Zombies might be a familiar theme in gaming, but an asymmetric multiplayer FPS certainly isn't. The reality of Left 4 Dead colliding with people's expectations was clear enough at the Munich playtest we attended recently, as Germany's finest videogame journos shrieked in fear and delight. The survivor and infected teams were clashing on a previously unseen and remarkably intense new scenario: the Farmhouse. Rabid zombies came screaming out of the cornfields, and over-excited scribes punched the air as they managed to score an infected kill against the well-armed survivors.
The core of the game is easily understood: playing as part of a team of four armed survivors of the zombie apocalypse, you fight against AI-controlled waves of basic zombies and rather more potent boss types.