Left 4 Dead 2 Demo Open To All

By John Walker on November 4th, 2009 at 5:46 pm.

Sadly you don't get this far in the demo.

In case you hadn’t spotted, the Left 4 Dead 2 demo is now open to all, whether you’ve pre-ordered the game or not. Which you could well argue is the point of a demo. It’s the first two levels of one campaign, so while not offering a big finish, will give you a taste for the new special infected, the melee weapons, and of course what it’s like to play L4D in the sunshine. They say to go to the official site for more details, but I can’t find any there. So instead open Steam. (Oh, and in exceedingly stupid news, if you pre-ordered L4D2 you will now also have a new hat in TF2. I feel like I’m writing news about a Barbie game.)

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144 Comments »

  1. Andy says:

    The hat deal is pretty retarded.

    In other news: Thanks Steam for automatically downloading l4d2 demo without asking me, and thereby breaking my bandwidth limit for the day and halting any chances of me downloading anything else till tomorrow. Screw user choice, YOU DO WANT L4D2!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Po0py says:

      Every time I see in game content being offered for free I remember the Gears of War 2 gold plated lancer rifle that came with the pre orders. And all those douchebags who were running around with it on Xbox Live. Thankfully the TF2 hat isn’t as douchebaggy as the gold Lancer but by week 2 I’m gonna be sick of it people wearing it. It completely breaks immersion.

      I think there should be an option for you to turn of the TF2 visibility on client side. Doubt if valve will have the foresight, though.

    • jsutcliffe says:

      But … haven’t they put the hat into the same art style TF2 uses, so it doesn’t look out of place? I don’t see the problem.

    • Lagmint says:

      How the hell do you lose ‘immersion’ in TF2? People wear WIRE HALO’s. People are blown into pieces and then respawn. People are the exact same looking person as other people on their team – and a different colour than the other team…

    • Tyshalle says:

      So let me get this straight… A bunch of cartoons who can double jump and rocket jump and turn invisible and shoot guns with healing rays and disguise themselves as a perfect replica of an enemy combatant, and in general most people look like each other even if they’re on opposite teams… you have no problem with this when it comes to immersion, but some fucking *hats* will take you right out of the experience?!

      You sure “immersion” is the word you’re looking for? If so, I do not think it means what you think it means.

    • The Pink Ninja says:

      If it DLed it without you asking then your Steam is fucked up. I had to specifically open it up and click several times.

      And I am a fellow monthly gig limit person.

      And the immersion of TF2 is broken by HATS? What are you on.

    • Kadayi says:

      Maybe ask your younger brother if he decided to download it perhaps? I’ve not seen anyone else venting about automatic downloads of the demo so far.

    • Tyshalle says:

      It wouldn’t surprise me too much. I’ve got Half-Life Source pre-loaded on my computer and I never asked it to do that.

  2. Trezoristo says:

    Barbie is the tenth TF2 class?

    • Gorgeras says:

      Velociraptor is the tenth class. It WILL be the tenth class.

    • saladin says:

      The demo for the first game didn’t have a finale either. I don’t see why this one should be any different. It’s hardly stingy not to put a full campaign in a demo.

  3. Fat says:

    I pre-ordered (me likes L4D) so i got the demo last week.

    I have to say, the game seems great, more playable, better looking, etc. But, the demo was quite a letdown. Two short maps, no finale taster, no versus or even survival?! The main reason i play L4D is for the Versus!

    They should have either added on the option to play the two short maps they gave us, in Versus mode. Or they should have given 1 normal map and a finale. I’d prefer the former option to the latter, obviously.

    It just feels a bit stingy. I didn’t even get my bat yet. I guess i will have to make do with my hat. =(

  4. Vinraith says:

    Grabbed it and played it with the usual suspects last night. The consensus was “what L4D would have looked like after a good expansion, or a couple of paid DLC packs. I’m inclined to agree, the new stuff is actually surprisingly nice by and large, but I don’t think the underlying experience is really any different than the original. The melee weapons are fun, I liked the tower crescendo (finally, something new with a crescendo moment!), the gun variety is a nice change, and the slightly more diverse infected are nice. Daylight makes the game less creepy, and am I the only one finding it hard to avoid shooting some of these new characters? Ellis, in particular, looks like a zombie on first glance. His clothes are the same drab and washed out colors that they wear, and he completely fails to stand out. Then again, with that accent and that writing, I find it hard to feel bad about plugging him with a shotgun now and then.

    • Clovis says:

      That’s what I thought about Super Mario III. What a ripoff. They just added a tail to Mario. That totally could have been added for free.

      (Ya, I know, Miyamoto didn’t promise free DLC and all…)

      What exactly could they have done to actually justifiy it as a stand alone product?

      We get, “Like the last one, but with some new stuff” all the time in the gaming world, and it has never been a problem until now. It makes gamers sound like they are completely insane. It would be like complaining about the sequal to Die Hard because it is just another action movie with Bruce Willis and they should have distributed it for free. Yikes.

    • Railick says:

      Max Payne 2 could have certainly been an expandsion for Max Payne that’s for sure , if L4D2 could have been an expansion for L4D that is (Which I don’t believe) At least in Max Payne the main character was the same, the setting was the same, the game play was the same ect where as in L4D2 the setting is changed, the characters are changed, the weapons are changed, the story line is new, the enemies are new, the engine and the phyics are new and improved , so on and so forth. There is no way L4D2 could have been an expansion, a expand-alone maybe but . . .

