Posts Tagged ‘Left 4 Dead 2’

New games could monitor your arousal level

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Excited yet?

(Kotaku) – Half-Life and Left 4 Dead developer Valve has been toying with new ways to use biofeedback – heart rate, facial expressions, eye-tracking, levels of physical arousal – for years. What does that mean for the future of people who like Valve video games? How about controlling games with your eyes?

Valve’s Mike Ambinder talked about the sundry ways the company is experimenting with incorporating user biofeedback at GDC today. Currently, that includes prototype versions of Left 4 Dead 2 with an “AI Director” that responds to your arousal levels, modifying how it distributes health items, zombie hordes and Special Infected based on “player trauma.”

It also includes a build of top-down shooter Alien Swarm that alters the game’s timer in response to stress and a version of Portal 2 that decoupled aiming a cross-hair and viewing the game world.

Ambinder showed a demo of a Left 4 Dead 2 player connected to a biofeedback measurement device, a custom piece of hardware designed to detect skin conductance response. An in-game graph displayed levels of arousal from the player as he fought a series of Special Infected zombies, trying to refill a generator with gas cans. The player’s stress levels steadily increased as he was attacked, until ultimately he peaked during a Tank battle. A post-gameplay graph showed spikes in player trauma levels, tied to game events: Smoker attack, Charger battle, game-ending Hunter pounce.

A Left 4 Dead 2 prototype used player biofeedback in another capacity, showing a teammates’ arousal levels above their health bar to illustrate how other Survivors were responding to in-game trauma.

Ambinder said that data was entertaining to watch during competitive play in the upcoming (Defense of the Ancients) DOTA 2. This, he said, was “the most enjoyable thing we’ve done so far” with biofeedback. Players who saw their opponents’ sense of arousal spike would “go crazy” with delight.

“It’s great to watch people suffer because of your actions,” he said.

[Full article at]


Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

Latest DLC Coming to Both L4D1 & L4D2

(Press Release) – Valve, creators of best-selling game franchises (such as Half-Life, Portal, Team Fortress, and Counter-Strike) and leading technologies (such as Steam and Source), today announced the new add-on for its co-operative zombie thrillers — “The Sacrifice,” in development for both Left 4 Dead (L4D) and Left 4 Dead 2 (L4D2) — is due for release on October 5, 2010.

“The Sacrifice” is the prequel to “The Passing,” and takes place from the L4D Survivors’ perspective as they make their way South. In addition to advancing the story, “The Sacrifice” introduces a new style finale featuring “Sacrificial Gameplay” where players get to decide who will give their life so the others may live.

The Sacrifice DLC for L4D1 is a seperate download than The Sacrifice for L4D2.

In The Sacrifice for Left 4 Dead 1 gamers receive the complete Sacrifice campaign with maps playable in Campaign, Versus, and Survival.

In The Sacrifice for Left 4 Dead 2 owners receive “The Sacrifice” campaign playable with the Left 4 Dead Survivors. In addition, those with Left 4 Dead 2 receive L4D’s “No Mercy” campaign. Both campaigns are playable in Campaign, Versus, Survival, and Scavenge modes and both will feature the Left 4 Dead 2 Special Infected, items, and weapons. Yes, Zoey with a chainsaw!

Targeted for release on October 5th, “The Sacrifice” will be available for download on Xbox Live for 560 Microsoft Points and free to all PC gamers.

For more information, please visit

Gritskriegs Top 5 Games of 2009

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

Cammy, your outfits rock! And welcome to our top 5!

What end of the year is complete without some sort of top 5? Initially, I was ready to do a top 5 based on times I lost my pants during 2009 but the rest of the Reckon Crew didn’t want to relive those moments. Can’t say I blame them either. So you get a Top 5 Video Games of 2009, and please, keep in mind that while we use the BG rating scale doesn’t mean all of the games on our top list are going to be Busy Gamer friendly…

#5: Street Fighter 4 – I know most people have been turned off by the Street Fighter franchise with its re-fitted, re-skinned, re-released titles in the past. Or at least I have been. Seriously, how many version of Street Fighter 3 did we see? Street Fighter 3 Turbo, Street Fighter 3 Really Fast Turbo, Street Fighter 3 Dance Dance Revolution, Street Fighter 3 Happy Fun Time Sunshine Edition… Okay, so I might have made some of those up but you get the picture. Fortunately for us, Capcom decided to take all of the things that made Street Fighter a great franchise, slap on some new graphics, and finally reward us for taking the time to learn some moves instead of just mashing the quick kick button over and over. Packed with some extra goodies and bringing back the old school flava, Street Fighter 4 gets my vote for one of the top games of 2009.

