Dying Light 2 (PlayStation 5)23/02/2022 0 By Josh shoup
I can’t imagine how difficult it must be to be a game developer that wants to want to make a game in a well-established genre. Imagine wanting to make a whacky racing game that is NOT Mario Kart, a fighting game that is not Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat, or in this case a Zombie game that isn’t Resident Evil. That was why when the first Dying Light game came out in 2015 I was intrigued with a game that was a very open-world Zombie..parkour game? It was different, and I was there for it! It ended up being one of the best open-world games I had played last gen and I was READY for part 2.
Dying Light 2 takes place 22 years after the events of Dying Light 1 and while the game still focuses on survival, parkour, and crafting, the cast is all new and in a new city called Villedor. Newcomers to the series can take solace in the fact that you can play Dying Light 2 without having to play the first game.
Players will take control of Aiden Caldwell, a young man that the survivors of the world call a Pilgrim. Pilgrims are people that have no fear of traveling the world between cities and from the sounds of it, are few and far apart. As a child, Aiden was experimented on by a scientist named Dr. Waltz along with his sister named Mia. After an accident happened at the hospital they were living at, Aiden was separated from his sister, leading to a life of Aiden searching for her in each city he comes to. Upon reaching Villedor, Aiden discovers a city in which there are 3 different groups of people vying for control, a LOT of zombies, and a Dr. that will stop at nothing to destroy all things.
Gathering and crafting is a MAJOR part of your survival in Dying Light 2. The city is full of loot for Aiden to pick up. From more common items like honey used to make healing items to the much rarer military drops that contain military tech used to upgrade your paraglider and the grappling hook. This leads to one of my gripes with the game. While I do understand that this is a survival game set in post-apocalyptic times, I found gathering to be a bit of drag especially later in the game when you are more likely to need healing items and are wanting to upgrade weapons and their mods. For a game that they say is survival and to not always fight, there is a LOT of emphasis on needing hard-to-get items like Zombie Trophies, which are only obtainable by fighting legions of the undead! I was able to find good ways to farm for some of those items, but a better way to make it so you can purchase all the ingredients??
I mentioned the paraglider and the grappling hook as well as parkour. Traveling about a large city full of zombies is a tall order, and that is what makes the traveling system unique in Dying Light 2. Aiden can, and will, climb everything in the world. From small mom and pop shops to breathtaking skyscrapers! Staying in the air and being able to quickly move is what will keep you alive. As you level Aiden up, you will get more abilities that are useful in jumping higher or using less stamina, or the ALWAYS hilarious jumping off a zombie’s head like you are Mario! I admit that I wish there were more uses for the grappling hook though. It is a wonderful tool that you don’t get until much too late in the game and felt forced as a last-second idea.
The story that unfolds is very well done, with a great voice cast and familiar faces. One of your main partners in the game is voiced, acted, and has the likeness of Rosario Dawson! I generally have a good sense of story beats and so I am not generally surprised but even I have to admit that were some nice twists in the game that caught me off guard. This actually leads to another major issue I had in the game. I had to reboot the game MANY times because the audio would get messed up where nobody spoke their lines at all, in fact, it would skip all spoken audio! The game still would play fine, but with no spoken parts. I ended up having to look at some gameplay videos on Youtube when I realized there were things said that I never heard, just so I could understand WHAT was happening, Hopefully, this isn’t an issue other players are having because it really pulled away from the experience significantly.
All in all, despite some of those flaws that I detailed, I felt like the wait for Dying Light 2 was well worth it. Between the story and the never-ending fun ways to kill enemies, I found myself having fun even when I was just wandering around the city looking for different things to do.
*This Review Code was so generously provided by the publisher for review*