The open-world zombie genre is overcrowded, and every new release in this format feels the same. However, the Dying Light franchise feels like a breath of fresh air due to its new twist on the formula with a remarkable parkour system. Released on February 4, 2022, Dying Light 2 had a lot to live up to due to the hype surrounding its launch after the first game’s success.

Let’s see how the sequel has faired among the fanbase with this detailed Dying Light 2 review.

Gameplay & Enemy Design

Dying Light 2 campfire

In the gameplay department, the Dying Light franchise combines the funky melee combat against the zombies from Dead Island with a parkour system much reminiscent of Mirror’s Edge. Dying Light 2 preserves many of the gameplay elements of the prequel and expands upon them in the form of increased zombie types, more & abilities, live-action services, and story choices affecting your gameplay.

Since Dying Light 2 presents a world where the original Harran virus has been mutated, the zombies have also mutated. We see this with the various zombie types in the game, like Banshee, Howlers, Bolters, Revenants, and a couple of others. Furthermore, Volatiles are still a looming threat during the nighttime. Like in the prequel, there are a fair bit of human enemies you can fight in the form of various factions controlling parts of the city.

World Design & Traversal

Dying Light 2 overworld with many large buildings and HUD

The world design and your traversal across it are admittedly the best parts of Dying Light 2. While it doesn’t have the same charm as the city of Harran from the first game, Techland has done a good job of depicting the horrors of mutations with the game’s environment.

The parkour system from the first game has been more fleshed-out, giving you greater traversal options. As you progress through the game and make certain story choices, more parkour options open up to you, providing you with greater freedom to travel the zombie-infested town.

Dying Light 2 Story

Dying Light 2 character dialogue

Dying Light 2 takes place in the year 2036, 22 years after the virus first appeared in Harran. The virus has now mutated and spread across the world, leaving the remaining human population confined within a few habitable zones. You fill the shoes of a Pilgrim named Aiden, whose search for his lost sister Mia leads him to one of the biggest habitable zones named Villedor.

As with the prequel, the story of Dying Light 2 isn’t its strongest suit. The narrative feels weak, with poorly written characters and missions which end up feeling pointless. In fact, it’s easy to forget the entire main plot until the end of the game, making the story and characters mostly forgettable.

Performance (Patch 1.10)

enemy zombie floating in the air

The game had its fair share of optimization and performance issues during launch, ranging from minor glitches to game-breaking bugs. However, with several hotfixes and patches over the course of 1 year, the optimization has greatly improved, allowing you to run it on medium-to-high settings on a mid-range machine. Furthermore, aside from a few funny zombies clipping bugs, it’s rare to encounter any game-breaking issues.

Dying Light 2 Final Verdict

While Dying Light 2 expands on its prequel in every aspect, the overall changes aren’t as impactful. Although the game’s primary charm is the unique gameplay experience with story choices, the ramifications of your choices are quite low. This is especially true if we compare it to what was advertised during the game’s announcement.

That said, if you love the first game and want to live out the zombie-slaying power fantasy, then Dying Light 2 is a good choice. The satisfying parkour mechanics and survival horror elements will ensure you get your money’s worth out of Dying Light 2.

If you enjoyed this review, be sure to visit Gamesoft’s blog and check out some of our other reviews, such as Hollow Knight and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.