Surprising Gaming Hits Everyone Thought Would Be Flops

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 Surprising Gaming Hits Everyone Thought Would Be Flops


Techland fooled fans once. They weren’t going to let it happen again. Oh, Dead Island, Techland’s 2011 undead survival game, sold well. How could it not? The game’s reveal trailer, which told a surprisingly emotional story about a young girl’s transformation into a zombie, went viral, amassing over a million views and getting everyone pumped for the game. Unfortunately, Dead Island didn’t deliver. It’s got some interesting ideas, but as critics note, the game is so glitchy, so ugly, and so repetitive that it’s hard to sink your teeth into.



When Techland released Dead Island: Riptide, the first game’s equally buggy stand-alone expansion, the hype died out entirely, and when Techland announced that it was making another game set during the zombie apocalypse — one that looked a lot like Dead Island, too, thanks to its open-world design and complex crafting system — it didn’t seem like a good sign. Besides, in a world full of Resident Evil, Dead Rising, DayZ, Plants vs. Zombies, and so many others, did we really need another zombie game? Common wisdom said no.



But Techland promised that it would do better. “We had to learn some lessons the hard way,” producer Tymon Smektala said. “We really feel we need to prove to people that we have made a AAA game.” It wasn’t just talk. Techland succeeded. Dying Light quickly shambled to the top of the sales charts, spawning both a popular expansion pack and a battle royale-inspired spin-off. Dying Light didn’t just succeed. It launched an entire franchise, proving that, for Techland at least, the third time really is the charm.