Dead Island 2 is officially back from the dead – and it looks spectacularly brutal

A group of zombies attacking the player in Dead Island 2
(Image credit: Deep Silver)

Dead Island 2 is officially back from the dead and is due to hit shelves as soon as next year. 

The long-awaited sequel was revealed with a gruesome world premiere trailer during Gamescom 2022's Opening Night Live showcase, following an Amazon listing leak earlier this week. 

Due to release on February 3, 2023, for PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One and PC, Dead Island 2 looks to be a familiar affair for fans of the tropical horror series. The sequel looks as gory as you might hope, with its focus on melee meaning you can expect to bash, slash and decapitate the undead's heads with a variety of brutal weapons including swords, pipes and bats –  guns will be available too.

But this time, rather than attempting to escape the island paradise of Banoi, you'll be aiming to survive in a virus-ravaged Los Angeles, so definitely expect zombies in loafers, hawaiian shirts and bikinis. Check the announcement trailer out for yourself here (it's age-restricted).

Dead Island 2

(Image credit: Deep Silver)

According to the game's Lead Narrative Design Khan, the character we see in the announcement trailer is Jacob, who is one of six playable zombie-slaying characters in Dead Island 2. According to Khan, all the characters have "larger-than-life personalities" and a pulpy and irreverent tone befitting the sequel's B-movie-inspired setting.

In addition to the announcement trailer, Opening Night Live gave us our first look at gameplay too. Dead Island 2's gameplay is all about "experimenting" with your preferred slaying method, according to Khan, who called it a "toy box of close combat melee".

It certainly looks that way, with the trailer showing zombies being electrocuted, blown up, impaled through the chin with spikes, and even sliced in half. Take a look for yourself here (again, it's age-restricted).

Dead Island 2

(Image credit: Deep Silver)

A rocky road

Dead Island 2 has had a turbulent development road, to say the least, leading many to wonder if it would ever materialize. 

The development of Dead Island 2 has switched hands twice since the sequel was originally announced eight years ago. Spec Ops: The Line developer Yager initially undertook the project before passing it to Team Sonic racing developer Sumo Digital in 2016. Sumo then passed the development onto Homefront: The Revolution developer Dambuster Studios in 2019.

Since then, we haven't heard much about Dead Island 2  – until now. 

After waiting all this time for the sequel to one of the most frantic, fun horrors of all time, the next few months are sure to fly in.

Vic Hood
Associate Editor, TechRadar Gaming

Vic is TechRadar Gaming's Associate Editor. An award-winning games journalist, Vic brings experience from IGN, Eurogamer and more to the TechRadar table. You may have even heard her on the radio or speaking on a panel. Not only is Vic passionate about games, but she's also an avid mental health advocate who has appeared on both panels and podcasts to discuss mental health awareness. Make sure to follow her on Twitter for more.