Home » Back 4 Blood Feels Like a Marriage of Payday 2 and Left 4 Dead

Back 4 Blood Feels Like a Marriage of Payday 2 and Left 4 Dead

Back 4 Blood has gotten a lot of attention as a successor to Left 4 Dead, and for good reason. Both games were developed by Turtle Rock Studios, and a lot of the gameplay in Back 4 Blood can bring up memories of Left 4 Dead. Both are zombie shooters that take players through linear yet challenging levels with secrets spread throughout their worlds. At the same time, Back 4 Blood has more character choice and a sense of realism that more recent technology allows, making it feel like a mix between both Left 4 Dead and Payday 2.

While Back 4 Blood doesn’t need too much help getting its name out there, the marriage of Left 4 Dead and Payday 2 is a great selling point. The traditional zombie killing that many are used to is complimented by a weapon system that allows players to customize their builds and find what fits them best. This is a major step up from what classic Left 4 Dead fans had, and helps to round out the player experience in a similar fashion as Payday 2.

RELATED: Back 4 Blood Smashes Left 4 Dead All Time Steam Concurrent Player Record

Diverse Weapons

With each run able to have different weapon builds, consumables, and a shop for players to use at the beginning of each section, loading in feels a lot like preparing for a heist in Payday 2. Players won’t find themselves robbing different banks and trying to infiltrate one of the most well-protected places in the world, but they will find extra loot and copper, the currency used in Back 4 Blood, is stashed throughout each of Back 4 Blood‘s acts.

Some doors, like the vaults in Payday 2, will need extra equipment to get through, but these unique spaces also provide instances of risk-reward management. The copper players have maintains its value throughout the run, and the options to refill ammo, upgrade weapons, or fill health at a safe house become more serious decisions the longer a run goes. This planning stage before the Cleaners leave a safe house can have consequences throughout the entire section players are in. Much like being unprepared for a heist in Payday 2, being ill-prepared for a level like The Crossing in Back 4 Blood can result in the whole team going down.

In each area, the option to take a tool kit and open locked doors for extra loot can be tempting, but having a defibrillator to get teammates up faster could be the difference between dying to the horde or making it out alive. Similarly, while restarting a mission in Left 4 Dead could be a chore, failing a run in Back 4 Blood feels more like failing a heist in Payday 2. Beginners in Back 4 Blood will likely find themselves reevaluating what gear they brought with them and what changes need to be made to make their next attempt a smoother experience.

The Ridden

As important as preparation is for each section, the unique Ridden in Back 4 Blood also bring with them their own challenges. Building on many of the concepts used in Left 4 Dead’s Infected, the Ridden act as somewhat evolved variants with Special Ridden featuring their own classes and skills. The abilities of these Special Ridden have noticeable similarities to the Special Infected, but tend to appear more often and can become overwhelming. Their numbers are part of what helps them to stand out, acting more as constant threats than isolated members of the horde. Some players might not love this aspect of Back 4 Blood as it reaffirms the threat Ridden pose.

Thinking through levels, Back 4 Blood‘s cards, and which of the Special Ridden will pose the biggest problem is what helps join the aspects of Back 4 Blood that feel inspired by Left 4 Dead and Payday 2. It generates a cohesive game that has built on a solid foundation. The gunplay feels as rewarding and responsive as Payday 2, while the Ridden feel like the natural evolution of Left 4 Dead’s infected. In these ways Back 4 Blood has taken some of the best aspects of two well-loved titles to provide an updated experience for a familiar genre.

Back 4 Blood is available now for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

MORE: Back 4 Blood Review