A new interview with Dead Island 2 developer Dambuster Studios explained how they went about designing zombies and characters for their upcoming title. In the interview they also described consulting with a “diversity council” to avoid “hurtful stereotype[s]”.
Art director Adam Olsson told them that while they do have stereotypical characters and zombies, such as with bodybuilder zombies – they went about their parody of Los Angeles with consultation with the company’s diversity council.
“It was a really interesting exercise trying to break down what makes something LA and what stands out as a truly unique LA experience,” Olsson said to The Loadout. “We were very cautious to take anything that would feel like a hurtful stereotype and that’s why, in the studio, we have a diversity council that helps us understand whether we’ve pushed something too far.”
He also explained that this diversity council was created by Dambuster Studios years ago to improve diversity and representation in video games.
“The council has worked very closely with us to make sure we’re pushing out a good tone because we want to make sure that we bring Dead Island 2 into the 21st Century,” Olsson continued on. “We want to be contemporary and we want to be representative.”
While this is not a remake, but rather a sequel to a popular title which launched over a decade ago, it appears the sentiment Olsson states in this interview leads them to a similar path as with the previously announced Splinter Cell remake, which aims to update its story for a “modern day audiences”.