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Video Game Dead Island 2 Review
Dead Island 2 (2011) is the latest shooting and exploration game in the Dead Island series, where you use a variety of weapons to kill zombies, survive and find comrades. As you explore a deserted California, you meet other survivors who can join your group. The unusual mix of quirky, macabre humour and over-the-top, bloody violence makes for an entertaining experience for older teens and adults.

Our examiner, Ben Kendall, first checked Dead Island 2 13 months ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 7 months ago.

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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Dead Island 2 is the latest shooting and exploration game in the Dead Island series, where you use a variety of weapons to kill zombies, survive and find comrades. As you explore a deserted California, you meet other survivors who can join your group. The unusual mix of quirky, macabre humour and over-the-top, bloody violence makes for an entertaining experience for older teens and adults.

After a zombie apocalypse causes the US government to annex the state of California, you join a group of survivors to explore the vast, run-down cities of Los Angeles and San Francisco. As you go you find weapons (and ways to customise them) to help you against the ever-present zombie threat.

You play as one of six characters and choose specific skills to help you defeat enemies in different ways. As you explore the vast open world, you unlock new skills and adjust your mix of skills to experiment with different play styles until you find one that suits you best. You defeat enemies with guns, melee weapons, and environmental hazards such as fire and electricity. Even mundane everyday items come in handy in this world, like beheading a zombie with a frisbee.

The result is a game that encourages you to experiment with different play styles, using your abilities and weapons to fight in ever more unusual, and often amusing, ways.

There have been several previous games in the series, all with a focus on surviving through a zombie apocalypse and killing zombies:
  • Dead Island (2011) PC, Mac, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360.
  • Dead Island: Riptide (2013) PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360.
  • Escape Dead Island (2014) PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360.
  • Dead Island: Definitive Edition (2016) (a remaster of the original game and Dead Island: Riptide) PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One.
  • Dead Island 2 (2023) PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Stadia.
 

BenefitsBenefits

Play StylePlay Style

This is a Shooting and Traversal game with Action, Adventure, Fighting and Narrative elements. You can play this by yourself or as a 3-player online game. You can play the game in a dedicated co-op mode with up to two other people. You work together to defeat the zombie hordes.

 
You can play this game in the following styles:

DurationDuration

We haven't documented duration data for this game yet.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

Rated PEGI 18 for Extreme Violence, Strong Language. This game features graphic violence against human-like zombie characters. These enemies can be stabbed, stamped upon, and attacked with weapons that produce corrosion and burning. There is frequent dismemberment and decapitation, as well as the sight of bones being broken, with accompanying blood, wound and gore effects. The game also contains the use of strong language ('*!@?*'). Dead bodies are frequently seen on the ground. Some have been cut in half or are missing limbs and there is often the sight of internal organs. One scene shows a character removing a metal shard from their stomach, causing profuse bleeding. There are references to marijuana use and sight of marijuana use, although the player's character is not able to use the drug.
 
Users Interact: The game enables players to interact and communicate with each other, so may expose players to language usually associated with older rated games.

Skill Level

12+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. It's also important to ensure children understand in-game purchases and have spending limits set-up. You need to quickly react to the hordes of enemies and think of inventive ways to defeat them, often requiring intuition and outside-the-box thinking.

Account Rating

  • You need PlayStation Plus to play online with PlayStation 3.
  • You need be 18-years-old to to subscribe to Xbox Live Gold for online play, but can then configure family accounts for younger players to play online with Xbox One or Xbox Series X|S.
  • You need be 18-years-old to subscribe to PlayStation Plus for online play, but can create sub-accounts for younger players of 7-years or older to play online with PlayStation 4 or PlayStation 5.

CostsCosts

Dead Island 2 usually costs £3.99 to £79.99.
 

Dead Island 2

XBox Store Xbox One £59.99
PlayStation Store PS5 £59.99
PlayStation Store PS4 £59.99
App Store Mac -

Dead Island 2 Deluxe Edition

Dead Island 2 Gold Edition

Dead Island Definitive Collection

XBox Store Xbox One £24.99
PlayStation Store PS4 £19.99

Dead Island Definitive Edition

XBox Store Xbox One £12.79
PlayStation Store PS4 £12.99
Steam Store PC £17.79

Dead Island Retro Revenge

XBox Store Xbox One £3.99
PlayStation Store PS4 £3.99

Dead Island: Riptide Definitive Edition

PlayStation Store PS4 £12.99
There are the following additional costs associated with this game:
  • In-Game Purchases: Additional in-game purchases are offered for items that enhance the experience.
  • You need a subscription to play online:
    • You need Xbox Live Gold to play online with Xbox 360.
    • You need to purchase a PlayStation Plus subscription to play online with PlayStation 4 or PlayStation 5.
    • You need to purchase a Xbox Live Gold subscription to play online with Xbox One or Xbox Series X|S.
 
There are three different editions of the game to choose from:
  • Standard Edition - includes the game only.
  • Deluxe Edition - includes the game and cosmetic items.
  • Gold Edition - includes the above cosmetics, extra weapons, and the Expansion Pass, which grants access to extra story.

You can purchase the Expansion Pass separately if you buy the Standard or Deluxe Edition of the game. 
 
It's important to set up your accounts and devices appropriately. More information is on our Financial Resources page.
 

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 06/09/2011, updated in 2023

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS3, PS4, PS5, Stadia, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Players: 1 (3 online)

Genres: Shooting, Traversal (Action, Adventure, Fighting and Narrative)

Accessibility: 0 features documented (Tweet Developer)

Components: 3D First-Person and Open World

Developer: DS Dambuster (@DSDambuster)


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Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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