In a surprising move, Valve has announced that they’re releasing an official update for Left 4 Dead 2 that’s based largely on community-created content.
“It has been many years since the infection first hit,” reads a description of the update on the Left 4 Dead blog. “Radio silence, no sign of life, nothing but lingering hopes… CEDA is not going to save us. But there is hope! A few brave souls have continued the fight against all odds, and soon we can all benefit from their resilience.”
The description goes on to note that the update (titled “The Last Stand“) was “created by the community, for the community.” Unfortunately, Valve does not elaborate on what that means or what kind of content will be included in this update.
For what it’s worth, though, there is already a popular Left 4 Dead 2 mod called The Last Stand. It’s a survival map mod that brings The Last Stand from the original Left 4 Dead into the second game. It’s a classic “Horde Mode” scenario in which you and your friends are tasked with seeing how long you can last against endless waves of enemies. While the mod updates the original map with some of the sequel’s weapons and a few other minor alterations, it retains most of the core elements of the original experience.
So is that what this update is? The trailer for The Last Stand certainly suggests that it’s basically an official version of the mod (which, to be fair, was based on existing content), but it stops short of confirming what this update is all about.
Let’s assume for a moment, though, that this is basically the existing Last Stand mod, since that’s roughly what it seems to be. The real question then becomes “Why now?” Why is Valve suddenly releasing Left 4 Dead update after all this time, and why is it seemingly based on a mod that’s been available for quite some time? The whole situation just seems a little odd.
Then again, it’s easy enough to argue that Valve is basically in a position where they can do whatever they want. Steam is still the same moneymaker it ever was, and the success of Half Life: Alyx has seemingly got the company thinking about actually producing content related to their famous franchises once more.
So while Left 4 Dead 3 still isn’t happening, this is a nice little surprise and a great excuse to revisit one of the greatest co-op PC games ever made.