Thu
Feb 17 2011 2:05pm

Dead Island trailer

It seems that this jaw-dropping new trailer for the first-person shooter Dead Island is already causing plenty of controversy for its disturbing portrayal of a young girl and her parents being slaughtered by zombie hordes. Due out later this year, Dead Island is being promoted as a new twist on the zombie video game, with greater emphasis on storytelling and role-playing elements.

Both developers at Techland and publisher Deep Silver have refused to release any further details about the game, but it’s clear that they expect it to have a major impact on the gaming scene; while it still doesn’t have an official release date, the trailer certainly has people talking, for better or worse. So, what do you think—too violent, or just too awesome for words?


Bridget McGovern is still waiting for somebody to come out with Zombie Oregon Trail (where dying of dysentery will finally be the least of your problems).

16 comments
Jason Denzel
1. JasonDenzel
I was impressed by the emotional impact the video delivered.

Zombies generally aren't my thing, but I was captivated from the first frame to the last.
cat.stevens
3. cat.stevens
Beautiful piece of work; made me feel sick and I didn't finish it. I need to go home and hug my daughter.
Eduardo Gisbert
4. xgisbert
I'm a really big fan of zombie material. That being said, I have mixed emotions about the trailer. On one hand, it looks like the producers wanted to create apprehension through the death of a child; on the other hand, you've got a good storytelling mechanic by having the convergence of both the forward and backward motions.
It looks great, and also compelling. It sure makes me wonder about the game itself.
cat.stevens
7. Emily Evans
There is a zombie Oregon Trail. The Organ Trail:

http://hatsproductions.com/organtrail.html
cat.stevens
8. Radstronomical
I and some of those I've talked to feel like the trailer is a little bit exploitative -- taking a controversial and emotional trailer to garner interest for yet another zombie game in a market already deeply over saturated with them. The trailer is well made, yeah, but it doesn't make me care about the game.
cat.stevens
9. ShaunB
Actually...someone DID make a Zombie Oregon Trail.

It's called "Organ Trail" and it's awesome:
http://hatsproductions.com/organtrail.html

Enjoy!
cat.stevens
10. Andrea K Host
Well, it's a sad video (the music helpfully lets you know how you're supposed to feel). The moment where the girl lifts up from the grass is spectacular because it was unexpected. I thought she was going through a transformation, and hadn't realised till then that we were reversing.

But the main thing I was left wondering was why zombies never eat more of their victims. A bite on the neck, maybe some chewed off lips. They never seem to get any brains out at all.
Bridget McGovern
11. BMcGovern
@ShaunB (and Ryan and Emily, whose comments were initially snagged by our overzealous spam filter)--thanks so much for the link to Organ Trail! I love it when the Internet manages to instantly fulfill my nerdiest wishes :)
Bridget Sullivan
12. Ellid
Oh, I just don't know.

On the one hand, it was very well made (and they managed to keep the gore factor down wrt the daughter), but it's just so..... gratuitous.

I mean, the bikini clad zombie is just ick. ick, ick, ick.

It's really sad, but I feel manipulated and also objectified simultaneously.
James Goetsch
13. Jedikalos
Gratiutous. Having lost a child, I find the offhand use of the child dying plot trope simply thoughtless at best and disgusting at worst. When I had first lost my child the trailer would have devastated me. You feel like you need to hide enough to nurse your pain and recover. But I also remember thinking when my child died that I wished no one would ever know what it felt like (I had the fantasy thought that it would be nice if my child were the last one to die so no one would ever have to feel like this again). I guess the people making the game and those finding entertainment in the images are just lucky then--they have not faced real horror. That makes me glad for them. But I really hate it nontheless.
Peter Tijger
14. Peter-Tijger
The most brilliant/shocking/best trailer ever..........in film/games/whatever...........this is how it's done.
I can understand that when you've lost a child it can bring back sad memories, but there's a big difference between this and real life. A lot of things cannot be done in entertainment, be it books, movies or whatever else you can think of, if we should take into account all the bad things that has happened to lots of people. Point is, it's used for emotional shock value and it works. It reminds us all that would some loss like this happen to you in real life, it would devastate you. That point definitely comes across to me as a father of 2, even though it's presented as "entertainment"...........the horror rings true, that's what makes this trailer so powerful, that and the way it's crafted.
build six
15. build6
i thought it was awesome, and that as it went on and you realised what was going on -

(a) something is wrong here, is that someone on fire?
(b) some things are happening in reverse
(c) OMG ZOMBIES
(d) OMG it was going to be a nice holiday?!?

- it really grabbed you. I mean, every element here has appeared elsewhere before (reverse time, zombies, etc.) but it was put together really nicely - choice of music, sequences/ordering etc. - and I wonder about the conceptualisation of this trailer (separate from the rest of the game).

I've been forwarding this to everybody when it was first pointed to me, everyone's been uniformly impressed. But yeah when you realise that the entire nice family was doomed it was very sad :-(
cat.stevens
16. RJK
I thought the trailer was very well executed. Certainly a welcome departure from the hyperbolic bombast that tends to populate most game trailers. As a piece of media meant to drum up interest in the game, it gets the job done, regardless of how anyone might feel about the specific content.

Also, it's worth noting that Dead Island isn't a first-person shooter. It's a third-person action/RPG with more of a focus on melee elements.

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