You can quickly discern from the title what you're getting into here. There's an island, and it's dead. Well, filled with the undead. While technically a sequel to the original Dead Island, after the enjoyable opening tutorial-by-way-of-prologue section, everything begins to fall apart. The same monotonous combat returns, where you rely primarily on weapons of melee (crowbars, baseball bats, wrenches). Sure, you can mix and match in Dead Island: Riptide to create spiked bats or fancy saws, but none of this comes off as new if you've played an action game in the past decade.
RATING M for Mature
DETAILS PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, $50; PC, $40
BOTTOM LINE Sucks you under and never lets you up for air