Dead Island

Spotlight

VideoEGTV: Dead Island's iconic trailer given a modern twist

To celebrate the GOTY Edition rumours, we thought we would spruce up the hugely successful announcement trailer.

VideoDead Island Ryder White DLC trailer

Out on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 on 1st Feb.

Key events

FeatureThe Dead Island bug the public never saw

And the world's most tragic workaround.

It is a staple of zombie fiction that, in amongst the crush of bodies, the hands that grasp, the roots that clutch, a person may discover who they truly are. The landscape changes and a shopping mall becomes a battlefield, a coffee shop in a food court becomes a safe haven. There is a lovely moment in the Dawn of the Dead remake when a heroic character reveals that they were previously just a guy who sold TVs. Yes, zombies want to get at what's inside you, but sometimes, in the process, they also get at what's inside you. In the darkest hour, you find reserves you never knew you had.

Dead Island's whopping five million sales proves new IP can succeed at the end of a console lifecycle, publisher says

Dead Island has sold over five million copies, Koch Media has announced.

That's global sales of the retail and digital versions since the game launched in September 2011. Koch, parent company of Dead Island publisher Deep Silver, said the zombie kill 'em up still enjoys strong sales today.

Koch boss Klemens Kundratitz gushed: "While others focus on ever-increasing development budgets and driving brand messages via ballooning marketing expenditures, Deep Silver stands for hitting the zeitgeist, innovation and fresh gameplay.

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Dead Island Game of the Year Edition release date announced

The Dead Island Game of the Year Edition launches in Europe on 6th July 2012, and in the US and Canada on 26th June, Deep Silver has announced.

That's for the PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

The Dead Island GOTY includes the Bloodbath Arena mode and Ryder White storyline DLC, as well as The Ripper weapon blueprint. The original game has sold "way over" three million copies worldwide, Deep Silver said.

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Is Techland not making Dead Island 2?

Amid contradicting reports, Eurogamer speaks to the studio.

Buggy open world horror RPG Dead Island was an unlikely breakout new IP success last year. It became Polish developer Techland's most successful title.

FeatureStrange Tales From The Studio

Investigating some of the odder roles in games development.

We all know the drill. New game gets announced, studio bigwig witters on about the big vision, there's a bunch of stats for the trainspotters and then months later - bang! - a finished game. But what happens in the meantime is still vague, mysterious and messy. Rarely does anyone think of the men and women on the game development frontline who quietly toil away to produce the magic that eventually emerges on a diet of little more than Pepsi and pizza.

Dead Island: Ryder White Review

Dead Island: Ryder White Review

Not-so-easy Ryder.

In the debate about the rights and wrongs of DLC, one aspect rarely discussed is how downloadable expansions can enable a developer to build on flawed potential and polish up a rough diamond. Few diamonds came rougher than Dead Island last year, a game groaning with promise but ultimately weighed down by lacklustre presentation and lacking the inspiration to keep its over-20-hour playing time fresh.

As the first narrative add-on for the game, following the XP grind of Bloodbath Arena, Ryder White's campaign should have been a chance for Techland to elevate its surprise hit into something truly special. Sadly, it seems either that the studio really doesn't understand what worked first time around, or that it's gone out of its way to sabotage its own game. Think of any element of Dead Island that you enjoyed, and chances are it's been removed or broken in this DLC.

You liked the co-op, right? Playing with three friends, working together to complete the quests or just teaming up to beat down the zombie horde, was a feature that helped to soothe the sting of the game's clumsier aspects. So, naturally, that's completely disappeared; Ryder White's story is single-player only.

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Dead Island Ryder White DLC release date, price

Dead Island Ryder White DLC release date, price

Play as he, the game's villain.

Dead Island expands on 1st February with new story content that lets you play as Ryder White, the main game's chief antagonist.

For 800 Microsoft Points or Ł7.99 on PSN and Steam, you'll see first-hand the motivations of White - a military man and "loving" husband.

This new story content has twists and turns and should last "several" hours.

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FeatureSaturday Soapbox: Bring On The Next Generation

Before the games industry really loses it mojo.

You may have noticed that my splendid and lovely colleagues Oli Welsh and Martin Robinson have recently become embroiled in what may very well be the most polite argument in the history of the internet, debating whether or not 2011 has been a vintage year for gaming.

