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Mod of the Week: Left 4 Dead 2

With Valve’s keen support of the Oculus Rift headset you could imagine many of their popular titles would be set to receive official support for the device. Both Team Fortress 2 and Half-Life 2 have already received native support, and rumour has it that Left 4 Dead 2 is next on the agenda. However, those clever boffins in the mod community have already managed to hijack the software and insert a script that makes Left 4 Dead 2 fully compatible with Oculus Rift, and VRFocus is going to show you how to do just that.

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Much like many of the titles that this Mod of the Week feature will cover, Left 4 Dead 2 can run with stereoscopic 3D and motion-tracking via the Oculus Rift headset courtesy of the Vireio mod software. This is a free download but can be tricky to implement, and so below follows detailed instructions to get one of the most critically acclaimed zombie bashing experiences of all time!

Set-Up

As Left 4 Dead 2 is a few years old now there will undoubtedly be numerous updates that require installation. Once the videogame has been installed launch the .exe file directly (i.e. do not launch through your Steam client). Allow the automated update process to complete. During VRFocus‘ tests the update closed a number of times before true completion, so simply restart in the same fashion as previously instructed.

Boot the videogame via the .exe when the updates have been completed and access the Options menu. Disable Vertical Sync and set the resolution to 1200 x 800 pixels. Exit the videogame and set your desktop resolution to 1200 x 800 pixels also. Next, copy the d3d9.dll, hijackdll.dll, libfreespace.dll and VRboost.dll files from your Vireio directory into your Left 4 Dead 2 directory (the folder in which the Left 4 Dead 2 .exe file is located). Boot Vireio and adjust your settings in accordance with your preferred Oculus Rift profile, then boot Left 4 Dead 2 as normal.

 

NOTE: Some graphics cards prioritise VRboost.dll ahead of the in-game shaders, which can occasionally cause conflict. If Left 4 Dead 2 crashes upon load of the videogame (after loading via the in-game menu) you will need to use Vireio’s in-built menu system. Instructions for how to do this follow below:

  • Access the Profiles.xml file in your Vireio directory and find the Left 4 Dead 2 entry.
  • Change the name of the ‘VRboostRules’ entry to something that doesn’t already exist.
  • Boot the videogame and once on the main menu, press the Left Shift key and the ‘*’ key on the numberpad simultaneously.
  • Select the ‘Overall Settings’ option, this will display a shader count a the bottom of the screen in green text. Make a note of this number on the main menu, level select and loading screens.
  • Return to the Profiles.xml screen and change the entry named ‘minVRboostShaderCount’ to the highest number recorded plus an additional 20 (i.e. if the highest number displayed in green text was 4, enter 24 as the new value).
  • Rename the ‘VRboostRules’ entry to it’s original name.