The entire premise that Back 4 Blood is based on centers around teaming up with three friends to try and survive the relentless, and seemingly endless, onslaught of Ridden. Obviously building off of the formula established with the two Left 4 Dead titles, this is a game where half the fun comes from how you and your friends respond to the unpredictable nature of the game. While there technically is a solo mode, it is heavily disincentivized compared to playing with other people. Even playing with bots is pushed as a better secondary option compared to going it alone.
That’s all well and good, but what about players who want to squad up for some split-screen local co-op zombie shooting action? The Left 4 Dead games were some of the best couch co-op experiences of their day, and while the standard of games having split-screen has been slowly disappearing, many are wondering if Back 4 Blood will allow us to play with our friends on the same console. Online multiplayer is a given but isn’t quite the same as having a buddy sitting right there next to you while you play. If that’s how you prefer to play, you’re probably wondering if Back 4 Blood supports split-screen local co-op play. Now that the game is out, here’s what you need to know before you rush out and grab the latest and greatest zombie shooter.
Back 4 Blood was advertised as being a fully cross-play title across all the major platforms (Xbox, PlayStation, and PC), but the developers admitted that local split-screen wouldn’t be an option. They made a specific statement about it, saying, “We would love to support split-screen but right now it is, unfortunately, something that will not be available at launch.” Now that the game is out, the unfortunate truth is that there is no way to play Back 4 Blood on a single console or PC with more than one person. The best you could do is go old school and set up multiple systems for a LAN party if you wanted to play with your friends in the same room.
Based on the only mention that Turtle Rock has made about split-screen support, we can have some hope that it will be added as an option sometime in the game’s future. We know that Back 4 Blood is a game that they will want to support with updates and content over time, and the fact that this feature is one that enough people are asking for (and that the team is aware of) makes us think that they will do everything they can to implement it in the game as soon as they can.
As for now, we will have to hang tight and see what future plans Back 4 Blood has to share before we will know when, if ever, this option will be added.