Dying Light: Initial Impressions
(Note: This is NOT my review. All opinions and discussed matters are subject to change.)
Enter Harran, a developing coastal city bustling with traffic. Oh, and all that traffic? Yeah, those are undead. An outbreak of a virus has ravaged this city, and a stringent quarantine has been put into place. No one can get in, and no one can get out. This is a fairly standard idea for a zombie themed game, right? Well, there are some things that Dying Light does differently. One of these is the fact that the outside world has not been ravaged, and those inside know this. The problem is that those on the outside don’t know that there are survivors in the city. It gets kind of heated, but I wont ruin the story here. The game breaks from the cliche by isolating the infected areas. It may not be original, but it isn’t overplayed.
What’s it like?
Dying Light, to me, is a mix of Dead Island and Far Cry 3. If you are a fan of Dead Island, then you are in luck. If you aren’t though, don’t be too afraid. I did not like that game at all and found myself bored with it. This game, however, does enough to set itself apart… so far.
The parkour elements in the game are interesting, yet slightly disappointing. I and others expected to see mechanics similar to that of Titanfall. You won’t find that here, though. The game’s take on parkour is simply being able to climb well, not much more. That said, mobility through the environment is done well. The scaling of walls and climbing of buildings is smooth and does portray a sense of skill. They certainly don’t make it look easy.
How about the combat, you ask? Again, it’s a lot like Dead Island (which makes sense considering that the games are made by the same developer). There is a heavy emphasis on melee weapons, but for good reason. Loud noises attract zombies, and not just the shambling type. There are guns, and they are extremely effective. However, shooting comes with the risk of noise. It would be nice to pop heads like balloons, but as soon as you do, you can expect to see yourself set upon by hordes of sprinting and climbing undead.
The night is TERRIFYING. There are zombies that go bump in the night. Big, mutated, frightening zombies that we call hunters. Hunters are one of the many special variations that are found among the undead. Avoiding them is ideal. The moment one of them spots you, the hunter lets out a shout to alert the rest; then the hunt begins. They are very fast and they climb very well. On the other hand, the night is a great time to level up your agility skill. You gain a boost to agility and stamina, which is helpful for fleeing the hunters.
Questing is fairly standard, and again, similar to Dead Island. There aren’t enough to give off the feeling of repetitiveness, which is a plus. Aside from your standard quests, the game also offers entertaining challenges, such as having to sever 30 zombie arms.
All in all, I am having a blast with Dying Light. Chris (@HolyHeadshot) and I started to get into the co-op play, and we hope to put more time into that before my official review, which should be coming within the next few weeks. Thanks for reading!