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After eight years, zombie survival game now has thousands of players

As the Dead Island 2 Steam release draws near, one zombie survival game from 2016 suddenly has thousands more players on Valve’s platform.

Dead Island Riptide Steam survival game: A survivor from Steam zombie game Dead Island Riptide

What’s your favorite game that you haven’t played in years, a genuine, personal classic that you’ve maybe forgotten about, or simply not had time to revisit? The years move on, new games are released, and it’s always hard to keep up with your backlog, no matter how devoted you are. Nevertheless, some stalwarts never truly fade into the ether. With the Dead Island 2 Steam release nearly upon us, it’s time for one forgotten survival game – one proverbial shambling corpse, released all the way back in 2016 – to rise again. Eight years since it landed on Valve’s platform, this grueling zombie shooter is enjoying an unexpected resurgence, with thousands more players during the last two days.

Dead Island: Riptide is the oft-maligned sequel to Techland’s 2011 original. Arriving on Steam in May 2016, the zombie survival game has maintained a respectable ‘mostly positive’ rating based on user responses, and recently hit an all-time high concurrent player count when it was briefly available for free back in February. In the wake of State of Decay and Dying Light 2, Riptide has arguably been engulfed by gaming history. Regardless, it’s suddenly enjoying an unexpected surge in popularity.

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On the morning of Sunday April 14, the Dead Island: Riptide concurrent Steam player count hovered in the region of 300 to 500. Come the evening, that suddenly leapt to 2,416 – as of this writing, more than 2,000 people are still playing Riptide at the same time. Ignoring the gigantic spike in February, when Riptide was fleetingly given away for free, and thus attracted more than 20,000 concurrent users, this is the highest simultaneous player count for the zombie game on Steam ever.

So why now? There are a few possible explanations. First of all, with Dead Island 2 hitting Steam on Monday April 22, players who already own Riptide – especially after the February giveaway – might be coming back for another session ahead of the full sequel.

Dead Island Riptide Steam player count: A graph of players for survival game Dead Island Riptide

Less likely, but a little more intriguing, another zombie survival game which uses real map data to recreate your hometown has just launched on Steam and proven a big success, so perhaps players have been drawn to that and wanted a little extra undead survival action, and then found their way back to Riptide.

But if that’s not your own style, you can try some of the other best zombie games, or maybe the best FPS games available on PC instead.

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