Dying Light 2 is starting 2021 on a bit of a downer, after quite the tough 2020. It missed its release window and instead got delayed without getting a new launch date. According to developer Techland, the PS5 and Xbox Series X game required "more developer time to fulfil our vision", and we're hoping that vision will be done sometime in early 2021.
The sequel was originally revealed at E3 2018, and got our hearts racing. Techland is promising 100 hours of content, with a 15-20 hour campaign, and after the bits of Dying Light 2 we've seen the more the better. Want to know why we're so excited? Scroll down to find out everything you need to know about the upcoming zombie sequel, which we'll be updating with news, rumors and that new release date when it's announced.
- Techland reveals how the Dying Light 2 delay has helped the studio reach its ambitions for the sequel
- Next-gen ray-tracing helps Dying Light 2 feel "even more intense", says Techland
The Dying Light 2 release date has gone MIA
Right now, Dying Light 2 has no release date. The game has been delayed indefinitely - not canceled - and has scrapped its Spring 2020 window as a result. It's the second delay for the game that was originally planned for a 2019 release, and is all down to developer Techland needing more time.
In a statement announcing the news, CEO Paweł Marchewka said: "We were initially aiming for a Spring 2020 release with Dying Light 2, but unfortunately, we need more development time to fulfill our vision. We will have more details to share in the coming months, and will get back to you as soon as we have more information.
"We apologize for this unwelcome news. Our priority is to deliver an experience that lives up to our own high standards and to the expectations of you, our fans."
Dying Light 2 takes place 15 years after the first game
Techland has described the time period of Dying Light 2 as the "new dark ages", where the zombie apocalypse has dragged society back to a Hobbesian state of nature, and humanity is just as likely to kill itself than be eaten up by the hordes of undead parading the streets of Harran (the Turkish-set city from the first game).
As for who you'll be playing as, that's unclear, but it sure sounds like noted voice actor Troy Baker in those trailers, so hopefully this new protagonist will be somewhat more charismatic than Dying Light's archetypal snooze-fest Kyle Crane.
The Dying Light 2 gameplay demo is a sight to behold
Despite the absence of any release date, Techland was more than happy to show off several minutes of direct gameplay footage at E3 2019.
Naturally, the updated visuals look stunning, and Techland seem to be making the most of the Xbox One X to show off all those rich colours and sharply drawn skylines. The demo also gives you a good idea of the game's updated parkour and combat mechanics, so it's well worth a watch for any interested fan.
Exclusive Dying Light 2 concept art gives you a first proper look at the new zombies, setting, and more
You can't have a game called Dying Light 2 without featuring the walking dead themselves. While Techland has been coy to share details about its new take on the infected, GamesRadar+ has got the first big scoop on the shuffling corpses with this exclusive concept art, showing off an infected Peacekeeper enemy.
“We have this whole cycle of infected life in the game” explains Dying Light 2’s Lead Game Designer Tymon Smektała. “The infected start as a Viral, which is someone who just got bitten and just got infected, so they still show traces of humanity, and at this point they are very quick, very dangerous – they avoid the sun at all costs. But after some time in that state, they turn into what we call Biters, which are your regular zombies; slowly moving infected that, if able, will try and grab you and infect you or eat you, but the sunlight is dangerous to them, and they are not as quick and as agile as the Virals.”
“And if Biters stay in the sun for a long period of time or under a UV light, they turn into Degenerates; decaying zombies that are very weak with pieces of flesh falling off of them, so they’re not really that dangerous to you. But still you have to keep an eye for them because Dying Light 2 is a systemic game, a lot of things happen emergently. And of course, there’s a different path of evolution for the Infected where they turn into the Volatiles, which are the most dangerous, extreme night predators. If you see them, you just need to run. There’s no fighting with those guys because they will just kill you.”
But wait; there's more. Techland recently released yet more concept art, showing off a dilapidated theme park (seen above) that's no doubt host to all manner of nastiness. The artwork's accompanying description reads as follows:
“Players are directly responsible for shaping the world of Dying Light 2. Player choices will influence whole regions, districts, areas of The City. Dying Light 2 will often force you to make decisions on the spot, and the outcome can be unexpected. This particular scene depicts just that - how one good deed can end in destruction. This theme park, once a bustling, lively district, now sits in ruins, the oversized Octopus attraction mirroring the famous Ferris wheel in Pripyat, near Chernobyl."
Dying Light 2 is much more of an RPG this time around
One of the most surprising things about Dying Light 2's reveal was the announcement that Chris Avellone - a famed games writer known for his work on multitudes of RPGs, from Divinity: Original Sin 2 to Fallout: New Vegas - has been assisting Techland with designing the game's story, which is now far more ambitious than Kyle Crane's linear tale in Dying Light.
In Dying Light 2, the plot is an organic, reactive entity that can weave in multiple directions, depending on how you decide to respond to situations in the zombie apocalypse. In turn, your actions will affect the world around you, from the threat level of its populace to the scarcity of its resources.
In a recent interview with our sister publication, Official Xbox Magazine, leader designer on Dying Light 2, Tymon Smektala explained how Dying Light 2 reacts to your good and bad decisions, and the fact the game allows you certain ways to fix a costly mistake:
"I think the biggest thing will be the ability to change the world around you. The moment when you make a decision or you perform some action in the game and you see that the world has changed, you see what kind of power we give you from the actions to the decisions you make," says Dying Light 2's Lead Designer Tymon Smektala. "So sometimes in crucial moments for the narrative where we feel there’s a space for you to think back and realise that maybe what you decided to do wasn’t the thing you really wanted to do, even if that’s not a ‘good’ thing... there are a couple of instances where we give you a chance to rewrite those decisions."
"It’s not like you can like go back to the moment of that decision and just change it," Smektala told Official Xbox Magazine. "You need to do some additional stuff, like complete a couple of extra missions, to fix the things that you think you wronged. But apart from those rare instances, all of the decisions are permanent."
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