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Interview from the E3
Written by Unknown on 17.07.2008 Time 15:49

Our comrades from Gamecyte.com are currently at the E3 in Los Angeles. They've interviewed Erik Johnson from Valve about Left 4 Dead, a coop-shooter currently in development by Valve, as well as about Team Fortress 2.

They've asked Erik if there are any connections between both games since their development process happened during the same time. Erik answered this question with a clear yes. Team Fortress 2 has a huge influence on Left 4 Dead. The communications between players is a very important element in a coop-game like Left 4 Dead, if not even more important then in Team Fortress 2. Left 4 Dead also benefits from the experience they gathered at the work on Team Fortress 2, since both games use the source engine, which is about to be advanced every day. The 360 port of the Orange Box is another very helpful experience Valve can use for Left 4 Dead's possible 360 port. New content and updates will be released for Left 4 Dead as well as it already happens for Team Fortress 2.

After they asked Erik about the balance between the 9 classes in Team Fortress 2, Erik instantly mentioned the Demoman, who’s grenades and sticky bombs makes him very powerful. Erik's opinion is that simply reducing the damage of the sticky bombs is not the best solution. According to his statement, Valve will solve the problem on another way. There are many different ways of balancing in many respects. He explains it at the case of a player who is new to Team Fortress 2. This player will have a problem when facing a level 3 sentry. An experience player will have a problem too, even though it's a problem of a lesser threat. A new player will also not recognize the importance of a Dispencer or a Teleporter at the first time.

The Interview also explains a few things about the Unlockables. Valve plans to work on every class in a 5 weeks cycle, meaning that all classes will be finished in about 8 months. Erik also said that no new "Meet the Cast" video will be released together with the Heavy update, but instead something else in a different style will be added.

The people from Gamecyte.com also mentioned that the community is wondering whether the regular updates are profitable for Valve or not. Erik answered that they don't want to create a temporary connection with the players based on a single game, but rather want to create a good reputation as a high quality game company so players will buy more Valve games from the company. The free weekends as well as the new updates, so Erik explains, always create a "Boost" of new players, so it's still profitable.

You can find the full Interview by clicking on the "Source" link added to the Related links section below.


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