A games company has been criticised for using a dead child as the centre piece of one of the industry’s most disturbing ever trailers. Warning – graphic content
Dead Island is a horror game where the player’s stay at a fictional holiday resort takes a disastrous turn after “they’re drawn into an area on the of a mysterious zombie epidemic.”
But instead of showing how the game would play out, Polish developers Techland has used the ultimate taboo of a dead child as a marketing tool.
The trailer begins with the image of a dead girl laying on the ground covered in blood and glass.
In a similar style to Coldplay’s The Scientist music video, the trailer is shown in reverse and with an emotional soundtrack – albeit with a more violent theme.
The girl rises upwards and back into the hotel room she was is staying in with her mum and dad.
Harrowing scenes then show the father battling a zombie attack in a blood-filled axe frenzy, hacking off heads as he hopelessly tries to defend his family.
Since its Thursday release, more than 1.25 million people have viewed the clip on Youtube alone with many more thought to have watched it on the Dead Island website.
For the past two days it has been the most talked about subject on Twitter with users describing it as “incredible” and “horrifying” in equal measure. Some have even admitted crying after watching it.
But while the quality of the clip hasn’t been denied, it has been criticised for focussing on a dead child to gain publicity.
The scenes in the trailer won’t even appear in the game and are used to illustrate a scenario that could happen take place for a holidaying family on Dead Island.
MCV games journalist Ben Parfitt said: “Yes, it’s clearly a great piece of film making. And yes, it’s touching – in a morose sort of way.
“But personally I just can’t get away from the fact that I’m uncomfortable watching a graphic depiction of the horrific final moments of the life of a young girl.
“With Dead Island, there’s nothing to learn from watching it. It’s not designed to make you think or to explore a point of debate.
“It’s a video that uses an image of a dead girl and images of her dying to create an emotional bond with a product.
“If you don’t like gore and you don’t like images of dead children you might not enjoy it very much.”
The game, which was first announced in 2007, will be released later this year on Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and PC.
Have developers gone too far with the Dead Island trailer? Have your say below
Warning: Trailer is NOT for the feint hearted or easily offended