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Left 4 Dead Review

Posted by Alex Element457 Ramirez, Dec 16, 2008 06:41

Can you imagine what it would be like to be dropped into a post-zombie apocalyptic world? How would you react? Better yet, what would you do if you were one of the zombies? Valve’s new first-person shooter allows you to answer all of these questions in one of the contenders for game of the year. Dropping you immediately into the fray, Left 4 Dead’s unrelenting action hits you fast and never lets up, and, let me say, I never thought a zombie invasion could be so much fun.

As with most games made with the Source engine, Left 4 Dead looks uncannily similar to other recent Valve-developed games. Items look like they were literally dragged and dropped from Half-Life 2, and the entire atmosphere looks like it came from Half-Life 2’s eerie Ravenholm level. One of the benefits of playing copy-cat with Half-Life 2, however, is that Left 4 Dead also features the great models from the marquee series. They aren’t the same characters, but I honestly wouldn’t be surprised to find that any of the characters made a cameo in Half-Life 2. The game also features some of the great animations that have become synonymous with the Half-Life series. All the characters feature some great animations, and the way the zombies fall after being shot is just so precise. I know how ridiculous that last part sounds, but in the event of a zombie uprising I fully expect zombies to fall the way they do in Left 4 Dead.

I also had no idea the Source engine could handle so many enemies onscreen at the same time. Hundreds of zombies can appear, and the game manages to never drop the framerate. Keeping framerates up has become a trend in the industry since Call of Duty 4, but the only other game that comes close to doing it on the same scale Left 4 Dead does has to be Gears of War 2. The game doesn’t have a lot of opportunities to blow something up and consequently it looks about average. The explosions themselves look alright, but I have a feeling a paper mache would have been better than the fire they used. Maybe not that much, but it certainly could have been better.

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Our Rating for Left 4 Dead Review
8.8 Replay
The single-player is amazingly refreshing, and the multi-player is quite possibly the most addictive thing since well…a long time.
8.9 Graphics
The source engine still looks great, and I honestly can’t believe the number of zombies that can fit onscreen without ever dropping the framerate.
9.0 Sound
Does a great job of setting whatever ambiance is called for, but the game’s limited dialogue really keeps it from earning a higher score.
9.7 Gameplay
I can’t stress just how much fun this game is to play. Its intense defense sequences are certainly my favorite levels in possibly any shooters to date.
9.3 Multiplayer/Online Content
Like the gameplay, it’s a great way to waste the weekend, but the maps do kind of lose their novelty after a little while.
9.4 Overall
Left 4 Dead is just a terrific game on all fronts and is a true testament to why we have all loved games for so long – they are just so much fun to play.

Rating: 4.7, votes: 7


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