Imagine yourself trapped on a vast tropical island amongst a horde of flesh eating monsters. What would you do? How will you survive? This is the question Deep Silver asked the gaming community when they launched Dead Island. It is an action role playing survival horror video game that is centred around a zombie infested island providing the player with a unique challenge. The game revolves around melee combat and houses a barrage of wacky yet cool weapons. Dead Island enjoyed quite a lot of success and garnered a lot of positive reviews.
Enjoying the huge success of the first instalment, Deep Silver is set to ask the gamers that question once again with the launch of Dead Island: Riptide. This game takes place directly after the first instalment as the survivors reach another Island in the Banoi archipelago. The survivors include familiar faces from the first game along with a completely new protagonist called John Morgan. This time around a Monsoon brings the virus to the island where the inhabitants get affected leaving the survivors at the hands of chaos and peril.
The gameplay more or less remains the same except for a few minor changes here and there. But there are a few very neat gameplay mechanics that have been introduced in this version. One of which that borrows from the Gears of War’s Horde Mode which requires the player to erect defences along with setting traps to keep the zombies at bay. The players will receive help from NPCs but has to rely on his tools and expertise to fight the barrage of beasts that threaten his very survival. The island and its effects are once again astounding and will make the player feel the need to survive in order to take in its beauty.
A pre-aplha co-op demo though reveals some depressing details which might just put a damper on the whole zombie situation. On more than one occasion the player is unable to strike his opponent due to failed physics implementation, decapitated heads have a life of their own and various other physics related problems. These might seem like minor bugs but can develop into huge problems later on and Deep Silver better pull their socks up soon as the game is slated for release in April 2013. Dead Island: Riptide is neither an expansion nor a full swing sequel as it lacks elements to make it either one.
The game does boast of some new gameplay mechanics as well as features that were only slightly hinted at during the demo. There is an all new dynamic weather system which necessitates a new mode of transportation. There are motorised boats which the player can make use of to get past the zombie infested waters of the island. A new weapon proficiency system enables players to become experts with whatever weapon class they chose. Players also have an option to carry over their character stats from the previous game to keep the action flowing at a steady pace.
As there are still improvements to be made in the gameplay, one cannot say what the future holds of Dead Island: Riptide. All we can hope for is a tense atmosphere filled with lost hope and over the top action.