‘Dead Island’ is a zombie-themed First Person Shooter with RPG elements, as if we don’t have enough zombie games already. On paper, it doesn’t sound like much. But after watching the trailer, it has quickly turned into one of my most anticipated games.
Unless you’ve already seen the trailer, you’ve probably never heard of ‘Dead Island’. The game is being developed by Techland, the relatively unknown company behind the ‘Call of Juarez’ games and the recent racer ‘Nail’d’. This is not a bad track record, but not an amazing one either.
The difference between Techland and every other developer making zombie games is that, at least in the trailer, Techland understands what the zombie genre is really about. Every good zombie movie, book or comic is about people, and how they deal with a constant threat. It’s about how people treat each other and how they react in dangerous and stressful situations.
The trailer for ‘Dead Island’ nails it. The story told in the three-minute clip isn’t about a zombie uprising. It’s about a man and a woman – the parents of a little girl we see in the first shot. It’s about how we can’t protect our children from everything, and the helplessness we feel when we try. It’s about trying to save someone you love and being unable to do so. In just three minutes, we connect with the characters. Despite knowing what happens in the end, we’re pulling for them.
I have no idea if the game is going to be good, though an open-world FPS with RPG elements sounds promising. What I do know is that the trailer absolutely blew me away. I’d put it right up there with the original ‘Gears of War’ trailer and the absolutely stunning ‘Halo 3’ teaser. It might even be my favorite videogame trailer of all time.
Oh, and fair warning: The trailer is more than a little gory.