So I’ve decided recently to try to figure out what my Top 10 games of all time were. These are just my opinion, and most of the games I’ve played a lot of tend to be fairly newer, so keep that in mind. Without further adieu, here we go.
10. Left 4 Dead (series)
Platform: Xbox 360, PC
Release Date(s): 11/17/2008, 11/17/2009
Reasoning: This is as much an ode to L4D as it is to Valve in general. With Counter Strike, Portal, Team Fortress, and Left 4 Dead, not mention Half Life and the Steam platform, Valve has been a fan favorite for a while now. Left 4 Dead is simply my favorite product from the developers of the Source Engine. Conceived while messing around with bots in Counter Strike, Left 4 Dead is the de facto zombie game. It has everything one could want: Shotguns, Creative Levels, Zombies, fun ways to kill said zombies, and challenging harder zombies, such as the Tank, the Witch, and the Smoker. The second game in the series, Left 4 Dead 2, uses the same engine as the first but contains the “polish” that so many like in their games, as well as more creative additions like melee weapons. The main gameplay is simple: Go from level to level in a “campaign”, with each level being the journey of the 4 survivors from one safe room to another. Each safe room contains needed supplies like ammo and health packs. At the end of a campaign is a finale, where transport is called in the rescue the survivors and the zombies throw everything at the survivors to prevent the rescue.
The real thing that sets Left 4 Dead apart from games like Dead Rising is the multiplayer. Not many games in this day and age have 4 player co-op (aside from survival modes, which L4D also has), but L4D is also unique is that it allows players to become the zombies they so fear in a 4v4 matchup, with 4 players being the 4 survivors, the other 4 being the zombie team. This unique game setup allows for really enjoyable game flexibility and really answers the “I wish there was a ____ mode.” Left 4 Dead simply has gametypes for all your different zombie killing desires. Want to play alone and explore the different campaigns (which increase in number frequently, especially with free DLC on the PC and beta testing and custom campaigns)? You can do that. Want to try to beat a map with a tight-knit group of 4 friends? Go right ahead. Want to challenge your skills? Crank up the difficulty and watch regular zombies 2-shot you. Want to mess around with randoms or with friends on a site/clan server? Versus mode is right up your allay. The freedom given with options in L4D, typical of Valve games, is just an added bonus. L4D is the killer zombie game out there.
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