    • A-Scale says:

      Is it a rule that any pro-l4d2 claims must devolve into childish drivel devoid of rhetorical value?

      Max Payne 2 was a different engine, significantly improved graphics, etc.

    • Lilliput King says:

      “devoid of rhetorical value”

      Is that actually what you’re looking for?

    • A-Scale says:

      Why not look up what rhetoric means?

    • Wulf says:

      Something against Southerners there, Vin? I actually like Ellis, and I’m horribly envious of his boyish good looks.

      I do think there’s enough here to justify a sequel though, and I have to say that I prefer this versus eight months between L4D episodes, as that would be absolutely horrible. Sure, it’s more of the same, but what sequel isn’t? The only thing here is that there’s a less of a leap in physics and graphics. And we’re still not as bad off as the consoles, sequel wise, as I feel that L4D2 features stronger variation than that seen between, say, Halo and Halo 2, or Gears of War and Gears of War 2.

      It’s not bad.

      If one enjoyed L4D and wants an equal amount of the same, with just enough variation to make it fresh again, then they’re going to enjoy L4D2, and L4D2 doesn’t exactly try to pretend it’s anything other than that.

      Not only that, but the new survivors are worth almost the entirety of the entry price alone. I’m sorry, but I wasn’t a big fan of the original L4D survivors. They were fun and all, but they struck me as far too one-dimensional. And Rochelle is leagues, and leagues, and leagues ahead of Zoey, who was basically an Alyx Vance reskin. Rochelle might be Valve’s first ever believable female character.

    • Lilliput King says:

      “Why not look up what rhetoric means?”

      No need, boyo.

      It’s just such a peculiar thing to seek.

    • Pantsman says:

      The thing, Clovis, is the proximity. Had this come out a year or two from now, exactly as is, people wouldn’t be complaining nearly as much. People are upset that they’re getting more so soon, because that implies to them that it won’t have been given the time needed to be worthwhile, which as it’s turning out is not the case.

  5. Jugglenaut says:

    My L4D2 demo is playing L4D and pretending the butt of my shotgun is a melee weapon. Not that I have anything against L4D2, I just know that if I play the demo, I’ll want to buy it, just like what happened with L4D. I’d prefer to wait for a cheap price this time, so I’m not letting myself even be tempted.

  6. Obdicut says:

    So Vinraith, what you’re saying is that aside from the ways the experience is different from the original, it’s not different from the original?

    Is there a reason the experience is supposed to change dramatically in a sequel?

    • Vinraith says:

      I’m saying that the details that are different don’t add up to an experience that feels any different. It feels exactly like the original with some extra content packs.

    • Gorgeras says:

      Valve justified making a whole new game based on the insubstantial claim that many of these new features were not technically possible. Having seem them now, I’m inclined not to believe it.

    • Lagmint says:

      “Valve justified making a whole new game based on the insubstantial claim that many of these new features were not technically possible. Having seem them now, I’m inclined not to believe it.”

      I’m sure Valve is cursing their see-through code – why must people psychicly see what we’ve done and know what was possible before and now, WHYYYYY!

    • Vinraith says:

      The funny thing is that it’s actually a pretty good expansion pack, I’d almost certainly have bought it at release if it had been priced and advertised as such. The glowing zombie eyes are a particularly nice touch.

    • Squid says:

      Vinraith, you are an idiot!

      Srsly get over it you big baby. Stop bringing down the mood just because you’re unhappy with something you’ve already stated a thousand times – yes, WE KNOW. Stop being a big sook and grow up like the rest of us you turd head.

  7. Cooper says:

    Over 3GB in size.

    Wot?

  8. Aisi says:

    Damn, those FBI ones just don’t die!

    • Vinraith says:

      You have to shoot them in the back. This is another one of those things the friendly AI is totally incapable of handling, incidentally.

    • name goes here says:

      For some reason, the friendly AI in L4D2 seems stupider. It’s pretty annoying when they would rather shoot 2 infected instead of saving me from the smoker. Did the survivor AI in L4D1 shove boomers back before shooting them? Because I don’t see them do it in L4D2.

    • Willy359 says:

      Get yourself a machete. Come to think of it, that’s good general advice for a lot of life.

    • Wulf says:

      The AI doesn’t attack the cops… ? Really?

      That’s weird, because the last time I played, I was attacked by a rather large zombie horde that included a tank, I concentrated on the tank, and when I’d finished I found that they’d been mowing down the zombies to keep them off me, and among the corpses were a few of the police zombies. …and I know I didn’t kill those guys, I was working on the tank.

      Is this something that’s broke in the non-preorder demo, somehow?

    • whalleywhat says:

      I think you can kill them from the front, it just takes a lot more ammo.

  9. Obdicut says:

    Vinraith, again, you’re saying it’s exactly the same except what is different. I’m really failing to understand how this is possible.

    And again, can you explain why a sequel needs to be dramatically different? I would have been much happier with Battlefield 2 if it had been more like Battlefield 1942. I would have been much happier with Neverwinter Nights 2 if it had been much more like Neverwinter Nights. I would have been happier with Thief 3 (Even though I really do like it) and Thief 2 if they had been more like Thief 1.

