Left 4 Dead (2008)
Left 4 Dead, released in 2008 by Valve, the same company that created the popular ‘Half-Life’ series, defined the ‘zombie horror FPS’ genre and is still being played on dedicated servers by adoring players.
Ah, I think back to those summer nights of playing this game on my PC until dawn with my friends and competitively comparing headshot scores and accuracy at the end.
Left 4 Dead plays like you are the survivors in a more about the zombie outbreak. You have four different characters to choose from for co-op player vs. environment on or offline multiplayer. Characters do not have special stats, but they interact with eachother in an amusing way throughout the campaigns- each set in Philadelphia.
Left 4 Dead introduces some unique concepts to the game, such as interacting with the environment in a detrimental way or a beneficial way – being able to shoot barrels of gasoline to start fires or slinging missed shots at parked cars that set off alarms and attract the horde. All the while, you are moving through immersive maps toward your campaign objective and come across some ..interesting..mutations that you have to deal with in special ways, as these zombies are more deadly than the regular brain-dead horde.
For example, the Hunter stalks its prey on the roof tops, can cling to sidewalls like Spiderman and will pounce on you when they think you’re weak and isolated unless one of your team mates shoots it dead out of the air.
Or, the Smoker – with its hallmark cough and elongated tongue that can strangle you off the side of a building unless your team rushes over to help. Boomers that explode, covering you in bile and attracting the horde, and Witches that will shred you to pieces and attract billions of the undead if you get their attention.
Aspects of this game can be truly terrifying and the gore is realistic- it’s not surprise that it has been banned in some countries.