Dying Light 2 Review

Dying Light, released in January 2015, has become one of the most popular zombie-themed projects. It's time to see the second part.

Dying Light 2 Review
Dying Light 2: People in the morning, monsters in the evening - a review of a computer game for PlayStation 5.

The first Dying Light, released in January 2015, has become one of the most popular zombie-themed projects of the past generation. Users praised the game, and the developers from the Techland studio provided it with proper support. The Polish team was essentially engaged only in Dying Light, abandoning other endeavors, including the fantasy Hellraid, which later appeared as an add-on for a post-apocalyptic action.

Fans were looking forward to the sequel, and Techland, in turn, tried to take all the best from the original and improve, expand every successful aspect, and at the same time attract new players who are not familiar with the series.

The sequel takes place 20 years after the events of the first part. But at the same time, we have a plot-independent product in front of us, which not only veterans, but also beginners are able to understand. The main character is Aiden Caldwell, who went to Villedore in search of his long-lost sister. Along the way, he meets a companion who gives him a mysterious object with a request to deliver it to a man named Loan.

Upon reaching the city, Aiden stumbles upon infected people who bite him, and then he almost dies at the hands of local residents. Suddenly, a certain Hakon comes to the aid of Aiden, who forces people to let go of the hero by vouching for him. The real prototype of Hakon was the stuntman David Belle, and at the initial stages he acts as the protagonist's teacher, telling and showing him the simplest techniques of parkour.

Exploring locations with this type of movement around the city, as in the first part, can be called the strongest side of the game. Jumping, hooking and moving along a vertical surface in Dying Light 2 Stay Human are made as simple and clear as possible, thanks to animation and marking of ledges.

True, the control at first seems inconvenient: the jump was hung on the R1 button (here and below is the layout for DualSense), but over time it comes to an understanding that this was not done by chance: due to the design of the controller, the player cannot simultaneously jump on the "Cross" and turn his head with the right stick, and the Techland approach solves a lot of problems.

Characteristically, parkour is used not only for movement, but also for combinations in battle. For example, you can choose a good moment and kick the enemy away, at the same time stunning him. After that, the opponent stands like a pillar (literally), from which you can push off and kick the second enemy. Stunned opponents will not be difficult to finish off with any weapon or the same kick.

Aiden also has two pumping branches: strength and agility. The first allows you to discover new fighting techniques, for example, kicking in flight, and the second - parkour skills, including running on the wall and rolling. According to the canons of role-playing games, a low-level character is practically incapable of anything, but as it progresses, it grows, and the skill of the player is pumped in parallel with it. Over time, you begin to feel in your gut why this ledge is located here, and there is another surface.

The second thing that immediately catches your eye is a simple schedule for 2022. By the standards of modern standards, it can be called "average". Yes, there are very detailed places, but most of the game looks outdated. High resolution and increased frame rate save the picture. The PS5 offers a choice of three settings: performance, resolution and quality. In the first and second cases, the emphasis is on 60 FPS and 4K, respectively, and in the third, the developers have added support for ray tracing effects. The best result seems to be a game with the first settings, since the speed in Dying Light 2 Stay Human is too high (Aiden runs very fast), and 30 FPS gives a slightly blurred picture.

During testing, we observed frequent "flickering" of the screen, but this problem, as already stated, will be solved in the patch of the first day. We also had the game crash several times when watching the built-in mini-video in the blocks of the pumping branches. If you quickly move the cursor from one cell to another, the console may give an error. These problems are also stated as known and awaiting a speedy fix.

Being infected, Aiden is not able to stay in the dark for long. The hero will need an ultraviolet lamp or fluorescent mushrooms, which briefly increases the time spent without light. Not to forget about the impending danger will help a bracelet with an alarm timer, after which Aiden begins to lose vitality and has a reduced resistance.

