Dead Island: Definitive Edition – More zombie stompin’ for your buck

Waking up with a hangover and the knowledge you’ll have to face people is bad enough when you’ve made a bit of a tit of yourself the night before. Waking up to discover the entire tropical island you’re holidaying on has had a zombie outbreak overnight and that you’ll need to lop off the heads of the now undead people you made a fool of yourself in front of last night is considerably worse.

Dead Island: Definitive Edition is the collection of the original last-gen game alongside Riptide, the second outing. Visually, Techland, the makers of the game, have given it a serious polish. Sure, the human expressions and movement are still really weird and the graphics aren’t what you’d expect from a shiny new title, but this is still a decent looking game, especially when you consider how much zombie killing you get for your buck. The tropical island also looks great and the juxtaposition of a sun-drenched luxury resort and sprinting zombies coming at you from every angle works brilliantly.

The open-world adventure has multiple missions that generally revolve around collecting items or going to help other survivors out. Fortunately, you are somehow immune to the zombie nibbles, so taking on a swath of the undead is no problem. Kinda.

Weapons wear out, so when you find a good melee item such as a decent machete you either need to use cash to keep it in good repair or just accept that you’ll need to find a new one soon enough. You also tire when you fight, so while taking on one zombie at a time is fine, as soon as they start to swarm around you running is a good option. Guns and vehicles make the killing a lot easier, but they often aren’t available or you just don’t have enough ammo.

Definitive Edition hasn’t changed enough to make a repeat visit worth it if you had the games on your last gen console, but for those new to the series, this is a good value bit of zombie stompin’. Sure, the missions can become repetitive and the characters are somewhat forgettable, but you can also bash a zombie’s head in with an oar, so that’s good. Added to that there is also a fun side-scrolling 16-bit Double-Dragon style zombie slaying game called Retro Revenge bundled in with the other games. While it’s forgettable nonsense, it’s fun nonetheless and a nice added bonus. While Dead Island isn’t that scary, it is fun and well worth a visit if you like your violence casual and bloody, with a sprinkling of splattered brains on top.

stars4
Deep Silver
Playstation 4, Xbox One
£23.50 – £28.50 (18+)