UPDATED: Left 4 Dead gamers angry at Valve for sequel

When Microsoft announced during their presentation that a sequel would be coming to the ever popular online shooter Left 4 Dead many, including yours truly, were quite surprised. Not because we didn't expect to see to a sequel coming, especially when the title has sold over 2.5 million retail copies alone, but because the game is barely seven months old.

Valve has and thrives on an amazing reputation of supporting their games for months after its release, in some cases even years (they still update and patch Counter Strike 1.6), and they are also known for taking their sweet time developing games as well, so why the release so early?

Valve's Chet Valiszek, his explaination, thought weirdly worded, was simple, they were not happy with the quality of the title (little confusing considering it carry's a Metacritic rating of 89): " "Left 4 Dead 1, like I said, had some of those fundamental things that we wanted to change about it, like the changes to the director, which took really long periods of time and a really long period of testing," he said. "And so, those changes fell in line with the long period of time it takes to create characters and everything else. That's why we're doing Left 4 Dead 2, right?"

He then went on to promise that this game was to be supported for a long time (like all Valve games are right?) with patches and downloadable content, but this is exactly where the frustration of so many stem from, they said the exact same thing for the title before it. Currently, in the "Left 4 Dead 2 Boycott" steam community group, lies just under 4000 members and growing by the minute. Their reasons for their anger?

    * Significant content for L4D1 was promised, and never delivered
    * Valve put little faith in L4D1 since they almost certainly started working on L4D2 right after release
    * The fact that L4D2 is nearly identical to L4D1 will decimate the community for both games
    * The announced date is not nearly enough time to polish content or make significant gameplay changes
    * The new character designs seem bland and unappealing so far
    * L4D2 is too bright to fit in with L4D1's visual aesthetic
    * The fiddle-based horde music is extremely disliked, though the differently orchestrated music is otherwise welcome
    * L4D2's release will result in a drop in quality and frequency for L4D1 content, even compared to before
    * The community has lost faith in Valve's former reputation for commitment to their games post-release

While some quarrels maybe seem a bit far fetched, they do raise some interesting concerns. One of their most vocal arguments is that it is just a money grab, and it is hard not to think otherwise. Valve, a company on strives on their reputation to its loyalty to its gamers, has yet to comment on the situation.

UPDATE: Looks like Valve has responded to the criticism. Valve's Chet Faliszek is asking that gamers give them a fair shake and compares this situation to the Orange Box situation, where gamers were forced to purchase a copy of Half Life 2 again and asks if that was a rip off (it was, what am I suppose to do with two copies of Half Life 2?). He asks gamers to read all of the information and at least play the game before posting criticism on the forums, and reassures them that most, if not all, posts on the forums are read by Valve. The boycott group now houses more then 22000 people now.

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People are trying to compare Left 4 Dead to a single-player experience. It's not. It's built around multi-player, which as we all know needs constant "maintenence" and life injected into it. I've enjoyed L4D and am not bothered by L4D2 but I can 100% see the other side of the argument. Valve continues to (or did until recently) support TF2 by adding maps, characters, etc.

Last time I checked, if a game is so well "prepared", then it means you shouldn't have to worry too much for support except for an occasional patch to support new Windows versions or graphic card maybe. Since when is it a crime for a company to move on to itx next project after it's done with one? I never expected Lucas Arts to keep on "supporting" Monkey Island and Sam & Max after it was released.

The main issue here may be gamers who became so used to half-finished games with 2 years of "fix the holes" updates who can't imagine buying a game anymore knowing what you see is what you get.

Left 4 Dead was released unfinished and buggy as hell. They fixed some things and added in the rest of the game later. It's still buggy and the extra content they said was going to be released was never released.

Ok. If that's true, then why did people buy thinking it will just be better later? seems very flawed logic to me. Also, from what I understand, people are angry because "they are also known for taking their sweet time developing games as well". They either are, and the game is fine as is, or they're not, and you shouldn't have bought the game in the first place.

I bought Mario Galaxy on Wii, it played perfectly fine from start to finish and I never assumed Nintendo would start releasing updates for it.

it is unlike valve to not offer more support for the game as they promised , but i have had 100+ hours of fun from a truly great game so i cant complain and look forward to the next one.

