The zombies have arrived, and they've infiltrated every aspect of pop culture. These days it seems like everyone's dreaming up zombie versions of their favorite characters, coming up with special zombie levels of their favorite games, or kicking it up a notch with entire games devoted to the walking dead. Left 4 Dead and Dead Rising are two such games riding on this wave of carnivorous corpses, so it only seems logical that we pair the two undead franchises up against one another to see which one is the zombie-slaying champion.
Most chaotic: Left 4 Dead. It's hard to match the sheer chaos of having a Left 4 Dead zombie horde raining down on you.
Most over-the-top: Dead Rising. C'mon, look at the picture below and tell me that's not some Sylvester-Stallone-arm-wrestling-over-the-top awesomeness.
Best characters: Left 4 Dead. Outside of the drab Nick and Rochelle in Left 4 Dead 2, the casts of each game each have strong, memorable personalities, like Louis' endlessly upbeat cheer, or Francis' penchant for hating things, and Ellis' tendency towards telling stories featuring his unlucky friend Keith.
Best story: Dead Rising. It's an easy win for Dead Rising here, seeing as how Left 4 Dead doesn't have much of a story.
Most memorable monsters: Left 4 Dead. Smoker, Tankie, and the rest of the undead gang may not speak, but that doesn't mean that these vicious vagrants are lacking personality.
Winner: Left 4 Dead
If you're looking for wild, do-as-you-please antics where you can use zombies as walking punchlines by putting silly masks on them, or executing them in over-the-top ways, you can't beat Dead Rising. But if you're looking for some legitimately scary walking dead, Left 4 Dead's pulse-pounding, you-could-die-at-any-second multiplayer mayhem is the cream of the crop, which is why, at the end of the day, it's the franchise that'll be reaching that rescue helicopter while Dead Rising stays behind to go crowd surfing on a sea of corpses.