impressions: left 4 dead

l4dpostI confess I had initial misgivings about a first-person shooter involving zombies. While, from a shooter-game-design perspective, it provides perfect premise sense for an inexhaustible supply of hostile cannon fodder, I wasn’t all that excited about mowing down the shambling, decaying undead. I suppose it stemmed from my childhood distaste of zombies in general, what with my father being a fan of movies like Re-Animator and George Romero’s classics. And no, I still have not seen the more recent films like 28 Days/Weeks Later, or even Shaun of the Dead. Yes, I know. I’ll watch them soon, especially now that I’ve gotten hooked on Left 4 Dead.

But I get ahead of myself. It was Oneal’s prompting that finally got me to try out L4D for the PC when Steam had a free-activation weekend. I was impressed enough by the game that I went ahead and bought it (on 40% sale that weekend, yay), firmly establishing my presence on Steam.

I like L4D because of its jump-in-and-go implementation of game launching, which has streamlined the back-end of the multiplayer FPS experience into a very sleek and robust system. This is the most hassle-free design I’ve ever seen in terms of getting random people to play together, and I marvel at how easily you can get right into the thick of things. It’s a well-implemented FPS, too. And games like this have been in my blood since the days of classic Wolfenstein 3D.

I’ll talk more about it later on. For now, work beckons, but I am happy to report that blowing the heads off of zombie hordes is a great stress-buster.

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~ by Dante Gagelonia on May 13, 2009.

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