Also i looked at a few of the instigators of the complaints on the forums , some of them has over 200+ hours off gamer time . How can anyone complain at 200+ hours for �30 , some people need to get real.

edit - like to dd for those saying there is no story they are wrong . I like the way the story is told through titbits left throughout the levels . People on the forums have already posted silly amounts of details about the story and how the 4 campaigns link together.

I think that some game developers could adopt Blizzard's WoW developing style. They release game content and engine v1.x. After some time they release extra content and new engine v2.x which can play old content too (content can be upgraded with little patch/converter if needed). If Valve adopted that approach then you could play L4D1 content (maps, characters, video, ...) with new shiny L4D2 engine. Everybody would be happy.

Patchou said,
There is a critical difference though: you pay Blizzard every month for this.

If game content have some standard from the start and in-game video is done by using engine too (means you don't need to re-render video files) then cost of upgrade of content (recycling) is much cheaper and faster than creating new one. For example Valve could re-sell original HL1 content with HL2 engine to new generation of gamers (again and again). In long run this developing strategy could save a lot of money and make a lot of money.

Its very strange then things like these comes not from Valve (which have access to all internal resources and could make it better and faster):

http://www.gametrailers.com/user-movie/hal...with-hl2/148848

They wana make more money, can you blame them? No one is forcing you to buy the sequel. We'll see how many are true to your word when it comes out!, if it is a success then obviously people wanted it!

Well i've had 30+ hours out of L4D and totally enjoyed it. It could do with a few more campaigns though, i would say 6 to 8 would be ideal.

I look forward to the next one even though the characters in it look crap!

Guess I should be happy I bought it during their last sale for half of the initial price. I'll be very interested in seeing how this shapes up in the next few months.

Kirkburn said,
So, rather than people calling me a fanboy for defending Valve's actions, I point ya'll towards http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2009/06/04...s-a-little-bit/

From reading that link, it reads like this new stuff could of been shipped as an expansion to the original game (to which I think people would be fine with) instead of a completely new game.

An expansion would also have gotten around the whole problem of "splitting the community" as it would be one game, with the extra stuff there if people wanted it.

The end of the day my beef is with all the options available for providing this new content (paid DLC, an expansion or new game) valve have chosen the one which is most harmful to the current fans. (Although they are a company after all and this way does provide the maximum profit)

The Dark Wanderer said,
From reading that link, it reads like this new stuff could of been shipped as an expansion to the original game (to which I think people would be fine with) instead of a completely new game.

An expansion would also have gotten around the whole problem of "splitting the community" as it would be one game, with the extra stuff there if people wanted it.

The end of the day my beef is with all the options available for providing this new content (paid DLC, an expansion or new game) valve have chosen the one which is most harmful to the current fans. (Although they are a company after all and this way does provide the maximum profit)


As far as I know, L4D1 and 2 will interact. Expansions aren't usually larger than the original game, though.

I feel like I just participated in a kind of expensive beta-testing. Oh well, I guess it will just make for a better game experience.

m-p{3} said,
I feel like I just participated in a kind of expensive beta-testing. Oh well, I guess it will just make for a better game experience.

For the love of god, why? Every time something gets upgraded or sequeled, you feel like you were previously beta-testing it? Seriously?

Kirkburn said,
For the love of god, why? Every time something gets upgraded or sequeled, you feel like you were previously beta-testing it? Seriously?

It's more about the lying and failed promise of new content, rather than even just begin faithful to valve and hoping, we were TOLD we were gonna get new content.
Some bug fixes, making the tank swing hit all 4 survivors, adding two maps into the game that already existed, and adding a timer event script doesn't seem like "more machine guns, more levels, more survivors, a storyline, or even more infected". Seems to me the promise is coming in a $50 package.
Which is the ONLY reason I'm ticked, L4d1 is still a good game, but it's not what I thought it was gonna be.

SierraSonic said,
It's more about the lying and failed promise of new content, rather than even just begin faithful to valve and hoping, we were TOLD we were gonna get new content.
Some bug fixes, making the tank swing hit all 4 survivors, adding two maps into the game that already existed, and adding a timer event script doesn't seem like "more machine guns, more levels, more survivors, a storyline, or even more infected". Seems to me the promise is coming in a $50 package.
Which is the ONLY reason I'm ticked, L4d1 is still a good game, but it's not what I thought it was gonna be.


