Must Check: Back 4 Blood - Before You Buy

Updated on 2023-06-29
Back 4 Blood (PC, PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S/One) is a cooperative zombie shooter with familiar DNA. How is it? Let's talk.

Back 4 Blood 

Yo, what's going on guys? Here is your friend and welcome back to Videosolo. Today, we're talking about Back 4 Blood. This is the newest game from Warner Brothers and Turtle Rock Studios. Once again, trying to crack the code on cooperative multiplayer chaos. It is like the spiritual successor to the classic Left 4 Dead games that helped bring this gameplay style to the mainstream. So long story short, Back 4 Blood is precisely that. 

Back 4 Game Played

The gameplay, the shooting, and the objectives feel newer and a bit more modernized, but you'll get that same rush playing with your friends. You know, mowing down zombies, trying to take down the more unique ones and just struggling to get through to a safe house at the end. Like if you're looking for that gameplay sensation, you get it here. I think some of the betas were a little rough, and I wasn't sure how this game would pan out, but all signs point to it as pretty decent. You know, it's not without its problems, but it's fun. And just so you know, before we go forward, this footage was captured on both a PC version and the Xbox Series X version. 

So with this game, first of all, it's worth noting that the shooting feels pretty great. As much as there's an emphasis on ADS, many of the guns can be hip-fired, and some of them you can do fairly okay with. The weapon feedback is excellent, and the gunfire sounds loud and aggressive and punchy. The reload animations are pretty sweet. There are primary weapons, a sidearm, and melee weapons like a machete, hatchet, or bat with nails. You know, zombie killing stuff like that. You have a weapon you start with, but you find more along the way by opening crates and exploring for a little bit before moving on. And the weapon variety is surprisingly lovely. You know, SMGs, assault rifles of all kinds, shotguns and some fun handguns. So just like a lot of sidearm variety. They all feel accessible, but they all feel like they have their slight differences in play style. 

I mean, even if at the end of the day, it just boils down to just firing a bunch of bullets into a crowd of zombies, the way they shake up are nice. And with the guns, you can pick up weapons attachments for them in the field. Unfortunately, it kind of sucks that they stayed locked to that weapon. So if you drop the weapon for a new one, you can't take your attachment. At least that's what we saw. If that's not the case, feel free to correct us, but it doesn't matter too much because you're always finding cool weapons. And some of them have different optics, compensators, stocks, stuff like that, and all kinds of changes stats and make them feel slightly different. 

Character movement and navigation is just quick enough to feel competent but restrictive enough to make some encounters or just wrong positioning feel pretty dangerous. You're carrying stuff strategically in a relatively limited inventory of throwables like grenades, Molotovs, pipe bombs, and other tricks down the line. And you have different healing items and toolkits for opening optional locked doors, defibrillators to revive friends quicker and stuff like that. And you'll also be able to pick things up to kind of help build up many defences. You could drop razor wire to slow some average enemies down. You can often set up something like a mini mounted gun in specific scenarios. You can also pick up and place or throw gas canisters to shoot at just the right moment to get an advantage because you're going to need every benefit you get. You might know how these games go. It's broken into multiple chunks. Each chunk has various levels or scenarios within it structured around a whole story or campaign. And it can get pretty challenging. Just a couple of acts in, we were pleasantly surprised by the whole level of challenge and coordination needed. 

Even if, honestly, sometimes the best plan doesn't matter because the game loves to throw chaos right into your lap. Like to the point where multiple times, the game spawns massive enemies right on top of you. Or the game lets you fortify an area. 

Then the enemies come from a completely different spot that we weren't expecting. It might be some of the randomnesses the game generates to keep things invariably interesting. Still, sometimes it can also feel a little sloppy, messy, and not as fun. That's just here and there, though. All these sequences are surprisingly lengthy, though, and there's some good variety to the levels and areas. What's nice is that all of it feels perfectly good and spooky, from abandoned buildings to creepy dark alleyways where you need a flashlight, collapsed bridges, and even wide open farm fields that still brought the tension. We don't want to spoil the last few for you, but they're pretty cool. It also feels messy when we've had the occasional crash on the Xbox version. Nothing insane, but here and there and worth mentioning. 

