Left 4 Dead 2 Boycotters...Flown To Valve To Play The Game

Illustration for article titled Left 4 Dead 2 Boycotters...Flown To Valve To Play The Game

A couple of the internet's squeakiest wheels - the Left 4 Dead 2 boycotters - have been singled out by Valve for special attention. And not the "hobbling sticks to the legs" kind, either. The "fly to Valve HQ" kind.

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Yes, in an attempt to talk their super-fans down from the ledge, Valve arranged for two of the group's users - Walking_Target and Agent of Chaos - to pop over to Valve headquarters and get some hands-on time with Left 4 Dead 2. See if they could be persuaded to write some nice things about the game.

So, did it work?

Bet your Gabe Newell it worked.

Walking_Target wrote that "things seemed balanced and 'tight' and did not feel like a rushed job", and that "we can say with confidence...that the quality of gameplay in Left 4 Dead 2 is not in question; and it will only get better".

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As you could guess, the reaction of the nutcases to the traitor nutcases was less than positive.

God, they're just a remarkable bunch of people through and through, arent' they?

L4D2 Boycott [Steam]

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DISCUSSION

This is a cultural problem, I think. Here we have a group of people who are not buying a game, which I think is always legitimate. But, instead of just deciding to not buy the game and get something else instead, they publicise their non-purchase and let the maker of the product know they are not buying it (like roughly another six billion people or so, by the way).

At this point, the maker of the product becomes concerned with the image these guys are giving and is forced to react, often by course-correcting and making decisions that a large part of the potential buyers of the product don't necessarily agree with or want to see done.

That is a problem with all product boycotts for me. Ironically, I do think the L4D guys do have a very solid point to theirs. Valve did advertise a high rate of DLC content to the first game, implying it would be a sort of modular platform for extra campaigns and seems to have materials that fit that description already working on a full blown sequel before any DLC has been released. Either their previous communications were misleading or they course corrected in ways inconsistent with what they had advertised. In either case, if people make a purchase choice based on false claims by the maker of the product they have reasons to be angry.

If I'm told I will get a free drink with my burger I will demand that drink, and if I'm offered a paid drink before my free one arrives I might be pissed. I might even stop going to that restaurant.

I would not send a note to the press and organize other people to sign a petition for free drinks, though.