Dead Island: Bloodbath Arena Review

What's the point of adding a survival mode to a survival horror game? I've been playing Dead Island's new Bloodbath Arena mode all night and still can't work out the answer to that one.

Available for free if you have the pre-order code, or for 800 MS Points, this 1GB download adds a new location to the game's fast travel map. Head over there and you discover a military bunker where urgent evacuation has given way to paranoid boredom. The few remaining soldiers amuse themselves by heading through four different doors to self-contained zombie-infested areas. The goal once you're in an arena is simple: last as long as you can without dying, while enemies come at you in ever-more-deadly waves.

Trouble is, that's not vastly different to what happens in the actual game. Survival modes rely on overwhelming odds, but Dead Island's wheezing engine still struggles with more than 10 zombies in play at a time. While the context may be slightly different, the enemy types are the same (the size of the download is presumably down to the maps themselves) and they attack in the same patterns. There's nothing here to catch you off-guard, which leaves the whole survival aspect rather limp.

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Dead Island Bloodbath Arena DLC release date announced

Bloodbath Arena, the first downloadable content for zombie kill 'em up Dead Island, launches on 22nd November.

It goes live on PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. In Europe, the DLC launches on PS3 on Wednesday 23rd.

Bloodbath Arena is a wave-based mode that includes four different arenas for single-player and co-op play.

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Dead Island PS3/360 patch date and details

Dead Island PS3/360 patch date and details

O negative experience be gone.

The console versions of Dead Island will be patched this week. The PlayStation 3 version of Dead Island will be updated first on Wednesday, 9th November, followed a day later on Thursday, 10th November, by the Xbox 360 version.

These fixes are already available on PC.

Dead Island developer Techland put the Bloodbath Arena DLC on hold until fixes such as those below could be rolled out.

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Techland trademarks Dead World

First hint at a Dead Island sequel?

UPDATE: A spokesperson for the studio just told Eurogamer, "Techland is not going to comment on [the trademark filing] at this time."

Dead Island PC patch 1.3 released

Dead Island PC patch 1.3 released

These cadaver big effect on gameplay.

Dead Island PC patch 1.3 has been released on Steam.

The headline alterations are a raised level-cap to 60, new weapon blueprints, better rewards from weapon crates and improvements made to enhance subsequent campaign playthroughs.

Gameplay improvements

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Dead Island patch released on Steam

Dead Island patch released on Steam

Less of autopsy-turvy ride.

A Dead Island patch has been released on Steam that fixes levitating zombies and other, less interesting things.

Areas from trading to inventory to corrupted files and co-op games are tackled.

Are these the sum of all changes Techland wanted to implement before Bloodbath Arena can be released?

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Dead Island DLC delayed

Techland still polishing up main game.

Gamers will have to wait for the first batch of Dead Island DLC while developer Techland finishes polishing the main game.

Dead Island film announced

Dead Island film announced

THAT trailer "primary creative inspiration".

Movie company Lionsgate has optioned film rights from Deep Silver to make a Dead Island film.

The game's haunting debut trailer, which went viral upon its release, will serve as the primary creative inspiration for the film, Lionsgate said.

"The film Dead Island will be an innovation of the zombie genre because of its focus on human emotion, family ties and non-linear storytelling," the company continued.

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Dead Island PC patch may wipe saves

Dead Island PC patch may wipe saves

But publisher planning a "make up" offer.

Dead Island's day one title update may wipe some of users' save data, thanks to incompatibility issues thrown up by the game's embarrassing PC launch balls-up, the game's publisher has admitted.

A statement from Deep Silver handed to horror site Daily Dead explained that it had done its best to avoid save files being compromised but in some instances players will lose their progress.

"We tried every avenue possible in order to avoid fans having to wipe their saved games… this update may cause incompatibilities between the incorrect version of Dead Island that was released and the fixed version and cause a wipe on saved games. "

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Dead Island patch for launch

Dead Island patch for launch

A fleshy furlong of fixes.

Buggy horror-action role-player Dead Island will be patched this Friday at launch.

