A swanky new gaming feature announced by Amazon at Gamescom will let you interact with Dead Island 2 using your voice. This feature is known as Alexa Game Control, and it pretty much does what it says on the tin.
With Alexa Game Control in use, players will be able to control aspects of their game via Amazon's voice activated software. Amazon states that the feature will work with "any microphone or headset connected to their PC or console," and therefore "players do not need an Echo device to play games with their voice". You will, however, need an Amazon account (but not necessarily a Prime one).
Along with this announcement, Amazon also revealed how this new feature will be implemented in Dambuster Studios' upcoming zombie slasher, Dead Island 2.
In this case, players will be able to use Alexa Game Control to help them navigate through LA (or Hell A, as the Dead Island 2 team has branded it) by saying things such as "where is the nearest workbench".
What holds the most potential for fun, perhaps, is that this new feature will allow Dead Island 2 players to "manipulate zombie hordes" by saying "Hey zombie" into the mic.
To be honest, I am not sure what you would say to the zombie after getting its attention, though. Do zombies even know fear? If you were to try and do that trick used for bears where you make yourself as large as possible while making a racket, would that scare them off? Could you manipulate your advancing zombies with a 'carrot on a stick' and offer it up something else to chow down on while you make your break for freedom? So many questions.
Here is what Steve Bernstrin, director of Alexa Games, had to say on the matter:
"Gamers will enjoy a more immersive gaming experience by using their voice to goad zombies, ask for help, activate special abilities during combat, and more, without having to say 'Alexa,' use an Echo device, or purchase any special hardware."
While Dead Island 2 is the debut game for this feature, it will of course be implemented in more games in the future. However, for now at least and per Amazon's Alexa Game Control page, it is only compatible with PC and Xbox consoles.
Meanwhile, for more on Dead Island 2, check out Ian's interview with developers David Stenton and James Worral, where they talk more about their new and improved version of the game.