Left 4 Dead Series

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Left 4 Dead (L4D)
Windows, Mac, XB360
Left 4 Dead 2 (L4D2)
Windows, Mac, XB360


Left 4 Dead 2 Box Art



If you are looking for an insanely fast paced intensely gory zombie shooter, then the Left 4 Dead series will tickle your fancy for sure. Seriously, these are the quickest most agile zombies you have ever seen. As the storyline en tales, these turbo charged zombies are the result of the infectious "Green Flu" virus, which is apparently a rabies like disease causing extreme changes to brain function and body degeneration/mutation. It is your job, along with a few other immune survivors, to blast your way through the city in hopes of finding a means of evacuation. Luckily, you and your buddies are packing some serious heat that will help level the playing field a bit. You find all sorts of weapons ranging from M60s to chainsaws that helps to battle against the massive zombie horde.

The gore and dismemberment of L4D is excellent and you can blast off all limbs with incredible blood effects and detail. L4D doesn't exhibit any torso dismemberment unfortunately, but no fear as L4D2 takes up the slack and then some. The level of blood and dismemberment in L4D2 has been massively upgraded from L4D and also added an arsenal of melee weapons very similar to that of the Dead Rising series or Dead Island. In L4D2, you can shoot or slice off practically any part of a zombie with sick detail and full body dismemberment including torsos. In fact, the regular US version of L4D2 was banned in Australia and Germany due to the excessive gore and violence resulting in Valve creating a heavily censored version for release in those countries. It doesn't get much better than chucking a beeping pipe bomb into a horde of zombie bastards and watching the brainless morons run after it like candy only to be blown into pieces with limbs, blood, and intestines flying through the air like silly string. Hell yes, that feels good!

In true Valve fashion, all environments, textures, lighting, and reflections look absolutely stunning in these games. Blood and guts pouring onto the streets has never looked better. The gameplay and physics are very addicting in both titles and will keep you entertained for hours. It is actually hard to notice, due to the heavily dark environments and rapid pace of gameplay, but there is actually a very detailed gore/dismemberment system going on, mostly in L4D2. In L4D2, if you slow down a bit and really pay attention to what happens to your enemies' anatomy when being shot or sliced, you will notice some seriously gruesome detail in the damage of their bodies. You can blast holes right through any part of a zombie's body exposing detailed bones, intestines, and other organs while blood comes pouring out of gaping wounds. The dismemberment is also multi-sectional, meaning you can sever parts of legs, arms, and even heads.

Another reason why it is really hard to see the true extent of the gore and dismemberment in this series is because, unfortunately, after an enemy has completely died and fallen, you can no longer interact with the corpse. This means that the gore and dismemberment are disabled and you can't keep shooting or slicing them to see how far the gore really goes. This seems to be an issue with several other games alike. Fortunately though, you can get quite a few shots or slices in before they hit the ground as they usually die and fall rather slowly. However, larger enemies do not share the same detailed gore or dismemberment system of the regular zombies, or even at all in most. Many larger enemies, like "The Chargers" for example, only have texture damage and blood effects, which is a major downer after witnessing the detailed gore of the regular zombies.

If you only try one title from this series, make it Left 4 Dead 2. The relentless zombie massacre is enough to make anyone smile :-)


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Left 4 Dead

Left 4 Dead 2

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