The lights are on
Veteran Member - Level 13
(No bloody/gore-filled pictures will be used in this blog for certain audiences.)
I am fully prepared for the backlash this blog is sure to bring. Ever since my blog just before the end of the year about my opinion of The Walking Dead game. It was not a favorable opinion, and it went against the majority of the community and their own opinions. I'm used to that type of thing, as my tastes tend to veer off from that of the majority.
Yesterday, I ventured to Wal-Mart because I woke up to a flat tire. I needed some things anyways, so the trip wasn't a complete waste of energy. I wandered, as I always do in Wal-Mart, and found myself in the video game/electronic section. Surprise surprise. In my browsing, I spotted Dead Island GOTY for $20. At Gamestop, its been $26 and change used. After some debate with myself and advice from the GIO Twitter users, I made the purchase.
This wasn't the first time I owned Dead Island. The first time I owned it, I didn't get time to really explore. Times got rough financially, and I had to trade it in.
My previous failure to play the game, along with the recent commotion over Riptide influenced my repurchase.
I've been playing nearly nonstop since last night. I wasn't expecting much in terms of gameplay or anything, given that the majority of the reviews call it "sluggish" or "unfinished" but I am having a blast.
An open world zombie game? Uh... yes please.
Every complaint that I had with The Walking Dead, Dead Island remedy's. Dead Island has freedom, a variety of enemies, weapons, item customization, leveling up, gorgeous landscapes... I could continue, but I think you get the point.
The weapon system is wonderful. I picked Sam B., the blunt weapon specialist. Wrenches, bats, paddles, pipes... if it can be used to bash in a zombies skull, I'll use if. I can use knives and bombs as well, the way I do it is much more fun. The weapons themselves get used and durability comes into play, forcing you to use other weapons. My favorite pipe has become unuseable several times thanks to overuse. They can be repaired for a price, but when you're in the heat of a zombie swarm, multiple weapons is key.
I'm only 8% through the main story with about 10 hours of gameplay. There are sidequests up the wazoo, and I love it. Some are simple fetch quests, which can normally be irritating. Thanks to the random zombies walking around, however, each mission could prove to be your last. If you are unprepared, a simple walk down the road could greet you with a swarm of death.
Then there's vehicles. You ever feel the need to run down walking dead things while swerving down a narrow path? Dead Island has you covered. The first vehicle I drove was a blue truck of some sort. I ran into my fair share of broken down vehicles and trees while getting used to the controls, but I killed my fair share of zombies in the process. Its an extremely fun time.
I'm a softy for visuals. As an artist of sorts, I appreciate the work that goes into making a quality backdrop or setpiece. The island itself is a character in the game. From the beach and poolside areas, to the jungle and building interiors, it all adds to the quality of the game. Its absolutely gorgeous... if you ignore the blood stains and walking dead people.
Character customization is even fun in its own way. You get experience points for killing zombies and completing tasks and such, much like in an RPG. There are three different trees of progression to explore, so even if you play through the game more than once with the same character, you can have a different experience.
So, surely there has to be a downside to Dead Island. Right?
Indeed. In fact, Dead Island's weakness is The Walking Dead's strength. Story. Dead Island, so far, has very little story to speak of. You are simply wandering around an island trying to survive. While I disliked TWD, it had a great, if predictable, narrative. A great story, in my opinion, cannot compensate for fun.
For my money, Dead Island is a better game, and overall experience, than 2012's Game of the Year (according to the VGA's) The Walking Dead. Oh, and come April, possibly May, I'll be purchasing Riptide.
I'd also like to thank Saint for inspiring me to come up with catchy/controversial blog titles. Thanks for reading.