Left 4 Dead 2 Preview

Left 4 Dead 2 Preview

Published On November 7, 2009 | By Rob Rymond | Previews

We recently ran a competition on Twitter and gave away two demo codes for Left 4 Dead 2, which launches on November 17th.

Our winners kindly agreed to write some words for us to give you the lowdown on the demo and what we can expect from the full game. Here are those words (slightly edited), but many thanks to @PurpleSteve (Steve Wright – not the DJ) and @dazbobaby (we have no real name) for their contributions.


Steve Wright – Left 4 Dead 2 Demo Hands On

It’s daylight. I step off of a boat and a Southern accent wishes me good luck. The sun lights up the pier in front of me. I stop to take in the view. Is this really Left 4 Dead?

I grab my trusty shotgun (now covered in chrome) and turn the corner to be greeted by a whole slew of rather bloody zombies. This is definitely Left 4 Dead. The first thing that hit me was the gore, the zombies in the first game were bloodied up but not to this extent. Missing arms, glistening gore covered chests and this was before I shot at them.

The shotgun literally blew them to pieces. Lots of horrible little pieces. Valve have put a lot of work into the damage models; blood arcs and spins, covering everything around you, Shaun of the Dead style holes appear in their chest. I grab a quick respite after this bloody beginning and head through to the next street. More infected await me and I’m greeted with a sight that scared the absolute bejesus out of me. The Spitter.

The gangly zombie came shambling around the corner and proceeded to eject a ball of bright green slime straight at me. To shocked to shoot I turned and ran as the acid ate at my health. After gathering what little self-respect I had left, I turned and headed back into the alley, popping shots at the few infected that were standing around. I found the Spitter hiding behind a wall and shot her down with confidence. She is one freaky looking little lady.

But not as freaky as the Jockey. This little giggling critter will hop and hurdle across the ground and spring onto your shoulders. Losing control is not a nice feeling in Left 4 Dead. He can walk you into fire, spitter acid, hordes, even tanks. If you see him, gun him down, or maybe you could beat him down.

Machetes, frying pans, night sticks and guitars are all the weapons that are at your disposal to dispose of the undead. Decapitating zombies with the guitar will give you a satisfying twang that I guarantee will make you grin every time. Just dont try and knock down the charger. This thing is intimidating, you only get to see him for a second before he is flying across the map and repeatedly slamming you off the ground.

There is so much variation in the Left 4 Dead 2 demo, possibly more than the entirety of the original. I kept finding a different gun with every play through, my favourite of the additions has to be the Magnum that I found hidden at the end of a street. Like a normal pistol, it has unlimited ammo, but this pistol, well, it’s a little monster. The sniper rifle is another favourite as it packs a much heftier, realistic punch. I even stumbled across what seemed to be a cross between an assault rifle and a sniper. I wish I could given you more details but I had about two seconds to grab it and fight my way through the incoming mob.

Rather than the tried and tested method of press-button-kill-horde, Valve have includes the press-button-kill-horde-press-another-button (phew) method that featured in the recent L4D DLC. Upon leaving a security trailer you have to sprint through a maze of fences to reach a tower and disable an alarm. This was a compete blast; running through hordes of zombies, swinging your machete like a madman all hocked up on an adrenaline boost. I can only imagine the fun your going to have on versus mode.

Boomer bile, adrenaline, defibrillator, need I continue? Every play through greeted me with something new. Standouts have to include covering the tank with boomer bile and watching a zombie civil war ensue. Getting my hands on the machete for the first time and marvelling at the macabre damage it can cause. Oh, and the big fan favourite, meeting the female boomer.

From this demo alone you can tell Valve have a lot more secrets up their sleeve. I for one cant wait to get my hands on the game.

Thanks to Console Monster for giving me the chance to play this, if you’re a fan of the original then you owe it to yourself to play this.


Dazbobaby – Left 4 Dead 2 Demo Hands On

I won a code for this thanks to Console Monster and having never played any previous incarnation, I didn’t know what to expect. Turns out it’s pretty good and I’ve missed some great games. So anyway, I booted up the game, and got cracking, and first impressions are that there’s plenty of meat on this game, with a load of different game types.

On offer is:

1. Singleplayer
2. Campaign – Online with friends
3. Survival – Not in the demo
4. Realism – Not in the demo
5. Verus – Not in the demo
6. Survival – Not in the demo
7. Scavenge – Not in the demo

So the full game looks like it’ll keep you busy for a while, but this of course is a demo. I played the first two levels before getting interrupted, (life has a way of doing that), and played like I would play Call of Duty i.e. like Rambo; and apparently, this is how you’re not supposed to play it, but still it worked.

I’m not sure if I like the ammo count as you dont seem to ever run out, but it’s an arcade style game after all. Health is a different matter, you have to find health packs, injectors, and painkillers. The weapons are pretty decent too, but for me it’s the melee weapons, and man, did I love the frying pan or what!

I just loved smashing zombie heads, and there’s a lot of heads that need attention. It also has some genuinely scarey moments, and some that will have you screaming, (play with the lights off for full effect!!).

I have to say, it’s probably not my type of game though, I like more strategic ones and the ‘trip wire gameplay’ isn’t a favourite either as it is too scripted.

I loved Zombie Apocalype, and a lot of people have said it’s a cheap rip-off of L4D. I dont see it like that; it’s a different type of gameplay altogether. But both games have their merits. And both will keep you busy for a while, but I think L4D will last that bit longer!


Thank you very much to both our winners and the exclusive Youtube video shot in HD for us from Dazbobaby. Tell us your thoughts in the forums.

The Left 4 Dead 2 demo is out now!

About The Author

Currently residing between Solihull and Stoke, Rob is training to be a professional journalist at Staffordshire University. He has a wealth of experience under his belt and has been writing for 7 years despite only being 19. He thrives on news and reporting it but also dabbles with reviews as well from time to time. Outside of video games he is also a radio broadcaster (or DJ to me and you) and spends time with his girlfriend.