Back 4 Blood release date, cross-play, beta, trailers and characters

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Back 4 Blood release date, cross-play, beta, trailers and characters

Back 4 Blood is a cooperative first-person shooter from the creators of the critically-acclaimed Left 4 Dead franchise. The game will see you fending off hordes of undead with up to three friends or AI-controlled teammates, and will be available on both PS5 and Xbox Series X, as well as last-gen consoles and PC. The game is also coming to Xbox Game Pass on day one. 

The game was supposed to launch on June 22, 2021, but has been pushed back until October 12. With the game’s beta now done, dusted and an apparent success, eyes are firmly on its launch date. Don’t miss our early impressions of the game. 

Here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming shooter from Turtle Rock Studios.

[Update: There’s a brand new Back 4 Blood trailer, this time focusing on the game’s campaign. Watch it for yourself below.]

Back 4 Blood: cut to the chase

  • What is it? A cooperative first-person shooter by Turtle Rock Studios
  • When’s it out? October 12, 2021
  • What can I play it on? PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One and PC

Back 4 Blood release date and price

Back 4 Blood trailer still

(Image credit: The Game Awards)

Back 4 Blood will be released on October 12, 2021. The game will be available on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One consoles and PC. 

Back 4 Blood will cost $59.99 / £59.99 / AU$79.99 for the standard edition of the game, $89.99 / £79.99 for the Deluxe Edition and $99.99 / £89.99 for the Ultimate Edition. Pricing will vary depending on your territory.

Back 4 Blood trailers

Back 4 Blood trailer still

(Image credit: The Game Awards)

Want to watch all the Back 4 Blood trailers in one place? We’ve rounded up all the videos of the game in action for your viewing pleasure below.

Campaign trailer

A brand new trailer for Back 4 Blood delves into the game’s campaign and shows some more gameplay footage. Watch it for yourself below:

19 Minutes of Beta Gameplay
GN has shown off 19 minutes of gameplay from the Back 4 Blood beta, explaining how the game works and what players should expect with the game’s developers.

Back 4 Blood – Xbox & Bethesda Games 2021 – Official PvP Announce Trailer
Turtle Rock Studios showed off Back 4 Blood’s PvP mode in a short trailer during Microsoft’s E3 2021 conference. The game was also confirmed to launch on Xbox Game Pass on day one. 

Back 4 Blood – Extended gameplay Demo
Turtle Rock Studios shared an extended gameplay demo of Back 4 Blood. We see Cleaners Walker, Hoffman, Holly and Evangelo fight their way through a massive Ridden attack. 

Back 4 Blood – Meet the Cleaners trailer
Want to know who you’ll be playing as in Back 4 Blood? Check out the Cleaners trailer below which introduces the eight characters in the game. 

Back 4 Blood – Card System Trailer
Deal, slay, earn and replay: Back 4 Blood has an innovative new card system that players can look forward to. Check out the trailer below which explains the game’s card system in detail, and how it affects each playthrough.

Back 4 Blood Gameplay Showcase
Turtle Rock Studios gameplay was first shown on December 17, 2020. In the trailer below, you can watch the livestream which includes developer commentary and how the game plays.

Back 4 Blood – Reveal trailer
Everyone loves a good cinematic teaser trailer. Check out Back 4 Blood’s which was shown on December 11, 2020.

Back 4 Blood – Gameplay demo
This short gameplay demo of Back 4 Blood gives you a glimpse of the type of zombie-filled mayhem that awaits players when the game releases in October. 

Back 4 Blood gameplay and story

Back 4 Blood trailer still

(Image credit: The Game Awards)

Back 4 Blood puts you in the shoes of one of eight customizable ‘Cleaners’, a group of grizzled veterans who have banded together to fight against the catastrophic outbreak that has either killed off or infected most of humanity. 

You’ll need to fight against parasite-infected freaks known as the Ridden, who come in various shapes and sizes that will require different strategies to overcome. The game can be played solo or with up to three friends online or with AI-controlled teammates, and includes a co-op story campaign. 

Back 4 Blood also features a 4v4 PvP mode where you can play as a Cleaner or Ridden. Both sides come with unique weapons and abilities, which should make for some interesting gameplay encounters. At launch, matches will be a best of three rounds and according to a developer Q&A from GameInformer, the PVP maps will be based on sections of stages used in the campaign, with a few odd tweaks to make them fit the mode better.