Having learned the basics, Aiden finds himself in the location of old Villedor, where he gets involved in local feuds of survivors and military fighting with each other. The problem is that the Loane sought by the proto-novelist is located in Central Loop, the road to which lies through a tunnel controlled by peacekeepers. The player will have to decide which side to take and what is more important to him: to help the residents or to continue the main mission. Working simultaneously for both factions, Aiden discovers the city, performs side tasks, engages in competitions and restores buildings.

After launching the water pipeline, a strategically important object can be transferred to one of the two factions, thereby adjusting the city for itself, in which there will be places for parkour (survivalists) or traps for enemies (peacemakers). In addition, passive objects are opened, for example, electrical panels during the restoration of a power plant, which are not the result of a particular decision.

Among the abandoned buildings there are unattended windmills acting as local "towers from Ubisoft". Here it is necessary to climb up the ledges and rungs to press the button, after which the survivalists will restore the building, and it will become a refuge from night monsters. The latter, without proper pumping, pose a serious threat. Especially troublesome are the mourners working in Dying Light 2 Stay Human as a siren. Such infected people must be avoided, otherwise a GTA-type chase mode is launched, where the threat increases with each of the four stages: first, the player is pursued by agile runners taking numbers, and at the end the strongest monsters are connected.

For killing special types of opponents, points are given (it is necessary to search the bodies) to upgrade the craft. Those, in turn, help to make this or that object. For example, a Molotov cocktail that burns everything around, or a lock pick that allows you to open locks. In the case of the latter, it is possible to increase the strength or the quantity produced. Moreover, with the proper level of pumping, the mechanics of opening the lock will go into oblivion and the box will open at the touch of a button. Speaking of mechanics: the latter is completely copied from "Uncharted: A Lost Legacy". Aiden, in the manner of Chloe, inserts two objects into the lock and twists the sticks in the same way — the actions completely repeat those from the Naughty Dog game.

In addition to opening shelters and completing quests, the protagonist can explore the dark corners of the old Villedore, as well as the streets where military convoy trucks are parked. In both cases, you can get valuable supplies. In general, "schmoozing" in Dying Light 2 Stay Human is flourishing. Aiden begs in every drawer, in every bag and even in the trash. Moreover, the use of this activity is minimal: you can sell things for a penny, and so many resources are not required for the manufacture and modification of items.

The main source of interest is the challenge to experienced parkourers, namely, the ability to get to the highest towers of the city. A parachute hangs from them as a tag, and an attempt to get there sometimes turns into an interesting puzzle — fans of platformers will definitely like it. The reward for the test is the military equipment necessary for pumping the paraglider.

The paraglider is issued closer to the middle of the game and initially it is annoying, but the first level of pumping gives it maneuverability and ease of control. However, the mechanics of flight are not the best side of Dying Light 2 Stay Human. It is very inconvenient to turn the paraglider with the left stick, while the right one is responsible for the rotation of the head. In addition, after the disclosure, and it happens when you click on the "Square", the hero falls down sharply. The fact is that it is necessary to climb up on a paraglider by default when pressing the stick down. As a result, in order not to get killed, you need to "play the piano": press R1 (jump), "Square" (open the paraglider) and at the same time move your left finger on the stick from top to bottom. The most "convenient" mechanics can infuriate anyone, especially during the speed test. But you get used to it after a few dozen hours.

It is better not to meddle in speed tasks without proper pumping, since the seconds that the player shortens when running on walls, fast climbing or rolling are taken into account. Aiden's skills are pumped not only with the help of experience points earned, but also inhibitors that unlock the corresponding branches. To open the level, you need three items, so you will have to run a lot. After that, the player must independently decide what to invest in: force or parkour. The passive ability of the first is an increase in health, the second is endurance.

As for side tasks, of course, there are interesting or humorous ones among them, but there are few of them. For example, one "scientist" offers to indicate the location of the most powerful weapon for only 200 gold. Miraculously, Aiden, who made his way through the crowd of infected people, finds nothing like this and returns with a claim to the adventurer, and he says that zeal served as a reward for the hero. Basically, the questions on the map that the player goes to study turn into places to collect supposedly useful loot. Exclamation marks identifying a side task are incredibly rare and threaten to result in veiled speed tests. In general, the side tasks here embody everything that you love or hate Ubisoft games for.

