More L4D Survival Mode Info (w/ Graph!)

I'm hugely disappointed in the amount of "Left 4 Dead" I've been playing lately. I blame it in part on "Peggle," but more on the fact that I've been busy with site and general life stuff and haven't had a decent chunk of time to dedicate to a nice Versus game with some good friends. Unfortunately, the incoming "good weather" might also impede my gaming a bit, but not before I have some time to get my hands dirty with the L4D DLC coming out next week.

Seeing as the two new multiplayer maps aren't really "new" to people that have played through single player, the Survival Mode remains the one enigma in the DLC package. Thankfully, there's a post on the Left 4 Dead Blog detailing the new Survival Mode down to it's most intricate detail, with charts!

Given the importance of pacing in Survival Mode, we need to define as precisely as possible how the difficulty ramps up during the course of a round. We have numerous variables to work with: mob spawn frequency, special infected spawn frequency, number of each type of special infected, total number of special infected, tank spawn frequency, total number of tanks, and so on. We need all of these variables to work together to create a fairly smooth difficulty curve...

...For example, a tank will be much harder to fight if a mob of common infected spawns at the same time - and nearly impossible if three hunters also show up right at that moment. A similar situation can happen due to variables outside our control - a team may not dispatch a tank or mob quickly enough, causing subsequent waves to start arriving and piling on to an already difficult battle. It's also hard to anticipate when teams will need to make an ammo run or heal up, both of which can be extremely difficult only a few minutes into the round. In order to help visualize these overlap points and the collapse of each spawn curve, we graphed out the wave behavior of infected over the course of a survival round.

I'm having a bit of a nerduerism over the fact that I actually understand what they're talking about, and that the curve (pictured above) actually makes sense to me. It seems to me that Survival matches will generally be pretty short, because once you hit the 15 minute mark, there's almost always going to be a Tank coming after you. That certainly bodes well for me, considering my recent lack of committment to major gaming time. Either way, next week shall be a good week for zombie game fetishists everywhere.

Surviving the L4D Survival Pack

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Mark is the pretty much everything of Bloody Good Horror. When he's not casting spells in Magic or Hearthstone, you'll probably find him watching wrestling, beard glistening from the essence of Chicago's myriad beers and meats.

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