Dead Island Won’t Let You Kill Zombie Kids…But Why Would You Want To?
The Dead Island trailer that we probably all have seen has no doubt evoked some powerful feelings. The sombre music, the chilling visuals, and the way the grisly demise of one little girl is played out backwards. Who wouldn’t feel a little jolted by that? It was the entire purpose of the trailer. Gamers went forth believing that Dead Island was going to be a much deeper, darker experience.
Nope. We won’t pass up an opportunity to show the trailer to you again.
Well, they were wrong. At least when it comes to who they’re facing off against.
A Deep Silver spokesperson stated that you won’t be able to kill kids in the game, due to the fact that they didn’t feel that it was appropriate. This is something that no doubt will disappoint a lot of people who might have been looking forward to the game. But we have to ask ourselves, was it ever really that important?
Looking at it from a ‘realistic’ point of view, sure – we can understand that child-zombies would exist. They wouldn’t automatically be exempt from infection, but one would wonder if theoretically their bodies could handle infection and they wouldn’t just die…permanently, not to be reanimated. This was something that was explored briefly in Resident Evil 5 (if you were paying attention or played that long into it…). Women and children of the Ndipaya village couldn’t handle the infection and died quickly – and you really only faced off against women in the first few levels of the game. That makes a bit of sense, since their immune systems would theoretically be weaker and they just wouldn’t turn. One easy and realistic way that little ankle-biters to be written out of the equation.
You might be asking, what’s the difference between a zombie-child and a Necromorph baby or a Demon Child? Or even those little baby things from Parasite Eve 2? Y’know, the kind that exploded into red spray if you touched them? I think I might be doing a little more harm to my point here, but alas…There are lots of differences – for one, zombie-children still have a lot of the appearance of an actual child. The trailer shows mere seconds passing by before this little girl who was previously clinging to Daddy for help, lunging towards him to take a bite out of his jugular. His response is one of survival instinct as he throws his beloved child off of his back and sends her out the window, plummeting to the ground. No massive transformation happened, she didn’t grow claws or sprout some parasite from her neck – for all intents and purposes, she was still a little kid. If you didn’t know the name of the game was Dead Island, you might not have ever realized she was a zombie at the beginning of the trailer.
The blood could be explained away….Strawberry ice cream? She got some on her shirt, too.
Additionally, Dead Island claims to have a detailed gore system in store for players. Different levels of flesh and bone, zombies in different states of decomposition. So this wouldn’t be just blasting away a few smaller NPCs under the notion that they might have been kids, or shooting at something so pixelated that you really wouldn’t have been able to tell if it was a kid or not. Dead Island would show kids getting slaughtered by electric machetes and the like in extensive fashion. We might not think of ourselves as ‘all about the graphics’ but this would definitely be enough to ruffle quite a few feathers. Call me old fashioned, but it does kind of make my skin crawl as well. As soon as “Concerned Parent A” hears that you can kill kids in this game from “Concerned Parent B” then the whole freaking alphabet is on the phone with their local Fox News station intent on getting the game banned. Deep Silver is a smaller company – no way they’d want to take the risk. And so, Zombie Kids got the proverbial axe.
So why all of the commotion about ‘wanting’ to kill kids? Especially with such an easy out for kids? Is it all about the realism. Yeah, I get it – zombies wouldn’t pick and choose their victims in a real life zombie apocalypse. Sometimes the words “real life” and the words “Zombie Apocalypse” together in one sentence make me laugh. It is just a game…games aren’t real. And in the case of Dead Island, neither are Zombie Kids.