Turn off the lights and get scared with these games
October is finally here and it's time to consume enormous amounts of confectionaries without the usual guilt, even if it is accompanied by a bit of nausea. Leading up to Halloween, it is hard not to get into the mood by watching scary movies (Exorcist, anyone?), listening to spooky songs (how about the Marilyn Manson version of “This Is Halloween”?), or maybe reading a story or two by Edgar Allen Poe.
Real or fake, these are some snazzy looking screenshots
The gaming community is abuzz with what are claimed to be leaked screenshots contained in a confidential PowerPoint presentation from Valve showing portions of Left 4 Dead 2 redrawn with the next generation Source 2.0 engine. While we'll temper our excitement until if or when Valve makes an official announcement, giving some credence to the leaked photos is that they were posted by Neogaf user "CBOAT" (crazy buttocks on a train), who despite the silly nickname has a history of leaking confidential information to the masses.
Love gaming on Linux but don't have a taste for Wine? Look for a nice hot helping of Steam-brewed titles to come to the rescue sometime in the future. After a couple of years of rumors -- and denials -- that Valve was working on a Linux port of its blockbuster Steam service, it looks like the project is actually happening. Valve recently invited Mike Larabel, the man behind the Phoronix website for Linux lovers, out to the company's offices to give him a glimpse of the Steam for Linux in action.
Right now, Left 4 Dead 2 is cheaper than its own strategy guide. Yeah.
In honor of its brand new free DLC campaign – which brings back the original Left 4 Dead cast for a bit more zombie slaughter and a whole lot more one-character-of-your-choice-dying-permanently – Valve’s slashed the prices of both Left 4 Dead 1 and 2 to a mere $6.79 a piece. We don’t know what you did to piss Valve off, every zombie ever, but from where we’re looking, it seems they’ve signed your death warrant. Or re-death warrant. Whatever.
So basically, if you’ve yet to give either Left 4 Dead a try, there’s no better time than now. Free DLC, nearly free games, and more zombies than you can shake a green, disembodied hand at; there are “deals” – like the kind you see on the Home Shopping Network – and then there are real deals. And then there’s the kind where you get to shoot things. Can you guess which one this is?
The title pretty much says it all, but that won’t stop me from using the next few lines to remind everyone how much we still love free Left 4 Dead DLC, especially when our console counterparts are stuck paying for it. The Sacrifice campaign which will launch on all platforms October 5th will be a bit of a departure over past offerings since it will support both the original Left 4 Dead along with the sequel.
This odd combination continues to mix things up by allowing those who play the new campaign using the sequel to finally control the original crew alongside all the new special infected that made Left 4 Dead 2 such a huge improvement.
If you’re eager for more feel free to check out the official web comic or teaser trailer to help tide you over until October 5th.
You wouldn’t think of the zombie apocalypse as a time for togetherness and kind regard for your fellow man, but that’s exactly what it is. Think about it: between geographical distance and Francis’ vehement disdain for all things, the casts of Left 4 Dead 1 and 2 would’ve never even given each other the time of day – much less formed the kind of deep, tight-knit connections that can only blossom after you’ve scrubbed caked-on Boomer bile off each other’s backs. Left 4 Dead 2’s “The Passing” DLC, which is fresh out of Valve’s assuredly none-too-sanitary oven, is a perfect demonstration of this.
The DLC brings the original Left 4 Dead cast down to Georgia, where they encounter Left 4 Dead 2’s rag-tag band of survivors. In addition to what we’re sure will be all sorts of sitcom laugh track-worthy shenanigans and quips between the newly united parties, The Passing includes three new maps, the fallen survivor zombie class, the golf club melee weapon, a co-op challenge mode, and more. To top it all off, Valve’s rolling out new weekly game modes called “Mutations” -- like “Chainsaw Massacre,” which we think is pretty self-explanatory.
As with all things wonderful and good and from Valve (yeah, a bit redundant, we know) in this universe, The Passing is completely free. Just fire up Steam and the DLC will be waiting to infect your hard drive. Meanwhile, if you don’t own Left 4 Dead 2 yet and our previous chiding failed to convince you, Valve’s sprinkled the game with wallet bait again – this time dropping its price by 33%. So basically, whatever excuses you had last time… will still work, in all honesty. You’re only hurting yourself, though.
In case you need a reminder, we at MPC are pretty big Left 4 Dead 2 fans. In fact, if you were able to make it even half-way through our review of Valve’s fine-tuned take on cooperative zombie-slaughter without giving Valve a heaping handful of your money, well, we’re pretty sure you just hate being happy. Or, perhaps you made the mistake of wasting your precious funds on pointless causes like food and your family, and simply couldn’t afford Left 4 Dead 2. In which case, everything’s fine and dandy now, because Valve’s put the game on sale at the extremely attractive price of $24.99.
The sale runs from now until Thursday, and applies not just to vanilla Left 4 Dead 2, but also to any bundles that include the game. So basically, we recommend that you pounce on this deal like a starving, family-less guy who spent his last few bucks on Left 4 Dead 2 pouncing on free samples at the grocery store. Or something.
Valve also points out that Left 4 Dead 2’s eagerly anticipated “The Passing” DLC is coming sometime this spring, and will include – among other things – multiple brand new game modes. As in, more than one. Since Valve wrote that announcement in all caps, we’re gonna assume it’s a big deal. More details soon, we hope.
Four humans versus thousands upon thousands of zombies. Left 4 Dead 2 doesn’t seem very fair, does it? Well, in early 2010, four familiar faces are looking to even the odds, which – by our math – makes the zombie apocalypse 0.000000001% more evenly matched. That’s right: Francis, Bill, Zoey, and Louis are back, and Coach, Rochelle, Ellis, and Nick are… still here! So they’re teaming up, in case that wasn’t the most obvious thing in the entire world.
“The Passing will become the most important campaign in the Left 4 Dead story, as all the Survivors are being called together in one campaign,” said Doug Lombardi, VP of marketing at Valve. “It will also be a huge offering of new gameplay content, with something new for every game mode plus a new uncommon common and weaponry.”
Taking place in a small town in rural Georgia, the DLC will also include a new co-op challenge mode. As for pricing, Valve’s not saying at the moment, but we’d be shocked if PC gamers were forced to drop a nickel or a dime on The Passing, as Valve’s PC content hasn’t traditionally carried a price tag.
The DLC’s out in early 2010. Which is nice, since we’ll need a relaxing Left 4 Dead 2 break in between our rigorous Mass Effect 2/BioShock 2 sessions.
Zombie hunting season is officially open, and Valve has another hit on its ESRB-compliant hands. After little more than two weeks on shelves, Left 4 Dead 2’s retail tally has slashed through the two million mark like a katana through brittle undead flesh.
“Left 4 Dead 2 is off to a great start with strong support at retail and great reviews from the press,” said Doug Lombardi, VP of marketing at Valve. “Meanwhile the title has already been played by over 1 million Xbox LIVE Gold account holders, and news regarding L4D2 DLC 1 is coming very soon.”
Valve also added that “sales to date are more than double the original title.”
As for the real zombie apocalypse, well, we're guessing that’s probably on hold. Odds are, its brain-munching participants are cemented to their screens at the moment, completely addicted to Left 4 Dead 2 just like the rest of us.