members to breach through the sides.
In CS:GO, the rooftops have some small windows, which can be used to ambush Terrorists below as CT. Breaking windows will alert any players inside the warehouse so it best to destroy all three windows so enemies are unlikely to know which window you will be using. Silenced M4A1-S is the best suited as this will give enemies less likely to see the players. Scoped weapons like semi-auto sniper rifles, bolt-action sniper rifles or the scoped assault rifle can also be used to effectively ambush enemies below but it will attract attention due to it loud firing sound. Watch out for enemy snipers as well when ambushing enemies below. Furthermore, Terrorists can also utilize (by going the vent and go rooftop) the same tactic when all CTs are striking below without guarding the rooftops.
Unlike the other areas, this pathway is narrow and very short but can lead to enemy players in effectively trapping targets. Furthermore, a handful of players may guard this area with a sniper weapon and can eliminate unsuspecting victims who attempt to enter or escape from the warehouse or the roof. In here, HE grenades are deadly aganist clustered groups of trapped players and being blinded by flashbangs are nearly impossible to avoid.
Generally, this section of the map will be watched, and perhaps used, by both teams, especially when enemies were not encountered in the main entrance or the ventilation shafts.
In Source, a second entryway has been added, allowing the CTs to take higher ground in the warehouse. This makes using the Smoke grenade more useful.
Before using the side door, take precautions that enemy players may be camping nearby and will waiting for targets to enter. If possible, use any available grenade to disorientate or scare off campers or you can even open the door and quickly retreat thus fooling the enemy.
In here, caution is heavily exercised to a great extent as enemies can camp above in the upper floors and corner targets from many angles. Cover is quite scare as there are very few places where players can physically hide themselves.
Rushing through the main entrance is never recommended, unless the opposing team is distracted by covering team members. However, using a smoke grenade can help players to reduce the chance of being hit although it can attract attention and may lead you to being eliminated.
Human players will often avoid using the ventilation shaft because parts of their bodies would clip through the shaft, thus alerting enemies. However, as a last resort when enemies are distracted, this is a good route to take for the CTs. Moreover, the Terrorists may decide to slip through the vents at the beginning of the round to access the warehouse roof.
The ventilation shaft can allow team members to quietly sneak through the building but you must be absolutely certain that there are no enemies on the other side of the vents. In this situation, flashbangs and an HE grenade can be sufficient enough to flush out enemy players but be sure to traverse through this special infiltration route quickly, especially when the opposing team is alerted by your actions.
When taking the vent in CS 1.6, keep yourself in the middle and try not to crawl against the wall of the vent. The enemy can see parts of your body clipping through the vent, thus causing them to wallbang (the act of shooting through the wall). Ping Of Death Bots can also do this.
The front entrance is usually ignored in early rounds. However, in older games, this was the only exit point in which the hostages (in older games) can be escorted (as the doors in the side would hamper rescue efforts and hostages are unable to climb ladders to reach the vents, excluding Condition Zero). In Global Offensive, as a CT can now carry a hostage and this "restriction" does not exist anymore.
To access the upper floors (and rescue the hostages), players must either use the ventilation shaft, the ramp, or the ladder that connects between a pathway and a hole to the security hangar. However, this may be hard to accomplish as enemies can easily camp above, especially in the security hangar with the windows (and the security cameras in Counter-Strike 1.6). In these situations, a flashbang can come in handy by throwing the stun grenade at the warehouse security hangar and then quickly breach through the area. Oftentimes, enemy players will throw an HE grenade at the lower sections of the building as it is too risky to use an explosive when nearby the hostages.
In the security room, this is where all of the hostages are normally located. However, if some of the Terrorists have not been eliminated, then this is the place where they will have most likely camped inside. For them, it will be easy to ambush the Counter-Terrorists as the automatic doors make noise, alerting wary players. In fact, if the ventilation shaft was not checked for enemies, a Terrorist may actually be hiding above the vent opening in the security hangar. When an enemy player makes sufficient noise, a flashbang can be thrown thus blinding victims and allowing the user to descend from above and finish off stunned enemy players.
As a precaution, a Smoke grenade can be used to conceal movement and make it harder for assailants to fire their weapons. If a player is adequently skilled, the doors can be opened and a flashbang can be thrown quickly enough for that user to retreat and not get blinded. For obvious reasons, HE grenades are not recommended to use in the cramped room as the explosion will always harm the hostages.
In the older Counter-Strike games, it is possible to throw a flashbang or/and a smoke grenade at the automatic doors. This would cause at least one of the doors to open and thus make it easier for enemies to infiltrate the security room.
The Bridge/Train Tracks
This area will commonly be used by the Counter-Terrorists to ensure that they keep an eye on the main entrance and the roof of the warehouse. Snipers are quite plentiful in the bridge (CS 1.6) or the train tracks (CS:S). Normally, the Terrorists ignore this area of the map, unless the hostages were being escorted by a CT. However, the roof of the warehouse offers better footground and cover (depending on the situation) thus the Terrorists will prefer to hang around that area.
Unless it has been confirmed that there are no enemies around the main entrance of the warehouse, be very careful in how to descend from this area. Once after you fall down to access the lower areas, there may not be any room for escape.
The Terrorists will only focus their attention on this section of the map when the Counter-Terrorists have either successfully breached through the warehouse and/or are escorting the Hostages to the rescue zone. In here, snipers can be common but it is normally easy to dispatch them as they will not have enough time to fire and dodge enemy fire. However, players armed with close-ranged weaponry have to confronted very seriously as they can ambush you with a one shot, one hit kill or at least inflict heavy damage before you can counter their strategy. Campers can be hiding around the office buildings or behind some props (such as a crate) which gives them an advantage as they can keep an eye on the hostage rescue zone(s).
If an enemy sniper does become troublesome to engage, use a smoke grenade and try to strafe to avoid being hit. Depending on the range, a flashbang could be handy in some situations whereas, it could be useless. Elsewhere, an HE grenade will normally serve best for distractions or to flush out hiding enemy campers.