Left 4 Dead 2: The Sacrifice

Just got word from Valve about their new DLC, “The Sacrifice.” It’s slated for release October 5th, although the language suggests it could get pushed if need be. This is really a unique DLC package in that they’re releasing it both for the original and “L4D2,” although each edition is a separate download. And, as if they read my mind, they’re also tossing “No Mercy” into the L4D2 fold as a bonus, complete with all the sequel’s special infected and items. Valve describes it as “Zoey with a chainsaw.”

There’s also a new kind of finale, wherein one member of the team can give their lives to save their buddies. No other specifics are mentioned. As usual, “The Sacrifice” will be free on the PC and cost 560 MS points for 360 owners. You can almost hear Valve gritting their teeth as they state that fact. Microsoft’s profound skill at butchering their relationship with one of the most important developers in the gaming world remains a sore wound for me. Redmond is all excited to be the next Wii, and in the process, they’re tearing down the foundations that built their house in the first place. It’s this kind of short-sighted, money-grubbing, trend-following crap that will be their undoing.

It’s an interesting idea to simultaneously release “The Sacrifice” for both games, but I wonder how much good it will do. Does the original still get played? Absolutely. But it’s not like fanboys actually want to be appeased, no matter what they say. They’re still going to accuse Valve of neglecting the first release, and in a way, they’re still correct. You can’t undo the damage of making L4D2, and this is coming from a person who supports the fact that they made it. The people who got pissed off love to be pissed off, and trying to appease them now almost seems like a waste of money. I guess you have to chalk that up to Valve just being class acts, and genuinely caring about their customers. They do this kind of thing not from a place of greed, but earnestness. I think it hurts their feelings when their fans aren’t happy, and even if the gesture is fruitless, they want to do it anyway. It’s what makes them one of the greats.