The zombies in Back 4 Blood have been heard moaning the ‘N word’. Yes, really

Back 4 Blood beta

The beta preview for zombie co-op shooter Back 4 Blood had almost 100,000 concurrent players over the weekend.

The much-anticipated title is a spiritual successor to the Left 4 Dead series that sees groups of four players completing objectives together as they fend off waves of zombie hordes.

The beta has proved incredibly popular, with 98,024 concurrent players at its peak according to SteamDB

That’s even more impressive when the beta was closed and only available to those who pre-ordered the game ahead of its October release, or watched streamers playing on Twitch.

However, players were shocked to hear what sounded like zombies moaning the N word.

The undead, known as The Ridden, are particularly vocal as they chase players. But many noticed the unfortunate sound clip (warning: clips below contain strong language).

Publisher WB Games has since responded to Kotaku to explain that the slur is, of course, unintentional.

“Our team has been made aware of offensive language that can be heard when playing the game. This was not recorded or ever intended to be part of our gameplay,” says the statement.

“The audio is a result of two different Ridden growls that are playing simultaneously and when heard together sound like that word. We are working diligently to fix this issue, which should be completed either in time for the Beta, or when the game launches.”

The Back 4 Blood beta is plenty of fun, with a certain amount of catharsis in downing tonnes of zombies with friends. Weapons feel weighty and zombie heads explode with a satisfying spurt of gore – as you’d expect really.

Objectives don’t quite make enough of teamwork, though, and the computerised bots that take the place of human players are pretty useless. There’s also a card system for buffs which is a little confusing.

In addition there’s a versus mode that’s certainly reminiscent of developer Turtle Rock Studios multiplayer shooter Evolve, with players competing against each other as humans and Ridden. 

The game has plenty of potential, but whether it can maintain those high Steam numbers remains to be seen.

Back 4 Blood is released on 12 October across Xbox and PlayStation consoles, as well as PC.

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