Fevered: Left 4 Dead 2 Heads To The Swamp

By John Walker on July 23rd, 2009 at 10:30 am.

This week’s Comic Con sees Valve revealing new sections of Left 4 Dead 2 to the public. We’ve already seen the daytime levels set in New Orleans for The Parish campaign. Now comes Swamp Fever, with its misty, boggy setting, putting at ease those who were afraid the game wouldn’t be dark enough. This will reveal the new Boss Infected, The Spitter. We’re told, “The female Spitter has an area attack that can split up Survivors or flush them out of their hiding spots.” They’ll also show the new uncommon Infected, the Mudman (seen below), along with the cricket bat, AK47, and grenade launcher. So if you’re there, go play it! New images of the game are below.

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280 Comments »

  1. invisiblejesus says:

    @Psychopomp

    Ah, I misunderstood you then. In that case, I gotta agree with MD. If you’re going to bash the boycotters for supposedly just screaming “THEY PWOMISED!” at you, then you better actually give an answer of your own if you want to be taken seriously. Some of the boycotters on this thread have already given well thought out reasons for their opinions on the subject, I don’t see why it’s unreasonable to expect you to do the same.

  2. Psychopomp says:

    I can’t be arsed to dig it up, but basically it sums up to “They have a 360 version to worry about, and they can’t even get in what they’ve released for TF2 on the 360, due to memory constraints.”

  3. invisiblejesus says:

    What the hell does that have to do with anything? That doesn’t answer the question at all.

  4. Gorgeras says:

    He doesn’t want to answer it; it’s an awfully similar answer to one a poster on the Steam forums just made and just makes no sense.

  5. Psychopomp says:

    Yes

    Yes, it does

    Basically, I believe Valve said what they did without completely thinking it through, or that they ran into difficulties they had not foreseen.

  6. invisiblejesus says:

    That doesn’t matter. Expecting a company to follow through on what they’ve said they would do is not a sense of entitlement. It just isn’t, that’s not what a sense of entitlement is. Valve’s reasons, whatever they might be, don’t change the fact that they haven’t lived up to their word. I do think the boycotters are being a bit extreme, but they’ve got a point, and their expectations aren’t crazy. If the best rebuttal you can give to them is that Valve wasn’t competent enough to live up to their word, that’s pretty piss-poor, especially given how vehement you seem to be about it.

  7. Gorgeras says:

    That was one possibility I considered, but I have my doubts: fucking over a loyal player-base by not thinking something through is not something you don’t seriously consider making amends for.

    Number of olive branches extended by Valve to the Boycott group: 0.

    The way Valve are treating criticism strongly suggests Left4Dead 2 was an extremely deliberate *business* decision, not a technical thing. The date which Valve gives for when they started on Left4Dead 2 suggests they made the technical limitations that walled them into making it a full sequel rather than content for the original *after* deciding they were abandoning support L4D in the way they said they would.

    No, they didn’t have amazing ideas and then run into technical problems. They decided the day after it went on sale to cash in on a sequel and had the ideas that would technically restrict it to being stand-alone later, hence the delay in announcement, bug fixes, news on bug fixes, gameplay fixes, missing Versus content etc.

    I’ve never heard a more ridiculous excuse for a premature sequel.

  8. jalf says:

    @Psychopomp: So you’re saying that it’s ok to charge money for a service you end up not delivering, as long as it’s because you “hadn’t thought it through, or ran into difficulties?”

    I don’t know which world you live in, but it’s not one where I’d want to spend my money.

  9. invisiblejesus says:

    To be fair, Gorgeras, this is the same Valve that let a stupid flamefest over whether the Survival pack would be free or not fester for a couple weeks, then gave the thing away for free in the end. It wouldn’t be unlike them to let people get angry and kick up a fuss, then eventually wind up doing more or less what the boycotters ask for. It’s one reason I think they’re being a bit extreme, it’s very much Valve’s MO to give the players what they want, but to let them stew over it for a bit first.

  10. Psychopomp says:

    @invisiblejesus

    So you’re telling me you’ve never promised something, only to find out later you can’t go feasibly go through with it?

    Yeah, sure.

  11. Gorgeras says:

    If it turns out Valve releases L4D 2 in a way consistent with the requests of the Boycott group, I still think someone should be held to account. Using this for publicity would be extremely irresponsible.

    Best-case scenario at the moment is that Valve stick to their guns, but actually give something other than the lame dick excuses put out so far.

  12. Andy`` says:

    “How is it a sense of entitlement is Valve said they were going to do it? I mean, no one assumed it, they came right out and SAID it.”

