I've played this game for about 6 hours now, and I must agree with many of the reviewers online that the game is very "fetch quest" heavy. I don't mind it too much since the idea is that you're immune to the infection and willing to go out in the wild to help people who can not help themselves. With that said, the "help me get these items" make sense. So far, I like the game. I enjoy running around exploring the island without having to stay on a set path. The graphics has been polished from the original dead island. I like the concept, graphics, and the free roaming. The graphics were nice. I felt like I was really in the jungle, and the layout of the island was like a maze, and it really give off the feeling of lost and frustration. Even though I like the game, there's a list of things that annoyed me and it shouldn't have been in the game considering this is their second game. There has been plenty of time in between the first and second to iron out the issues since they reused a lot of the design elements from the first.
What I don't like about dead island are the lip-syncing of the characters when they talk, no kids in the game, the weird zombie reactions and AI, and NINJA ZOMBIES!
1. The lip sync issue doesn't affect gameplay, it's just annoying to watch.
2. I didn't like that they didn't include kids and kid zombies in either of the Dead Island game. I'm not for killing kids, but it would make the story more believable and so much more emotional and intense. During the first game, are you telling me not one family brought their kids with them on vacation? So far in the second one, there were numberous quests that talk about kids and their safety. Where are they? If they included kids and have quests where you need to make decisions to isolate infected kids, or to kill them, it would add so much to the game and the player experience. So it's pretty much a straight up hack and slash game with some RPG elements mixed in. So with that said, the story and the characters are forgettable.
3. The weird zombie reactions/AI affect the game somewhere. There was a point in the game where there were 5 zombies in front of me, 4 eating on the ground and one standing there. The one standing there was facing me, and was the closest. But the ones eating got up and ran at me! I killed the 4, and walked up to the one stand and it teleported like 10 feet to grab me (grab animation). This really affect how you do your planning since you don't know which zombie you will attract and which one you won't.
4. But what bothered me most of all, are ninja zombies. At times zombies will spawn in your path as you're walking or in a room you know you secured. This happened to me three times last night. I don't want to give away the game so I'll be vague on where it happen.
- I was carrying a quest item to the boat, and while walking, I saw a bag, and went to to get it. There was nothing around, and it was in a tunnel so I know there was nothing in front of me (becase if there was, then I would have killed before groing through bag), and nothing behind me as I just came from there, and know it was clear. The moment I opened the bag, I got hit from behind! And turned to see a zombie there swinging at me. I didn't die, but it took a huge chunk of power.
- I went into an empty room to grab some fruit and alcohol bottle, went to the back of the room to explore, then turned around and saw two zombies standing there. They couldn't have followed me because they weren't aggressive, they were standing still. They spawned when I was there and my back turned. They didn't react to me until I threw a knife at one of them.
- This one freaked me out a bit. I was sprinting down a hill towards the beach to pick up supplies. Then all of a sudden a zombie spawns right in front of me. I saw an empty path, then it popped into view and ran at me!
These ninja zombies appear out of nowhere and it can ruin a game for you if you're low on health and ran into an "empty room" for shelter. Overall, the game is an OK game. It continues exactly where the first one left off, so if you played the first one, this will "complete" the story I guess. Only thing I would ask for is for a patch that will do something along the lines of "if player is within x distance, do not respawn zombie". With this condition statement, it should prevent ninja zombies.
Overall, it's a good/fun game. But a little annoying.
-- EDIT (downgraded fun factor) --
I've played about 18 hours now, and it's more of the same as it was during the 6 hours I've played. I did, however, noticed that during hub defense sequences, your "allies" doesn't really help fortify anything. They would stand there and wait until the game initiates the attack. So the player need to run around and put up the barricades, lay down mines, put propane canisters in place, and mount machine guns. I'm playing as Xian (asian woman) and seeing those big guys standing around twirling their weapons as I carry the gatling guns to their mounts was laughable. I figured they didn't program the NPC to help since they think people would be playing multiplayer. But why not have a cutscene where the NPC mount the guns then let player choose to initiate the attack? At least with that you feel like it's a team effort and not you doing everything. This goes for team building quests as well. The main characters would sit at home base and ask the player to bring them things. Why can't these guys just follow the player and help? And if a live person joins the game, drop one CPU character. That way once I find 7 sticks of deordant, I can give you on the spot and not go back to town to give to you. I find that the game is not fully thought through and it riding on the popularity of the first game and the zombie craze.