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

Valve Corporation

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

Left 4 Dead 2 (abbreviated L4D2) is a single-player and multiplayer cooperative survival horror first person shooter game developed by Valve Corporation. It is the sequel to Left 4 Dead, and was built using Source engine. It was first announced on June 1, 2009 by Valve Corporation at Microsoft's E3 2009 press conference. The game is available on PC and Xbox 360.

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

Plot[]

Left_4_Dead_2_Soundtrack_-_'Dark_Carnival'-0

Left 4 Dead 2 Soundtrack - 'Dark Carnival'-0

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

The story take place in Savannah, Georgia, after the event in The Sacrifice. The four survivors climb up the roof to witness the last rescue helicopter leaves the rooftop of The Vannah. They decide to go to a mall, where a second evacuation point is located. While on their way, they learn each other name: Ellis, Coach, Rochelle and Nick. After an encounter with Whitaker, the survivors enter the mall to discovered that it is overrun, with all CEDA agents at the center are either dead or infected as well. The group enters the mall's atrium to discover Jimmy Gibbs Jr.'s stock car and, with Ellis's plan, fuel up the car to break out of the mall, where they head to New Orleans, rumored to be the last standing city in America.

The four then arrive at the raised bridge in Rayford, where they meet Francis, Louis and Zoey. Bill sacrifices his life to raise the bridge, while Louis is wounded by a Witch as the group explores Rayford. Because the new survivors need to cross the bridge, they must find another way across and refill the generator. After battling through a wedding, the streets and a "historical sewer", they meet up with the original survivors again, who help covering the new survivors while they fending of the Infected to fill the generator and lower the bridge.

They continue to drive until they reach Griffin County, where they find the highway is completely blocked by abandoned vehicles, forcing them to proceed on foot through the abandoned through miles of abandoned car, which they found a search light is still on far away. The lights are revealed to come from Whispering Oaks Amusement Park. As they fight their way through and navigate to the stadium, Coach comes up with an idea to use the concert equipment in The Peach Pit, abandoned by Midnight Riders, to attract the helicopter pilot's attention. The plan worked, and the Survivors manage to evacuate in the helicopter as the masses of Infected swarm the stadium.

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

After being rescued, the helicopter pilot becomes infected, prompting Nick to shoot him and cause the helicopter to crash. The Survivors exit the wrecked helicopter to find that they have landed in a bayou. They discover a small village, where the villagers decided to fend off for themselves, but ultimately failed as they were overrun. Work their way through the swamp, the survivors come across a crashed plane, dead military paratroopers, and infected swamp villagers. The previous survivors had informed any passerby to head to the Plantation House. When the survivors head there, they found a radio, which they contact Virgil for rescue. After fending off the horde, Virgil blasts the gate open to allow the survivors to escape on his boat before they could overwhelm them.

On their to New Orleans, Virgil's boat runs low on fuel and drop the survivors at Ducatel, Mississippi to find gas. The survivors forgot the gun bag, and the local gas station ran out of gas, forced them to go to the next gas station two miles away. Passing through an abandoned sugar mill infested with Witches, they found the gas station. After collecting their fuel, they begin to head back where a stormy weather hit. Going all the way back to the Burger Tank, Coach comes up with the idea to use the Burger Tank's sign to signal Virgil, which they success to do so as Virgil arrives to pick them up before the Survivors are overwhelmed by the Infected.

Virgil drop the group on New Orleans, where Coach is immediately reinvigorated as they see fighter jets in the sky, knowing that the military had not abandoned the city yet, though Nick was skeptical about their presence. They decide that the bridge in the distance is the best chance of survival and discover the corpses of non-infected people on the way. The survivors suspect that the military took over CEDA's pitiful attempts to contain the situation as they find themselves in an area being bombed by the military, and quicken their pace to the bridge. They interrupt a transmission on the bridge between the two military personnel: Papa Gator and Rescue 7, which the two suspect that the Survivors are Carriers. Rescue 7 are prepared to carry the carriers, as papa Gator informs the Survivors that they are lucky as they had just pulled out of the area, and that they must reach to the other side of the bridge for rescue. The Survivors fight through the Infected amassed on the bridge and reach Rescue 7, which as he carry the survivor out, the fighter jets bomb the bridge to prevent the Infected from leaving the city and the pilot takes them out to a military cruise ship at sea. [3]

The Cover and Rating[]

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 a hand model named 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 declined to comment.[4]

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 the background did 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: The 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 the official authorities.

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 Secondary Weapon
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"
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"
Context sensitive controls[]
  • The X button is used to interact with other things. Using it, you can pick the objects up, open doors or help the 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 that 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.

Reception[]

Left 4 Dead 2 was universally acclaimed by critics, with a Metacritic score of 89/100 on both PC[5] & Xbox 360[6] based on 55 critic reviews and 76 critic reviews respectively.

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 that 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.

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 that they promised.

Valve informed the fans that they have been tracking their comments ever since the first announcement on June 1, 2009 and their response was 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 to get more free updates and save money. Valve 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 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 both own and play Left 4 Dead 2.[7][8]

As of 2011, Valve has ported all six original campaigns from Left 4 Dead to Left 4 Dead 2, playable with the original survivors. No Mercy and The Sacrifice were ported to the game on October 5, 2010, while the rest were ported with the addition of Cold Stream on March 22, 2011. The campaigns are virtually identical to their original versions besides the addition of melee weapons (which were absent from the original game) and updated character icons.

Gallery[]

Trailers[]

Main article: Left 4 Dead 2 Trailer
See also: Videos and Trailers#Left 4 Dead 2

Screenshots and Concept art[]

Features[]

Major changes from the original[]

Downloadable Content[]

Split screen[]

Split screen play is fully supported on the Xbox 360 allowing the players to play both online and offline with a friend by 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.

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. The 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 considered calling it Back 4 More.[9] [?]
  • 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 became both Coach and Nick, but is simply commenting on the similar lineup of the main characters in relation to the previous game.
  • As seen in some gameplay videos, the "Dying Animation" of the Hunter and Smoker 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'.
  • The clues for how all of the game's campaigns related 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.
  • Every time that you started Left 4 Dead 2 up, the loading screen, menu background animation and music will change to match one of the 5 campaigns.[10]
  • Left 4 Dead 2 was nominated for "Game of the Year" in the 2009 Spike Video Game Awards. It also won the 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 that they are shown is different. The differences included 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.

External Links[]

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

References[]

Gameplay Modes
Introduced in Left 4 Dead Introduced in Left 4 Dead 2
Single icon.png Campaign icon.png Versus icon.png Survival icon.png Scavenge icon.png Realism icon.png Mutation icon.png Realism Versus icon.png Versus survival.png
Single Player Campaign Versus Survival Scavenge Realism Mutation Realism VS Versus Survival
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