RE5, dead on at our number 4 spot! BANG!

#4: Resident Evil 5 – Yes, that came out this year, bitches. Your copy is probably sitting on a shelf collecting dust because you got the big gun after the second playthrough and you decided it wasn’t worth playing any more. Not me. I fire this game up at least once a month and find the time to shoot some Majini in the face… Gorgeous graphics, top notch voice acting, and a solid story made this a game to remember. Unsurprising that another sequel from Capcom barges into my top 5. Someone over at Capcom needs a raise.

Borderlands screams in at number 3!

#3: Borderlands – I’ll be honest, this game caught me off guard. When I first saw the ads for the game I thought we were seeing a Fallout 3 clone but that was not at all the case. Featuring four classes with customizable builds, a barren wasteland filled with strange beasties and roaming bands of lunatics, and some very funny voice acting, Borderlands caught my fancy with its mix of first person shooter and role playing elements. After all, how many games do you know of that give you a mission to wipe out a horde of midget psychos?

#2: Left 4 Dead 2 – Yeah, I liked the first one and I have to say the second one was done right. Not liking yerself some zombie killing is just downright un-American, I say. Delivering on the promise of more weapons, more action, and more undead, Left 4 Dead 2 built on the franchise by taking a different route and showing us a new band of survivors and their attempt to escape zombies. Now if it just had more Ellis and his stories of his buddy Keith…

#1: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 – Yeah, it’s another sequel. Sue me. Maybe 2009 was the year to put out game sequels… Modern Warfare 2 showed us CoD4 wasn’t a fluke and managed to live up to our expectations. We wanted more, we got more. Another action packed, fingernail biting single player campaign and had us defending American soil. More controversial content was available through the portion of the game that had us gunning down innocent civilians as we walked through an airport with a known terrorist. I thought I hated the guy for making me do that but then he shot me in the head. Jerk. Stunning visuals, realistic weaponry, and even more multi-player modes had me up late way too many times. And if that isn’t enough, I’ve got two words. Lance Henriksen. ’nuff said.

So, those are my picks for 2009. Here’s to 2010. Two more years till the world ends. Maybe we’ll see “Duke Nukem Forever” before then… Naaaaah.

Gritskrieg – End of Line

Left 4 Dead 2 DLC brings back old friends

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009


Valve is ready to bridge the gap between Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2. The DLC currently titled ‘The Passing’, will see the original survivors encounter the newcomers in Left 4 Dead 2.

The DLC will crossover the two sets of survivors in the game, but you’ll be playing as the new ones. Valve describes the upcoming campaign as “the most important campaign in the Left 4 Dead story.”

In addition to a new story campaign, the content will include a new “uncommon common” zombie, melee weapon, gun and new playable areas for the Survival, Versus and Scavenge game types. Valve is also promising a new “co-operative challenge mode of play,” but has released no details.

The Passing is scheduled for a release in “early 2010″ for both Xbox 360 and PC.


Zombies Pass the Borderlands via DLC

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009


(1UP) – Three weeks ago, gamers finally got their chance to shoot their way through Borderlands and already downloadable content has been announced a few days before launch.

This DLC bring players to Jakob’s Cove where players will discover the evident and scary fact that Dr. Ned has created a rotting army of monsters. Forcing players to mindlessly eliminate all zombies while helping Dr. Ned discover a cure for the virus, this mishap by the doctor has seemed to have created a horrible story but a great slaughter-fest.

Seeming to be a little late, Gearbox Software is releasing content of the undead: The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned. Being released on November 24th, this DLC is going to bringing the family together in time to be thankful for awesome zombie action for Thanksgiving. This new content will include brand new quests, enemies and environments for players to wonder around taking out the recently revived.

