The lights are on
After the Dead Island trailer hit the web, gamers were craving new
gameplay details just as badly as the undead yearn to feast on flesh.
Deep Sliver and Techland just gave us a taste of what to expect from the
game with an extensive GDC demo.
Although the game takes place in a paradise-gone-mad – the Royal
Palms Resort on Banoi Island – the team promises that there will be
diversity in locations. Boasting more than just beaches, the entire
island has erupted with the outbreak and will feature cities, jungles,
and poolsides littered with gore and corpses.
Attempting to avoid being compared to its zombie-themed competition,
the team at Techland opted to create its own genre and have branded Dead
Island a zombie-slasher/action RPG. Suspense isn’t the focus, instead,
Dead Island will specialize in intense, close-quarters combat. As a
result, the bulk of combat will be melee in nature, using whatever the
player can find – canoe paddles, sledgehammers, knives, and more. Trying
to avoid anything outlandish or unbelievable, firearms will only be
used if they make sense contextually (like stumbling upon the corpse of a
police officer) and once the ammo is expended the gun will be little
more use than a paperweight.
Different types of weapons will require unique combat tactics, with
blunt and sharp objects performing differently from each other. Deaths
are quite gruesome, too, with severed limbs spouting fountains of blood
from the ground. Not every zombie encounter will lead to a fight,
however, as you can choose to pass some of the slower moving variety.
Many corpses will simply crawl about the ground due to some grievous
Weapon combination will be a part of play, but the team isn’t aiming
to usurp Dead Rising. Blueprints and work stations will allow you to
combine items, but the focus will be on repairing and upgrading –
sharpening or balancing a knife, for example.
Dead Island will feature four character classes, each with a
manufactured personality to lead you through the narrative-driven game.
The classes are tentatively broken down into Tank, Leader,
Jack-of-all-Trades, and Assassin, but are subject to change. Whatever
class is chosen, your character is mysteriously immune to the zombie
outbreak, and as such has become the only hope for the island’s
surviving inhabitants. Our demo followed the exploits of the Tank, a
one-hit wonder rap star slated to perform at the resort. Demonstrating
one of the class’ unique skills, the Techland rep initiated “fury.” This
skill desaturated the world until zombies were outlined in red,
allowing the player to supercharge themselves and punch heads off the
It is obvious that Dead Island is taking some liberty with
“traditional” zombie lore, but won’t reveal the origin of the outbreak –
virus, voodoo, etc. – just yet. But just as each class has some
exaggerated super moves, the game features its own brands of special
zombies. We witnessed grotesque, bulbous zombies branded “Suiciders”
that explode when in close proximity, and more traditional “Thug”
zombies that boast an intimidating stature. There are more generic forms
of zombies, too, such as aggressive and slow breeds, flaming zombies,
and zombies that wield weapons. It wasn’t made clear if these zombies
use weapons in an intelligent capacity, or if rather they’re remnants of
their human life. Also, expect lots of zombies in bikinis.
Hundreds of quests are promised in the open world island, many of
which are optional. If you help a stranded survivor, they may aid you by
unlocking a building or lending their skills. But is the risk worth the
reward? Sometimes the answer is undeniably yes, as escorting some
survivors back to a stronghold may help in a permanent capacity. For
example, rescuing a mechanic could result in he or she fixing a car for
faster travel. While collecting and escorting survivors isn’t a core
element of play, there will be some clear benefits to aiding those
As far as co-op is concerned, we’re promised a seamless four-player drop-in/drop-out experience.
While the game looks undeniably fun, the tone of Dead Island is still
in question and seems a bit contradictory to the trailer, which
featured a very emotional scene from the evening of the outbreak. The
tank character spouted one-liners with every kill and had a decidedly
comical overtone. When asked about the nature of the game, Techland said
that they will try to offer more personal and meaningful experiences
depending on the mission, but that the tone will in general be in the
spirit of the genre.
Dead Island is slated for release on the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC.
looks awesome. Definitely on my radar.
Dead Rising 3: Island?
It sounds like Left 4 Dead meets Dead Rising. I'm still pretty excited after reading this article. I just hope it doesn't have time limits during the whole course of the story like Dead Rising.
Suiciders are creepers that have infiltrated Dead Island. Read their description, and be afraid.
These graphics are way too good for xbox.
Hopefully it will be able to retain the picturesque scenery throughout the consoles.
Man I hate how they tell you about a game but don't have any video to show I know there not allowed to record but why can't video game journalist be unscrupulous like regular journalist and do it anyway.
As for what was written it sounds great this game really seems like it won't be your average zombie hack and slash title. I love all Zombie games I just can't get enough of em and this game looks as if it won't disappoint.
So basicly this is turning out to just be another Dead Rising. Not interested anymore.
Open-world zombie-slasher... what else need be said? i will definitely be getting this... even if i wasnt a zombie genre fan, id get it for the graphics... are those in-game screenshots?