    The following “You”‘s are aimed at nobody in particular.

    When was the last time you said you’d do something, go somewhere, or expressed a particular viewpoint to someone and then later changed your mind? Did you have a good reason for it? What did they think about it when you told them?

    Valve made what they think is the right decision. You think differently, and that’s fine. But they didn’t promise anything, they don’t owe you anything, and they seem to feel bad about it but its what they want to do, because they have their reasons (some of which they’ve explained, I think. I’m sure you can work out what’s likely).

    Why is it a sense of entitlement? You’re complaining about them changing their minds. You won’t let them. But they’re allowed to, and they do nothing wrong in doing so. You might mistrust them because of it, but to claim they’re doing the wrong thing, and that they should do what you say they should, is implying that you’re entitled to their services beyond what they’ve provided, when you’re not.

  13. Gorgeras says:

    Psychopomp; there is a very good reason why Valve never gave release dates they knew they could never keep to. Perhaps they shouldn’t have messed with that formula in regards to content and support.

    The promises an organisation makes should be held to a higher standard than any single individual: they have vastly more power, flexibility and collective experience.

  14. Psychopomp says:

    Number of olive branches extended by boycott group, to Valve:0

    With that damn avatar, and the general attitude in their comments, it’s really hard to take them seriously.

    @Jalf

    As long as you tried your damndest to follow through?

    Yeah, kinda. I’m not the type to hold a grudge. Hell, I was with the steam boycott group at the beginning.

    And I want to punch everyone in the face who ever complained about the “lack” of content. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. If you don’t think Ico, Call of Duty 4, Beyond Good and Evil, and Shadow of the Collosus were worth $50 because of their length, you need a kick in the rear.

    While we’re at it, here’s something the boycotters always dodge.

    Let’s say Valve *did* release it as incremental DLC

    Is $10 per campaign some how not reasonable?
    Let’s say

  15. Psychopomp says:

    Forgetting to log-in for edit button FTL

  16. invisiblejesus says:

    @Psychopomp

    “So you’re telling me you’ve never promised something, only to find out later you can’t go feasibly go through with it?

    Yeah, sure.”

    Sure, I probably have. And those people who I let down were right to take me to task for it. When you say you’re going to do something, and then you don’t do it, you take responsibility for it. This is simple stuff, everyone knows this.

    And this bullshit about olive branches extended to Valve by the boycott group? Why do they have to extend olive branches? They’ve explained their expectations. Valve hasn’t said a word about them. If they get what they want, presumably they’ll buy the game. If they don’t, they’ll presumably go through with their boycott (and if they don’t then they deserve the flaming that they’ll no doubt get). They’re the ones with a grievance against Valve, I’m not sure where you get the idea that they need to be extending olive branches. Valve is a company, they are customers. By letting Valve know why they are unhappy, they’re already going above and beyond what most unhappy customers would be willing to do anyway.

    And yeah, I wouldn’t have paid $50 for Beyond Good and Evil. Never played CoD4 or Shadow of the Colossus, so I couldn’t say about those two.

    With regards to incremental DLC, you’re still missing the point. Valve outright said they would support L4D with free updates, like they do with TF2. TF2 doesn’t charge for incremental DLC. Therefore yeah, paying $10 per campaign would be crap, for reasons we’ve already gone over but you seem to refuse to even acknowledge.

  17. Stupoider says:

    http://www.halflife2.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/spitter10.jpg

    There’s the Spitter. She looks scary. :<

  18. invisiblejesus says:

    @Andy

    Valve is a business. They are not my friggin’ friend, and they are not your friend. They are people who offer a service in return for payment. Your argument makes perfect sense when it comes to friends. When it comes to a business that is asking for you to make a second purchase after letting you down with the first, not so much. I actually work for a small business where we answer to our customers on a regular basis. If we screw up and they opt to cut us some slack, great. But if they don’t, that’s not their fault. That’s ours for not delivering the goods like we said we would. And we sure as hell do not ask them to come back and buy a second product at full price while pretending that the first purchase was perfectly adequate.

    Again, I’m not with the boycotters simply because I did get umpteen zillion hours of play out of L4D1 and would like to continue doing the same with my friends in L4D2. It doesn’t change the fact that the boycott argument is a strong one, and you guys can’t seem to refute it without somehow confusing Valve for one of your buddies rather than a business that is competing with other businesses for your dollar.

