Back 4 Blood release date, characters, and types of Ridden

Turtle Rock Studios' follow-up to Left 4 Dead is coming in a matter of months

Looking forward to the Back 4 Blood release date? Not long to go until we’ll be bashing our way through hordes of zombies to get to the safe room. E3 2021 gave us a look at some fresh Back 4 Blood gameplay, including the Swarm PvP mode, where players can play as both cleaners and the Ridden.

Back 4 Blood is the spiritual successor to, and from the same creators as, Left 4 Dead. It does look fairly similar in the gameplay trailers we’ve seen so far, as you take on swathes of violent zombies in a race to get from A to B, waving around various melee weapons and guns in a bid to survive the thick onslaught of these once-humans. This FPS game can be played with three other players online in a story campaign, or you can choose to go at it alone in competitive multiplayer.

There’s a lot to dissect from recent footage, particularly the types of Ridden we’ll come up against. We’ve also seen the roster of Back 4 Blood characters, or rather cleaners, we can play as when the release date hits later this year, so let’s take a look at everything we know so far.

Back 4 Blood release date

After a delay earlier this year, the Back 4 Blood release date is October 12, 2021, originally set to release in June.

There’s also an open beta planned for August 5-9 for early access, and 12-16 for all players. You can register for an open beta code on the Back 4 Blood website.

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Back 4 Blood characters

The characters in Back 4 Blood all come with their own perks, something Left 4 Dead didn’t have. It’s still unclear whether weapons are unique to each character, but from the trailers and images we’ve seen so far, it does look like characters at least have a weapon preference, even if you can pick up new guns along the way. Holly, for example, wields a nail spiked baseball bat called Dottie.

Here’s a look at all of the confirmed characters in Back 4 Blood:

  • Hoffman – spawn ammo with kills, +1 offensive item slot, increased team ammo capacity
  • Walker – precision kills increase accuracy, increased damage, increased team health
  • Doc – heals low health teammates even without items, healing efficiency, team trauma resistance
  • Mom – instant revive, +1 support inventory, +1 team extra life
  • Holly – recover stamina w/kills, damage resistance, team stamina
  • Evangelo – breakout of grabs, stamina regen, team movement speed
  • Karlee – sense hazards, +1 quick inventory, +1 team use speed
  • Jim – precision kills increase damage, +1 ADS speed, team weakspot damage
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Back 4 Blood Ridden

As well as your usual run-of-the-mill zombie, there are also special types of Ridden in Back 4 Blood. They’re similar to the Witch, Spitter, and Charger in Left 4 Dead. Although these Ridden look deadlier than their predecessors, with four types of extra-mutated Ridden confirmed so far. From the extended E3 trailer above, it looks like there’s some nasty surprises in store for the cleaners; at the end of the trailer a huge monster (which doesn’t look remotely human) emerges from a gaping hole in the ground.

The confirmed Ridden in Back 4 Blood are:

  • Reeker – large and slow, they explode on death and cover nearby characters in a sticky substance
  • Stinger – a well hidden Ridden… they can pin characters down with their phlegm, delightful
  • Snitcher – summons other Ridden by screaming
  • Tallboy – both big and agile, this Ridden swings a club arm to bash characters and can burst forward to close the gap between you

That’s all we know about Back 4 Blood for now, but there’s a lot to feast on. If you’re hungry for more, check out the best zombie games on PC.

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