Welcome to a house party you won’t forget in our Dead Island 2: HAUS DLC review!
Welcome to HAUS, the first DLC expansion for Dead Island 2. It’s been 7 months since our initial trip to Hell-A (which you can read all about in our review), certainly better than 9 years that’s for sure!
But for our characters, not a day has passed and we’re already being invited to a new location. So grab those bats and load some ammo as we explore HAUS, Dead Island 2’s quite weird expansion that just leaves us with more questions.
Dead Island 2: HAUS DLC Review – Story
We pick up where we left off, hanging around the safe house in Bel-Air but now something new has arrived. A small piece of paper. An invitation inviting us to HAUS. But what is HAUS? Maybe we should pick it up and see what this is all ab-
We find ourselves teleported to a fancy-looking house overlooking a beautiful ocean but nothing much else. Upon entering the house we come to a large room displaying the title of the expansion. We also have three headless bodies sitting in chairs in a circle and a single head on the floor. Clearly, something happened here but what? If only these heads could ta-
In a world infested with zombies, we’re also now dealing with… cyborgs?… androids? I really have no clue. To progress we need to explore the unbelievably spacious house. No, seriously, this thing is impossibly big for what we see on the outside.
In the left wing, you’ll find a full 5 house cul-de-sac with a massive subterranean club that’s just built for raves, though be sure to avoid the numerous bottomless pits. In the right wing of the house, there’s a man-made forest perfect for your next cult gathering. Then to top it off is a massive server room between the two.
I suppose the building could move inside the neighbouring mountain to cover it, but it still seems impossibly huge. Anyway, to progress we need to venture through the cul-de-sac and the forest to find the missing talking heads of the other two bodies. Once found and reattached, we are then summoned to meet the master of the house.
First I get told to touch grass, and now told not to…
Now I must say that if you DON’T want the story of the DLC spoiled for you, then skip ahead to the next part. The master of the house is an AI, a computer in charge of gathering people for this cult and implanting their minds and subconscious into a MASSIVE computer called the Ark of Ascension. Yes, really.
Towards the very end of the story we’re given visions of key story beats and find out that the person who bit us at the start of the base game was planted by the cult in that location so we would be bitten in the first place. By the end, more questions are raised. There’s a little more to it, but that’s the meat and potatoes of the story.
In the end, we wake up back in the hot tub at our safe house in Bel-Air as if it were a dream, but we can fast-travel there whenever we want, so who knows…
Dead Island 2: HAUS DLC Review – What’s New?
To put it simply, not a lot. Along with the standard addition of missions and a handful of side quests, we’re given a few new DLC perks, one weapon and an enemy type (if you can call it that).
The new weapon we get is a crossbow. With only one bolt able to be nocked at one time, the real advantage is in its headshot multiplier. The crossbow deals the most damage in a single headshot over any other weapon. While annoying at times it’s easily a fun addition to your arsenal and is also needed to progress the story and defeat the new enemy type which is a bit more on the brainy side.
That is to say… it IS a brain… The Dark Brains are some overgrown brains that swallow up areas using their tendril-like blood vessels. They can’t hurt you and do nothing more than block your progression to some areas. The only way to “defeat” these oversized lumps of grey matter is to shoot them with a crossbow bolt. Your bullets, explosives, sledgehammer and very sharp knives and claws will do NOTHING to them.
I think the biggest disappointment with the Dark Brains is that they are only parasitic to the HAUS DLC. It would have been a nice treat to find Dark Brains elsewhere in L.A., like having them blocking doors to unexplored buildings that we couldn’t access before. But instead, the few we find in the DLC are it.
The last bit of new “content” I want to highlight isn’t content itself, but instead a new problem with the graphics. You may remember how I sung the praises of the graphics in our original review with the only real problem I had with it being the lack of reflections (still a thing btw). Well now I found something else.
Towards the start of the DLC you find a water feature in the entrance of the house, the water in this little pool is so choppy it looks like it washed in from the PS2 era. In 2023 you’d expect smoother graphics and framerate, unfortunately, it’s just something else that should have been worked on but didn’t.
Dead Island 2: HAUS DLC Review – Conclusion
Dead Island 2’s HAUS DLC is an enjoyable little excursion into a new area that slightly expands on the original ending and leaves us with more questions than answers. In many ways, I feel there is a lot of missed potential from this DLC. It could have expanded the world more than it did and it could have offered significantly more playtime.
By the end I had finished the entire DLC, including getting the achievements and finding the collectible notes in around 3 hours, far too short for its $19.45AUD price tag. I hope that whatever Deep Silver has in store for future expansions and updates can provide more bang for everyone’s buck.
So why should you play Dead Island 2: HAUS DLC?
- You got the season pass and we’re already going to play it
- You want to see the next step in the story
- You’re itching to do your best Daryl Dixon impersonation
But why shouldn’t you play Dead Island 2: HAUS DLC?
- The price point is too high for what it offers
- You want a longer experience
- You prefer Michonne anyway
A review code for Dead Island 2 deluxe edition was kindly provided by the publishers for the purpose of this review. To find out about the base game, be sure to read our Dead Island 2 review and jump on the Qualbert Discord to chat with us about the game!