Developer Turtle Rock Studios also claim that Back 4 Blood features “extreme replayability”, as no playthrough is the same due to the changing environments, hazards and enemy type placements. The game’s dynamic ‘Game Director’ ensures that there will be lots of variety, and tougher legions of Ridden to deal with as you play.

The game’s rogue-lite Card System will also create new experiences as you play: you can jump right in with a pre-made deck, or dive into Back 4 Blood’s vast customization options. There will be cards in both PVE and PVP, however, players may notice some cards are different in each mode to keep games more balanced.

Back 4 Blood characters

Back 4 Blood Cleaners artwork

(Image credit: Turtle Rock Studios)

Known as Cleaners, Back 4 Blood features eight customizable characters, all of whom have their own strengths and abilities. Let’s meet the eclectic crew who are tasked with getting rid of the Ridden.

Spawn ammo with kills
– +1 offensive item slot
– Increases team ammo capacity

Howard Robert Hoffman was probably more prepared than most for the apocalypse. An enthusiastic prepper and conspiracy theorist, Hoffman managed to survive as the world fell into chaos, but he’s now ready to put his skills into good use.

– Precision kills increase accuracy
– Increased damage
– Increased team health

Elijah Walker is a former Army Ranger and a highly-skilled combatant as a result. Though he’s a man of few words, Walker’s commitment to the fight means he commands respect among his fellow Cleaners. 

Heals low health teammates even without items
– Increased healing efficiency
– Increased team trauma resistance

Known simply as ‘Doc’, this Cleaner sacrificed her social life for a career in medicine. It means she’s a hell of a doctor, even if her bedside manner leaves a little to be desired. What’s more, she’s more than capable with a weapon in her hand, which makes her the ideal teammate when facing the Ridden.

– Instant revive
– +1 support inventory
– +1 team extra life

Mom has never shirked away from a challenge and took on newfound responsibility as the apocalypse hit. Outspoken and fiercely strong-willed, she’s out for revenge after losing her son. 

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– Recover stamina with kills
– Increased damage resistance
– Increased team stamina

Holly Forrester is extremely resilient and great at boosting the team’s morale. She’s known as the glue that keeps the Cleaners together, and seen as a bright light in the darkness of the apocalypse.

– Can break out of grabs
– Stamina regen
– Increased team movement speed

Evangelo is the youngest member of the Cleaners, but that doesn’t mean he can’t hold his own in a fight. While his nerves might show from being overly chatty, he’s eager to prove he’s got what it takes to be part of the team.

– Can sense hazards –
+1 quick inventory –
+1 team use speed

Karlee’s allegiance hasn’t always been clear, but the rise of the Ridden has helped her pick a side. Karlee is determined to help the remaining survivors, but is unlikely to be best friends with anyone any time soon.

– Precision kills increase damage
– +1 aim down sight speed
– Increased team weak spot damage

A seasoned hunter, Jim also has a military background. It means he’s well-equipped to deal with the Ridden and hunt out any infestations. A trusted Cleaner, Jim is exactly the type of person you’d want on your side during the outbreak.

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Back 4 Blood enemies

Back 4 Blood enemy still

(Image credit: WB Games)

There will be eight types of Ridden to survive against in Back 4 Blood, each of which poses a unique threat to you and your squad. Here’s a roundup of the disfigured nasties you’ll need to dispose of in Back 4 Blood.

The Snitcher will let out a deafening screech when aggravated, which will cause a fresh horde of Ridden to appear. Shut it up before it screams, or you might regret it.

An intimidating sight, the Tallboy stalks its victims but can quickly close the gap by dashing forward at speed. If the Tallboy gets near enough, watch out for its massive club-like arm as it will try to pulverize you and your team. Aim at its weak spot, the shoulder, before it can take a swing.

You’ll probably smell this stinker before you see it. The Reeker is a large but slow-moving enemy that explodes on death. Just make sure you keep your distance before it blows up, as the Reeker will blow players back and cover you in sticky pus.

You’ll need to keep your wits about you when a Stinger appears. This Ridden can traverse many surfaces and tends to stick to the shadows. If it manages to pin you with its phlegm (gross), you’ll need to get a teammate to break you out or use a breakout card.

We’ll update this section as more Ridden are announced. 

Back 4 Blood news

Back 4 Blood PVP showcase

(Image credit: Turtle Rock Studios)

Narrative-driven replayability

Back 4 Blood has a main story that players will be able to experience through the game’s cinematics. However, the game’s lead writer Simon Mackenzie has revealed in an interview with GameSpot that players will be able to learn more about the world and its characters by switching up their squad too. There are eight playable Cleaners in total in the game, while a squad caps out at four, so it’ll be worth swapping around that structure to learn more in the game’s quieter moments.  

