Back 4 Blood Guide: Starting Tips To Help You Survive

Back 4 Blood is proving itself to be one of the more enjoyable shooters to come out in 2021, but there’s a lot to learn if you want to survive in the Ridden apocalypse.

This survival guide will set you on the right path with some key tips for beginners, along with some general advice for playing with friends or strangers. So grab your baseball bat and let’s jump in!

Back 4 Blood Open Beta Early Impressions - Game Informer
Credit: Turtle Rock

Start On Recruit Difficulty

Back 4 Blood has 3 difficulty options for missions – Recruit, Veteran and Nightmare. If you’re an experienced gamer, you might be tempted to start on Veteran, but that probably won’t end very well for you.

The difficulty spike between Recruit and Veteran is kinda huge, and without more game knowledge and a good selection of cards, you’ll have a much harder time making progress. Start on Recruit instead to get a good feel for the game before you jump into those higher difficulties.

Unless you have a team of friends to play with, it’s pretty tough to get anywhere on Veteran without unlocking better gear first. It might feel strange for some to play on what is essentially the game’s “easy” mode, but in reality it’s much closer to “normal”.

The best Back 4 Blood Holly build | Rock Paper Shotgun
Credit: Turtle Rock

Pay Close Attention To Which Cards You Pick

When you start the game, you get a simple starter deck with a limited number of cards to use. These cards give you guaranteed bonuses once they pop up during a run. For example, one might give you extra grenade slots, while another might boost your healing speed.

However, certain cards have drawbacks. These range from disabling aiming down sights to reducing your ammo capacity. They typically have a big payoff, but they’re designed to be used with certain characters or builds rather than thrown randomly into a deck. If you don’t pay close attention to what cards you’re using, you might end up with some negative effects that harm you more than they help.

How to play the Back 4 Blood Alpha - Charlie INTEL
Credit: Turtle Rock

Build Decks Around Your Characters

After advancing through some of the game, you should be unlocking supply points which you can use to get new cards. You get these at the camp between runs, and adding them to your deck will give you more options for the next time you start a mission.

It’s a good idea to make a deck around one or two synergies. For example, if you’re playing as Holly you can go for melee cards, as her stamina boosts make her a great character in close quarters combat. Cards that boost melee damage, heal you with every Ridden kill or give you more melee attack speed are all great choices.

Other characters will need different synergies. Doc is a healer, so make sure your deck has healing cards if you want to make the most out of her. Other characters rely more on rifles, so you can go for more ammo or damage to make them more effective.

Back 4 Blood: The Best Cards In the Game - Den of Geek
Credit: Turtle Rock

Don’t Be A Lone Wolf

Back 4 Blood is a team game, and you won’t get far without cooperation.

It’s important to kill Ridden, but it’s equally important to look out for your teammates. Some Ridden can stun you or drag you away, but allies can free you by attacking the monster in question. You can also share items, so if a teammate is low on ammo or desperately needs healing you can always lend a helping hand.

You can even buy team-wide upgrades in the saferoom between missions, which grant bonuses to all allies. Don’t play too selfishly and your team will have a much better time!

Credit: Turtle Rock Studios

Use Pings And Callouts

Pings are an essential way to quickly communicate with your team. You can ping with the left bumper if you’re on controller, or the Q key if you’re using a keyboard and mouse. This will draw attention to any objectives, ammo, items of note.

You can even ping tougher Ridden enemies, which is very handy as it means your team will usually spot them quicker. Without voice chat, pings are your best way to communicate, and even if you’re playing with friends it can be very helpful.

Credit: Turtle Rock Studios

Work Together To Kill Special Ridden

You’ll be fighting plenty of special Ridden throughout each mission. These are enemies with more health and abilities, often requiring different strategies to beat compared to the regular Ridden. It’s important to learn what each of them can do and focus on them as a team before they dish out too much damage.

A lot of special Ridden have a weakspot, and attacking it will dispatch these enemies much faster. Exploders have a weakspot right in the middle of their chest, while Tallboys have one near the top of their arm.

And when bosses start to spawn, you’ll need to work together as a unit to take care of them or your whole team can get wiped. Don’t get too close to the Hag!

Are you getting stuck into some Ridden-killing action in Back 4 Blood? Let us know on social media.

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Featured image credit: Turtle Rock