November 17, 2009

Left4Dead2 | First Impressions

Mike Rohde Says: OK, Left4Dead2 showed up today, which means I had to put down Modern Warfare 2 and Forza Motorsport 3 to give this game a try. I gotta say, I went into this game with expectations of it being just like the first one, and that I’d regret not playing MW2. Well, for the first few games, my expectations were right on the mark, then I played a second round, and then a third. As they say, the third times a charm and Valve got themselves another fan.

The first online game I played was laggy as all get out. There were plenty of glitches and screen jumping. To add salt to the wounds, none of my teammates knew where to go and we stood around looking at each other a lot. When I asked if anyone knew where to go, one of my teammates started shooting me. The game eventually kicked us out to the main menu. I can’t say I wasn’t upset…

The second attempt wasn't much better. I tried to select a specific mission and saw there were only a few available games on each map. When I finally started a game, my character was already near death! I spawned into Coach who was on his death bed!! It didn't take long for me to die. Not a fun way to play. A teammate did offer a first aid pack, but by the time I ran back to him (he never left the safe house while the rest of us moved forward) I got jumped by a jockey and died.

And guess what: if you die, or the team needs to restart a level, you do not reset at full health. That’s a major bummer.

Here’s another newsflash: the Normal difficultly level is Hard! As in real hard. As in, I wanted to switch to the Easy level just so I could complete a map.

The third game was the charm. I played on the Easy level and started at the beginning. The team ran through some smokey rooms filled with fire, got some cool wepaons and we actually finished! Ding!! Achievement unlocked. This was the game in which I got into Left4Dead 2 and I actually forgot about MW2 for about 10 minutes.

I can’t speak for all of the maps, but at least for the first one, the way you get rescued is pretty cool. You don’t wait for a rescue vehicle, instead, you find the ways and means to rescue yourself. In this case, you need to find enough gas cans to fuel up a car. After the car has enough gas in it, then you have to get into the car and… well, you’ll have to see for yourself. And let me tell you, even on the Easy level, it wasn’t easy. The Zombies keep coming and coming and coming and coming and coming and coming and then just when you think they won’t come no more, they keep coming.

This is a game that should keep me entertained for awhile. I don’t think it will have the lasting appeal of MW2 but it’s a worthwhile coop shooter that contains plenty of excellent gaming moments.