If you are looking for zombie-based co-op games, Left 4 Dead 2 is the one for you. It has a huge amount of options for the discerning co-op game player, and the inventive four-way survival engine has you really watching out for each other’s backs (well, mostly, unless you’re playing with some douchebags, which rarely, but occasionally happens) as the hordes of zombies attack. The variety of evil undead that sweep towards you are impressive, and brilliantly animated to give you no chance of sitting around until the next crazed fiend approaches. There are some great, if wildly difficult, Easter eggs and achievements, such as the garden gnome challenge, that will keep you revisiting this game regularly.
There are many other elements to Left 4 Dead 2 that are worth mentioning, such as the realistic landscapes that are beautifully rendered, and the non-linear routes that you can take to the end of the levels, which keeps things nicely fresh. The end sections to each level also give you a real buzz (just like the juddering chainsaws you can pick up), both in their exhilarating build up and when they’re taking place. Running around a disused theme park or igniting fireworks at a stadium rock show, defending various abandoned houses and shacks while the waves of chilling ghouls approach is a top gaming experience that everyone should enjoy.
Also available are add-on levels that keep expanding the game universe, and there are some really great ones out there, such as Highway to Hell, Suicide Blitz and many more. I’ve played through a few of these and they are every bit as good as the original levels introduced by keen enthusiasts.
Don’t be left for dead, play Left 4 Dead 2 today!
This game really puts the ‘detective’ in Detective Comics’ most famous exponent – Batman. You feel as if you are really going undercover in a film noir epic as you follow in the footsteps of Gotham City’s most famous son. The game is deep, with acres of map to explore to find hundreds of hidden clues and easter eggs. It’s very nice to look at too, the art design is immaculate, and evokes that haunted, gothic science fiction atmosphere that fans of Batman want from a game. Particular scenes of note are the Scarecrow sections when Batman is under the influence of hallucinogenic narcotics and has to guide himself away from the clutches of a hideously huge Scarecrow, complete with glowing lamp eyes. Pretty hair-raising stuff.
The fight dynamics in the game are reasonably good, but don’t advance much beyond punching, kicking, and a handful of different Batarangs and weapon choices. Where it does get interesting are the stealth power-ups that allow Batman to silently swoop down and snatch up the thugs and villains that he has to contend with. This gives the game an authenticly exciting feel, as you’re never entirely sure if the criminals will notice you or not, always keeping you on your toes. Sometimes the line of vision is not entirely clear and you feel unfairly busted, and then you have to play through the same section again when you’re mowed down by machine gun fire, but there’s enough skull-cracking, bone-crunching fun to be had that it doesn’t really matter that much.
The bosses are excellent, covering a swath of characters from Gotham. We meet Poison Ivy in all her botanical glory, along with the deliciously delinquent Harley Quinn, the harrowing Scarecrow as already mentioned, Krok, Viktor Zsasz, The Riddler (never in person, as far as I’ve found yet, but in the background, taunting us mercilessly), and of course, the king of quips, the jester of death, The Joker himself – as voiced by Mark Hamill of Star Wars Luke Skywalker and Batman – The Animated Series fame, no less! These give the game a real nostalgic Batman feel, echoing all of the greatest elements of the movies, TV show and comic books, but in a hefty punch-packing package.
Batman: Arkham Asylum does not disappoint on any level and will keep you coming back for more bat-tastic amusement.