I chose Logan as my character to look good lols. He's quite good at throwing stuffs and also his rage skill is great in killing walkers, infected, thugs, hunters and others. Well, you can lots of survivors in the dead island which is surprising as you will even encounter them in the dead zone.
There are lot of quests including main, side and continuous quests. Of course, you can skip or ignore other quests to prioritize the main quests to proceed on next chapter but will not gain experience or level up to upgrade your skills.
Just like other survival games you can use things or stuffs in order to survive. You can pick anything like hammer, paddle, knife, machete and even woodstick. While, you can have softdrinks, alcohol and others to heal and for other purposes.