I’d wager most folk around these parts devoured Left 4 Dead back in the day, just as I did. Valve’s “28 Days Later with your friends” infected my life for a good year, and a bigger, better sequel one year later only strengthened the disease. But as Valve haven’t really been in the business of making games for a good few years – hopefully, that’s about to change – and while it felt like Left 4 Dead was going to change the world back in (oh no) 2008, for a long time nothing filled the rotten hole where my heart used to be.
That is, until Fatshark’s rowdy rat-smash, Vermintide. The four vs the world setup and the UI were highly reminiscent of Left 4 Dead, and what are Gutter Runners and Pack Masters if not reskinned Hunters and Smokers? But there was much more to that game than swapping out zombies for skaven. With both series now/still on their second games, let’s look at how Vermintide ran with the legacy of Left 4 Dead, while managing to forge its own identity.