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Left 4 Dead 2

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Left 4 Dead 2
Left4dead2cover
Developer(s) Valve Corporation
Distributor(s)

Valve Corporation
Steam
Electronic Arts

Designer(s) Mike Booth
Writer(s) Chet Faliszek
Composer(s) Mike Morasky
Release date

Xbox 360, PC
US November 17, 2009
EU November 19, 2009
Mac
October 5, 2010

Genre(s)Co-operative
Online
Survival horror
First-person shooter
Game modes Single player, multiplayer
Platform(s) PC, Xbox 360, Mac
Prequel Left 4 Dead
Sequel N/A

Left 4 Dead 2 is a single-player and multiplayer co-operative survival horror FPS game developed by Valve Corporation. It is the sequel to Left 4 Dead, it was first announced June 1st 2009 by Valve Corporation at Microsoft's E3 2009 press conference.

As of January 24, 2010, Metacritic gave Left 4 Dead 2 a metascore of 89 out of 100.

The Left 4 Dead 2 multiplayer demo was released on October 28th, for those who pre-ordered. It was then made available to the public on November 3rd. [1][2]

The sequel picks up one week after the events of the first game (four weeks after the first infection) where The Infection has spread to the southern United States. [3] Left 4 Dead 2 introduces three new Special Infected, new weapons, melee weapons, new items, upgraded Infected, the Uncommon Common Infected, five new campaigns, and two new game modes: Scavenge Mode and Realism Mode. Realism Versus and Mutations were later released with the The Passing DLC, a new campaign which chronologically fits in as the second campaign out of six.

The four Survivors the players control are Nick, Ellis, Rochelle, and Coach.

Game Requirements

MINIMUM SPECS/ PC
Disk Drive : DVD-ROM
DirectX : 9.0, Mac OS X will use OpenGL 3
Hard Drive Space : At least 7.5 GB of free space
Operating System : Windows 7, Vista, Vista 64, XP, MacOS X 10.6.4 or higher ( Snow Leopard Graphics Update required )
Processor : 3.0 GHz P4, Intel core 2 duo 2.4GHz or better recommended
RAM : 1 GB for XP / 2GB for Vista, Mac
Video Card : nVidia GeForce 6600 or higher / ATI Radeon X800 or higher

Awards

Left 4 Dead 2 was featured as one of Game Informer's top 50 games of 2009. Game Informer had this to say:

"Ever wonder how far you could make it through the zombie apocalypse with just a chainsaw and a grenade launcher? Left 4 Dead 2 has your answer. Everything about Valve's sequel to last year's intense co-op FPS is amplified, with gratuitous gore, tons of melee weapons, intensified finales, and even more zombies. If you still think this sequel came too soon, then you haven't cracked a clown zombie in the face with a cricket bat while protecting a lawn gnome."

The Drunk Tank Podcast by RoosterTeeth named Left 4 Dead 2 the best game of 2009.

Plot

Left-4-dead-2-20090601025212186 640w

The campaign poster for The Parish, the final campaign in the game.

The plot is similar to Left 4 Dead; it involves the aftermath of the the Infection one week after the events of the previous game, now being around three weeks after the first infection.

The story starts around noon in Savannah, Georgia. As the last rescue helicopter leaves the building, four unlucky Survivors climb up the hotel to find that they were just a couple of seconds too late. With this newfound predicament, the group decides to go to a mall, where it is said that another evacuation center is still in operation. When the group reaches the mall, they find that it has been overwhelmed by the Infected. In desperate hope, they decide to pierce deeper into the building in hopes that the evacuation center was simply deeper inside. It turns out that the center was decimated, and all the CEDA agents are either dead or infected. In despair, the group wanders into the mall's atrium and finds a functioning stock car, albeit without gas. A new idea appears in their heads; to scrounge around the atrium in search of gas cans, for the purpose of filling the car's tank. This proves successful, and the Survivors escape Savannah.