  19. derfalconer says:

    People who point out the ‘massive’ amount of new content in the next game when compared to the first seem to never mention or acknowledge that you are paying the same full price for a game running the same engine plus reskinned models and some gimmicks. Have you watched the gameplay videos? The shove animations are the same, the guns are simply reskinned so much of the game is just recycled l4d with ‘new and exciting’ scattered about. (minus the nade launcher it seems, or whatever other new weapon that could be coded into l4d might be).

    What it basically comes down to for me is that I can’t see a single reason why this is a seperate game and not just an expansion pack. It may seem silly, but I would feel more comfortable paying for an expansion pack, even at a retarded 50$ price, than for a product billed as a stand alone but so obviously isn’t for any other reason than to charge that 50$ price. As long as they were were more honest about what this game is in reality.

  20. Psychopomp says:

    “Sure, I probably have. And those people who I let down were right to take me to task for it..”

    Don’t get me wrong, I agree with you there, although I’m an advocate of “forgive and forget.” People fuck up, and that’s all there is to it.

    “I’m not sure where you get the idea that they need to be extending olive branches.”

    Look at their avatar. You don’t flip someone off, act like children, and insult them, then expect *them* to try to make amends.

    “And yeah, I wouldn’t have paid $50 for Beyond Good and Evil.”

    http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/forum/pc/where-did-the-strange-notion-that-length-equals-value-come-from/?value=sf%25members%252%25user778&search=1&ret=all

    I’ve nothing more to say to you.

  21. Stupoider says:

    I’m one of the people who have noticed the gimmicks and the use of the same recycled engine, but I’ve had to put it aside and trust Valve. They haven’t disappointed me before, so what makes this any different?

    If it’s crap I’ll still be sad, mind.

  22. Psychopomp says:

    “People who point out the ‘massive’ amount of new content in the next game when compared to the first seem to never mention or acknowledge that you are paying the same full price for a game running the same engine plus reskinned models and some gimmicks. Have you watched the gameplay videos? The shove animations are the same, the guns are simply reskinned so much of the game is just recycled l4d with ‘new and exciting’ scattered about.”

    1)You’re blind

    2)Concerning the animation, don’t fix what isn’t broken

    3)There’s more to a sequel then new weapons, and characters.

    4)In the unlikely event that you are correct, how does this make it any different from, say, Fallout 2?

  23. RobF says:

    @derfalconer “People who point out the ‘massive’ amount of new content in the next game when compared to the first seem to never mention or acknowledge that you are paying the same full price for a game running the same engine plus reskinned models…”

    If more people did this instead of attempting to reinvent the wheel every ten minutes we’d probably have an even richer gaming environment than we already have.

  24. derfalconer says:

    1)You’re blind
    -I guess nothing in the gameplay videos I have seen jumped out at me as “This is a new experience and game as a whole that is worthy of being a standalone title and not just a good expansion”. Fair enough, maybe I am blind, I’ll schedule an appointment with an optometrist asap.

    2)Concerning the animation, don’t fix what isn’t broken
    -to a point sure, the animation works fine. Why is it the same animation for 8 totally different people (culturally, physically, stylistically) in 2 far removed locations? for the sake of less argument lets just say it’s an annoyance of mine.
    3)There’s more to a sequel then new weapons, and characters.
    -new SI, new more humid locations, and things that so far haven’t been released or fully explained yet. Sure.
    4)In the unlikely event that you are correct, how does this make it any different from, say, Fallout 2?
    I don’t know whether it will or whether it wont be different in the end, this is all speculation.

  25. Vinraith says:

    Comparing Beyond Good and Evil to Left 4 Dead is just plain heretical. BG&E was practically art, L4D is an atmospheric but otherwise run-of-the-mill co-op shooter. Games CAN be valuable well beyond what would be indicated by their playing duration (BG&E and Portal are good examples), L4D simply isn’t one of those games IMO.

  26. Tei says:

    BG&E and L4D are no different levels. L4D shine as a bit of a e-sport and a bit of a social activity. BG&E is just like a long and excellent book that make you feel things.
    Is not that L4D is better or worst than BG&E, is that where different things.

    I can even …hell… defend L4D for what it is. A masterpiece of procedural generated gameplay.
    Probablly most others procedural generated games are 8 bits games of the 80′s. Valve has reintroduced the concept to make a game session unpredictible even on a coop enviroment. Most people *hate* unpredictibility (at expense of fun) so is something like a miracle that Valve has made possible a game that people like and is unpredictible. Maybe is somewhat untrue, maybe the trick of valve has been made a game that is predictible on the esentials (you know how the shotgun will feel, and how easy/hard is to kill a generic zeb) and unpredictible on no-essentials.
    But since has been a sucesss, more games will follow, and thats make the whole world better for us all. L4D is already on the gamming history books.