    I do think dramatic change, especially after a long period, can be good– I really like Fallout 3, and think it breathed new life into the franchise, but I don’t see it is an automatic good thing.

    Can you explain why it’s an overwhelming metric for you? Are you saying that the new infected do not actually change play style at all?

    • Vinraith says:

      I can’t comprehend your problem here, and my interest in clarifying is waning rapidly. You’re a PC gamer, yes? At some point in the past you’ve purchased expansion packs, yes? When those expansion packs were installed they added new content, they enhanced the game to which they were added, but they didn’t change it radically enough to consider a new game, right? So the game was different, but at its root it was still basically the same game and played basically the same way, yes?

      Same thing here, I can’t explain it any better than that. Look at the list of changes from L4D1 to L4D2 and tell me whether it looks like the change list for an expansion pack or a sequel. If your answer is the latter, I suppose we’ll have to agree to disagree.

    • Levictus says:

      FO3 was a good change? Are you kidding me? Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against them switching away from the top-down view, changing locations, but all other changes were made solely in order to make the game appealing for console users. In itself, there is nothing wrong with that, but don’t call it Fallout. Call it Steve Balmer’s xbox adventure in DC or something like that. FO3 had nothing to with the original Fallouts. No subtle humor, no strategic combat, just a console FPS with a few gimmicks set in a post apocalyptic setting.

    • Railick says:

      I tend to agree with Vinraith this argument has been beaten to death and there is no point in trying to explain yourselves to each other. I disagree with Vinraith that this could have been an expansion (having purchased a LOT of expansion in the past) But I respect his opinion and can see his points are valid ect . I also speak from experience that there is no point in trying to change Vinraith’s mind ;P

  10. Emil Eriksson says:

    You’re just jealous cause you’re not getting yourself a nice hat ;)

    On a more serious note, what kind of crappy ISP do you have who limits your data? I have never heard of that :S

    • vagabond says:

      Dunno where the poster in question is from, but in Australia there isn’t an ISP that doesn’t have a download cap. I pay $50 a month for 50 Gig of downloads a month (although my ISP runs some services on it’s own servers that don’t count towards that limit, Steam is one of those services) and mine would be considered quite a high cap (most people that aren’t digitally downloading games or torrenting stuff probably have caps less than 10 Gig)

    • Andy says:

      Virgin Media, one of the most popular in the UK. I have a 10mb/s connection which is great and all but between 5-9pm I’m only allowed 1.5gigs, which takes about 5 minutes to download, and then I’m crippled for rest of the day. It grinds my gears, especially when I get home from work to find Steam has been downloading stuff all on its own without even a “yes/no?” message box.

  11. LewieP says:

    The new sniper rifle is lovely.

    • Poindexter says:

      @LewieP

      I also enjoy me some of that burst-fire assault rifle.

  12. Mort says:

    I got dizzy with excitement over the release of the demo; lfd is a daily coop staple. But was surprisingly left underwhelmed by it in the end. The reason I can only think of is that it’s actually no different at all.
    The melee weapons were fun for the first run through I thought, also I don’t think there’s much difference between them, whether it’s a pan, machete, guitar. But now I just don’t bother with them.
    New guns are always good though.

    The special infected didn’t have the impact I expected and for me don’t add anything over what was in the original, they’re quickly dispatched.
    And um yeh, that’s it. Can’t believe I paid £27 actually.

  13. Obdicut says:

    Vinraith:

    I’m not sure why you feel there’s an appropriate level of change for an expansion pack, and an appropriate level of change for a new game. I don’t feel the same way, and I’m trying to get you to explain why you do.

    Thief 2 barely varied from Thief 1 at all, and where it did, I wish it hadn’t, mostly. I consider it still a fine standalone game, not an expansion pack. If you have played those two, can you tell me if you think Thief 2 should have been released as an expansion pack?

    If you haven’t, I can cast about and fine another example.

    I’m not sure why your interest is waning; your point appears to be that this should be an expansion pack, not a new game. I’m trying to explore why you feel that way, in the context of other sequels that didn’t radically change the old game.

    • Aisi says:

      New levels were substantially different in T2, along with the new storyline. Having a weapon that fires three round bursts and a machete is not much innovation or new content. And I think the story is still “OMGZOMBIES!!!” :)

    • Aisi says:

      Also, the Thief series didn’t exist in the age of DLC (though T2 is still a worthy successor, nothing like an expansion pack), and TTLG wasn’t promising tons of new fun content to one of its games (“TF2″) and then milking the other like a content-thin cash cow.

  14. jsutcliffe says:

    I’m interested in it, but I didn’t really enjoy the first one since I couldn’t find a nice group to play with. Also, there are too many games to play right now — Void (if I can find it), Torchlight, Dragon Age, Forza 3 … the list goes on.

    Ah well, I picked up L4D when Valve had it available for $25 as a weekend deal. If they do that for L4D2 at some point I’ll probably grab it, if I have time to play it or not..

  15. Xercies says:

    This is basically an expansion pack, I’m sorry he advances could be done in L4D and Valve are lying if they say they couldn’t. The melee weapons actually don’t change that much, and I couldn’t see the new damage model they did with it.

    The plus is that I like the bigger levels, and because I didn’t get L4D1 last time I’m tempted to get this though I will wait for a weekend deal to be quite honest.