During their escape, the group stops at a bridge raised by three of the original Survivors from Left 4 Dead. One of them will meet the Survivors and inform them that they cannot lower the bridge for the group because the generator used to lower the bridge is out of fuel, and they must tend to one of their own who is wounded. After battling through a wedding with the Witch bride, the streets, and a "historical sewer," the Survivors then meet up with the other three again. After the three original Survivors agree to help by defending them from higher ground, the Savannah group is able to fend off most of the Infected, find gas cans, fill up the generator, cross the lowered bridge, and drive off while exchanging farewells as they continue to New Orleans.

The escape car works well until the Survivors find that the highway is blocked by abandoned vehicles, seemingly going on for miles. Finding no other way past, the Survivors leave the car behind and proceed by foot. When they go below the overpass, they see searchlights still online in the distance. The group then decides to head for the lights, in hope of finding some uninfected people. The searchlights turn out to be originating from Whispering Oaks Amusement Park and Fairgrounds, which is now a hunting ground for a large number of Infected individuals. The Survivors wander through the park for a bit of time until they see a helicopter fly over head. Newly inspired, they decide to hold a rock concert set up for the Midnight Riders in hopes that the loud music and Grammy-award-winning pyrotechnics will attract the helicopter. When they finally enter the amphitheater, they activate the controls and find out that the sound is attracting a massive amount of Infected along with the helicopter pilot. After much fighting, the helicopter finally decides to make a pick-up and the Survivors barely escape the abandoned carnival.

The Survivors of L4D2

The Survivors of Left 4 Dead 2. (From left to right: Ellis, Coach, Rochelle, and Nick)

But once again, luck is not on their side, and the helicopter is forced to do a crash landing after the helicopter pilot turns out to be infected and was shot by one of the Survivors. The Survivors exit the wrecked helicopter to find that they landed in a bayou. They pass through a small village and find that the populace decided to take matters into their own hands and barricade themselves against the Infected. Without any other option, the Survivors decide to try to find the barricaded area. They travel through a swamp, fight numerous Infected, and find a crashed airliner in their path to the safe area. When they reach it, they discover that the townspeople were overwhelmed by the infection, but luck turns out to be on their side this time as they find someone wrote on a wall about an old plantation house and a nearby dock. The Survivors head toward it and find a radio, and manage to contact a man named Virgil who has a boat further down the river. Virgil and the group have a short discussion via radio, and the Survivors tell him that they are at the plantation home. Virgil recognizes the location and begins to navigate his way to their location. After the Survivors fight off hordes of Infected, Virgil arrives and blows down the gates that blocked their way to the river, the Survivors then jump on the boat to safety.

However, along the way, Virgil's boat begins to run low on fuel, so he drops the Survivors off by a small town in Ducatel, Mississippi, with instructions to get diesel for the boat from the gas station across the road. Unfortunately, this gas station is out of fuel, and the Survivors forgot the bag of guns, and have to travel two miles east, navigating through a Witch-infested sugar mill to collect gas. Even more unfortunately, they have to once again walk those two miles back, except uphill, in the midst of a torrential downpour. The forgotten bag of guns also held the flares to contact Virgil. So they decide to signal Virgil by lighting up the Burger Tank sign near the dock. They defend themselves once more against hordes of Infected until Virgil finally arrives for them.

At long last, Virgil drops the Survivors at a waterfront in New Orleans. He then leaves, saying he is on his way to find other Survivors. The group of Survivors then fight their way through the waterfront, a park, a cemetery, and the French Quarter, coming to a bridge in the middle of being bombed by the military. On the other side of the bridge is a military chopper about to leave. The Survivors manage to contact the military over the radio and then run across the bridge to the awaiting chopper pilot who carries them to a military cruise ship. [4].

The Cover and Rating

L4dcovers123

The latest cover hand (left), the previous one (center), and the oldest known one (right).

The cover of the Left 4 Dead 2 is almost identical to the original Left 4 Dead cover. The hand was modeled once again by hand model Andrea Wicklund.

The idea was to create a hand missing another two fingers along with the famous original missing thumb, resulting in a hand only holding up two fingers, further signifying the number two. The background's color was also changed to a lighter shade of green.

Around June 2009 the ESRB told Valve that the new cover is unacceptable, and the idea was changed to tucking the two unwanted fingers behind the hand to attain the desired effect, yet still keep the missing thumb.

