Tuesday, September 29, 2009

[REVIEW] Left 4 Dead Crash Course

Image via Destructoid

This review will be short, just like the campaign. And I have to say, I'm overall incredibly disappointed.

First and foremost, I downloaded the PC version, because I don't feel like paying $7 for the 360 version. I like paying nothing, just as I did on Steam. Oh wait, it comes as a title update. I wish I knew that before getting pissed off at Steam for advertising it and not allowing me to download. After a unintentional load of L4D, I thought to check the campaign option to see if it was there.

It was.

I boot the campaign up, after connecting my 360 wireless controller to my MacBook Pro (How's that for irony? Playing the Windows version of Left 4 Dead, with the free Crash Course DLC using my Xbox 360 controller) and load up Crash Course. Your greeted with your helicopter pilot from the - story wise - previous campaign, No Mercy (it's No Mercy, right? That was the only campaign that ended with a helicopter pilot rescuing you, so...) shot, laying on the side of a building with your helicopter in shambles because, according to Zoey, he turned into a zombie.

Begin Crash Course.

The campaign, as stated before, is SO fucking short, it's ridiculous. The only two chapters in the free add-on (I'm glad grateful that I didn't pony up the $7/560 Microsoft Points for this) were around the same length of any other chapter from the retail campaigns, however, it seemed like there were a lot more of the horde and special infected. How's this for clusterfuck material? First chapter, I'm nearing the bridge, and I just passed a Witch. Going under the bridge, there's another Witch. Oh, and this one: a Tank spawns as soon as the first chapter starts as we are making our way away from the helicopter. And I almost forgot about this one: Last chapter, getting the generator to start, and a Tank spawned not 5 goddamned minutes after the first Tank. Does it help to mentioned that Boomers are in plentiful supply and the random horde swarms come in handfuls now?

I originally thought that Crash Course was cranked out of Gabe Newel's man-juice sack simply because the L4D fanbase was about to turn into the horde themselves over the announcement of L4D2 at this year's E3, after Valve said they would be supporting L4D1 into the coming years with DLC before L4D1 came out.


But, alas, I was right. Two chapters for this campaign add-on, and for free (again, for PC users) pretty much confirms my original thought. With the compacting of special infected appearances, plus the abundance of the horde itself, makes me feel that Valve wanted to cram as much content they could into 2 short chapters.

Free It's good that Valve made this a free add-on, considering Microsoft demanded they charge for it. Why the oddball price of $7 is beyond me. If anything, this DLC is worth about $2-3, if not less. Oh, wait...

Same Creepy Atmosphere Again, Valve does with the creepiness factor and Crash Course is the same kind of gameplay you'd expect from any other campaign, albeit short.

360 Users Pay Why Microsoft is demanding Valve puts a price tag - and at 7-fucking-dollars - on this is beyond me, due to the uprising L4D fanbase that was near condemning Valve's office with pipe bombs and molitovs. 

Too Fucking Short Two chapters, and that's it. 

Too Much At Once I can understand the lack of chapters to play through would cause some disservice to the series, but do you really have to crank up the amount of horde and special infected just for your lack of wanting to put a quality product out? Valve has been known over the years to put out nothing but quality, but Crash Course pretty much throws up the middle in the faces of their followers. Especially the Xbox gang.

You can bet your $7 that I won't be paying for Crash Course for my 360. I don't even know if I want to play it again on my computer. I feel so...used.


This review was based on an easy difficulty setting, using solely the shotgun (favorite weapon throughout retail campaign). The overall completion time took roughly 30-40 minutes, and possibly longer on higher difficulties. Multiplayer maps were not tested; this review was going after the story-canon related material, solely the Crash Course campaign itself.