In a splendid videogame February we had the opportunity to get our hands on Dying Light 2: Stay Human for PS5, which we tell you today in our review
After about seven years from the release of the first chapter, Dying Light is back in great dust on next gen, in a very special month. In fact, the guys from Techland, a few days after the release of Horizon Forbidden West and Elden Ring, have decided to launch the sequel to the zombie and parkour game that had entertained us so much on the now older generation. A risky move or awareness of one’s means? Let’s find out together in our review of Dying Light 2: Stay Human for PS5.
Zombieland? More or less
After the first few minutes in Dying Light 2: Stay Human, the first impression is that of being in Zombieland. Remember the 2009 movie with Jesse Eisenberg? Here, that one. Dying Light 2 is a good mix between a title about the “end of the world” and an action caciarone, with excellent exploration phases and many goliardic moments. What works a little less is how it combines an unlikely amount of bugs with a not-too-interesting campaign. We’re still not sure if releasing a game about a global pandemic two years after a global pandemic was a genius or a downright risky move. but this evidently influenced development (both positively and negatively). If we then add that after a couple of weeks the guys from Techland will have to fight against two giants like Horizon and Elden Ring, curiosity about why this “hasty” launch increases.
The world is your playground – Dying Light 2: Stay Human for PS5 review, welcome to Zombieland!
Along the lines of its predecessor Dying Light 2 sports a great city map, extremely explorable, with an excellent horizontal extension and an equally good vertical development. While swarms of zombies flock to buildings by day to hide from the sun, by night they pour into the streets en masse, leaving the player the freedom to explore “A little at a time”. Plus, like (almost) everyone else, you’ve been infected with the zombie virus, and being in contact with UV rays is the only thing that delays the inevitable. The recurring need to reload the meter, which runs out within minutes if you are inside a building away from light, is an excellent addition to gameplay already basic anxious and frenetic.
The day-night cycle creates a good balance in gameplay variety: while nights are the right time to rummage through abandoned subway stations, power plants and hospitals to collect new weapons and materials for crafting, by day you travel through the city and complete outdoor story missions. Add to that Dying Light 2’s biggest selling point: his parkour system. If already in the first chapter the parkour worked extremely well, in this sequel the “park of moves” available is expanded even more, consequently granting even more freedom to maneuver. Jumping from building to building, climbing skyscrapers and even swinging with the grappling hook to get from point A to point B often results in “the floor is lava” never boring or monotonous. Also, certainly noteworthy, the repertoire of over 20 parkour skills unlockable by leveling up that allows you to navigate the city in new (and light-hearted) ways.
Non solo parkour – Review Dying Light 2: Stay Human per PS5, welcome to Zombieland!
Parkour, of course, isn’t the only key mechanic in Dying Light 2. Rather, the fight against humans and zombies it can also be a lot of fun. The catalog of moves available has a good variety; between kicks in the face, dodges and counterattacks you certainly won’t get bored. There is no variety in the types of human enemies that are fought (only men of medium size or enemies much more robust and slow but with large two-handed weapons) but all in all it does not disturb. The only flaw, in the long run, is the extreme simplicity during the fights. Once you have learned the pattern of the few attacks of the opponent’s AI, the degree of challenge disrupts even in the most difficult situations.
For the same reason, moving on to zombies, on average, it doesn’t really feel too dangerous to wander the streets at night. Being chased by a “nocturnal” or by swarms of nibbles is still a satisfying experience, even though Techland could have raised the bar a little more. In favor of that, though, there are so many fun options to kill an entire room of bloodthirsty zombies that you rarely get bored. Throwing giant canisters of explosive gas at groups of enemies, setting fire to a dozen zombies with a well-placed Molotov cocktail or simply kicking them out of a window is always fun and rewarding. The variety among zombies (fortunately) is also better than that among human enemies.
But as night falls… – Dying Light 2: Stay Human review for PS5, welcome to Zombieland!
Although (from what transpires so far) we liked the game, we come to the elephant in the room: the bugs. If your tolerance for bugs is low, we recommend that you arm yourself with chamomile tea. The amount of glitches in Dying Light 2 is mind bogglingbe it crashes or minor problems. Dialogues that stop abruptly, audio that goes crazy, not being able to finish a mission because the objective does not generate and much more. Most glitches aren’t too disturbing, but some problems are too serious to ignore. Normally I expect a certain disregard in such “free” open-worlds, but this case is really exaggerated. In terms of stability I can almost say with certainty that Dying Light 2 is a very good competitor of the PC version of Cyberpunk 2077. The only positive is that Techland is aware of the monster it has created and is working hard on the fix.
Another problem with the game lies in the protagonist. The revenge story involving Aiden is uninspiring, quite confusing and a little too clichéd. Above all, the numerous (and cloying) flashbacks of her story break the pace of the game for no real reason. A great shame as there are so many interesting stories and well written characters in the countryside. For some reason, however, Aiden is one of the most boring people in one of the most clichéd and banal adventures of the “apocalypse” context of recent years. A great pity.
Teamwork – Dying Light 2: Stay Human review for PS5, welcome to Zombieland!
After the extremely down time, let’s go back to dessert. Dying Light 2 also features a drop-in cooperative mode in which up to four players can explore the city together and undertake any activity, from the main campaign to parkour minigames. Not only is it a pleasure to be able to enjoy so much of the co-op campaign, but it has almost all the features which make a cooperative enjoyable and extremely fun. The difficulty is “adjusted” to take into account more people in the action, the loot is divided for each player and above all all progress, XP and decisions on the story are transferred to your save file, both as a host and as a guest.
Unfortunately, even here there are some small bugs and technical problems. In some situations, both the connection drop and the framerate drop have been quite problematic. Overall though it looks like Techland is quickly fixing the experience which in my opinion, at the moment, represents the real strength of the entire title.
As usual, net of what was analyzed in the course of this review of Dying Light 2: Stay Human for PS5, we find ourselves taking stock. When everything works, the game is an excellent zombie game and more. The exploration is of quality as well as the freedom of action, the short “combat” catalog is never boring and the co-op mode is one of the funniest I’ve ever gotten my hands on. The fact that such an incredible amount of bugs corrupt such an enjoyable gaming experience is a great shame. Judging by the timely big-fixes he is making, at least however, Techland is aware of this. Unfortunately, no patch can fix the forgettable main storyline or the silly protagonist of the adventure, but the streets of Dying Light 2 surely have their own why. If you are a fan of zombies and post-apocalyptic games, Dying Light 2: Stay Human is a title not to be missed. Maybe, though, give it time to fix.
Dying Light 2: Stay Human is available from February 4th 2022 for Xbox Series X / S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Nintendo Switch (in cloud) and PC. As always, we greet you and invite you to stay connected on TechGameWorld.com for more news, reviews, updates and much more from the world of video games. Also, don’t forget to check out the Instant Gaming catalog for always discounted games. Hello and happy gaming!
Fun but absolutely worth fixing.
Points in favor
- Good map structure
- Great freedom of exploration, especially thanks to parkour
- Fun but not too complex combat
- Great co-op mode
- Too many bugs, both minor and major
- Uninspiring story
- Extremely banal protagonist