Tagged "Dead Island"

Oct 23
By Matt Gander In Features No Comments

We’re all guilty of something, but rather than fill these hallowed pages with our sinful confessions we’re instead going to share our top five gaming guilty pleasures.

All of the games below faced a harsh critical reception upon release, but despite their faults they aren’t entirely without merit…no matter how dubious those merits actually are.

Dead Island


Oh, Dead Island. You wowed us with your fancy CGI trailer, but when you finally showed up you reminded us of how first person shooters used to look and feel ten years ago. Glitches were frequent and sometimes game ruining, while gun fights left a lot to be desired. Then there were the comically poor mission objectives, such as the quest to reunite a full grown woman with her teddy bear.

The long sandy beaches, holiday villas and tropical rain forests do make a welcome change from war torn environments though and exploring these sun-drenched – either by car or on foot – locations can be pleasure when not being pestered by the undead. Even when under attack the fact that you are never penalised too heavily for dying keeps the level of frustration low, as does the way you simply restart a few yards back from where you snuffed it. Playing with others online certainly elevates the tedium of the mundane missions too, particularly during of the final, linear, prison level.

Somewhat annoyingly, Techland never learned by this mistake – the last mission in Riptide also forced the player down dull corridors. A far cry from the open the environments both adventures began in.

Rise of Nightmares


Once tipped to be the game that would sell the Kinect to ‘hardcore’ gamers – or whatever term Microsoft uses nowadays – it ended up being the game that solidified the fact that Kinect games are best kept simple.

Sega’s Rise of Nightmares was something of a nightmare to play, mixing first person hacking and slashing with QTEs and the odd puzzle or two, yet there are some questionable thrills to be had.

Just like a low budget horror movie, the dialogue is so corny and badly delivered that it somehow manages to entertain. Watching other player try to get to grips with the clumsy controls while struggling to succeed at even the most basic of QTEs can likewise prove entertaining. We’d wager that this is why dozens of Rise of Nightmares ‘Let’s Play’ videos on YouTube have astonishingly high amounts of views. We all love watching somebody make a fool out of themselves.

At least Sega did get the combat right – hacking the limbs off the various monsters that lurk in the dank corridors is relatively satisfying, and there’s a very long list of weapons to do so. The gardening sheers in particular make the task of decapitating zombies seem as simple as pruning an overgrown bush.

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Jul 16
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

There weren’t a great deal of new releases out last week, and as such this week’s UK top 40 is devoid of all new entries.

We were expecting Namco’s Inversion to enter in the bottom half of the top 40 but it hasn’t even managed that. According to Chart-Track it entered at a lowly #50. It’s not total doom and gloom for the gravity bending shooter though – it’s in at #22 in the Xbox 360 chart and #23 in the PlayStation 3 chart. It could have performed worse, but not by a great deal.

LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes is the UK’s #1 for the fourth week running. Blocky Batman is then followed by London 2012, The Amazing Spider-Man, Dead Island: GoTY Edition and Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Future Solider.

After entering the chart last week at a respectable #19, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy has already left the top 40. That’s a bit of a shame as it’s rather good. Its vanishing act could be down to lack of stock however – we’ve hardly seen any copies while we’ve been out and about.

Jul 09
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

Even with the The Amazing Spider-Man movie out now, Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes has managed to hold onto the top spot of the UK chart for a third week running.

Spider-Man has to make do with #3, as London 2012 has risen up to #2. Spec Ops: The Line drops to #4 and at #5 it’s a new entry (of sorts) – Dead Island: Game of the Year Edition.

Theatrhythm Final Fantasy hasn’t done too badly arriving at #19. We hope that developers have realised now that releasing 3DS demos on the eShop does wonders for sales figures.

The last new entry is PC MMO The Secret World at #38. That’s just the sales for the boxed retail version, we should probably point out. Apparently it’s the most refreshing MMO in years.

Beat the Beat: Rhythm Paradise misses out on a top 40 placing but enters the Wii chart just shy of the top 10 at #11.

Jul 05
By Matt Gander In This Week's Games 2 Comments

Releasing two rhythm action titles on the same day may not sound the best of ideas, but Beat the Beat: Rhythm Paradise and Theatrhythm Final Fantasy are two very different games.

