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Left 4 Dead 2: The Passing Review

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V3ctor 28th April 2010, 08:16 Quote
I pre-ordered L4D2, and until now I just played 7h on it... Loved the first one, don't like the second. Just fired it up to play this level and I was disappointed. The L4D1 survivors didn't participate much in the game, just for cover fire basically (as u said)... IMHO a waste of download...
500mph 28th April 2010, 09:03 Quote
RIP Bill
bigc90210 28th April 2010, 09:10 Quote
Heres my opinion on this, and how i think the passing has brought the feeling of L4D1 back to L4D2, accidently:

Cast your minds back a year or 2 to the launch of Left 4 Dead 1. It was something we'd never seen before, the graphics were good, the gameplay was amazing, and it gave us the oppertunity to have some of the best teamwork experiences we'd ever had on an online game. Things (for me) that stand out in my head about L4D1 was the manic'ness of it, running short of ammo, resorting to pistols, and getting excited and bringing your team mates over when you found the second pistol so you could "dual up". The horde was fierce, in those days it was very much a "back to the wall" approach, as getting mobbed by a horde with just a single pistol for defence would spell distaster, and who knows what the Special Infected are up to!

Fast forward to Left 4 Dead 2, and it was a whole separate affair. At first, the maps themselves were brutal, far longer than we were used to, with more zombies, and of course the new special infected to get used to. After this, it was all about the tactics. Instant kill charges, smoking off ledges, jockying off rooftops and superbooms. After this it was flamboyancy (meleeing tanks to death, chainsawing witches, 25 pounces and blind spits) which lead us to our mods, and gradually cranking up the odds against the survivors.

When Left 4 Dead 2 came out, there were a lot of complaints. Whether it was due to the spitters acid being too green to the daylight maps being too bright, or the tank being too pink, the complaints were rife and plentiful (though everyone still adored the game in general). Fast forward a few months, and there were a gamers going back to Left 4 Dead 1, not becuase L4D2 is a bad game - it just wasn't as "good" as L4D1. I must admit myself that I kind of understood what they meant too, though I couldn't put my finger on exactly why. When L4D2 was released, it was seen as very "Hard" compared to L4D1, now a L4D1 game in my opinion is far harder, as you have no melee weapon to fall back on, and guns are far and few between. I've been looking at the strategies that are used throught playing a campaign of L4D1 and L4D2 recently to see what it is that makes us go back to the original, and when The Passing was released, it gave me my Eurieka moment. My eurieka was that all of the "tools" in L4D2 were there to make it a better game than L4D1, just they hadn't been used properly. Bear with me here, and let me explain.

Question:

In L4D2, how many times would you (unless your chainsaw had just ran out, or you are incapped and were armed with a melee) EVER only have a single pistol

Chances are, the answer would be never. You would either have a melee, or you would have dual pistols in the saferoom by picking up the spare pistol your team mate dropped. Simply put, going outside with 1 pistol doesn't make sense, and is'nt a good idea.

With L4D1, its all you've got. Theres no chainsaws, bats, clubs, swords and so forth and when you DO find a secondary pistol, its a big deal. Not only for the fact that it's twice as much ammo to use, but it gives your main weapon a break on the dwindling supply of ammo you now have to deal with; and when you're getting horded, you've got to time your reloading well! With L4D2, you start off with bats, the thought of getting boomed just means switching to it and swinging wildly till they're all dead, and best of all - you dont use a single bullet, or need to reload - no worries.

The passing gave us and extra campaign, and it also messed up our servers. One of the server glitches was that no melee weapons would spawn at the start, so all you had was your main gun, and a pistol (yes, a SINGLE pistol), and all of a sudden - everything changed, Oh secondary pistol... I'll never snub you again....

I must admit, I myself was among the people shouting "OMFG SPAWN TEH BATZ!!" but when we decided to play on, the volume dial of L4D2 suddenly turned up to 11. Regular infected became a challenge, harder to kill, and with limited power forced us to use our shotguns/uzis, which in turn ran out of ammo pretty soon after. The previously ignorable baseball bat you would find lying in a storeroom became a focal point of "who had the bat" so they could take of what was coming from the front. To me personally, it turned the game on it's head. The teamplay, co-operation and communication was back from L4D1, as were the pulse pounding moments, scraping for resources (health and ammo) as well as a new found respect for the common infected; as now they could swarm you again and that single pistol isn't up to much on it's own. Again on the subject of melees, as soon as someone found the first or second melee weapons, you could bet your life there was someone behind waiting to pick up their dropped pistol so they now had a pair, and thank goodness for that too! There was now a point in checking rooms for stuff other than health, and the much over-looked cricket bat and crowbar were the stars of the show - if you could find them and pick them up first!

