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Back 4 Blood trailer shows off new co-op challenges and loadouts

The latest trailer for Back 4 Blood, an upcoming co-op zombie shooter from the makers of Left 4 Dead, shows how its card-powered loadouts and difficulty modifiers flesh out the game's replayability. 

As we learned in our chat with Turtle Rock's Lianne Papp earlier this year, Back 4 Blood is built on an AI randomizer of sorts called the Game Director. Initially established in Left 4 Dead, this AI creates new challenges each run to keep the game fresh, and Back 4 Blood integrates a new card system to add more variety to the mix. 

This trailer shows some of those cards in action, many of which weren't available during the game's initial technical alpha. At the start of each mission, the Game Director plays Corruption cards that make the game harder in some way or another. Some cards add special Ridden (Back 4 Blood's take on zombies) to the mission, while others might change the environment or add extra hazards. The trailer features Corruption cards for armored Ridden, the Hag, armored Tall Boys, charred Ridden, and a card that causes a blackout and spawns Snitch-type Ridden. 

Once the game has laid its cards on the table, players get to take their turn, so to speak. You assemble a deck of cards before starting each mission, and then draw (or, more accurately, purchase) cards from that deck as you progress, tailoring and strengthening your loadout with each new card. The cards in the technical alpha were fairly limited, with few options beyond the premade decks, but this trailer shows dozens of cards that have already got us theorycrafting new loadouts. You can invest in ammo reserves, healing, explosives, melee, movement, sniping, stealth, and plenty more. Between varied enemies, custom loadouts, and the luck of the draw, Back 4 Blood looks set to match or even surpass the replayability of its predecessor, which is no small feat. 

You can see more of the Game Director in action in this Back 4 Blood trailer from the Future Games Showcase. 

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.