Theatrhythm Final Fantasy has been designed with Final Fantasy fan service in mind – a collection of all things Final Fantasy, wrapped up in a musical package. There’s 39 tracks to choose from, with more available as DLC. Eurogamer has a list of these which will set you back around 90p each. Considering Square-Enix’s experience with rhythm action games is limited, positive review scores suggest it has turned out rather well. There’s a demo on the 3DS eShop to try and you should be able to find it for under £25 online. Amazon was offering a free stylus and sticker sheet with it, but that deal seems to have ended now.

Beat the Beat: Rhythm Paradise on Wii is a sequel to Rhythm Heaven – a DS game that can usually be found for less than a fiver nowadays as retailers greatly overstocked it. This one is based around mini-games. Barking mad mini-games, of which there are over 50. Review scores have been high including 9.0 from EGM, 5/5 from Giant Bomb and 4/5 from Games Radar. There hasn’t been a great deal of note out for Wii owners recently so it should make an appearance in the chart next week.

Then we have a budget re-release of Dead Island, which Deep Silver are calling ‘Game of the Year Edition’ despite reviews being incredibly mixed upon release. It was, however, apparently the second best selling new IP of last year after LA Noire. We finished it shortly after it was released – although it looks quite nice and is suitably violent, we found that the mission objectives were so ridiculous that they stopped us being immersed. Having to find a fully grown women’s teddy bear so she can sleep at night, even though there are zombies banging at the doors of her chalet, was far too nonsensical for our liking.

We suppose that if you are curious about playing it, then paying £15 to do so will hardly break the bank. It comes with the Ryder White mission and Bloodbath Area DLC, plus a new weapon blueprint. Amazon are selling the PlayStation 3 version with a headset for £21.97. Looks like they’ve sold out of the Xbox 360 bundle though.

Next week: Inversion (PS3, 360), adidas miCoach (360, PS3) and Mahjong Mysteries: Ancient Athena (3DS).

Sep 26
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

There’s no prize for guessing what game is at the top of the UK chart this week. You may not have guessed though that Gears of War 3 ranks as the biggest launch of this year so far, almost beating the launch week figures for Gears 1 and 2 combined.

Codemasters’ F1 2011 makes a pit-stop at #2, followed by Dead Island, Zumba Fitness and Deus Ex: Human Revolution. 505 Games is, in fact, the only publisher to have two games in the top 10 this week, with the other being Rugby World Cup 2011 at #10.

505 Games’ MMA Supremacy isn’t off to a good start, however – it’s at #24 in the PlayStation 3 chart and #29 in the Xbox 360 chart.

As for other recent releases, Rise of Nightmares drops from #18 to #25, Starfox 64 3D goes from #13 to #35 while God of War Collection Volume II drops from #35 to #38.

Sep 19
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

Even with stock shortages and the likes of GAME and GameStation pumping the price up from £39.99 to £47.99 to take advantage of demand, Dead Island remains the UK’s #1. In the two weeks it has been out, it had already sold more copies than any of Deep Silver’s previous games. Incidentally, Deep Silver are publishing Catherine over here. We reckon it’ll be a good idea to pre-order in case it suffers from similar stock shortages.

Warhammer 40K: Space Marine, Resistance 3, Driver: San Francisco and Deus Ex: Human Revolution make up the rest of the top five. The PlayStation 3 version of Dead Island outsold Resistance 3 last week, just to put into perspective how popular it is. Starfox 64 3D drops from #9 to #13. Not the massive dip people may had feared.

THQ’s uber flop Red Faction: Armageddon re-enters at #11 due to being cut to £9.99 both online and on the high street. We very much doubt this’ll make THQ revive the brand – people are only buying it as it’s cheap.

The only new entry in the top 40 is God of War Collection: Volume 2 at #35.

Sega’s Kinect-only Rise of Nightmares moves up from #37 to #18 but The Gunstringer is nowhere to be seen, even with a 9/10 review in The Official Xbox Magazine.

Sep 12
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

With so many new releases out last week, there was no way that this week’s UK chart was going to be a dull one. And it isn’t.