  27. Psychopomp says:

    @Vin

    I’m more talking the quantity of the content itself. BG&E is more valuable than, say, Oblivion, not because it’s longer, but because it’s *better.*

  28. JoeDuck says:

    @MacBeth: Wow man, i’ll try to have you on my team if we meet in vs, 76000 zombies is a lot of zombies… :-)

    @all the angry boycott people:
    It’s simple. There are 2 sides to this story.
    One side is full of braindead morons who believe all the lies that Valve tells them and plays their games and kill 76000 zombies. :-)
    The other side holds the torch of purity, says what is right and what is wrong, defines the moral standard that should be met by the company and represents the “loyal fanbase”. If it’s not as good or as free as they demand, they get moving, go to forums and actively hunt down any information to say that Valve is wrong, that they have sold out and they should stop their practices and give stuff for free, forever. And they vow to not kill any more zombies until right is right.

    Well… MacBeth is currently 58000 zombies ahead of me, so i’m going to stay in the first side, thank you very much. Please drop by sometime and tell us how are you doing.

  29. Psychopomp says:

    JoeDuck=That guy who makes everyone feel silly.

  30. Loves L4D2 says:

    ok can people please stop whinging about it should be DLC blah blah blah it should be called L4D 1.3???
    come on guys they (Valve) made a great game alst year and they are making an even better game this year it all sounds fresh and good and i will be one of the ppl lining up and buying it on the release. so firstly does any over developer out there release DLC for free???
    nope so stop bloody whinging ok thats all im all raged out it will be a great game and cant wait for the demo!!

  31. Jamie says:

    amen. arguement against L4D boycotters is – get over it. ‘Oh no! I’m going to have to spend £25 in 6 months! Disaster!!’

  32. Jamie says:

    ‘Oh no!! I’m going to have the choice of spending £25 on a new game in 6 months time! Disaster!!!’

    Arguement against boycotters – get over it?

  33. Nick says:

    “4)In the unlikely event that you are correct, how does this make it any different from, say, Fallout 2?”

    Massively for a large number of reasons, but generally I’d compare like with like if you are trying to make a point.

  34. Andy`` says:

    invisiblejesus: I know they’re a business, to imply I was claiming Valve is my friend is fallacious (or that I was talking about friends at all), and the argument still applies – not all businesses are equal. Graphics card manufacturers are going to keep making cards regardless of the ramifications for those without money to always keep up, Football clubs don’t keep players because the fans demand it, etc etc.

    If you applied the argument to different things, you get different outcomes. Saying you’ll release Product X, Y and Z and then only managing to release product Z is going to gather some of the wrath of those that wanted Product X or Y. Saying you’ll come and do a job, which you expect to be paid for, at a certain time and day and then not doing it is a situation where you mess up the schedule of the customer, which is actually a sort of direct loss for the customer. But if you’ve entered a contract which requires your services then you’re liable to be sued or something similarly bad for not fulfilling the contract. Of course, none of us have entered such a contract with Valve, so that example doesn’t apply. In all situations, customers can and probably will be lost, but how badly that happens varies on the situation, the type of job, the reasons for it, etc.

    The whole point is, a business speculating about the possible future of their software and then coming to a different conclusion about what is actually feasible (See: Peter Molyneux, Beyond Good & Evil 2, COD:MW2 pricing, any original release dates in the last year) is NOT the same as a business providing a faulty product or service, then completely ignoring it and making a new one that they want you buy it.

    L4D1 is not an inherently flawed product to this extent, nor should we wish to go down that route is it a faulty service (it’s not really a service that we paid for, though) – if it was it would have gotten poor reviews and have been bashed really harshly by players at the time of release. If they’d never updated the game post release, and never released a sequel, there wouldn’t be such a ruckus, even if there was disappointment (because you can’t make everyone happy about a game).

    Not to say the boycott group aren’t completely devoid of sensible thoughts – I’m a little worried about a community slip too. And complaining can help keep companies in check, keep them away from seriously bad behaviour. But there’s still a sense of entitlement in that boycott group, and it’s not going anywhere soon, especially when they do silly things like claim L4D2 should only be evaluated at the time of its release and then proceed to evaluate it anyway.

  35. pignoli says:

    Can we talk about the game please? I’m sick of reading these stupid arguments. We’ve all heard them before so can we just let this dead horse rest?

