Dead Island Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC
Dead Island Box Art
System: PC, PS3, Xbox 360
Dev: Techland
Pub: Deep Silver
Release: September 6, 2011
Players: 1, 2-4 (Online)
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Blood and Gore, Drug Reference, Intense Violence, Sexual Themes, Strong Language, Use of Alcohol

Still, despite the game's lack of any kind of legitimate scares or impactful narrative, there is quite a bit to enjoy in Dead Island. There are enough story missions and side quests to keep you playing for at least 20 hours. And if you want to max out your skills trees, there will be plenty of zombies to help you grind out that XP. The only problem here is that the game doesn't give you that much incentive to level up, as zombies level up with you and your level doesn't have much bearing on anything aside from unlocking a few upper-echelon weapons.

Dead Island Screenshot

Technically speaking, Dead Island is a mixed bag. The open world has a few nice areas, but zombie animations are repetitive, and some of the vistas are quite sparse. But if you are a gore fan, there are dynamic kill animations, so at least that's something. Similarly, the audio is great in places, but some wooden voice acting and repetitive zombie sounds keep this game's sound design from being as good as it could have been.

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Dead Island is a good game. But if you pick it up and are expecting something radically different from what you're used to, you'll be sorely disappointed. The RPG twist on the genre is fairly cool, and does result in an experience that is longer than you might expect, but the game's utter lack of story and reliance on pre-established genre conventions make it a pretty big missed opportunity. Dead Island may be a nice vacation, but it's far from the most memorable trip you've ever taken. Yelp it next time.

By Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Senior Contributing Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.7
Graphics
Visuals are not very detailed, but kills are dynamic and gruesome.
3.7
Control
First-person controls are fairly easy to use, but gunplay takes some getting used to.
3.1
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Music is sparse, and vocal performances are uneven.
3.9
Play Value
There's 20+ hours of content here, but no real incentive to replay.
3.6
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • In keeping with an atmosphere of desperation and survival by any means, Dead Island focuses on serious, first-person action gameplay with a close-quarter, immersive melee focus.
  • With an open-world setting on a massive tropical island, Banoi is filled to the brim with things to do and objectives to tackle, allowing a fresh way to advance both the characters and story at the same time and providing for endless replay value.
  • Dead Island's seamless 4-player co-op multiplayer seeks to provide the most immersive multiplayer experience to date. Players can drop in and out of each other's games at any time with no loss of progress as well as the ability to continue on alone or with others.
  • The ability to enhance and develop your character using RPG-like elements including four unique character/classes, an XP-based leveling system, and unlockable skill trees put the power in your hands to create and play a unique protagonist.
  • With thousands of weapons in-game, from simple wooden bats to fire axes to heavy rifles, Dead Island is a collector's dream. This in combination with Dead Island's weapon customization system will enable the player to craft the ultimate weapon to ensure their survival.

  • Videos / Game Trailers
    Dead Island Announcement Trailer - click to enlarge
    Announcement Trailer

    Screenshots / Images
    Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge Dead Island Screenshot - click to enlarge

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