  16. Mad Doc MacRae says:

    I’m sorely tempted by that hat. I have the willpower of an amoeba.

  17. Heliocentric says:

    A great one, but an expansion pack. I’m gonna wait for sales still.

  18. The Innocent says:

    I agree. I don’t know where this idealized imagining about what distinguishes a sequel from an expansion comes from. As a PC gamer, it seems that most sequels have always followed the formula of adding new levels, weapons, gameplay mechanics, characters, settings, etc. I have only played one or two expansions or DLCs that provided an equal or greater quantity of content than the original. Heck, I’m hard-pressed to name any. Maybe an expansion to a Total War game. Expansions are generally sold on the cheap because they don’t add all that much extra to a game (in my assessment of expansions that I’ve personally purchased). They expand the game, not increase its size by over double. It sounds like L4D2 is going to be the same amount of game as the first one, not just a couple extra campaigns. I can understand people complaining about Valve’s purported future support of L4D1 (but please don’t do any more complaining about it here — I promise that everybody already knows your beef), but this argument seems a bit silly to me. This doesn’t feel like an expansion pack at all, and if it really does to you, then let me know what expansions you’ve been playing, because I’d love to get them.

  19. westyfield says:

    Eeehh. I’ll probably buy L4D2 (maybe even preorder it closer to release for the discount (and the hat)), but it didn’t feel all that great to me. Same thing with L4D demo, no finale so no sense of scale. It would, however, be a bit unreasonable to expect them to give a whole campaign for the demo as it could be argued that it is 1/5th of the whole game.
    The SCAR (burst-fire assault rifle) is rather nice, and at one point I punched a hole clean through a zombie with the sniper rifle, so it’s not all totally average.

  20. airtekh says:

    Damn. 3.6GB in size. Curse you, crappy broadband!

  21. Psychopomp says:

    The hat looks really nice on Spy and Sniper, FYI

  22. Kadayi says:

    Traditionally an ‘expansion pack’ adds a couple of weapons a couple of maps and a couple of new monsters. The content is never more than the original game (Consider ‘tale of the sword coast’ for Baldurs Gate as a prime example) in terms of content. I’d say If your classing L4D2 as an expansion pack your not fully taking in the extent of what Valve are delivering with L4D2.

    Also as to the guy who couldn’t see the distinction between the old models and the new my advice is to get a shotgun and start shooting zombies at close range.

    • Stupoider says:

      Yes! Exactly! Expansion packs tend to deliver less content than the original, whereas L4D2 is delivering much, much more that L4D did.

    • Heliocentric says:

      Company of heroes: opposing fronts spoiled me when it came to expansions. I guess i might be expecting too much. The galactic civ 2 expansions, the civ expansions and most strategy game expansions add great content which i half feel would be patch fodder. But its still great content, but i guess action games tend to be sequels with the same level of content. I mean the jump between these 2 l4d titles is not dow to dow2. So i guess the bar for strategy game expansions is higher.

      But tell me all you people expecting a few guns and a few maps in an expansion, when did you last get such a meagre package?

    • Kadayi says:

      @Heliocentric

      Having been burned on EPs for the MoHaa series I can’t say I’ve bought any since (I think they in fact caused the rot). However at the same time I think that there was a significant drop off in expansion packs for the FPS game after that anyhows. The only FPs title I can think of that went for EPs since then were probably FEAR & Doom 3 tbh (and I didn’t buy those)

      Still the rule is generally the EP is never more content than the original product.

    • Railick says:

      Dawn of War’s expansions added WAY more than was every in the base game, so this argument doesn’t hold up.

    • Clovis says:

      Ok, I haven’t bought them, but the DLC for Fallout 3 and GTA looks good, but is certainly much, much smaller than the original. If I buy an action game that takes 40 hours to complete, I would expect an expansion to add about 10 hours worth. I’m pretty sure that is the case for those games.

      Now, if you want insanity, just look at COD4′s “mappacks” on the consoles. What is it? Like $10 for some maps? Now that is something to be annoyed about. Oh, and guess what we’re gonna’ get with COD:MW2?

    • Stupoider says:

      Sorry Raillick, we’re talking about a single expansion, not loads of expansions that when added together may have more content that the original, but altogether work out at a higher price.

    • Serondal says:

      Actaully if you take the Dark Crusade expansion alone it has more content than the origonal game with the vast campaign ect. The Winter Assault compaign as at least as long as the one in the origonal game and adds a totally new side. The Soul Storm campaign goes even further adding air planes ect all sorts of new stuff that wasn’t in the origonal game and each of them are stand alone and each of them add more to the game ALONE than when was in it when it came out. So what is your point again?

    • Lilliput King says:

      “each of them are stand alone”

      What was yours?

    • vagabond says:

      I dunno about where you are, but in Oz, I’m pretty sure each of the DoW expandalones was the price of a new game on release anyway, so I don’t think they’re really a valid comparison (if it’s long like a full game, runs like a full game, and costs like a full game…)

    • Xercies says:

      Umm this does exactly that, a couple of new weapons, a couple of new monsters, and a couple of new maps. It does not feel like an upgrade to L4D to justify the 2 at the end.

    • Kadayi says:

      @Xercies

      Do the math on the ‘couple’ bit in a compare and contrast manner with L4D Vs L4D2 then come back with your conclusions

  23. IcyBee says:

    Nice expansion pack there Valve. I might pick it up when it’s down to a tenner.