    As that isn’t going to happen – people seem far too keen on constantly re-iterating themselves as if it’s going to magically change someone elses opinion – I would seriously suggest just locking the comments for L4D2 articles…

  36. Gorgeras says:

    @Psychopomp

    “Number of olive branches extended by boycott group, to Valve:0

    With that damn avatar, and the general attitude in their comments, it’s really hard to take them seriously.”

    It is EXTREMELY easy to take the comments of grass-roots members of any group and then represent it as the general nature of the whole: BNP grass-roots are almost indistinguishable from Labour, LibDem and Socialist-Labour grass-roots in their manners and views.

    Why not try doing something that’s not easy? How many olive branches have Valve asked for? Just one: “trust us” and they were given a dozen very good reasons why the answer was “no”, citing actual examples where trust in Valve was misplaced over Left4Dead. You haven’t explained why Valve need olive branches extended to them; what would they actually do if this happened? The Boycott group at least says what would change their opinion.

    Why are people so hung up on the avatar anyway? If they had a serious avatar, people would say the group is stuck-up but because they don’t it’s *easy* to throw the accusation that they are childish. Where is the actual complaint about the avatar or is this another red herring?

  37. Dominic White says:

    @pignoli – We need to assemble a list of ‘games that you can’t talk about online’. Left 4 Dead has forever been ruined by the boycott nonsense, Fallout 3 brings out the ‘consoles are ruining everything’ brigade like nothing else. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a coherent discission of anything related to Deus Ex 3 go on for more than two pages before it’s trolled into nothingness.

  38. Chemix says:

    seeing as my post is mostly ignored by the masses I’ll ask a question now: I haven’t bought a t-shirt in a good, 7 or so years, so who the frak is depeche mode, and why do people care?

  39. Dominic White says:

    Given that Depeche Mode have been going since 1980, it’s amazing you DON’T know about them.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Depeche_Mode

  40. Stupoider says:

    http://kotaku.com/5321720/left-4-dead-2-has-bulletproof-zombies-too

    Kevlar-wearing uncommon Infected. I’m starting to like this sequel. 8D

  41. Vinraith says:

    @Psychopomp

    I understood, I just disagree. There are games that trump their quantity with their quality, and BG&E is most certainly one of them. I don’t think L4D is.

  42. Tei says:

    “kevlar zombies” could be interesting. Is another bit that may add variety to the game. Somewhat fun the discussion on Kotaku. I think Witzbold is wrong here, and the guys “but is a gamey!” are right.

  43. PHeMoX says:

    Horrible horrible horrible… HL2 engine = outdated.

    This sure as heck won’t catch my attention any time soon, knowing they will silently let Left 4 Dead 1 die..

  44. Vinraith says:

    The HL2 engine has held up quite well with continued tweaking, and its one mammoth advantage is that it scales marvelously to low-end systems. I may not approve of some of their other behavior, but I do still give Valve points for prioritizing accessibility for people with “average” computers.

  45. VHATI says:

    bababoring. how can you make a survival horror game minus the horror. How about l4d1. There is nothing horror, or survival about it. fool me once, shame on, shame on you. Fool me, you can’t get fooled again.

    i dont buy valve products anymore because the little spark that make them famous has never been found in any of thier other games.

  46. Jim Rossignol says:

    VHATI: I’d say you were right, except for all those other brilliant Valve games, which means you are wrong.

  47. Alex Taldren says:

    Oh man! Check out these awesome screenshots of cool new weapons, characters, and these amazing new maps. I cannot wait to get my hands on this expans… sequel…?

  48. Psychopomp says:

    “Why are people so hung up on the avatar anyway?”

    It’s a glaring beacon of arrogance. It’s like if this was called “Rock, Paper, Fuck you:PC gaming because consoles are for nubs,” or those “hardcore,” gamers who go around calling everyone a scrub, or if I walked around in a shirt that said “Fuck you, I’m from Texas.”

    Not to imply that all of us Texans *don’t* think that on at least a subconcious level >_>

  49. Psychopomp says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baldurs_Gate_2
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallout_2
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dominions_3

    Oh man, look at these shitty games. They just added in some new characters, maps, and weapons, recorded some new dialogue, and reskinned a bunch of shit.

    The lazy gits even re-used some of their old characters, *and* are using the same engine! WHAT DO THEY TAKE US FOR?

  50. derfalconer says:

    “Oh man, look at these shitty games.”

    Sorry, did I say anywhere that l4d2 would be a shitty game? It’s ok, I can wait for you to not find those sentiments in my posts. I have a problem with how the game is billed as a sequel, standalone full priced game, not at all with ANY of the content contained in it.