Local Left 4 Dead Players Rejoice! Local Hosting Glitch!

3 min read


I am happy, so really, really happy.

Left 4 Dead is being considered by many as 2008’s game of the year and it’s for a reason. That reason is that it is one of the best co-operative multiplayer games that you will ever play, that and it has zombies. Lots and lots of zombies.

Last night, I was browsing the internet and lo and behold, I thought that I just saw someone in a forum mention some sort of hosting glitch. So I started to dig and dig and in the end I found out that is indeed very true.

This game is absolutely amazing and now it is about to get about ten times better. No more US server lag, no more dealing with 30 zombies whilst having a second of lag.

The full DIY guide to hosting a local game, after the jump.

Ok, so here is a video of how it works. But let me rather just explain it to you as well.

Before you start, you should know that this method can cause your game to hang, which is normal so don’t worry about it too much.

I tried it last night more than once and didn’t have any freezing issues. Ok, so here is what you do:

1. Create a friends-only game

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2. Pick your settings and all

3. Once in, tap the “A” button repeatedly to start and cancel the matchmaking over and over

4. When you get it right, the lobby will start count down from 5.

5. Play with your friends and have awesome lag-free zombie killing fun.

For step 3, I tried doing it at a similar pace to the guy in the video but it didn’t work. So what I did is, I tapped the “A” button really quickly and it started counting down within a second or two.

The only reason I may have been worried to recommend this game to locals is because it had server lag, with this glitch now being possible, I can’t recommend it enough. Let’s just hope that Valve are awesome and that they support it properly with the next update.

Last Updated: February 20, 2009

Nick De Bruyne

Video games writer, editor and critic since ’08. Living and breathing video games, movies and cars since the 80s. Follow me on Twitter if you love tons of gaming talk, and @pennyworthrevs for fun stuff and links.

  • Q121

    Can anyone explain why this works? or how? or what it is doing?

    Or do we just smile and except it 🙂

  • Read underneath?

  • SlippyMadFrog

    I was actualy thinking of a way to bypass the dedicated serves because sometimes it was lag-free and sometimes it lagged. This is awesome!!!

  • Oh, my bad. Basically it seems that after cancelling out the process a few times, it thinks that there are no available servers and so it kicks into an emergency type mode that makes you the host, so that if for some reason there are no servers, gaming can commence.

  • janrik

    Great find!

    Moar Zombies! :sick:

  • Bboy

    Well it seems as though Value added support for playing without dedicated servers… maybe this was supposed to be a fail safe if there were no servers available or they had connectivity issues. The method above probably simulates this is some way and kicks off a non-dedicated server game. (unless someone has a better theory).

  • Bboy

    Lol, ok – i loaded this page up at 12:50, had a meeting wrote the comment and submitted at 13:50. I see the mystery was already solved by that stage :w00t:

  • Finally got the chance to play lag free this weekend for a good amount of time. It is not difficult to see what all the fuss is about. L4D is just an absolutely awesome game and one of the best co-op experiences you will ever have.

  • CattleBruiser

    My Xbox freezes when I try this :-/

  • Just try a few times. Ive had it freeze on me. Just tap that a button a couple of times, if it hasnt worked then just wait a second or two and try tapping it again. What me and my friends have done is that anyone willing to host must all try and get in, some might freeze, some wont, whoever gets in first sends out the inv’s. But we get it right most of the time without many issues.


    If it is freezing, slow down the rate at which you are tapping.

  • lucivar

    hi, can i ask u?? how to connect the left for dead only in local sever

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