  • The ESRB was asked why they still allowed the new cover with only the missing thumb, yet not accepting the two unwanted fingers and the thumb. The ESRB has declined to comment. [5]

Around July 2009 Valve decided to change the cover once again, making the two tucked-away fingers slightly more visible. The hand drastically changed, as did the background, which is now yellow.

In the United Kingdom, the cover was changed to show the hand facing the opposite direction, as the two-finger sign towards the viewer is considered an insult. This cover design change does not apply with the New Zealand and Australian versions of the game even though the direction of the two-finger sign applies in those countries as well. In addition, the German and Japanese version of the cover features all of the fingers intact as it did with the first game due to the same censorship reasons that applied to the first game's cover.

Australia and Germany censored Left 4 Dead 2, removing some features generally to do with violence:

  • Blood and gore: Virtually no blood is found after killing the Infected and is impossible to remove any body parts from using weapons on them. Despite this, achievements for dismemberment were still included and can be awarded in the Australian version
  • Fire and Explosive Effects: Infected can no longer be set on fire and no damage is visible when hit with Explosive Ammo or the Pipe Bomb. Infected that the game registers as having been set on fire act in the same way as they would if on fire except that no fire is visible.
  • Bodies: After dying, the Infected disappear, often before they even hit the ground
  • Infected: The Riot Infected is removed from the game, because it "encourages violence against official authority". In the Australian version, the Riot Infected was eventually put back in with minor alterations to remove any connection to official authorities.

Major changes from the original

Controls

These are the default controls of Left 4 Dead 2 for both the PC and Xbox 360 versions.

PC

Both Sides
Button Action
W Move Forward
S Move Backward
A Strafe Left
D Strafe Right
Space Bar Jump
Left Ctrl Crouch
Shift Walk
C Voice Chat
T Team Message
Y Players Message
F4 Spray Tag
M Choose Team
H See Message of the Day
Tab Status Screen
Esc Main Menu - Start Vote
F1 Vote Yes
F2 Vote No
F5 Screen Capture


Survivors
Button Action
Left Click Fire Weapon / Throw Grenade / Use Current Item
Right Click Melee Attack / Heal Other / Give to Other
Middle Click Rifle Scope
Mousewheel Scroll Up Select Previous
PrevMousewheel Scroll Down Select Next
1 Select Primary Weapon
2 Select Pistol
3 Molotov / Pipe Bomb / Boomer Bile
4 Primary Healing Slot
5

Temporary Healing Slot

R Reload
E Use
Q Select Previous Weapon
F Toggle Flashlight on/off
Z Give Orders
X Questions and Answers


Infected
Button Action
Left Click Use Infected Ability
Right Click Melee Attack (Throw Concrete as the Tank)
E Move closer to Survivor Position (Ghost Mode Only)
Left Ctrl Crouch (Enter attack position as Hunter)

Xbox 360

Survivors
Button Action
Left Stick Move (Click to Vocalize)
Right Stick Look (Click to use Sniper Rifle Scope)
A Jump
B Reload
X Use [Open Doors]
Y Select Weapon
LB Crouch
RB 180° Spin
RT Primary Attack: Fire
LT Secondary Attack: Melee Shove
D-Pad Up Flashlight
D-Pad Right Select Primary Healing Slot
D-Pad Down Select Temporary Healing Slot
D-Pad Left Select Molotov / Pipe bomb / Bile Bomb
Start Main Menu / Vote "Yes"
Back Status Screen / Vote "No"


Context sensitive controls
  • The X button is used to interact with other things. Using it, you can pick up objects, open doors, or help other Survivors to their feet.
  • Select the first aid kit, target a teammate and press and hold LT to heal them. It has the same effect as them healing themselves. (It will therefore take 5 seconds and heal damage depending on the current hp of the person)
  • Select the pain pills, target a teammate, press and hold LT to give the pills to them.

Refer to health for further tips. Make sure your teammates know how to revive you and give first aid kits and/or pain pills to you. The Survivors need to watch out for each other.

