Did Valve's rushed sequel live up to the hype?
Taking place in the south, the game follows 4 survivors Coach, Nick, Ellis, and Rochelle who have to fight hordes of zombies to reach their goal of survival. Much like the first one, the second relies on co-operation between players to survive. Using weapons like shotguns and assault rifles, to grenades such as pipe bombs, Molotov cocktails, and a new addition, boomer bile, which attracted hordes of zombies to the gas or if thrown on an enemy tank, makes the zombies attack the tank. All of these weapons gloriously destroy the infected hordes with fantastic new gore effects that even caused some controversy down under.
But what's a tank? The tank is one of 8 special infected. Along with him there's the Hunter, Smoker, Spitter, Boomer, Jockey, Charger, and the unplayable Witch. Along with 3 new infected there are now female variants of the boomer and all the original infected have been redesigned with higher resolution textures and new sounds.
All of these infected are playable in the game's Versus and new Scavenger mode. The Versus is much like the first, two teams take turns trying to kill eachother, with one team playing as infected while the team playing the survivers trying to make it to the end. With 5 new campaigns this is generally a good thing, but most of the maps are boring and have "insta-kill" spots where if positioned right a special infected player can instantly kill a survivor player, ruining the experience for those who have died, this happened to me twice during my first session of the game.
The New survivors are...not that interesting besides Ellis who's a southern mechanic who's hilarious and fun. The other survivors are the conman Nick who likes to pick on the other survivors, Coach who thinks it's serious business, and Rochelle who is bland and never really has anything interesting or funny to say. Quite a low character for everyone one of them (Including the Left4Dead's original cast) to have a distinct personality.
All in all, (including my PC installation problems) Left4Dead 2 seems rushed and doesn't carry as much charm for the game or characters as the first one. Many fans were disappointed that this was done in a year, and it shows. Many small features such as legs and other animations were taken out of the game and the great cast from the first game is no where to be seen. Next time Valve should work on the game more before pushing out a rushed game that doesn't seem to be as fresh or fun as the first one.
If you are thinking about buying this game for your child who is under 17:
The game's cast does occasionally use some strong profanity (ex. Sh*t) but doesn't get worse than that (No F-bombs)
The game also allows you to turn off gore and alternatively can let you go into "Low violence mode" Where bodies disappear right as they are killed and there is no gore or limbs falling off, however this mode is only available in the PC version.