Graphics:
6.0
Gameplay:
5.4
Sound:
5.8
Control:
5.5
Replay Value:
5.9
Online Gameplay:
5.3
Overall Rating:
5.7
Publisher:
Deep Silver
Developer:
Techland
Number Of Players:
1-4
Genre:
Action
Release Date:
April 23, 2013


‘sigh’ No. I’m not a big fan of the word “rehash” because it has been abused by gamers far too often and in most cases, it’s not accurate. But in the case of Dead Island: Riptide , there is no more fitting label. Beyond a mildly intriguing introduction, this follow-up effort offers little you haven’t seen before, and it’s just loaded with horrid writing and dialogue, predictable clichés, tedious repetition, and a mishmash of plot ideas that never gel into a cohesive storyline. The actual gameplay is fine and I suppose you might still have lots of fun playing co-op with friends. But otherwise, pass.

Graphically, you won’t find much that impresses you. The environment can be involving and the overall detail isn’t bad, but this is hardly an elite visual presentation. Despite some decent animation and character design, one never feels fully immersed in the atmosphere. The developers just didn’t do enough with our surroundings, which ultimately feel lackluster and uninteresting. Given the chosen setting, one can’t help but notice all the missed opportunities. If you sit back to think about it, you’ll realize that when you take the zombies out of the equation, you get a largely mediocre backdrop that does nothing to inspire curiosity and exploration.

The sound isn’t any better, as the voice performances are often poor (average at best) and the soundtrack – much like the action itself – is repetitive and uninspired. There’s no shortage of grotesque special effects thanks to the incessant combat that often results in gory audio. But that only goes so far and although this contributes positively to the experience, it stands as the lone highlight. Plus, when all you really care about is hearing the next sloppy kill plastered all over your speakers, you’re once again reminded that Riptide is far from a complete experience. The sound and the graphics are disappointing primarily because they take a step backwards.

As I said above, the game starts with promise and even a bit of mystery and intrigue. After the first half-hour or so, I was already anticipating a worthy sequel that features more than decimating hordes of zombies. Sadly, after many hours more, the opposite proved true— in fact, there’s nothing appealing about this game besides the decimation of zombies. That can be awfully entertaining and thanks to some cooperative fun, it makes this production slightly more worthwhile. I also enjoyed some of the freedom associated with weapon creation and a few of the characters are cool. So I can’t say the game is a total flop.