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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Review: Dead Island

Developer(s) Techland

Publisher(s) Deep Silver

Platform(s) PS3, Xbox 360 & PC

Release date September, 2011

Genre(s)         Role Playing, First Person, Sandbox (Open World)

Mode(s)        Single Player, Multiplayer

Rating(s) ESRB: M, PEGI: 18

I don’t play much Zombie Apocalypse games, I don’t like the idea that it’s the trend of this generation so simply I don’t like it when a certain subject can become the “it” factor in the world society and be part of that. Simply it diminishes my real identity and individuality. But none the less, I play them enough to understand its purpose and how effects towards the fan of the genre.

The game is developed by a gaming company which I was not familiar with even though Nail’d & Call of Juarez games were scattered in several shops back here I did not gave my time to check them out.

“So, why the f*** are you reviewing this game then?” you may ask. Some may still question themselves whether to buy this game or wait for another epic game to come but my reason behind it is simply that I had set myself to play with a mutual friend as soon as it came out. The first time I heard about the game was in their trailer, the first it caught my attention and I included it among the most dramatic game trailer I've seen. Read about the game and it was expected to be an open world with a Left 4 Dead survival FPS game. Few weeks after the video footage of the gameplay, I found that quests were shown Experience Points. By that time I started to expect an RPG element will include, which convinced me that it will not look like just another “hack-your-way-through-zombies” game.

On release day, as I made my first run, my previous views of the game changed almost significantly. Although my very first try was unpleasant due to several technical disturbing events. Patches were quickly given and things got a lot better by diminishing some game breaking bugs.

So here I am and ready to give my thoughts about the game.

                                           Ugly and bloody sight but feels better to survive form the attack


The set up if located in a fictional paradise island (or so it was...) called Banoi. You can play as one of the four basic characters in the game and each of them has backgrounds and combat styles. As soon as you made your choice, you will wake up in a bed to find that things are in total chaos. And as one of the (immune) survivals, it’s your job to save some survivals by discovering the open world of Banoi and try to figure out what’s going on and what find its source as you hack your way through places with various infected (zombies).

                                           One of the bugs, no table 


There is no doubt that is has one impressive graphics I've seen in gaming. From open environments, narrow places, water effects and dark rooms, there’s so much to appreciate in terms of landscapes and lightings. The blood and chopped fleshes will leave you in horror especially when cutting zombie's limbs as you go in slow motion.

                                           Familiar? sure they are the family from the trailer


This is where it shines the most. But I will try to mention all of them one at a time without losing my focus. The view is set on First Person mode, when you check the skills; you will find that it’s designed with kill trees and you need to earn points by leveling up; and to level up you need to kill zombies. Skill trees are distributed in three and they are set depending on the character class you chose and their classes are specialized in Firearms or Sharp Weapons or Throwing Sharp Weapons or Blunt Weapons. So the more killing and side questing the more experience you will gain to create a very effective class character. Since there’s a class who’s specialized in firearms, this game is more focused on using melee weapons and they work very well; weapons usually warn off so they needed maintenance by working on them on a workbench and they can also be upgraded to increase its effective use and durability, aside from maintaining a weapon, you can also create custom made weapons by acquiring manuals scattered in the island and it will instruct you for the items you will need to gather in order to make that particular weapon. The game can be played either solo which will take you long to finish a given quest and will have some difficulties to finish a mission or co-op whereas you will find quick questing and extra fun. Questing is designed traditionally like a fetching method taken from an RPG perspective, so you will be busy going to locations either on foot or via vehicle. When playing solo, the zombies will have a fair level close to yours unless if the host is higher from your level then you will have a rough time to kill one zombie at a time. My first play through wasn't pleasant due to several encounters of bugs and ultra-sensitive mouse handling which left me a bit dizzy. But in just a few days it got patched and most of the bugs were fixed. So the game got me hooked for more questing and level grinding which let me to forget about its glitches overtime.

                                          Beautiful but deadly place to stay


Given that this is an adult game, you will expect gores, screams and voice acting where you find them struggle to survive from attacks. Not excellent but believable to say the least.

This is literally one horrifying zombie apocalypse games I've ever played in terms of sounds. The voices of the infected will alert you as you hear them in the area. Given the fact that will determine what type of infected you will encounter nearby but the trouble here is that it’s not clear to pin point their locations so expect to get many surprise attacks even though you’re in a sunny open world. An early tip is to proceed with caution.


What can I say? like i said i'm no fan on the zombie apocalypse game. However, it’s another great pre-purchase for me via Steam. Dead Island gave a new flavored treat for those who love Left 4 Dead/Killing Floor games with a blend of RPG element which will charm gamers who played Fallout (3 & New Vegas) and Borderlands. It’s a First Person Melee that strongly relies on the RPG element in a survival horror setup. But for those who expect gun blazing, solo campaign then you might need to rethink that. Despite the bugs I have encountered in the game, it never fails to let me go back to grind and loot for more goods and explore the wonderful yet horrifying Island of Banoi.

Score 9

Open world
Great weapon customization
Addicting level grinding & looting
Plays well with friends and will guarantee sheer fun
Will hook you on taking even side quests
Surprise elements
Nice car control

Very sensitive mouse control
Long questing when playing solo
Hard at times when playing solo


  1. Informative and fun, well written review Mookie ^^


  2. Thanks a many Rubi! I hope it helps :).

  3. Here's a question though, do you have any idea where I can get this game in Riyadh?!

    I've been frantically asking around everywhere since the 9th of September but none of the big stores have it in stock. Help is appreciated.

  4. Hi,

    Thanks for the comment; what big shops did you go to?

    I just checked one of the usual shops i visit and said that they're sold out but new supplies will come somewhere next week (Monday max).

    Their details as folliws:

    Computer House
    Olaya dist., almost opposite to the main entrance of Faisaliah Mall, next to Maghrabi Optic Shop
    Phone number 01-464-4125
    timings: 9 - 12 pm and 4 - 10 pm