Right on! They released a game they knew would have to be tested and repaired WHILE we were playing- I don't count these "updates" as new content- as I see it, the only thing they've delivered on within the promises they made is the timer script. Kirkburn, I've played plenty of online games, and while I'm happy Valve did a lot of quality control post-release, this entire situation is the closest I've seen to a $50 beta test. I'll take Blizzard Entertainment's 12 years to Valve's 12 months any day. As with many of the other self-respecting computer gamers out there will also surely do, I won't be purchasing the new title unless I get a discount. Actually, I think I'll just save my money for Blizzard's newest... I've yet to have a dissatisfied moment whilst playing theirs over the past 8 years. Unlike any shooter I've so far purchased, L4D will only remain as a last-resort game for when I only want to jump off a cliff or pretend to accidentally shoot people in the back the entire round.

Stop moaning and grow up, its not a big deal.

Just because Valve is good at what it does, just because once they don't, doesn't give the right to start moaning at them when all other companies don't ALL THE TIME.

Seriously..

I'm more angry about the fact that L4D1 wasn't that worthy of a sequel to begin with, and we still don't have HL2:E3 yet. Seriously, Episode 3 should have been released twice over by now. It's becoming ridiculous.

spacer said,
I'm more angry about the fact that L4D1 wasn't that worthy of a sequel to begin with, and we still don't have HL2:E3 yet. Seriously, Episode 3 should have been released twice over by now. It's becoming ridiculous.

I gave up on the Episodes awhile ago. Bought the first and haven't bothered with the second.

I just wish they would concentrate on getting Episode 3 out the door first and why can't they incorporate all these new improvements into L4D1? Bring us TF2-like post-release support please.

kiran_aryan said,
give l4d2 at 50% price for all existing l4d1 gamers. maybe that will make them happy :P

I would like to see that, but can't imagine value will do it.

I love L4D, and as a lot of people thought valve would be supporting it in the same way they have TF2. Shame they didn't and split their community like they have now. I for one will only get the game if its £20 or below, or it comes out with a significant number of impressive reviews. (As much as I’m ****ed I still don’t wanna miss out of a good game :P)

The Dark Wanderer said,
I would like to see that, but can't imagine value will do it.

I love L4D, and as a lot of people thought valve would be supporting it in the same way they have TF2. Shame they didn't and split their community like they have now. I for one will only get the game if its £20 or below, or it comes out with a significant number of impressive reviews. (As much as I’m ****ed I still don’t wanna miss out of a good game :P)


They haven't said they're stopping with any L4D support. The new game doesn't come out until November.

You've already got survival mode. You may quite possibly get much more.

kiran_aryan said,
give l4d2 at 50% price for all existing l4d1 gamers. maybe that will make them happy :P

Discounts via Steam for registered owners would a very welcomed and appreciated announcement.

Kirkburn said,

They haven't said they're stopping with any L4D support. The new game doesn't come out until November.

You've already got survival mode. You may quite possibly get much more.

sure they will but you do believe in Santa dont you ;)

They did promised that stuff a lonlg long time ago , so while they might still support L4D it will be like 5% ( unless a big problem arises , the previous promises wont happen )

brent3000 said,
amen

What about 360 owners? I just bought the Game of the Year edition a few days prior to L4D2's announcement...seems like a big "**** you" from Valve to its fans.

You know, it really makes me *sigh* at just how much people expect for free these days.
Some people really are acting like spoilt little children over this.

Kirkburn said,
You know, it really makes me *sigh* at just how much people expect for free these days.
Some people really are acting like spoilt little children over this.


This guy makes me LOL. Are you talking about the same game here? L4D was half a game, an incomplete game yet they had no problem selling it at full price promising a ******** of updates (like TF2 has). Now they do this, and you don't have a problem with it? You're either stupid or a brown nose.

Fight ad hominem with ad hominem,... the only way to make the fanboys listen.

rpsgc said,

This guy makes me LOL. Are you talking about the same game here? L4D was half a game, an incomplete game yet they had no problem selling it at full price promising a ******** of updates (like TF2 has). Now they do this, and you don't have a problem with it? You're either stupid or a brown nose.

Fight ad hominem with ad hominem,... the only way to make the fanboys listen.


L4D seems to a pretty complete game to me. Just how many hours do you expect to get out of a game these days?