Infected

Infected
Button Action
Left Stick Move
Right Stick Look
A Jump
B No function
X Move to Survivor Position (Spawn Mode, or When Far Enough Away From Survivors)
Y No function
LB Crouch (Enter attack position as Hunter)
RB 180° Spin
RT Primary Attack: Fire (Tank: Melee)
LT Secondary Attack: Claw (Tank: Throw)
D-Pad Up No function
D-Pad Right No function
D-Pad Down No function
D-Pad Left No function
Start Main Menu / Vote "Yes"
Back Status Screen / Vote "No"

Boycott

Shortly after Valve's announcement of Left 4 Dead 2, many fans were shocked of the idea due to the short period of time after the first Left 4 Dead and the fact that the long promised SDK (which is essential to making new levels for Left 4 Dead) was being held back because of this. Hours after the announcement fans gathered together and formed a group called L4D2 Boycott (NO-L4D2); the group reached 10,000 members in one week and 35,000 members in three weeks. The group believed that Left 4 Dead 2 should not be a separate game in order to keep the community one, claiming that releasing a sequel would split the community. Their suggestion was to make Left 4 Dead 2 either an expansion pack that is not full-priced or free downloadable content, citing a lack of new content and also voicing their preference to keep the original Survivors and maps. Many fans were also disappointed that Valve had yet to deliver the free DLC they promised.

Valve has informed the fans that they have been tracking their comments ever since the first announcement on 1st June 2009, and their response were that Left 4 Dead will continue to be supported with downloadable content. This announcement caused some fans to believe that Valve saw the fans of Left 4 Dead as boycotting the sequel only get more free updates and to save money. Valve has also said that they are discussing the matter and are considering importing the original maps into Left 4 Dead 2; nothing regarding the original Survivors was mentioned.

The boycott was not especially effective because the pre-order sales of Left 4 Dead 2 quadrupled the pre-order sales of Left 4 Dead .

The boycott has since been officially disbanded as the founders themselves have said that they have done what they set out to do and are now sympathetic with Valve's work on Left 4 Dead 2, but however still maintain that they themselves will not buy the game.  Despite stating this, one should note the irony that on the leader's profiles it is noted that they own and play Left 4 Dead 2.[6][7]

Notes

  • The game takes place in Autumn as seen in a banner in the beginning of the trailer, as well as various pieces of graffiti which are dated for early October.
  • In the trailer, one can see what appears to be Marine Corps or Navy F/A-18 Hornets bombing the Infected. Infected can also be seen breaking through fenced barriers, implying Valve's statement that New Orleans had been relatively safe from the infection before the events of Left 4 Dead 2.
  • Valve seems to have reused the baseball bat hitting sound from the sound used in Team Fortress 2, which was also used in Half-Life 2. However, they have applied new, more authentic wooden sounds for it.
  • Valve decided not to give the game an elaborate sequel name because the title is so straightforward. However, the team did consider calling it Back 4 More.[8]
  • Upon seeing the campaign poster for The Parish with all four Survivors standing together, Game Informer Magazine commented; "Now the Black Guy is also the Old Guy and the office professional is wearing a suit instead of a tie. Yep, they're really mixing it up this time around.", this statement might be seen as contradictory, implying that there are two Louises who have become both Coach and Nick, but is simply commenting on the similar lineup of main characters in relation to the previous game.
  • As seen in some Gameplay Videos the "Dying Animation" of the Hunter and Smoker have been changed. Instead of flying away when being shot in the head like in the first Left 4 Dead they just fall on the ground like any other Infected. The Charger and Jockey can still go flying when killed, depending on how they moved before death.
  • Although the UK's boxart was changed due to censorship issues, the manual and the game avatar keep the original 'hand logo'.
  • For unknown reasons, the new Survivors address ammunition piles as guns rather than correctly addressing them as ammo like in the previous game. Valve has addressed the issue and are working to correct this.
  • The clues for how all of the game's campaigns relate are less subtle than the ones for the campaigns in the first game which provided little to no obvious signs of how the Survivors ended up in each campaign with the exception of Crash Course.
  • In the instruction manual for Left 4 Dead 2, on the Survivors page there is a picture with Ellis but the background is yellow while the other Survivors have green background. Also they used Coach's and Rochelle's old models noted by Rochelle's long hair even though it's supposed to be short and Coach's old shirt. This probably signifies that Valve didn't bother with the character pictures thus leaving them alone.
  • Every time you start up Left 4 Dead 2, the loading screen, menu background animation, and music will change to match one of the 5 campaigns. [9]
  • Left 4 Dead 2 was nominated for "Game of the Year" in the 2009 Spike Video Game Awards. It also won best Xbox 360 Game.
  • Left 4 Dead 2 came third in Screwattack's Top 10 Zombie Games, beaten only by Resident Evil 2 and Dead Rising.
  • Though numerous areas of the game's campaigns appear in the opening scene, their appearance and order they are shown is different. Differences include the Plantation's mounted gun being on the lower deck rather than the balcony above, the hotel having a room that has a health pack and several guns, and the atrium in Dead Center's mall having many more floors than in the actual game.
  • When Steam released their Mac OS X version of Steam, both Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2 had Mac OS X versions that used the same engine and servers as the PC version.
  • In the instruction manual for Left 4 Dead 2, on the game mode page, it says "Play Versus" twice. However, the second time it is mentioned, the description fits that of Realism mode.
  • The Germany opening censors decapitations, and changes the elevator scene. The riot Uncommon Infected were removed from the entire game (though seen in the opening) due to depiction of violence towards official authority in German law. As Australia got the same version as Germany, they were unfortunately affected by this same cut despite would of allowing it. The riot infected were eventually added back in through an update.
  • When viewing the credits from the Extras section in the main menu, it lists the names of the voice actors for the survivors. When The Passing DLC was released, the credits was updated with names of the voice actors for Zoey, Francis, and Louis. However, despite Bill being playable in The Sacrifice and the soon to be full release the original campaigns with the Cold Stream DLC, Bill's voice actor is not listed in the credits.