    So when’s HL2 Ep.3 coming out?

    • Stupoider says:

      My estimate is 2011. But don’t worry about it and just wait.

  24. Harlequin says:

    I was originally on the angry train with regard to the L4D2 announcement…and then I played the demo. Not being a fanboy of the first game, I wasn’t expecting much out of the sequel…and then I played the demo.

    Simply put, this game utterly curbstomps its predecessor. It has better visuals (and graphics don’t mean anything to me), more polished gameplay, melee weapons, more guns, more items, more varied level design, more everything when you get right down to it.

    People can continue to cry and pout all they want about how L4D2 should be an x-pack, but I really don’t think that idea holds water anymore. Valve may have lied about some things to justify the full retail pricing of the sequel, but the quality has been upped dramatically in my opinion, so I had no problem ordering the game in advance.

    Unlike InfinityWard, who is blatantly screwing over the PC gaming populace, Valve is keeping L4D2 competitively priced with other new releases and is enhancing the experience that was already provided.

  25. Forscythe says:

    A bit OT, but I just played through Max Payne 1 and 2 for the first time last weekend, and I have to disagree with you about MP2 being like an expansion to MP1. I actually didn’t enjoy the first game much at all (admittedly judging it by 2009 standards). I thought the play was uninspiring and repetitive, the environments were incredibly static and tedious, the enemies boring, and even the much-lauded storytelling seemed flat and cliche to me.

    After that, I hardly even wanted to try Max Payne 2, but by a few minutes in I found I was enjoying myself MUCH more. The engine was completely overhauled, with a very impressive graphical upgrade and the inclusion of havok, which makes bullet time a heck of a lot more fun. More importantly, the environments were 10x more detailed and the endless repetition was gone. The play was tweaked in several ways that made the combat much more fun for me, and even the storytelling seemed to come from a much more mature and confident studio.

    All in all, it was a much bigger package than just more levels for the same game, and much more worthy of being called a full sequel than L4D2 is. I felt like I was watching Remedy grow up and mature as I moved from 1 to 2, and it made me really regret for the first time that we aren’t getting Alan Wake on PC, after seeing their tremendous capacity for improvement.

    • Railick says:

      You’re not actaully disagreeing with me since I don’t think Max Payne 2 could have been an expansion to Max Payne 1, I was just saying I think it is closer to being an expansion to Max Payne than L4D2 is to being an expansion to L4D1 since it continues the story line, has the same characters and same basic game play (If more detailed and better phyics, it was a lot longer in between Max Payne 1 and Max Payne 2 then in between the left for dead games.) Where as L4D2 has totally new setting/character/sengine/physics/weapons/enemies so on and so forth with literally nothing shared from the first game expect for the world and the faction the enemies belong to.

    • Forscythe says:

      @Railick – you’re absolutely right, we don’t disagree. I guess I just wanted to tell the world how much I liked Payne 2

    • Serondal says:

      I like’em both :) , but I do agree Max Payne 2 was better in many ways (not the least of which was the awesome box it came in)

  26. Forscythe says:

    Whoops, above comment was supposed to be a reply to Railick

  27. Psychopomp says:

    The new infected AI…

    Jesus fuck, they’re diabolical.

    • Obdicut says:

      @psychopomp:

      Would you say that you’re playing exactly the same, or do the new infected require new strategies?

      Does cramming into closets and inside each other still work?

    • Psychopomp says:

      Camping, in my experience, gets you melted in seconds.

      The spitter’s goo does a metric ass-ton of damage, quickly ramping up to 3 damage a tick. Trying to camp means you have a wall of zombies keeping you from escaping the goo, so, on paper the spitter doesn’t sound so bad, but she really does demolish campers. Damage from other SI, when in the goo is catastrophic. I got pinned in the goo by a hunter. I went from 100 health to incapped in less than five seconds.

      The jockey knows the exact right/wrong place to pull you towards, up to and including a witch.

      The charger does enough to damage with his knockback, so that it’s not just the person being beat on by him that feels the pain. Got triple incapped by one waiting around a corner once, for instance.

      And that’s just the mechanics. The AI itself knows how to set up combos. It’s not uncommon for one person to make a break for the safe room while everyone else is occupied, only to be met with two or three SI waiting to beat on you. It feels more like playing a competent versus team, rather than a computer.

      There’s a greater emphasis on situational awareness, and communication with your team, rather than memorizing your closets.

      Note:This was all on expert.

    • Obdicut says:

      Cool, I was hoping for significant AI/balance improvement.

      Damn it, I have no time to play it, though. I just convinced a friend of mine to get Borderlands on the PC even though he has it on the 360 too, so we could play together. I can’t cheat on him with LFD2.

      Oh well, it forces me to wait for a cheaper price.

  28. Forscythe says:

    @The Innocent – it would be less unusual for an expansion pack to deliver more content than the original if most games had as little contend as Left 4 Dead does

  29. neems says:

    Regarding the new damage model – get yourself a Deagle (or whatever they call it) and start one shotting common infected. Most impressive, if somewhat gruesome. Also, despite what somebody up there said, of the melee weapons available in the demo, the frying pan is clearly the best.

    • Funky Badger says:

      Very easy to track down lost survivors by following the *bonk* sounds now…

      Pan-Fu. It never gets old.