“We do have cinematic scenes, so there is a historical version of events within the game, and the characters represented in the cutscenes as they happen is my golden path,” Mackenzie said. “That being said, all the Cleaners, when you have them, have different stories. They talk about each other–focusing on their own character stories or the wider picture. So you’ll get a different experience, and I hope people play through with different groups of Cleaners.”

“We’ve got a dynamic system with the [voice-over],” Mackenzie explained, “so when the pacing drops, that’s when the softer, more character-driven moments pop up. So we have to have several big performances because for a lot of the dialogue, we don’t know whether it’s going to be said as they are just walking or maybe there’s one or two Ridden or maybe they’re in a full firefight.”

Mod support?

In a recent interview, we quizzed Turtle Rock Studios co-founder and design director Chris Ashton about mod support in Back 4 Blood, and his answer was, perhaps understandably, rather cautious.

“Unknown at this point in time,” said Ashton. “It’s certainly more challenging these days than it used to be, but you know I love mods, I love modding, it’s where I got my start in games. I’d love to do it if we can but it’s definitely a big challenge. I’d love to see it.”

Back 4 Blood PC features detailed
Back 4 Blood on PC includes several features that will be available at launch, including 4K resolution, uncapped framerates, Nvidia DLSS support, ultrawide and multi-monitor support, cross-play, and various other graphics and visual quality options that PC players expect.

The game will be available via the Microsoft Store, Steam and Epic Games Store.

Always online
Back 4 Blood’s developer Turtle Rock has confirmed that the game is always online, meaning you won’t be able to play it offline, even if it’s just you and some AI. Turtle Rock confirmed this in a tweet when responding to a question about a store listing stating “online play required”, explaining, “We’re looking into ways we could support offline for the future but you will need an internet connection to play at launch.”

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Keeping the community together
In a recent blog post on keeping the game’s community together, Turtle Rock has confirmed that when only one person in a Back 4 Blood party needs to own DLC for everyone to be able to play it. The post states, that in PvE, “if your party leader owns a paid content drop, you will be able to play that content with them—including maps, gameplay and campaign. No separation. No exclusion. No split.”

And to put players’ minds at ease that paid content drops might make PvP play-to-win, Turtle Rock added, “In PvP, everyone who bought Back 4 Blood can get access to all additional PvP content, even without purchasing content drops. Players who don’t buy the content drops can earn new playable characters and Ridden in PvP, for free, through progression. Additionally, all PvP players have access to the same cards at the start of each match regardless of whether those players have purchased content drops or not.”

Coming to Xbox Game Pass day one
Back 4 Blood will launch on Xbox Game Pass on day one. The news was revealed at Microsoft’s E3 2021 conference and means those who subscribe to Xbox Game Pass or Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will Back 4 Blood when it launches on October 12 for no extra charge.

New boss called the Breaker
Back 4 Blood showed a new Ridden at the Summer Game Fest Show called the Breaker, which is a huge rock-like zombie with glowing hotspots. The breaker can leap around the map and cause havoc, so make sure you fire and move if you want to survive.

Will Back 4 Blood have cross-play?

Turtle Rock has now confirmed that cross-play will be included in Back 4 Blood during the open-beta, and will hopefully be ready for launch.

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Cross-play support is a great addition to Back 4 Blood, as the player base wouldn’t be needlessly segregated by platforms and it will ensure that the game will always have a healthy amount of players.

When is the Back 4 Blood beta?

Back 4 Blood’s beta has now taken place and, as far as it’s been made clear, there won’t be another before the game’s October 12 launch. Those who just can’t wait until then will be glad to know that pre-ordering the Digital Deluxe and Ultimate Editions of the game gives 4 days early access, starting on October 8. For those who took part in the beta, nothing will carry over to the main game. 

Turtle Rock has said in a Q&A with fans (via VG247) that it’ll be using feedback from the beta to work on improving the game’s bots as well as tuning difficulty before launch. We went hands on with the game so don’t miss our impressions on what we played.  

Will Back 4 Blood have DLSS support?

Nvidia has announced that Back 4 Blood will include DLSS support. PC Players with GeForce RTX graphics cards can activate Nvidia DLSS to benefit from the technology’s performance boosts, which should hep you eke out more performance when playing at higher resolutions.

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