A rotten corpse in a pretty coffin.
Published by Aether_Fenris
Zombies seem to be everywhere. Comics, television, and especially video games. Zombie games have to do a lot to stand out in the crowd now. Dead Island taunted a gorgeous open world and deep RPG driven gameplay, but did it deliver what it promised?
The moment you first lay eyes on the island resort of Banoi, you're most likely going to say something along the lines of "Wow, this game is beautiful!" and you'd be right. Everything in Dead Island is very well rendered, from the good to the bad. The palm trees and sand are pleasing to the eyes, and in the same way gashed and chewed up remains are absolutely disgusting. If there is one good thing I have to say about Dead Island it is that the graphics are consistently stunning.
Upon booting up the game, you are presented the choice of 4 different characters. Each character has different specialties and personalities, but unfortunately none of them are likable. All of the playable characters are an annoying stereotype, from the football jock to the coky feminist , and they just had to throw in a gangster black guy to boot. Add on top of that that none of them had any reason to vacation to the island aside from getting drunk and partying and you just don't really care if they survive or not.
The game controls from the first person perspective and is for the most part an RPG. You take on quests from other island survivors and, as you complete more story related quests new areas are opened to you. One area where the game falls short is that it is not nearly as open as it claims to be. Once you unlock all the areas, it is decently large but the island is still not that big. In the end, you're pretty much made to stay in the area where the story is unfolding unless you want to be completely bored to death. Killing zombies and completing quests awards you with experience, and as you level up you acquire skill points to buy upgrades and abilities with.
Another area the game falls short is the weapons. The game was supposed to be about improvising and using what is around you, but instead there are only a handful of items that can be used as weapons. Fortunately these weapons can be upgraded to break the monotony, but that still isn't enough. For example, if you have a baseball bat and 2 nails, you make a spiked bat. This is cool, but doesn't save the game from the fact that there are very few weapons. As you use weapons, they degrade. Guns become less accurate and strong, and pipes bend and rust. Use them enough and the weapon will break. This is kind of a neat feature, but ultimately the fact that you will likely find another weapon just like it soon causes you to only care so much. On top of that, combat eventually just gets repetitive and boring to the point that you hope you don't tun into another enemy - and not because you're dying.
Overall, Dead Island is very pretty, but that does not save it from mediocre gameplay that doesn't live up to any of its promises. Perhaps if I had known nothing about the game prior to my purchase, I would have enjoyed it more. I watched all the prerelease trailers and read most of the articles about it before it came out. I expected a wonderful, beautiful, open world zombie game. It may have delivered on the beautiful part, but the gameplay is fairly linear despite the side quests and the combat gets old quickly. There are plenty of toher zombie games out there that are much more worthy of your money and your time.
Try switching the controls to analog if you didn't like the gameplay very much! It made killing zombies much more satisfying! It does take some getting used to though. (I also believe there is an achievement for getting a certain amount of kills using the control scheme!)
Pikakid is an awesome new member for realizing that reviews are just opinions. Anyway, I can't change the control scheme because I already got rid of the game. I honestly would not have bothered with it anyway.
I was very excited when the game first came out, but was disappointed with the final product. The controls were clunky, weapons degraded way too quick (even upgraded) and the online had terrible servers. I could only connect with my brother for about 10 mins. Then one of us would just stop moving on the other screen, but both still playing. Oh and did i mention the game save problem. Hours of progress would be lost. Made the game unplayable.