For me the passing server glitch brought back everything that initially drew me in about the Left 4 Dead series, and in my opinion the missing melees have made the game harder, but far more respectable. There are a few maps in L4D2 where you are deemed to have "failed" if you use a few medkits on the way through, or if someone is incapped but still makes it to the safe room, as they are that easy. This is now not the case, as a lot of the time you won't make it through and if you are incapped and make it to the safe room, chances are you are one of the lucky ones.

Not everyone will agree with me on this, but I hope now and again we can turn off the melees at start, and take ourselves on a trip down memory lane to remember the sinking feeling at being boomed, but knowing whether to shoot the horde that is coming, or save it for the hunter, either way the outlook isn't good!

Originally posted by myself on my site www.teamsao.com
bigc90210 28th April 2010, 09:20 Quote
PS, you are all welcome to try our L4D2 Addon installer, we've had over 6,000 downloads so far and counting! please go to help-> update once installed for latest version.

http://www.teamsao.com/index.php?option=com_kunena&Itemid=53&func=view&catid=3&id=11940
MajorTom 28th April 2010, 09:21 Quote
I find it hard to complain about free content. I enjoyed it. Played through three times on co-op now and had some great fights.

Shame about the rather pointless inclusion of the original cast.

Golf club is a pointless addition, M60 is awesome! Fallen survivor adds an a decent choice to the game. Is he worth chasing into the horde or do you let him get away?

I had fun and it didn't cost me anything. If I had paid for it though, I'd be underwhelmed.

Oh and casting the witch as the bride in the wedding scene was a great idea. Just don't start the music for the first dance!
DbD 28th April 2010, 09:47 Quote
L4D2 > L4D1.

I think we all look back at the first time we saw something new with rose tinted glasses, but L4D1 had issues, most of which L4D2 fixes. Things like hiding in a cupboard for the finales are gone. In L4D1 basically everyone (who was any good) used an auto shotgun, in L4D2 other weapons also work. bic says no one uses a single pistol - L4D2 has the magnum which is a single pistol and is highly effective (particularly if you get incapped - you are much easier to rescue if you have a magnum).

Extra special infected, extra normal infected, special ammo, laser sights, daylight and rain also add variety.

The only thing I agree with is the characters in L4D2 just aren't as distinctive as the ones in the first game.
bigc90210 28th April 2010, 09:51 Quote
@DbD, the magnum is completely different to the single pistol, which is why i dont mention it. Most of what im talking about is what you start off with in the saferoom, and why you would typically never have a single pistol in general. Apologies if you have confused the word "pistol" to include magnum, as im just talking about the standard 9mm's
Valver 28th April 2010, 10:18 Quote
I think its a real shame that the new stuff (foot lockers, M60 etc) doesnt appear in any of the other "old" levels retrospectively.

For PC users it wouldnt be an issue - as everyone automatically gets the update - so they have all the data required to do it.

But because the 360 is optional paid DLC it would mean multiplayer games could get messed up if some players had the DLC and others didnt and were playing an old level. Would some see the M60 and others not?

So I see why Valve didnt add them retrospectively, but it means us PC players are being denied features due to console paid DLC :(
batfink 28th April 2010, 10:32 Quote
As a Versus level, The Passing is pretty damn good. Lots of choke points and, finally, it's a L4D2 level that's a bit more hunter-friendly.

As a single-player/team campaign, what a crushing let-down. I couldn't have been more disappointed.

I just hope to god that Realism Versus takes a permanent place in the roster of game modes. L4D2 would be infinitely poorer without it.
loftie 28th April 2010, 10:35 Quote
The Passing was a bit of a let down for me. The golf club seemed pointeless, the M60 was really overpowered, thank god it has limited ammo, and the fallen survivor - well I've been spawning him for a while now, so nothing new. I did enjoy the bits in the sewers though, that seemed to bring back some panic moments.

I agree with bigc, L4D1 was more enjoyable. L4d2 seems to be to reliant on melee. Guns just dont do enough damage either. I've unloaded 8 shotgun shells into a charger at point blank range and still had it survive before now, and instead of reloading i just pulled out a melee weapon and it was dead.

