GDC 2009: What Makes Left 4 Dead Tick

GDC 2009: What Makes Left 4 Dead Tick

Despite what you may think, Left 4 Dead isn't really about killing zombies.

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Sums it up nicely, Left 4 Dead is a co-op experience above everything else, and it's better off because of it. Though the occasional Expert deathmatch is always good :).

More games should encourage co-operative gameplay like Left 4 Dead, I think its a lot more fun than some other games.

His viewpoints are spot on, the team unity is pretty much all that drives the game. Sadly not too many people are very eager to cooperate and do silly stuff quite often. Only if you are in a well established team i tis possible to go for extreme, which is hard to come by.

XBox live is about the last place I'd wanna play this game....

notoriouslynx:
More games should encourage co-operative gameplay like Left 4 Dead, I think its a lot more fun than some other games.

Couldn't have said it any better myself friend

Yep, can't disagree, there's nothing worst then playing l4d with an un-cooperative/disorganised crew, just doesn't benefit the clear intended experience or your survival chances! ;)

NoMoreSanity:
Sums it up nicely, Left 4 Dead is a co-op experience above everything else, and it's better off because of it. Though the occasional Expert deathmatch is always good :).

Yeah, Left 4 Deathmatch is good for letting of steam every now and then.

My buddies and me sure had a lot of fun at that LAN, saving each other's asses repeatedly and screaming frantically: "Smoker! Smooooker! He's got me! Kill him, goddamnit!" :-D
It gets a bit repetitive, unfortunately, but it's still a lot of good fun.
I wouldn't trust my virtual life to a bunch of strangers, though. I think it's best to play it with friends.

One person cannot stand alone against the zombie horde without facing dire consequences (which usually involve being eaten in some horrible way).

Unless he is Serious Sam.

dochmbi:

One person cannot stand alone against the zombie horde without facing dire consequences (which usually involve being eaten in some horrible way).

Unless he is Serious Sam.

Too true lol

I really liked this review, sums up the game very well. Love the game too

Further proof that Left 4 Dead is the Anti Halo.

And I honestly enjoy having the occasional stupid team-mate in Left 4 Dead, makes it feel more like a REAL horror movie.

I don't really like survival/horror as a genre. I played the Bioshock demo and didn't like it. It creeped me out. :lol:

When they released the Left 4 Dead demo, I didn't think I'd like this one, either, because that's exactly what it was all about. But I played it one night with some friends, and I was instantly hooked, and it was all because of that team play.

I'm sure it helped that I had a good group of friends to play it with... ;)

With all respect I must disagree with the idea that L4D's emphasis on co-op is a good thing, the thing is that it puts too much emphasis on this by (more or less) killing anyone who deviates from the group (even if it's for a good reason such as finding ammo, health kits or going back to revive fallen team mates, unless you have someone holding your hand at all times you will probably die) which is unreasonable at the best of times and just plain stupid at the worst.

I shouldn't be forced to work with my team mates (indirectly or otherwise). I should want to help them and commit acts of altruism in-game because I feel inclined to, not because my hand's been forced in a 'help or die, motherf**ker!*' scenario.

This has also led to a large number of players (largely over XBL, I'm not sure about the PC version) who will boot you out of the game for something as simple as going into the next room without forming a crocadile with the rest of the team first.

I understand that Valve didn't just want lone badasses to just run and gun through the entire level without caution (which would make having a team of four survivors pointless) but I think they took the 'dependance on each other' too far, which in turn detracts from the fun and enjoyment of the experience.

Iron Mal:
With all respect I must disagree with the idea that L4D's emphasis on co-op is a good thing, the thing is that it puts too much emphasis on this by (more or less) killing anyone who deviates from the group (even if it's for a good reason such as finding ammo, health kits or going back to revive fallen team mates, unless you have someone holding your hand at all times you will probably die) which is unreasonable at the best of times and just plain stupid at the worst.

Hm. Going to get fallen teammates means that you aren't alone. And if you're low on health and your team isn't helping, that means they're playing the game wrong.

I shouldn't be forced to work with my team mates (indirectly or otherwise). I should want to help them and commit acts of altruism in-game because I feel inclined to, not because my hand's been forced in a 'help or die, motherf**ker!*' scenario.

Haven't spent much time playing games online, have you?

Because people don't, won't, (and frequently can't) help each other like L4D's gameplay insists you do. Altruism exists, especially with a good team, but it exists because the gameplay rewards it. Other games just don't provide that. You feel inclined to help other players because the team needs to succeed, and you're part of the team.

This has also led to a large number of players (largely over XBL, I'm not sure about the PC version) who will boot you out of the game for something as simple as going into the next room without forming a crocadile with the rest of the team first.

See, I've had the exact opposite experience. Players call out and help each other. You get booted if you're an asshole to other people, not if you are trying to help out.

I understand that Valve didn't just want lone badasses to just run and gun through the entire level without caution (which would make having a team of four survivors pointless) but I think they took the 'dependance on each other' too far, which in turn detracts from the fun and enjoyment of the experience.

I guess it's just one of those YMMV things then. L4D is the only reason I play XBL.

The AI Director is like a supreme overmind. If my and my friends go through a whole level commando style, with no health loss and high percentage accuracy, then we will be approached with a Boomer, Smoker, Tank and 2 Hunters plus a Horde. All because it decided we were EPICly strong. I have yet to survive that form of EPICness. Every round is different. There are countless camping spots, that may one round be a save haven, but the next, a death trap.

Left4Dead has my love and respect.

 

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