Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Left 4 Dead: Supreme Zombie Panic

Valve finally expanded upon the Source engine used in Counterstrike and created the fast paced, run and gun, glitch riddled zombie panic that is Left 4 Dead.

Left 4 Dead has zero storyline, just a simple test of zombie survival. Left 4 Dead tosses a combination of four players and bots into a zombie infested landscape, gives them weapons, pats them on the head, and says "good luck son". It is the perfect zombie game for those uninterested in storyline and slow pace.

This is what zombie survival enthusiasts have been waiting for; a zombie game in which the main objective is simply to endure the zombie onslaught while capping as many ravenous ghouls as necessary. Each level is fitted with a safe room at the end of an ocean of violent regular zombies as well as a few upgraded zombies known as special infected.

The list of zombie panic survivors are Francis, the too tough to be heterosexual biker, Bill, the hardened Vietnam vet whose cigarette never goes out, Louis, the former systems analyst and token black man, and Zoey, the horror film obsessed college student who looks like Claire Redfield from Resident Evil 2.

Each individual map in Left 4 Dead is a mimicry of a cheese ball zombie movie, complete with the players being listed as the cast and an awful tag line, i.e. "Curing the infection, one bullet at a time". The element of blending zombie movies with zombie games, was a stroke of pure genius on Valve's part.

The mechanics are great aside from inconveniences such as occasionally getting caught in windows and ladder climbing proving to be the most challenging element of Left 4 Dead. Survivors and zombies alike have quick free range movement with only a few "what the hell" moments in the game's physics which sometimes surface. The quick turn around feature offers a great mechanism for watching your back during a full fledged zombie panic.

The graphics are amazing and the necessity for teamwork I would assume helped Left 4 Dead receive multiplayer game of the year.

Left 4 Dead: An Accurate Depiction of Zombie Panic

Left 4 Dead is a great indicator of who you will want on your side in the event of a real zombie panic. After a few times through, you will soon discover that natural selection will weed out a great number of people should a real zombie invasion occur.

Such items as cars equipped with alarms will send a tsunami of zombies directly to your location if shot, and certain infected known as witches will only attack if their personal space is invaded.

It is mind bogglingly common that your fellow survivors will alert the horde by giving the alarm car the butt end of a rifle while slapping the witch around and spitting in her hair. Heed my words, these are the people to disassociate with in the event of zombie apocalypse.

Inversely, Major League Gaming offers a competitive competitive Left 4 Dead team ladder which can help you find people who you wouldn't mind entrusting your life to during a real zombie survival situation. There are also forums in which yourself and other Left 4 Dead enthusiasts can compare Internet penis sizes and participate in deep engagements about who is superior at killing zombies.

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