L4D1 did have it's issues, cupboard camping, but there community adapted and made mods. I've played with mods that added smoker cloud damage, and boomer explosion damage. Cupboard camping became a thing of the past after that.
phuzz 28th April 2010, 11:24 Quote
I'm not sure if it's an error with my install, or just luck, but so far in the Passing, I've not heard any of the L4D survivors say anything, so I'm just left with an addon level with the original three just stood their watching from time to time.
It's nice to have them watch your back in the finale though.
bigc90210 28th April 2010, 11:26 Quote
@phuzz, its cause your playing single player, in "online" mode, not single player in "Single Player" mode. Thats Why.
xaser04 28th April 2010, 12:10 Quote
I have only played the Passing offline so far and enjoyed it although the finale was a PITA with bots.

It certainly isn't my favourite campaign though, that still goes to hard rain.....
Skippylee 28th April 2010, 12:46 Quote
TBH I was a little disappointed with the Passing. I was expecting more interaction with the L4D1 survivors and also to find Bill dead with no explanation was also very disappointing. Maybe we will get to know why and how Bill died in future DLC. But like others have mentioned, its free, so I can't complain that much.

What I really do like is the Mutations. I'm loving Realism Versus at the moment - it's what Vs should have been like from the start. I'm looking forward to the new mutation this week. I just hope they have not used the best one first!!
GiantStickMan 28th April 2010, 13:28 Quote
Quote:
...lower a bridge so that they can cross in their stolen rally car

Might be nit-picking but I thought it was more of a stock car, since NASCAR is so big in the south.

The DLC was ok, a little short for my liking though. Would have been nice to see the original survivors play a more active role in the campaign.
WildThing 28th April 2010, 13:56 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by 500mph
RIP Bill

+1 :'(
D-Cyph3r 28th April 2010, 15:54 Quote
I liked it personally. Decent length (compared to Crash Course, which was a shower of shite), new fallen survivor mixes things up, finale is brutal and awesome (on advanced we had to get through 5 tanks. FIVE!) and it was free.


Now I just need my mates to start playing again.
erratum1 28th April 2010, 16:02 Quote
For free its a good addition but im not sure I would want to purchase it.
runadumb 28th April 2010, 18:54 Quote
I held off buying L4D2 as I had played the original to death and it just seemed like the same thing but I bought it during the last sale. Played through the campaigns with mates then lost interest in it completely. How foolish I was, this update has brought me back and although I enjoyed the new FREE campaign i'm loving the game overall. Best thing about it by a mile is the realism VS mode, I know it won't last long but that should be a mode of its own. It allows people like me who never really got great at the game and utterly suck as the infected to enjoy the VS mode. I look forward to the new mutators that will come but also playing through all the campaigns again on hard. I've only played through each campaign once
Blackie Chan 28th April 2010, 19:07 Quote
L4D1 was much better because of machine gun dual pistols. rate of fire is capped and clunky in L4D2
confusis 28th April 2010, 22:45 Quote
I would have paid for this DLC - had a few hours awesome play out of it which is worth a few bucks!
However the finale in the DLC is indeed brutal - only made it through so far on easy and (barely on) normal - all the other campaigns i have completed on advanced!
Sloth 28th April 2010, 22:59 Quote
Can't complain about the DLC since it's free, it certainly wasn't a negative experience, but I'm not too impressed.

That may be because I've never been a huge L4D fan, and really didn't like L4D2. It's a bit off-topic with this being a DLC thread, but L4D2 felt like much more like I was holding W and blasting and bashing away as I went. It felt like I was playing "Race to the Finish!" from Super Smash Bros Melee, except with zombies. That may be the appeal to some people, but from my extensive time playing zombie mod in CS:S it's just not what I'm used to from a zombie shooter. Too many hours spent sitting inside a room with soda machines blocking the doors!
HourBeforeDawn 28th April 2010, 23:49 Quote
I liked it and i liked the interaction with the first L4D crew so ya I enjoyed that add-on.
logan'srun 29th April 2010, 06:51 Quote
I can't believe no one has said it: Kill Bill? KILL BILL!!!! Hahaha, valve does have a sense of humor. . .

Anyway, I liked the passing, can't really complain too much about free stuff:

HOWEVER, I too was let down by the weak interaction of the L4D characters. I played it as Versus a couple of times and wondered where the characters were since they weren't there. It wasn't until I tried it as Campaign that I saw the cheesy cut scenes. Kind of a let down. Also the finale seemed bugged as Zoey would toss Boomer Bile Jars onto the deck that she stood on and you couldn't get them, even though she kept saying -' Here's something to help you out!'.
Hamfunk 29th April 2010, 18:50 Quote
"PC gamers have no real position to complain from."

If you got a free turd with the game, i'm sure you'd complain. Just because it's free doesn't mean we should be satisfied with mediocrity. It's been a long time coming and it didn't live up to the hype.

It certainly doesn't deserve a 7.
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