Unique open world zombie experience has arrived

John Schimdt

Zombie media, for lack of better term, is pretty awesome; and Techland’s new first-person horror survival game Dead Island is what a zombie lover like me has wanted for a very long time.

When you hear zombie game, you’re probably thinking about either Valve’s Left 4 Dead series, or maybe the Resident Evil series. Both of which are very basic video games- point the gun at the undead and shoot. In Dead Island, at least in the first chapter, you have to physically beat the undead with a stick (or an oar) until they’re back to being lifeless corpses.

Survival-horror games tend to have the player simply jump from one end to the another, completing objective after objective without much freedom. Dead Island literally throws you into the middle of an infectious outbreak in Papua New Guinea, and gives you a beautiful setting to run around doing various missions for your fellow survivors.

When you start up Dead Island, you’re given four characters to choose from. There is Xian Mei, an immigrant worker at the resort that is under siege by the undead, Sam B, a has-been rapper booked at the resort for a gig, Logan, an old NFL star taken under by the fame and fortune, and Purna, a recently fired cop working as a bodyguard.  All of these characters have their own characteristics to bring to the table.

Each of these characters has his or her own skill tree for melee, throwing, or guns. As you progress in the game by killing more and more zombies, you level up and get skill points to upgrade to particular skills. Eventually you become an unparalleled dealer of zombie re-death and destruction.

Multiplayer in Dead Island is pretty straightforward. When playing, you can just have a friend or a random player jump in your game through the Internet and help you fight the undead. It’s simple, fun and isn’t necessary to move the story forward. If you’re training for the zombie apocalypse, this isn’t a bad simulator.

The game has solid graphics for the amount of open space it has. For an open-ended-sandbox game like Dead Island, graphics are important, however, they can’t match up to other games. It is more focused on gameplay than graphics.

Overall, the game has some solid gameplay, controls and a great multiplayer aspect. It spins and pulls the standard survival horror game in a new direction and gives you your own options to do literally anything you want. It gives you the best of both worlds and helps prepare people for a zombie apocalypse.