Author Topic: Survivor Swap  (Read 2711 times)

Offline Fanghawk

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Survivor Swap
« on: October 26, 2010, 12:20:17 AM »
When The Sacrifice came out, one of things I thought was kind of weird about the new campaigns was that you couldn't play them as the new survivors. I could accept this for The Sacrifice to an extent (gives you a chance to give original survivors melee weapons, etc) but why keep the originals in L4D2's No Mercy? I could already play as them in the first game, and the addition of new special infected and melee weapons didn't seem enough to me. I wanted to take Coach through this campaign, or at least have the option to!

Now, whenever I told people this, their response was usually one of two things. The first was that "It wouldn't make sense for the new survivors to be in the city the originals were located in", as though the fictional plot of a very subtle backstory provided enough logic to refute my claim. The second was that the dialogue of the new survivors wouldn't line up with the events of the original camp, and recording new dialogue, testing, etc would take a lot of extra effort. To which I admit, makes sense, but when did that ever stop us from playing custom campaigns where the authors couldn't be bothered to tweak the dialogue settings for their maps? The maps are still fun and the characters are still fun, so do we really need the dialogue to follow every step of the way?

I still suspect that one day, Valve will release a mutation allowing for these possibilities, but in the meantime modders very quickly attempted to come up with their own solutions. Most of these are re-releases of all of L4D and L4D2's campaigns with minor tweaks to switch survivor teams, but it would take quite a bit of effort to download them all. One addon however, seems especially worth noting: Survivor Switcher.

Survivor Switcher takes a step closer to my ideal of keeping all options open by changing the survivor teams for all official L4D2 camps except for The Passing. (The original survivors meeting themselves, plus one of their own corpses, is too much of a mind-bender to bother with for now!) That means you can play Dead Center, Dark Carnival, Swamp Fever, Hard Rain, and The Parish as the original Survivors and then play The Sacrifice and No Mercy as the new survivors. I tried out Dead Center, and for the most part it plays just fine. By the way, this includes other gameplay modes, in case Doc gets an itch to take Bill through a certain single-player mutation.

Now of course, the mod isn't perfect. All you get from the original survivors dialogue-wise are stock warnings about incoming infected, cries for help when attacked, etc. Standing in the elevator in the first map with a distinct lack of exposition was very eerie, especially since the survivor's eyes followed me wherever I went. I also noticed an animation error when I tried to heal myself (although it didn't happen again later on) and the game felt strangely easy, breezing through with barely any resistance or friendly fires, even during the mall alarm event. So if I'm not too awesome for Normal difficulty anymore or the AI Director isn't going easy on me, something was tweaked to make things easier. Although it could just be that I haven't played single-player for a very long time, and the game has been patched to compensate for the difficulty.

Regardless, since the game feels lacking with the original survivors, I think it would be best used with other players to fill the void. Unless another modders version runs better than this, I suggest this be what we go to if we ever get an inkling to mix up our campaign playthroughs.

And if we do, I vote for Hard Rain. ;D
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 09:37:30 AM by Little Bugger »

Offline bobdog

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Re: Survivor Swap
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2010, 06:16:43 AM »
I'll DL and maybe we can give it a shot this week sometime.