Many fans of 2K and Gearbox's Borderlands spent at least part of their Thanksgiving weekend playing the new DLC, The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned. This first of several upcoming DLC offerings puts players in Jakobs Cove, an area swarming with zombified creatures ready to gnaw at your bones.
Enter the Cove
Borderlands was marketed as an RPS, a RPG-FPS. It's received a lot of praise and many players have poured dozens of hours into looting all over Pandora while investigating the legacy of the Vault. Regardless of which character class
you play with, a level cap was set at 50 and that is something that has not changed with The Zombie Island of Dr.
Ned. Additionally, you won't find any new weapons, but you will discover about 50 new quests, over a dozen new enemies, and the same addictive gameplay that has made the original so popular.
Borderlands isn't known for its captivating story or engaging cutscenes. Instead, anyone that has played it
will tell you that it's all about co-oping with friends to hunt for loot, complete quests, and fight numerous CPU
enemies. That successful formula hasn't changed with this DLC, which shouldn't be surprising, but it's worth mentioning.
The story with Island is fairly vague, but it gets the job done. In brief, a character known as Dr. Ned (whose name
and appearance is very much like Dr. Zed from the original campaign) is hard at work trying to keep the inhabitants
of Jakobs Cove alive. As the player, you must join arms with Dr. Ned and fight off hundreds of WereSkags, Tankensteins, Defilers, and pesky kamikazes. The story takes a few interesting twists, so by the end not all is as it
first seems. Just like with Borderlands, the story could have been fleshed out more but the gameplay more than makes up for it. My only complaint with Island in terms of playing through its campaign is one that others have already made known online: the "braaaains" quest. In this quest, you have to collect x number of brains, which you get by scoring critical hits on zombies. You can collect to your hearts content, but unless you've found and accepted the quest from an old friend from the original, the brains count for nothing. So just be sure to track down this fellow first and get the quest activated before starting your brains collection.
Island is best played with friends, which should come as no surprise. Running around with friends makes the experience far more playable and enjoyable, as anyone that has played the original by themselves will tell you. You
still can't get around having to spend a lot of time hoofing it from one location to another, but that annoyance is made more tolerable with co-op play.
In terms of presentation, I found Jakobs Cove to be a little more graphically interesting than the original. I
attribute that to the inclusion of trees (yes, trees) and also the amount of time I've already spent walking around the Arid Badlands.
In a nutshell, that's what you can expect from Island. Let's get to the summary...