  30. Rick says:

    Must… resist… 10%… off…. and… free… TF2… hat… Must… hold.. out… for… 50%… weekend….

    Willpower… failing… Damn you Valve, and your marketing towards weakminded fools like me.

    Thank goodness! My current debit card doesn’t work on Steam. Dignity saved!

  31. V. Tchitcherine. says:

    In reply to: Levictus

    I shall call it a flawed masterpiece featuring stunning artistry and stupendous atmosphere.

  32. Vinraith says:

    The more I think about and read this never-ending argument, the more I wonder whether the fundamental rift isn’t between people that regard L4D as a multiplayer game (mostly versus players) vs. people who think of it as a single player and co-op title (and never play versus).

    Judged as an SP/co-op game it’s woefully light on content, viewed as a multiplayer shooter perhaps its more typical. Similarly, from an SP/co-op perspective the additions in L4D2 are considerably less substantial than they would be viewed through the eyes of people who play all the game modes.

    • Vinraith says:

      As an added bonus, as someone pointed out above regarding Modern Warfare 2, mutliplayer shooter fans are somewhat used to getting crapped all over of late. By comparison to that, Valve’s handling of this thing has been kind and generous.

    • Serondal says:

      This just in, the first day patch for L4D2 is going to remove dedicated servers and use Games for Windows Match Maker to set up all games and will go out of its way to seperate people with the same clan tag from playing with each other

      :P

    • Psychopomp says:

      “The more I think about and read this never-ending argument, the more I wonder whether the fundamental rift isn’t between people that regard L4D as a multiplayer game (mostly versus players) vs. people who think of it as a single player and co-op title (and never play versus).”

      I was actually about to say, “since when is 20 maps not a lot of content for a multiplayer game?”

    • Vinraith says:

      “I was actually about to say, “since when is 20 maps not a lot of content for a multiplayer game?”

      Yup. Whereas if you think of it as a single player title with co-op (like I tend to) you have to admit that 4 campaigns of about 1.5 hours apiece (for a total play time of 6 hours) with limited replay value is pretty light.

      MP shooter fans expect less, because they expect to replay the same content over and over again and have the result be interesting because of the other players. Their expectations are lower, and with L4D2 they get about twice as many modes as the pure co-op crowd does, so of COURSE they think there’s a ton of new stuff here. They’ve presumably got new playable infected, as well, which obviously makes no difference to the co-op only folks, but is a major new content upgrade for them.

      Ah, good, now I understand and can finally drop this stupid issue. :)

    • GGX_Justice says:

      I must admit, I really enjoy reading Vinraith’s comments, and I think he’s hit upon something here.

      For a long time, I never had an internet connection and no compulsion to play multi-player titles, as I lacked a competitive nature. Yet somewhere along the line I picked up a broadband connection, and while I still prefer single-player adventures, I’ve morphed into really enjoying multi-player gaming.

      Which explains why Vinraith’s ideas always seemed to strike a chord with me, yet I disagreed (at least on L4D2). His revelation explains why – if you’re not interested in the Versus / Scavenger modes, or any other multi-player aspect of L4D2, then it really won’t feel as meaty an experience.

      Cheers! :)

    • Psychopomp says:

      I actually abhor versus, unless a game gets organized in RPS chat.

    • Dan Lawrence says:

      Then there are also those who see it as both a cracking, replayable, co-op experience and a fun multiplayer versus experience. On top of that there is the possible fun of the unknown in the new modes.

      Anyone who thinks the new special infected aren’t up to scratch hasn’t played the demo enough. I’ve been single handedly incapped by all three of them at different times. The jockey takedown in particular was ingenious; I was captured almost right out of the gate on the first level and ridden, face-first, into an onrushing horde. Went from a full health to dead in about ten seconds.

      My top three new weapons are:

      - The magnum pistol – great for those of us who can’t quite headshot every time but usually get a shot on the body.

      - Semi automatic sniper rifle – Sniping combined with deadly shooting from the hip, the best of the top tier.

      - The machete – Nothing like barrelling head first into charging horde blood soaked blade a-swinging or felling a tank with an ill-advised Rambo manoeuvre.

    • Vinraith says:

      “Then there are also those who see it as both a cracking, replayable, co-op experience and a fun multiplayer versus experience. ”

      To clarify, that’s still my first group, as it’s still a group of individuals that view the game through the “multiplayer shooter” filter, as opposed to the “single player game with co-op” filter as I’ll clumsily call it.

    • lumpi says:

      Something that I consider to be the hidden core of this whole discussion, but which is never ever mentioned:

      Replaybability is the minimum requirement for a multiplayer game. It’s nothing special. What is special about L4D is that it uses the layout and progression of a singleplayer game! That’s the big difference. You roam through a SP level in 5-10 minutes while a good MP map typically should entertain you for 30 minutes+ (de_dust and 2fort 24/7 servers anyone?)! That’s the catch. The layout, pacing and structure of a TF2 map, for example is fundamentally more versatile than L4D map, simply because it is planned less linearily. Random zombie spawns hardly even provide the variety of playing against teams of 8 human players using various classes and weapon loadouts.

      You can’t say L4D has “20″ maps and another multiplayer game has “only 12″. It’s not a fair comparison, not one that made a lot of sense, anyway.

