I'm sure we all have our fond memories of playing through Left 4 Dead and its brilliant sequel. But fun as they are, there's no hiding the pair are getting on a bit, and it's time enough something stepped in to carry on that co-op carnage*. Fortunately, Turtle Rock's own Back 4 Blood entered closed alpha today, and while it's not Left 4 Dead 3 by name, early reports suggest the devs have delivered a rock-solid successor to Bill and the gang's zombie-smashing classic.
*That something was Warhammer: Vermintide 2, but y'know. Fantasy hacking 'n' slashing isn't to everyone's tastes, I can get that.
Following its gameplay reveal at The Game Awards last week, Back 4 Blood has since opened registrations for its closed alpha - an alpha that kicked off proper earlier tonight. Running through 'til next Monday, the limited alpha will let you play one full level featuring the new special infected (sorry, "Ridden") and the game's pseudo-roguelike cards, which see you countering a deck of "corruption" modifiers with your own hand of boons.
While I haven't had a shot at Back 4 Blood yet (and have my own painfully nickpicky hangups regarding the game's aesthetic in comparison to L4D), our pals at Eurogamer have been having a blast, reckoning Back 4 Blood "really does feel a lot like you might imagine a new Left 4 Dead might play should it come out today". That's a hell of a promised start.
"Right now it's just a pleasure to be reminded of the potency of the formula Turtle Rock introduced all those years back, and to see where it can be pushed with modern technologies and techniques," Martin Robinson writes. "It's a thrill to see a team back doing what they do best, and for what's shaping up to be a bloody good time.
You can register for the Back 4 Blood alpha over on the game's official website. Then, it's just a matter of waiting for your invitation to appear. Fancy a quick No Mercy run, anyone?