Dropping officially on the PS3 and Xbox 360, the content has yet to be confirmed for the PC but I have a feeling that the PC version will be released before the zombies slip around the ice around the beginning of December. Instead of just hording through Left 4 Dead 2, get this content to grab some more loot to share with your buddies while giving the undead the pleasure of dying for a second time.

PAX ’09 Coverage: Left 4 Dead 2

Friday, September 18th, 2009
Left 4 Dead 2 is a bit more wide open than its predecessor

Left 4 Dead 2 is a bit more wide open than its predecessor

It’s almost impossible to mention having been at PAX without someone familiar with the event asking if we were able to play Left 4 Dead 2. It seems to be on a lot of minds lately. Some of the most common questions I hear when I say I did in fact have the opportunity to play the demon are things like, “Is it all new characters?” or “Shouldn’t this be DLC for the original?”  Fortunately, not only did we play the game but had the opportunity to speak with Chet Faliszek, writer for Left 4 Dead.

To answer one of the questions, yes, it is completely new characters. From what I could gather from the demo, the second tale of the zombie apocalypse appears to be based on several individuals from a high school. There’s the gruff gym coach, who I played as, and what may be three students. It was hard to determine the history behind the new characters from the level we played through but there appears to be very little mention of the previous characters, if any, in the sequel.

In regards to the fact this will indeed be a seperate game and not DLC for the original, Chet had this to say:

“We wanted to do a different cast of characters so we could give a different perspective on the infection. We’re in a different place, we’re in Savannah, we’re down south, we’re heading across the southern part of the States. It wouldn’t make sense for the other four to be here, they’ve already experienced the zombie apocalypse from before we meet the new characters and been through it and now we’re seeing it from a fresh cast so we can experience through their eyes. The old characters aren’t dead yet.”

From playing the demo and Chet’s comments, it’s a safe bet that we haven’t seen the last of the original four zombie survivors but those hoping to make more fun of Francis’ name may just have to wait a while. And while we enjoyed playing as the new characters, we also asked Chet about if there would ever be “customizable” characters, player created models to shoot our way through the game with:

“One of the things is that each character has about three thousand lines of audio that’s created specifically for that character based on the attributes of that character, where they’re from, how they interact with other people. The characters are a really important part of these games. There are games that are more wide open in general but this is more scripted. You could make new models but to do the characters is a ton of work.”

"All we wanna do is eat your brains..."

"All we wanna do is eat your brains..."

There are also new special infected to contend with, among them the Charger who has a nasty habit of catching lagging players off guard, tackling them and driving them away from the group. While waiting our turn to play the demo and watching another group, one player was caught by a Charger and pushed into a mass of undead around a corner away from his teammates. The resulting carnage was impressive to say the least. Beaten nearly to death before being rescued, the Charger had proven his effectiveness.

Another special infected is the Jockey. While small and rather easy to kill, the Jockey often came out of nowhere and landed on one of our backs and then attempted to either steer us away from the group or into a much meaner, nastier special infected. Our group had the unfortunate experience of having one teammate steered into a witch who then proceeded to trash the party. Not easily dispacthed once he latches on due to his small stature and the danger of hitting a teammate while trying to shoot him of, the Jockey proved nasty comes in small packages.

The third new special infected was the Spitter. As the name suggests, he spits venomous phlegm that will continue to burn a player unfortunate enough to get hit as long as they stay in the area the spit covers. Shooting a spitter also results in a large splash of acidic goo which can often be fatal if done too close to the group. While we didn’t have much trouble with this one, I can imagine the implications of the Spitter in versus mode.

I've been trying to tell people clowns are evil for years now...

I've been trying to tell people clowns are evil for years now...

Speaking of versus mode, Chet confirmed there return of it in the sequel as well as the usual co-op, survival, and an as yet unannounced game mode which will be revealed some time in October. With the addition of new weapons, including melee weapons, new unique infected aside from the special infected, and new environments, it’s going to be hard to say that L4D2 should have been DLC for the original game.

Before leaving, we asked Chet who we owed an ass-whooping for what we here at Busy Gamer consider to be the insanely difficult Lighthouse level. He merely laughed at us and called us n00bs. Thanks, Chet.

Gritskrieg – End of Line