      L4D, even with a million game modes slapped onto it, has the pacing, layout and atmosphere of a singleplayer game. And even though the coop mode adds an interesting twist, it still needs significantly more maps to deliver the same depth of a comparable human vs human MP game. Apples and oranges.

    • Railick says:

      Here is an amazing marketing ID for L4D2 – What if they sold 3 versions

      1) Complete version that is full price game with the entire game as it stands now
      2) Single player version that is 20 dollars and only includes the Single player game and co-op online mods for people like Vinraith
      3) Multiplayer only version that is 20 dollars and only includes the online half of the game versus, survival,co-op.

      Would that make everyone happy?

    • Railick says:

      That was suposed to be an amazing marketing IDEA , not ID : P

    • Vinraith says:

      $20 for the campaigns in co-op and the survival mode but no versus or scavenge mode? Sure, I’d take them up on that. It’ll never happen, though, as a large part of what drove L4D1 sales is the fact that all three of those groups thought they were being catered to and thus picked up the game. It’ll be interesting to see what happens with L4D2 sales, but I’ve no reason to think they’ll be down.

    • Clovis says:

      I think claiming there is “little replay value” in co-op is a bit unfair. I mainly play single-player games, and I pretty much never replay through them, especially shooters. Playing the same maps but with more enemies that are simply stronger is boring. But playing co-op on inceasingly difficult settings in L4D had such a significant effect on gameplay that I’ve now replayed most of the maps many times and almost never felt bored. I don’t know, maybe you just started out on Expert or something.

      Survival mode did get kinda’ boring quickly though.

      I spent more time in L4D in single player and co-op than most other shooters I’ve played. I spent less time playing it than I did Fallout 3, GTA IV, or any strategy game I liked though.

  33. GGX_Justice says:

    I believe the main issue with the demo is that VALVe didn’t show off enough new stuff. As in, there’s dynamic pathing within the demo, but it’s really easy to miss and isn’t actually that big of a deal for the level it’s in.

    Remember the L4D demo? How that was two levels? Well, actually, upon release it was apparent that it was actually one and a bit levels. Is that the same thing here?

    As for the experience being much the same, I think many people have forgotten that the full version will have different ammo, some more weapons excluded from the demo (such as Grenade Launcher, Chainsaw, etc) that makes the full experience difficult to qualitatively judge (from this demo). Not to mention that this is one campaign, and with each campaign having seperate and unique UCI…

    It’s a really hard game to make a useful demo for the consumer, and I’m not sure that it shows off the games strengths…

    As an aside, I pre-ordered the four pack with my main L4D group, where we’ve all come to the conclusion that this will eat a lot of our time. As always though, play with friends.

  34. Railick says:

    I think they would have been better of showing the first level from each campaign and leaving it at that.

  35. Angel Dust says:

    I played the demo and love it. The new gore system is fantastically messy and I’m enjoying it a hell of a lot more than I thought I would.

    One thing to remember, regarding the effectiveness of the new infected, is that if this demo is anything like the one for L4D1 then the full game is going to be much harder. I remember cruising through the first demo on expert with no problems but getting my ass handed to me, on the very same maps, in the fill game. I’m not sure if Valve neuter the AI director for the demos but it sure feels like it.

  36. tim7168 says:

    Yeah I mean it’s definitely an expansion pack cos, like, most expansion packs have, like, more actual campaigns than the original game, plus, like, new characters, weapons, game modes, items and enemies, yeah.

    Every play Doom II?

  37. tim7168 says:

    Yeah I mean it’s definitely an expansion pack cos, like, most expansion packs have, like, more actual campaigns than the original game, plus, like, new characters, weapons, game modes, items and enemies, yeah.

    Ever play Doom II?

    • lumpi says:

      Well, like, did you ever, like, play HL2? The actual best examples to, like, judge sequels made for Valve games? Or, like, Opposing Force, like, the actual best counter-example for, like, a good expansion pack to a godlike Valve game?

      Plus, like, can’t we call it a proper sequel and say it’s underwhelming?

    • psyk says:

      This isn’t made by valve how come ppl haven’t realized this by now.

  38. Stupoider says:

    Just had a go at it, and loved it. Once again, the environment is detailed and interesting, I love the improved graphics (molotovs are just.. phwoar). The gore system is lovely, seeing bodies fly around after a pipebomb is satisfying. I’m enjoying multiple paths, too.
    The new weapons and melee weapons are meaty. There’s satisfaction to be had in simple firing one of them/whacking an infected and hearing a crunch.
    Finally, the special infected. Fantastic stuff, The Spitter, Charger and Jockey all add to the gameplay, making it a much more enjoyable experience than L4D. :)

  39. postmanX3 says:

    I like how people are STILL complaining this should have been an expansion pack.

    I will laugh at them as I put a couple of shotgun shells into the gore-tastic zombies on the 17th.

    • Kadayi says:

      The hilarious thing is the lack of justification as to why it’s an expansion pack in their view. There’s a complete lack of precedent for an expansion back far outstripping the original game in terms of size and scope, but no it’s an expansion pack because….?

  40. Lilliput King says:

    I dunno. I kind of liked it.

    Sniff.

    Not enough though, despite the changes, though there are plenty of good uns. I like it like I liked the original, but I’ll get it when it’s cheaper. I appear to be in Vinraith’s camp in that I view it as essentially co-op, with limited replayability, and hence content-light.

