Why Dying Light 2 is not just another zombie shooter

Written 19th Nov 2019 by GameGator

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The night is dark and full of horror - a saying not only true for Game of Thrones but also Dying Light, a horror-action game released by Techland in 2015. The latter's promotional motto being: Good Night, Good Luck ran true to form: While the numerous zombies in the open-world slowly shuffled through the streets during daytime, they were wide awake and deadly at night. Although no zombies roam the city of Dying Lights' successor at day, this doesn't mean it's safe.

Dying Light 2, doesn't want to be another zombie shooter and sets out to be a very different game: With its primary focus set on story, not co-op, important decisions can change the entire course of the game. It offers an ambitious, open narrative and an exciting open-world adventure reminiscent of the Metro series. The action-adventure game is set in a world which has been overrun by zombies. Survivors have joined forces together and built fortresses to protect themselves from humans and zombies alike. The hero, Aiden, finds himself in between these fronts and can choose whether to join or fight the many factions.

Dying Light 2 burning city

You decide how the city develops.

Image: Techland

Meet Aiden

In order to survive the apocalypse and to move around the city, Aiden has learned one many tricks from Faith of Mirror's Edge. He can not only sprint and jump damn far but also run up walls, overcome obstacles, and climb exceptionally well. Dying Light 2 has twice more movements than its predecessor, and the demo already showcased some impressive moves through the city - a world increasingly extending into the vertical.

Gameplay-wise, Dying Light can best be imagined as a mixture of shooter and action-adventure from a first-person perspective. During the day, the game feels incredibly fast: Chase after an enemy transporter, sprint, jump, and climb - many fights are carried out with knives and machetes. At night, the zombies become active and can immediately notice you when you make a noise.

Dying Light 2 zombies

Be quiet at night, or attract hordes of zombies.

Image: Techland

It's your choice

The game is anything but linear. Time after time, you have to face difficult decisions, both on a small and large scale. Do you stay with your injured partner, or run as fast as you can to find medicine? Do you trust the mercenary of the other group?

One sample mission sends you to deactivate the water pumps in the neighbourhood - the city lacks clean drinking water. But once you get there, the enemy leader warns you that you are being taken advantage of. What do you do? Turn off the pumps to complete the mission? Depending on your decisions, an entirely new area of the city might become accessible with new quests, NPC's, and stories. At the same time, however, you might set loose a dangerous zombie type previously held back by the water masses.

Dying Light 2 is a game with huge ambitions - it's not another zombie shooter. The complex networks of many small and big decisions and consequences, the open-world, and the extensive movement system all impress and look like they are a lot of fun. According to the developers, you will only see about 70% of the content in a single run.