Escape Dead Island isn't your usual entry in the zombie-bashing series. Rather than taking place from a first-person perspective, Escape is more of a third-person adventure, following a young kid named Cliff as he fights for survival on a deserted isle, infested with the undead. Not everything is as it seems, though, as he consistently has hallucinations that indicate there's something deeper at play here.
The tempo of this game may throw off those used to the series' over-the-top antics, which will no doubt make a return in next year's Dead Island 2. For now, though, we've got some tips that will help you make the journey in one piece – and engage in other activities that should keep you busy.
Sometimes, It's Best To Distract
Unlike the previous Dead Island games, Escape Dead Island doesn't encourage running into battles with zombies and killing them. That's because, at the start of the game, Cliff doesn't have many weapons to speak of, aside from a knife he can use to shank them with stealth kills – and that doesn't always come easy, since they're able to spot you rather easily.
This is where distractions can come into play. Using items that are surrounded in the environment, you'll be able to distract a zombie out of your path, so that you can either sneak past them or go up and take them out from behind. These items usually vary, including a telephone, a radio and other noise-making tools.
The best way to use these items is to watch your zombie's pattern. If they're already out of the way and you can sneak past, you don't need to use them at all. However, if they're right where you need to go, flip it on and find a good hiding spot. Wait for them to lurch past, then make your move and continue forward.
Remember, you don't always have to take the aggressive approach. Sometimes stealth can keep you alive a bit longer – and that can make quite a difference later on in the game.
There Are Weapons, But…
Previous Dead Island games gave you the opportunity to build some cool weapons for use in the game. That's not the case with Escape Dead Island, as you usually stumble across something in the level that will help you out, such as a crossbow or a shotgun.
These are useful weapons, to be sure, as you can aim and fire them with ease. However, when using these, you need to keep one thing in mind – you won't find very much ammunition. That means your shots will be limited, and once you're out, you're back on your own with your knife or other melee weapons.
So when it comes to firearms, the best thing you can do is save your ammunition for enemies that count. You'll come across stronger and faster enemies as the game goes on, and they're the ones that are going to be the hardest to kill when it comes to melee strikes. Save your bullets for them, and you'll stay alive long enough for the next encounter.
Don't forget, you also have a "dodge" move to your credit. So if for some reason your shots don't connect, you can always jump out of the way, then realign your target in your sights and blast them. Just be prepared if you're dealing with more than one zombie – something could easily lurch on you from behind and attack!
Take a Picture, It'll Last Longer
Escape Dead Island comes with an interesting side activity that introduces some replay value once you finish the main adventure. In pure Pokémon Snap style, you can roam around the island and seek out photographic opportunities in "hot spots," then add them to your collection. While there's no really amazing reward that awaits you for doing this, it's fun to run around and get some great pictures – especially if you're quick enough to snap one with a zombie in it. Smile!
This serves as an interesting side activity if you're looking for something else to do in the game, so be sure to take advantage of it. (It's just a shame you can't share your snapshots with your friends, though.)
Escape Dead Island is available now for PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.