Be Bad: Dead Island’s Ryder White DLC

Well, videogames don't look very nice, do they?

It’s a frequent lament that we rarely get to play bad guys in an interesting way. There’s another hope on the horizon, with the rather good Dead Island announcing some new major DLC. Ryder White is a whole new angle on the game’s story, where you play as the titular character – the game’s main baddie. Which is a splendid idea, if it’s done right. It’s a new single-player campaign, where you’ll apparently get to understand White’s motivations for his actions, as well as see him as a loving husband and military man. Techland say it’ll be “several hours” long, and add in a couple more weapons. We’ve some screenshots of it below.

It’s due out on the 1st of February, and will cost you £8 via Steam.


  1. Agnol117 says:

    Is that a taser?

    I’ll be honest, I’m intrigued. I was a bit disappointed by the game’s story, though. There were a lot of interesting elements that were just kind of ignored, and Jun’s whole arc was extraordinarily frustrating. So I have very few expectations by way of story.

    All the same, I greatly enjoyed maiming zombies in the main game, so I’ll probably pick this up, for the gameplay if nothing else.

  2. Was Neurotic says:

    What does he do in the main game that makes him the bad guy? Unleash the toxins/plague/old pizza that zombifies the island’s populace? Sounds interesting! I haven’t played it, but I was following it for ages. Never occurred to me to wonder why everyone was zombified though. I just thought, ‘Zombies. Everywhere. Oh well, that’s not unusual.; :D

    *reads the plot on Wiki* Ahhh.

  3. HexagonalBolts says:

    Dead Island got rather a slating at release, is it still worth avoiding even at discount price, or has it been patched into something rather more enjoyable?

    • Agnol117 says:

      It’s not stellar by any means, but it’s enjoyable. Overall, it’s pretty average fare.

      EDIT: I should probably say a price point. Twenty bucks, maybe twenty-five, but that would be pushing it. If you can get it cheap, I’d say go for it.

    • Rapzid says:

      I would say it’s worth playing at a discount. Maybe 20 bucks. The gameplay got stale a fair bit before the end IMO. The enemies started feeling cheap and annoying toward the end rather than tricky and fun in the first half to 3/4.

    • paterah says:

      If you find it on a sale I’d get it, it’s rather enjoyable right now no doubt.
      To be fair, for me it’s the best co-op action I had in 2011.

    • HexagonalBolts says:

      Hmmm not being bowled over with enthusiasm here…

    • Agnol117 says:

      Honestly, I don’t think you’re going to be.

    • D3xter says:

      Well, let’s say it’s one of the best Co-Op games of 2011, it’s no Saint’s Row 3 or Magicka, but I think I enjoyed it more than the Portal 2 CoOp part simply because of it’s sheer length, been playing with 1-2 friends for about ~27 hours and got to the prison (last Act).
      Only thing that bothered me was that story dialogue started to skip sometimes, especially on those “escort” missions and the animations were somewhat wonky/you could laugh at them, but other than that I haven’t really seen many bugs and it was thoroughly enjoyable… dno if I would have played it for the SinglePlayer though :P

    • Milky1985 says:

      I got it near release for about £5 real money via retail, was full PC price, the rest of the fund coming from the EVIL INDUSTRY DESTROYING TRADE INS(writers note: this practice is not industry destroying or evil in any way, although the required ritual sacrifice was wierd)… and i still regretted the purchase.

      The combat was horrible imo and a map system where you can have 15 missions and mission locations, but only see ONE (yes 1) on the map at a time is just really really REALLLLLLLY stupid (it did look nice tho).

      Oh and enemies leveling with you is as stupid now as it was in oblivion, may as well not bother leveling.

      I would still recommend avoid unless they patched at the very least the map system.

    • Carra says:

      It’s an enjoyable game which should keep you busy for a few hours. It’s worth it at a discount price of €10.

    • Screwie says:

      Take L4D, remove the tight story structure and high pace and replace with a single map and rudimentary MMO kill- and fetch-questing, experience points and weapon grading. Basically everything the L4D games purposefully ignored in order to create a refined and focused experience.

      I wasn’t impressed.

