Knockback or kickback is the amount of power by which you are being pushed back when you shoot or when you are shot. While there's no difference between recoil or knockback, many people still differentiate these terms: Knockback that occurs while shooting with any gun, is often called recoil, while the pushback by shooting a target is always referred to as knockback, kickback or simply kick.

Knockback in Counter-Strike series

There is a big difference between the knockback powers of the weapons in Counter-Strike: Source, also for those in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Some weapon classes have generally more knockback than others, but we will look into the weapons' knockbacks individually. It is very important to understand knockback on weapons in order to buy the best choice of weapons before the escape.


  • Pistols/Sidearms have generally little to no knockback. One exception is the Night Hawk .50c which has great knockback, and therefor very useful against zombies when you are short on ammo on you primary weapon, especially when you score a headshot. However, it has only a 7-bullet magazine size, so on a limited ammo server, this can be very dangerous if you are too close to a zombie.
  • Shotguns are very effective in Zombie Escape due to their incredible knockback. Often when close to a zombie, shooting in their torso or head can push them back at a significant range, even resulting them to land outside of the actual map if there aren't clipping walls (walls that you cannot see but block the players access). However, shotguns are often a misleading weapon because both the M3 and the xm1014 (automatic shotgun) have disadvantages that are fatal in some cases:
    • The M3 is one of the heaviest weapons, and has a slow rate of fire, so the combo is outmatched against the speed of the zombies to escape. Only use this shotgun if you are sure to stay with a relative large group of players till the end.
    • The automatic shotgun is by far the most reliable of the two, and you don't suffer speed reduction while wielding this shotgun. It has a high rate of fire and has high knockback, also capable to push zombies back at a long range. However, you cannot shoot underwater with it. On boat escape maps, this weapon is useless if you are in the water (even when you aren't under water).