When a game enters development hell, and very few people expect to see a good product at the time of its release if they even see the title at all, this can be considered a pretty bad reputation for an upcoming release.
However, as Dead Island 2's technical art director Dan Evans-Lawes told VGC, this actually might not have been such a bad thing. "It definitely concerned us at the start," he explains. "I remember when we took the project on, I was thinking 'is this a poisoned chalice', you know what I mean? Once we announced the game, people were interested, because they knew it had been in 'development hell' for however long, and I think people were expecting it to be terrible, and so were pleasantly surprised when it wasn't."
Dead Island 2 launches next month, and so we'll have to see if it's a case of fourth time is the charm for its developers, but it seems Dambuster is confident it's got the formula right this time.