The dialogues in Dying Light 2 Stay Human are often made with humor — even passing by a couple in a bar, you can hear a good joke. The plot is as simple as possible and is served abruptly: Aiden comes to the right place, he is immediately sent to another. The hero runs back and forth from faction to faction and listens to essentially empty conversations. But sometimes there are unexpected moments that turn the situation 180 degrees.

For domestic gamers, it is important that the game is translated into Russian not only with subtitles: buyers are offered a full dubbing from 100 different actors, where the main roles were played by Andrey Mishutin (Ethan Sid in Far Cry New Dawn, Flavius in Assassin's Creed: Origins), Anton Eldarov (Chris Redfield in Resident Evil: Village) and Aliya Nasyrova (Dani Rojas in Far Cry 6) and other professionals.

However, the quality of Russian voice acting is average. As for the text, it is sometimes far from the topic and there are errors and untranslated words in it. The seasoning for the pie was a dose of mat, which, surprisingly, often falls into place.

Separately, I would like to praise the sound: savory blows, coupled with adequately prescribed animation, allow you to feel the weight of weapons, bursting skulls and soft tissue rupture, the clang of weapons and the popping of shots — everything is done perfectly and recorded in high quality. The music is also good, Olivier Derivier has done a fantastic job. I especially liked how the melody helps to navigate in space when performing a mission: when Aiden needs to climb the tower, the music tells him the right way, and if you move a little away from the planned course, silence will come.

The main disadvantage of the game, of course, is a weak AI. At the same time, the difficulty level will also seem understated to some players. Human enemies can:

  • to stand;
  • to strike one blow (a couple of times a combo was given out for the game) - strong or weak, it does not matter;
  • throw something or shoot with a bow at your disposal;
  • close in the block after two strokes and open after the same two strokes.

They are unable to bypass, parry blows, and even more so to develop a strategy for blocking and striking. Opponents are monsters and even dumber: they can do all of the above with the exception of the last point, and even move slowly.

Special individuals are also very stupid. For example, a bully has three punches: around himself, on the ground and a kick. As a result, the battles always proceed according to the following scenario: two strikes, we wait or step aside, two more strikes, and so on until the enemy is defeated. But Dying Light 2 Stay Human offers an extensive set of techniques and room for tactics. The game has a bounce to the side, a kick, parrying, a strong blow, modification of weapons with the use of elements, a lot of parkour elements in the end.

From the new mechanics of the study, in addition to the paraglider, in Dying Light 2 there were points of rapid movement in the form of a subway. The latter must be cleaned up, or secretly go through and turn on the switch. After that, Aiden will not have to jump on roofs for a long time to get to the specified area.

Stealth, it is worth noting, is executed well. An infected person can be approached from behind and strangled, and the game helpfully shows the level of alertness in the form of a gradually filling yellow stripe. After pumping the skill, Aiden gets the ability to quickly deal with the enemy with a knife - L1 during strangulation.

Unfortunately, one of the main advantages of the original, the cooperative game, we could not try out due to the servers being turned off. The developers report a four-player lobby, so the battles in Dying Light 2 Stay Human promise to be hot.

In general, Dying Light 2 Stay Human causes strange sensations. It offers an average level of graphics, a sluggish plot, weak And not enough interesting side tasks, but at the same time there is an exciting parkour, a post-apocalypse atmosphere and a lively thought-out universe in which you want to believe. The project definitely has a soul that makes you come back and play, explore Velledor hostile to the inhabitants, restore objects and help survivors. And with friends, it will probably be even more fun.

Like the original Dying Light, the sequel will undoubtedly gather a lot of fans, and Techland will eventually fill the game world with new activities. The foundation has been laid, the developers promise to support the project for five years.