    • yhancik says:

      But as much as I love Left4Dead (and I’m not much of a FPS-person), I find it a bit too “focused” sometimes. So I don’t hate the idea of a more open zombie-coop-killing experience.
      (and in itself “a single map” isn’t a bad thing)

      What worries me the most is that a poor execution of that idea might ruin the enjoyment – and I read a lot of bad things about the combat.

      There sure isn’t an unanimous opinion on that game :p

    • Caleb367 says:

      I like it quite a bit. Combat’s quite tight and focused and zombies aren’t the bullet-fodder we’ve grown accustomed to from L4D and Dead Rising, you can easily be overwhelmed by as little as four basic walkers if you’re careless. When fighting, you have to think fast, especially if you have more than one opponent and/or a “special” zombie to deal with. Example: Thugs behave like normal walkers, but are slower, much taller – which means they have a hell of a reach – and pack a wallop. Attacking one head on is the stupidest way to suicide in DI, so best course of action is either shooting at it from a distance or hit and run trying to break/cut off its arms before closing in for the kill.
      Maps are huge – I think the entire No Mercy campaign from L4D fits easily in the starting Resort map – and quite varied. The relatively open spaces of the Resort change to cramped streets and close quarters in Moresby City, previous hit and run tactics do not work anymore and you quickly learn it’s much better to stay as high as possible rather than plunging in the middle of an open-air market crawling with undead.
      Plot-wise, it ain’t nothing to write home about, and I feel that some of the more ridiculous crafting recipes would belong better to Dead Rising than Dead Island (would be good to see a “survival mode” needing food, drink and medicine and upgrading a safehouse) but nothing atrocious or excessively annoying about it.
      Tl; dr version: if you’re looking for a L4D clone, steer clear, as DI has a much slower pace and it’s more about exploration than scoring a body count in the thousands.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      Dead Island has some of the laziest programming I’ve ever encountered in a video game. Interior shadows showing up on exterior scenery, ugly textures littered sporadically throughout the levels, cut scenes that don’t take into account whether the player is in single or co-op mode, amateurish combat animation, unopenable loot chests stuck in terrain, disappearing inventory, sections of the game not scaled for difficulty differences in single and co-op play, almost non-existent collision detection, and atrociously designed escort quests among other problems. One could write an oversized pamphlet detailing how many things were technically botched with the release version of the game.

      Oh yeah, let’s not forget the killer beach balls. Have they fixed that little issue yet? I wouldn’t know because I uninstalled Dead Island after finally hitting the quarantine chapter and realizing that my experience was not going to get any better.

  4. sneetch says:

    I didn’t know he was the main baddy. The game kinda ground to a halt for me and a friend about the 2nd act/chapter. Too slow, tedious weapon management, pointless levelling forcing further tedious weapon management. The melee was interesting but the ranged combat was pointless and the melee was too slow, too time consuming. The quests were just plodding over-and-back fetch and fedex quests.

    A pity as it had great potential, if they just had a faster combat system and dropped half the RPG-lite mechanisms they shovelled in.

  5. SirKicksalot says:

    Dead Island is the best purchase I made in 2011, and I made a lot.

    • Doesn'tmeananything says:

      You can try buying more than one game per year and doing less of your shopping in China.

    • HybridHalo says:

      When it went down in price in the Steam Sale I bought copies for myself and 2 friends – since then it’s been the go-to for our co-op gaming time, over-riding both BF3 and Serious Sam.

      It’s clumsy in some ways, but the level of gore (obscene) and the slower game play – little things like the Zombies actually being a threat have made this a better “Zombie experience” than L4D, though it doesn’t quite match up to the likes of Dead Rising in terms of pure over-whelming crowd of zombies like perhaps it should.

      A little surprised to see so much negativity about it, to be honest. Perhaps Co-Op is what’s making the experience for me. And because of that – I recommend Dead Island if you’ll be playing with friends. A little disappointed to see that the DLC will be singleplayer.

  6. Innovacious says:

    Not really much of an announcement. Well, i guess the date+price is, but “Ryder White Campaign” has been listed in the in-game DLC menu since launch.

    • mondomau says:

      I’ve owned Dead Island since release and hadn’t noticed that, so it’s news to me :)