Say HL2 took 10 hours. Are you saying it has more replayability than L4D, which many people spend more hours playing? Think of all the custom maps that'll be arriving soon.

Why the hell should Valve give you an entirely new game, larger than the original game for free?

Kirkburn said,

L4D seems to a pretty complete game to me. Just how many hours do you expect to get out of a game these days?

Say HL2 took 10 hours. Are you saying it has more replayability than L4D, which many people spend more hours playing? Think of all the custom maps that'll be arriving soon.

Why the hell should Valve give you an entirely new game, larger than the original game for free?


To be honest ? any game for over than 40€ for me should have the lifespan of over 50hours ( more or less like the old ps1/ps2 games - any Jrpg for instance :P )

sick paying 40€ or more and end a game in less than 1 day - i feel like robbed , for that i would prefer something like an online rental - blockbusters style , 5-10€ for a weekend or 1 day rental

but well thats the problem with nowadays game - its a quickie , fap fap you done.

Ps - not talking about CS/L4D kinda games since those games are online ( HL2 isnt :P )

The problem is because we were promised of updated contents etc before we bought the first L4D. It was similar like Windows Vista Ultimate. Some people actually bought the Ultimate edition because Microsoft said that there would be interesting updates/features only available on the edition.

Ended up getting games and other disappointing features (to whoever bought Ultimate solely based on the promise)

:: Lyon :: said,
The problem is because we were promised of updated contents etc before we bought the first L4D. It was similar like Windows Vista Ultimate. Some people actually bought the Ultimate edition because Microsoft said that there would be interesting updates/features only available on the edition.

Ended up getting games and other disappointing features (to whoever bought Ultimate solely based on the promise)


Did the survival mode update not exist, and all the patches not arrive? What strange alternate world is this?

Kirkburn said,

Did the survival mode update not exist, and all the patches not arrive? What strange alternate world is this?

Valve did not even finish the 2 other vs maps. Hence when you are trying to walk across a roof you run into invisible items that you have to walk around. Hell the hammer sdk is still in beta... 9 months after the game released. Survival mode was fun until I got all the gold medals, then there was no reason to play it anymore and back to the 4 vs maps. I have to agree that it was just an expensive beta. I have to spend another 50 to get more maps, weapons, and characters, all of which should just be an expansion pack or DLC.

I would have thought fans would have been happy for a second game in the franchise, no?
If it's nearly identical, I'll agree that it might be a little bight of a waste, but if it adds more to the story from the first, I can only think that's a good thing.

People would be happy to have a sequel, if it weren't 7 months apart...
That's a rather short lifespan for a game.

There's no real point in keeping L4D1 up to date with patches and content, as they would want people to buy L4D2. So therefore, the support of l4d1 is... dead (pun intended?).

This is a rather big smack in the face to a lot of Valve and L4D supporters.

And what story do you speak of?
There was no story. Infected = shoot, get to the end of the linear maps. That's it :P

SillyHalfMexican said,
People would be happy to have a sequel, if it weren't 7 months apart...
That's a rather short lifespan for a game.

There's no real point in keeping L4D1 up to date with patches and content, as they would want people to buy L4D2. So therefore, the support of l4d1 is... dead (pun intended?).

This is a rather big smack in the face to a lot of Valve and L4D supporters.

And what story do you speak of?
There was no story. Infected = shoot, get to the end of the linear maps. That's it :P


It is not 7 months apart. It is a year apart.

They will be keeping L4D1 up to date, and they plan to continue supporting it.

And if you think there's no story in L4D, you're mistaken.

Kirkburn said,
And if you think there's no story in L4D, you're mistaken.

No, he's correct. L4D is simply four "scenarios" that you have to fight your way out of.

Majesticmerc said,
No, he's correct. L4D is simply four "scenarios" that you have to fight your way out of.

Yes, and the story is contained within those scenarios. Similar to Half Life 2. They contain hints to the story.

Kirkburn said,
Yes, and the story is contained within those scenarios. Similar to Half Life 2. They contain hints to the story.


What story? You kill zombies until you are safe. Are you talking about the writing on the walls inside the safehouses?

Doli said,
What story? You kill zombies until you are safe. Are you talking about the writing on the walls inside the safehouses?

I'm not talking about the story of the events of the game, I'm talking about the background to everything that's going on in that world.