Thanks for sharing your story! It’s always great to hear about how L4D played a role in people’s life!
The game made quite an impact on my life as well, and now I can’t help but share some of that. (Although it’s nothing quite like that epic marriage proposal).
(Warning! Wall o’ text incoming!)
So back in the days my mom was quite strict about video games. She was convinced that playing too much video games would turn people aggressive and violent, so I wasn’t allowed to play any video games for longer than 30 minutes on a day, and I could only play on weekends. Any kind of video games with blood was banned, unless the blood could be turned off. (I was around 14-15 years old I think)
Anyway, I somehow managed to convince her that the game wouldn’t be all that violent, bought the game… and It was glorious! The 30 minute gaming window I had during the weekend was just enough to finish a campaign. When I couldn’t play, I’d dream up and design my own L4D levels, drew my own little L4D comics, as well as made a few quite awfully animated L4D sketches.
But yeah, it wouldn’t be until 3-4 month later that my mom decided to actually take a look at what was happening on the screen, and of course it had to be the same day that I put my little brother in the seat and made him play it, lol. First thing she sees of course is my brother shooting an infected right in the face, the head exploding, and the screen covered in blood. She got so pissed, haha! xD
So anyway, I talked with her, and she had to admit that I hadn’t turned into an insane violent monster. Slowly I was allowed to play on weekdays as well, and when the L4D2 beta opened, she removed the 30 minute play constraint! I think she realized that Left 4 Dead inspired me to be creative, and that even violent video games such as Left 4 Dead didn’t have any negative effects on me. I don’t think I would have received any kind of support from her in my pursuit of a career in the games industry, if it hadn’t been for Left 4 Dead.
My brother and my mom is also the only family I talk to, so it means the world to me that L4D helped her change her view about the medium that I’m all about.