Readers will know that I am a huge fan of the first game, and even though it had some rough edges, it was a pretty brilliant experience. Unfortunately, Riptide isn't able to match up to that first title. The new character who uses hand-to-hand combat is lots of laughs, but the game itself feels like it was slapped together with very little care and isn't nearly as immersive or as atmospheric as the original.
If you read this blog with any regularity, you probably remember that I was a huge fan of Dead Island last year. So huge, in fact, that I was one of the critics who chose it as our overall game of 2011. We got more than a few funny looks from other critics when we made the announcement, but I still feel good about the choice in comparison to what the competition was, and I definitely think it was the right direction to go.
We celebrate our podcast's third anniversary by ruminating on some historic game franchise anniversaries; which did we vote as most important? Plus, why Dead Island deserves a second look, and The Horror Geek addresses "6 out of 5" as only he can. With Chi Kong Lui, Brad Gallaway, Mike Bracken, and Tim "No Batman For You" Spaeth.
I'm now convinced that Larry the Comic Book Enthusiast should totally have been a selectable character in Dead Island. His stamina, hygiene, usefulness and likeability won't ever be very high, but he would surely make up for it with funny quips and witty commentary and girlish screams. Something Techland should consider for the next DLC.
I covered this a bit in the review, but it's important to reiterate—leveling up implies things to the player that Dead Island doesn't deliver. Extra health is meaningless, extra damage is meaningless—over the course of the game zombies will always take the exact same number of hits to kill, so all the experience I'm gaining doesn't seem to serve any purpose.
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