Otherwise, with server stuff, we haven't had any problems. Granted, we've been playing during the early launch, not the full launch. This is like the early access, special edition launch or whatever. So that's subject to change, but so far, okay. Now on another positive side, the excellent variety continues with the enemy types. Tons of the stupid, annoying zombies are pretty soft and are just there to allow you to have some fun and slash or hip-fire your way through them but get surrounded, and you can be in trouble. Dealing with them is whatever. It's the pretty large variety of the more dangerous enemies out there that is awesome—tallboys. These big brutes can mess you up. Of course, that spit gross stuff. There's a couple of different types and then a few variations within those types. And it's nice to see. And that's not even counting the more boss style enemies, which can be kind of a pain in the ass. 

There are multiple difficulty modes for jumping into, suitable for newcomers and people looking for more play. And there's cross-play, giving people even more options. You know, we always say, the more opportunities for this type of stuff, the better. The game has some pretty inspired and fun little sequences, like defending a bar while the jukebox plays licensed tracks. That set a perfect tone until the zombies damaged the jukebox and the music screeches and turned off, and you got to turn the machine back on. Because man, with friends, that is a fun situation. Plus, with the card system, you can change the levels for an added challenge and goodies, like a time limit, making the story darker, filling it with fog, and straight up, it changes things. It makes it a little bit more compelling. 

There's a base camp between the action that lets you mess around with the sub stuff the game offers. A lot of this is centred around the card system. You build a deck that gives you advantages in the game. There's boring stuff like just a more healthy card and crazier stuff that you can get like no ADS. Still, you have a stronger melee or better bullet penetration, unique resistances, stuff that not only helps you but also benefits the entire team. You know, some of it can be kind of interesting. Spending points in supply lines allows you to unlock more cards, and you can pick up stuff in-game during levels to shake things up too. Now I'm not really into card systems. 

Even when there are no microtransactions and property, it still just feels weird to me. But here, it works as a way of some character customizations or builds. I would prefer to get boots that make me run faster or just a skill tree or a gun upgrade or something like that. That's just me. There's a lot to them, and as of right now, there aren't any microtransactions involved in them. And the studio has been seemingly pretty upfront and transparent. 

There will be paid stuff, but none of it apparently will be of any benefit for PVP. Now, we shall see. Time will tell, but right now, it all seems okay. The hub base also has a weapon range, and you can get tons of skins for your characters and each weapon if you want. You can also engage in solo mode or swarm mode, which is the competitive mode that I only briefly dabbled in. Still, it seems like it can be fun—getting to play as the lousy zombie creatures is simple because of the limited but pretty fun as something different to do in the game. 

It's, you know, is it like on the level of the Left 4 Dead 2 PC mods? Not quite, but it's nice to have this year. And the ability to make a private server is pretty excellent. I always appreciate that. There's just a decent amount here. You know, lengthy scenarios, multiple acts, cutscenes with the story I didn't care about and characters that I didn't find as compelling as something like Left 4 Dead. But you know, high levels, lots of enemies, massive amounts of the card, deck-building stuff, and other modes. 

The content offering is decent, and if you have a good group of friends, you'll likely have some fun playing through this. It isn't perfect, but it's way better than I expected, and I think people will have a lot of fun with it. I know I hate to be reductive, but it's a modernized Left 4 Dead. If you've been hoping for something like that, you have that here. The bells and whistles might annoy you, or you might like them. 


This is a Before You Buy. You know how this goes by now. I gave you some pros, some cons and some personal opinion. And now I want to hear yours down in the comments. What do you think of Back 4 Blood? Have you been playing since the alphas and the betas? Are you jumping in because you got the big pre-order special edition? Are you waiting for launch day? Who are you? What's your level of interest? Are you a Left 4 Dead fan?