Even with mixed reviews – everything from a 3/10 in EDGE to 8.0 from IGN – Dead Island manages to take the top spot. Below that at #2 there’s the TV-advertised Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine, which has managed to do better than the PS3-exclusive Resistance 3 in at #4, with Driver: San Francisco at #3.

Star Fox 64 3D barrel rolls in at a respectable #9, disproving the fact that the system hasn’t got a hope in hell.

NHL 12 slides in at a surprisingly high #12, but the last new entry in the chart hasn’t done so well – it’s Sega’s Rise of Nightmares at #37. That has still sold better than El Shaddai has though, which makes #27 in the PlayStation 3 chart and #37 in the Xbox 360 chart. Perhaps releasing it against a swarm of anticipated shooters wasn’t the best idea.

Sep 08
By Matt Gander In This Week's Games No Comments

Our cynical side told us to be wary of Dead Island. The trailer caused a lot of excitement on the ‘net but fancy CGI alone isn’t enough to distract from the fact that it’s by the developers behind Call of Juarez – a series that hardly has a glowing reputation. Were we right to be wary? Yes and no. General opinion seems to be that it’s an entertaining game but incredibly rough around the edges with a shoddy graphics engine and some strange glitches. It’s certainly a big game though – both Eurogamer and IGN said it took them around 25 hours to finish. Eurogamer gave it a 6 while IGN an 8.0. EDGE wasn’t quite able to look past the glitches though – they gave it a 3/10. “An additional quirk sees everyone refer to your character as ‘him’ – even if you play as a woman” they said.

If you’re more into sci-fi than zombies, this week also sees the release of Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine and Resistance 3. If you’re thinking that Space Marine is a Gears of War clone you’re wrong. Not just because Space Marine did chainsaw bayonets and bulky body armour way before Gears of War but because it plays differently with no cover system and a bigger focus on hacking and slashing. Reviews so far include 6/10 from Eurogamer. With heavy promotion behind it – including trailers in the cinema – THQ clearly has high hopes.

Resistance 3 is guaranteed to do well though, thanks to the series’ cult following and strong reviews. Eurogamer said it’s a single player game foremost with the multi-player modes (including two player co-op) taking a back seat. They found the multi-player mode a bit frustrating – when you start out you only have a basic arsenal, compared to players who have clocked up the hours and unlocked weapons that can fire through walls and whatnot.

Hard to believe, but Star Fox 64 3D is only the fifth 3DS game to be published by Nintendo. Third parties complained that only Nintendo’s software sells well on Nintendo formats, so they stepped aside. I bet they’re regretting that decision now after the likes of Konami and Namco delayed their 3DS titles due to poor console sales. It’s a real ‘catch 22’ for both Nintendo and publishers. I digress, sorry. The Official Nintendo magazine gave this remake an eyebrow raising high 94% while NGamer Magazine gave it a much more realistic sounding 87%. EDGE enjoyed it too and gave it an 8. NGamer said the visuals are a little scrappy in places but the Star Fox magic shines through. “They don’t make games like this any more; they remake them,” they said. Nintendo are also publishing Mystery Case Files: The Malgrave Incident on Wii this week, which is aimed at the casual market.

Also out are Rise of Nightmares, El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron and Monkey Island Special Edition Collection. Rise of Nightmares is a Kinect-exclusive from Sega that has been getting good early reviews including a B+ from Gaming Age. El Shaddai: Ascension is another that’s been given the thumbs up, with praise being given to the artistic direction and an novel combat system that involves stealing enemies’ weapons, purifiying them, and using them against them. There’s a demo on Xbox Live if you’re curious. Monkey Island Special Edition Collection meanwhile contains Money Island and its sequel plus codes to download avatar items. You should be able to find it for under £15 online at places like Zavvi.

Next week: The Gunstringer (360), Splinter Cell Trilogy HD (PS3), Bleach: Soul Resurrección (PS3), Heroes of Hellas 2 Olympia (DS), Mahjong 300 (DS), Phineas and Ferb: Across the Second Dimension (PS3, Wii, DS) and Puzzler Triple Pack (DS).

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