Trailers

See Also: Videos and Trailers#Left 4 Dead 2

Nobloodorsmokert

The blood and Smoker tongue is missing in the TV commercial (Bottom) but is in the Zombie Survival Guide (Top)

Main article: Left 4 Dead 2 Trailer

thumb|300px|left|Left 4 Dead 2 teaser trailer from E3 '09.

thumb|300px|left|Left 4 Dead 2 Zombie Survival Guide

thumb|300px|left|Left 4 Dead 2 Ad thumb|left|300px|Left 4 Dead 2 TV Spot 2A (Updated release date) thumb|300px|left|The third TV Spot for Left 4 Dead 2

Screenshots and Concept art

DLC

Split screen

Split screen play is fully supported on the XBOX 360 allowing players to play both online and offline with a friend using one console. On PC, split screen is unsupported but still possible. Using an XBOX 360 controller for PC and some console commands, one can play only offline with a friend. Due to changes in the console split screen online for PC is not possible, unlike Left 4 Dead where split screen PC can be done both online and offline. Doing this requires a higher-end processor.

External Links

Signed L4D2

An autographed copy of Left 4 Dead 2 given away during the "Dude Where's my Thumb 2" contest.

References

  1. http://pc.ign.com/articles/102/1027501p1.html
  2. http://kotaku.com/5365562/left-4-dead-2-demo-coming-next-month
  3. Left 4 Dead 2 is set in the American South, http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/988/988416p1.html
  4. http://www.gamespot.com/xbox360/action/left4dead2/video/6211469
  5. http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2009/06/01/left-4-dead-2-exclusive-rps-preview/
  6. http://steamcommunity.com/profiles/76561197984519218/games/
  7. http://steamcommunity.com/id/amalik/games/
  8. Official Xbox Magazine, Issue 50.
  9. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GkZtNy88Q2E Left 4 Dead 2 Main Themes
Gameplay Modes
Left 4 Dead Single icon Single Player / Campaign icon Campaign / Versus icon Versus / Survival icon Survival
Left 4 Dead 2 Single icon Single Player / Campaign icon Campaign / Versus icon Versus / Survival icon Survival / Scavenge icon Scavenge / Realism icon Realism

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