    That said, a couple of things made the original so boring to replay.

    1. The tendency of the game to drop hordes / SI in the same places,
    2. What could rather pithily be called the ‘tactics’ that developed. I’d get to a crescendo event and the people I’d be playing with would go “Hey guy! Over here, get in the corner!” I’d hear the horde music, and my team would go “Look! There’s a corner we can use!” I’d arrive at the finale, and the guys would go “Room for one more!”

    And my inner child would sigh, and wonder why we never have any fun anymore. If L4D2 actually goes some way to removing the tedium and predictability of L4D’s co-op, it’ll be a far better game for it.

  41. The Pink Ninja says:

    I enjoyed the demo but not enough to shell out for the full game.

    I’ll buy it when it’s £20 and if there isn’t anything else I want.

  42. DJ Phantoon says:

    Huh, you can spawn extra survivors by typing set_infected 0 with the mod to play as infected.

  43. jimigor says:

    Ausgamers have put together a censorship comparison video http://www.ausgamers.com/files/details/html/48328.

    Fuck its depressing.

    • dmauro says:

      Depressing indeed. The gore is not necessary for the game to be good, but it’s an important part of the overall aesthetic of the game, which greatly diminished in the aussie version. Better goreless than nothing though I suppose.

  44. McBain says:

    Bile bomb is my favourite…we threw it at a witch and watched the demented horde chase her round the gazebo.
    Sound design is excellent too, jockey’s manic giggling is as disturbing as the weeping witch. Also loving the retooled horde music, sounds like a brass band having an asthma attack while sliding down a hill.

  45. McBain says:

    Satisfied customer. Thank you Valve.

  46. The Innocent says:

    @Forscythe

    Well, I will concede that point. I got plenty of enjoyment out of my copy of L4D, but I agree that the content was a bit on the thin side.

  47. Scandalon says:

    I love how people think “censoring” gore makes it “safer”. If my kid is going to play a game that involves shooting/dismembering/blowing up people (or infected that used to be people, or whatever), and the style of the game warrants it, then I want it to be reasonably realistic, to know that yes, if you shoot someone in head, brain matter may fly out, if you shoot them in the gut, they will double over and scream, piss themselves, cry for their mothers, etc, they don’t disappear in a flurry of bouncing stars then fade away.. (i.e. Legend of Zelda doesn’t need realistic damage modeling, Men of our Duty to the Call of the Order of Postmodern Warfare IV, however, does.)

  48. Wulf says:

    For my own opinion on this, I’m really enjoying the new setting. I appreciate the atmosphere of zombies at night, but practically and aesthetically it just didn’t work for me. I say practically because it provided an extra level of visual confusion for me, as someone with poor sight. I much prefer this daytime setting aesthetically too, because it’s exotic, and it’s zombies alongside beaches and palm trees, for some reason, I find that oddly pleasing.

    The new survivors appeal to me a great deal, they seem to pack a lot of genuine personality, with my favourite two being probably Rochelle and Ellis, because I love the interactions between them, I tend to play Nick though, because I find his smarmy smartarse personality oddly appealing.

    Melee – Melee is awesome, I can’t get enough of it, I love plowing into a horde of zombies and hacking at them with a guitar as though it were an axe. It’s terribly overdone, it’s cliche, it’s silly, it’s camp, and I dig it for all of those reasons. It’s appealing in the say way that the Brick’s punchyteimz in Borderlands is enjoyable. Silliness and absurdity combined with melee equals a special kind of nirvana.

    The Director – Is a total bastard. The random level changes tend to mess with me, especially since I want to play it and act like a pro, like I know my way straight through a level. But I can’t! Because the Director keeps changing the levels, adding obstacles, removing obstacles I had to deal with last time, and every time I’ve played the damn levels, they’ve been different. It’s peculiar that this appeals to me so much that I want to sing its praises, but at the same time… GAH.

    The New Crescendo System – Is rather brilliant, the alarm thing is great, and I’m looking forward to the bombing runs or whatever else they have. No more stacking shivah! No more hiding in a corner! You have to keep moving to put an end to it!

    It also feels a lot more dynamic, there’s a hell of a lot more visual variety, and in every way it feels a more polished game than L4D was, since L4D felt every so slightly limited-budget.

    Plus… the survivors? Did I mention the survivors? I dig the survivors. For the first time, I really don’t care which of them I play. Whereas in L4D, three of them left me feeling somewhere between a bit of a jerk or a total douchebag. They’re actually likeable.

  49. Glove says:

    I’m not really that annoyed about L4D2′s lack of substance; I’m not buying it, so it doesn’t matter to me. What *does* annoy me is the fact that I paid $20US for TF2, and $50US for L4D1, when TF2 was a far more polished product upon initial release. L4D had a huge amount of very serious flaws, (no server browser, no content, broken gameplay features), which made it unpalatable for me, but the key thing was that Valve assured everyone that L4D would recieve substantial updates in future. That hasn’t occured. They took a good few months to get Versus working as it should have initially, and the output of new content is simply pathetic. I’m not claiming that I, as the customer, am entitled to bucketloads of free stuff simply because paradigms have changed, but it’s pretty fucking infuriating to go from the treatment of TF2 to the relative abandonment of L4D, when assured before purchasing that there would be significant content updates.