The fix-list, revealed by Destructoid, attends to nearly 40 problems. Everything from game instability, disappearing inventories and inability to finish side-quests are tackled - and plenty more besides.

Eurogamer turned up 6/10 in its Dead Island review.

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Out This Week - 09/09/11

Island! Fox! Resistance! Marine! Shaddai!

Your wallet is no longer safe. The games releases arrive thick and fast this week, with two platform exclusives, two hotly anticipated multiplatform releases and a unique Japanese thing - all fighting for your money.

Dead Island

Dead Island

Smack your beach up.

Remember the Dead Island teaser trailer? Of course you do. It "went viral" as marketing people with spreadsheets like to say. That means everybody saw it, posted it on Facebook, emailed it to their friends and said, "Hey, what's this Dead Island game all about?"

Played in reverse, we saw how a pretty young girl's fatal plunge from a hotel window was not the result of exorbitant room service fees but a zombie outbreak at a tropical resort. The mystery was almost unbearable. What was this game? Where had it come from? Was it a shooter? An adventure? The trailer wasn't saying. It was simply slick, artful, intriguing and loaded with promise. Remember it? Good. Now forget it, because Dead Island the game is nothing like the trailer.

It is, in fact, almost the complete opposite. Much like the moaning corpses that you're destined to spend a lot of time hacking to pieces, Dead Island is a shambling, lurching thing, falling to bits in important areas and frankly a bit whiffy up close. It's also strangely compelling, provided you're a forgiving sort who doesn't flinch at wonky coding and weird design decisions.

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FeatureDead Island

Dead again.

If Dead Island's developer Techland is out to confound expectations, then it's doing a damn fine job. First it promised us a holiday in the tropics where sun-kissed days were spent in the company of the undead and then, after several year's worth of stony silence, it grabs our attention once more by throwing a child out of a window (backwards, of course, because a little temporal distortion helps take the sting out of such a nasty image).

Dead Island trailer reflects game - dev

Dead Island trailer reflects game - dev

"I don't want to cause any hate."

Deep Silver has denied the accusation from many observers that the eye-catching Dead Island trailer that exploded upon the internet last month misrepresents the game it was designed to promote.

The Dead Island trailer, below, shows a reverse-time account of a young girl on a tropical holiday island being torn away from her parents, become a zombie and eventually be flung out of a window - backed by a poignant piano accompaniment.

It was a huge hit on the internet, trended on social networking site Twitter and sparked live action movie talk. Even celebrities, such as Shaun of the Dead star Simon Pegg, discussed it.

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Valve on that Dead Island trailer

Valve on that Dead Island trailer

"The violence towards kids is unpleasant."

Techland's eye-catching Dead Island trailer, which shows a reverse-time account of a young girl on a tropical holiday island being torn away from her parents, become a zombie and eventually be flung out of a window, turned heads - but what did Valve, the maker of Left 4 Dead, perhaps the best zombie game of this generation, think?

"It's pretty awesome. It's really good," Left 4 Dead writer Chet Faliszek told Eurogamer.

"I think it's great, but I just had a baby this year and I just had a weird feeling," offered writing partner Erik Wolpaw. "The violence towards kids is unpleasant. I'm not offended by it, but it's unpleasant in a way that makes it difficult to watch.

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Dead Island trailer rouses Hollywood

Dead Island trailer rouses Hollywood

"Big-name directors" on the phone.

That fantastic Dead Island video - which shows a reverse-time account of a young girl on a tropical holiday island being torn away from her parents, become a zombie and eventually be flung out of a window - has sent ripples across Hollywood.

"We had a couple of big-name directors come to us. One of the top directors in Hollywood sent a studio his link to the trailer and said he was interested in this, and the studio contacted us," Malte Wagner, business boss at publisher Koch Media/Deep Silver, told the LA Times blog.

"We've had a lot of inquiries, not only from Union but from other major players for film adaptation. The talks are very early and there's no deal whatsoever. Right now I'd say it boils down to three or four opportunities. Some are studios, not just bonders [financiers] like Union. We'd rather go with a big studio that can bring the creative side.

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COJ dev still working on Dead Island

It's coming along nicely, says Techland man.

Techland has confirmed survival horror game Dead Island is still in development, even though nothing's been seen or heard of it for nearly a year now.