In all the important ways, Back 4 Blood is the co-op zombie shooter that fans have been waiting for since Left 4 Dead 2. It has a few minor tweaks to the gameplay here and there, many improvements to gameplay and progression, and the obvious technical and graphical upgrades that the new generation of hardware affords. If you’ve sunk dozens, or more likely hundreds, of hours into those old classic zombie survival adventures, then Back 4 Blood will be a welcome breath of fresh air in a space that really hasn’t had any comparable games. Of all the changes this game has, though, the biggest is clearly the card system.
Cards are modifiers that add another layer of unpredictability to every campaign mission you run. The new A.I. director will still be there to tweak the difficulty, spawning Ridden and items based on how your team is doing to always keep things tense, but cards are on a different level. You will build your own deck to give yourself various buffs and advantages to keep up with the increasing difficulty of the missions. Not all cards are created equal, and you’ll want as many as possible to build the ideal deck. Here are all the ways you can earn new cards in Back 4 Blood.
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The first way to get cards in Back 4 Blood is slower and less reliable than the second. You will probably end up just getting some of these cards through natural progression, but some you will have to go out of your way for. And you’ll want to, too, because the cards you get this way are rare and can’t be obtained any other way.
Accomplishments are tasks you can do while playing matches. Some are more simple, like getting a number of kills with different weapon types, while others are more like achievements or trophies where you need to do something more specific like complete the Bar Room Blitz mission while making sure the jukebox doesn’t break. For the most part, you’re better off leaving these cards to hunt until later on, or if you see one you really want to get early since a lot will come just by playing normally.
Your main source of cards is meant to come from the Supply Lines. You will earn Supply Points by playing and beating missions that you can take to Chenda in the Fort Hope hub zone. You start off with just one Supply Line to show you how it works, but once you complete it, more will open up. These look and act a little like battle passes. You invest your points and unlock a set series of rewards until the line is complete. Thankfully you can see exactly what all the rewards are going to be, including any cards, so you can decide which Supply Lines you want to dump your points into.
You will be forced to unlock some other items, like cosmetics, in these Supply Lines as well, but you at least always know what you’re going to get and when, and outside of the cards tied to Accomplishments this is where every card will become available.
Finally, while you can’t keep them, you can at least test out any card in the game before you’ve even unlocked it. If you look in your Deck menu and go into the Solo section, you can access every card in the game to build a deck with. This deck can only be used in Solo mode, naturally, where nothing can be unlocked or earned. That makes it a perfect testing ground you can use if you see a card you think would be good to go for but want to make sure before attempting that Accomplishment or spending your Supply Points — feel free to test it out in Solo mode to make sure.
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