Dying Light: Game Review

Game Title: Dying Light
Publisher: Techland
Release Date: 27/01/15
Tside Rating: Tside Rating: 4 out of 5Tside Rating: 4 out of 5Tside Rating: 4 out of 5Tside Rating: 4 out of 5Tside Rating: 4 out of 5

Since Dying Light was released by it’s developers, Techland, on January 27 2015 it has received critical acclaim from industry experts, receiving a 8.5/10 from IGN and a 9/10 from Steam.

The game centres around the fictional city of Harran, a city set to hold an international sports festival before an infectious disease breaks out, turning innocent civilians into blood-lusting corpses.

The main protagonist of the story is Kyle Crane, a mercenary hired by the Global Relief Effort to recover confidential documents. The holder of the documents is a politician-turned-warlord named Rais, who’s gang of thugs are constantly causing trouble for the survivors in Harran.

Dying Light is an open world RPG, meaning you are free to explore the city as much as you wish. This means you can search for hidden Easter Eggs, such as the XPCaliber, or complete the vast array of side missions.

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Exploring the city is much more fun than you may think; vehicles are not used in the game at all because everyone who had a car has either abandoned it, crashed it or is now a brain eating zombie…

However, one of the main selling points of the game is that it combines traditional zombie slaying techniques with Parkour. From climbing up buildings to slide tackling the undead, this element of the game makes running around much more fun.

The game rewards persistent players, meaning the more running around and zombie bashing you do, the better you get at it.

The free-running controls within the game are simple and intuitive but will at times leave you very frustrated. Occasionally they’re unresponsive just when you need them; meaning you will plummet to your death on more than one occassion.

Aside from that, the Parkour is clunky to begin with but improves vastly as the character gains more experience.

The same could be said for the combat controls. Dying Light moves away from the hap-hazard slashing that’s present in other zombie games, such as Dead Rising. In Dead Rising the character can mow down crowds of zombies in a car or a “Rollerhawg” (Dead Rising 3) which is very satisfying, but not what Dying Light is trying to encompass.

Dying Light focuses more on evading zombies rather than fighting them, and when you do it’s not easy. To begin with it will take several swings with a gas pipe just to get a zombie on the ground. However, towards the end of the game you’ll be removing the heads of three zombies all at once.

Combat, on the whole, is very good and the AI is intelligent enough to stop you mowing down row after row of undead flesh.

The game also features a dynamic timescale meaning as you play, time slowly passes and eventually it becomes night time. Players are warned to stay inside during the night and the option to sleep through the night is one that is definitely worth using towards the start of the game.

Zombies become much more violent and different, more powerful mutations emerge during the night making survival very difficult for the novice player. Thankfully, those who do decide to stay outside during the night will be rewarded with double XP, meaning upgrading your character is much easier.

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As previously mentioned, the gameplay itself is very good. The game is easy to get to grips with and is fun to play. There’s a wide range of missions, the majority of which are optional but the player is rewarded for undertaking the optional ones. As well as this, there’s the option for co-op online play, where up to four people can team up to take on the undead. This is good if you want to try and get some more XP, or if you want a change of pace. You can work with random players, or with friends, meaning the online option is there if you and your friends just want to tear apart some zombies.

Looking at the game, Techland have made it very pretty. The clipping is fantastic throughout and the attention to detail is second to none. They’ve also incorporated a massive draw distance, meaning you can stand on top of one of Harran’s tallest towers and still see across the majority of the map.

Overall, I would rate Dying Light 4/5 because it’s a spectacular looking game, it flows very well and has a very interesting and dynamic storyline. The only ways it could be improved are more responsive controls and more side missions as once I’d completed the game I was still left wanting more.

from Tside