Dying Light 2: Everything We Know

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Techland’s Dying Light 2: Stay Human is shaping up to reinforce the original game’s stellar combat and traversal gameplay with a more fleshed-out and fully realized zombie apocalypse world. It’s been a long road since its debut back in 2018, but Dying Light 2 seems primed to expand on and deepen Dying Light’s elements in every way. That means improved traversal gameplay and fluid movement, a reactive open-world story that takes player choice into account, and of course, lots more horrific zombie monsters primed to rip you apart. We’ve learned quite a bit about Dying Light 2 of late, thanks to the fact that the game is finally approaching its release date after numerous delays. Here’s everything we know about Dying Light 2.

Table of Contents [hide]

  • Release date
  • What exactly is Dying Light 2: Stay Human?
  • What’s the deal with Dying Light’s zombies?
  • Should you still play the original?
  • What’s new in the sequel?
  • Dying Light 2 gameplay in action
  • Will there be multiplayer?
  • PC requirements
    • Minimum System Requirements (Ray Tracing Off):
    • Recommended System Specifications (Ray Tracing Off):
  • Trailers
  • Pre-order guide

Release date

Dying Light 2: Stay Human is set to release on February 4, 2022 for PC, PlayStation 5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch (although you’ll play an online version streaming from the cloud on Nintendo’s platform). First announced at E3 2018, the game was originally expected to release during the first half of 2020 but was delayed for an indefinite period. It then was slated to release on December 7, but was again pushed back.

The long wait for Dying Light 2: Stay Human could be attributed to the tumultuous development cycle surrounding the project, with complaints regarding Techland’s use of other games as creative starting points for its own projects as well as a toxic work culture. Another issue could possibly be linked to prominent developer Chris Avellone, who originally served as Dying Light 2: Stay Human’s narrative director but was terminated from the project following sexual misconduct allegations. However, these reported issues have not been acknowledged by the company in an official capacity.

What exactly is Dying Light 2: Stay Human?

Dying Light 2: Stay Human is a first-person open-world action game set in an isolated urban landscape after a zombie apocalypse. The Dying Light series puts a big emphasis on traversal, providing you with parkour abilities so you can make your way through its desolate urban landscape quickly and effectively. You play as Aiden Caldwell, a freelance “runner” who handles various odd jobs and tasks for the citizens of The City, one of the last human settlements in Europe. Following the events of Dying Light’s post-game expansion, The Following, former protagonist Kyle Crane was infected with a new strain of the virus that turns people into the ravenous infected, and he unknowingly spread the disease throughout the world. After the global outbreak, modern civilization came to an end, pushing humanity into a new dark age.

The sequel takes place 20 years later, where the modern world is a thing of the past. In Dying Light 2: Stay Human’s present, advanced technology is scarce, and firearms are hard to come by, requiring you to scavenge parts and craft makeshift weapons together to survive the onslaught of infected, along with enemy factions looking to take what you have left. You’ll see some shooter combat, as well as first-person melee fighting akin to something like Left 4 Dead 2. As you freely explore The City, which is four times bigger than the original game’s world, you’ll be able to take on side missions, explore abandoned buildings, and make essential choices that will impact the flow of your story. Ultimately, your decisions throughout the settlement will leave an impression on the state of the last human settlement.

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What’s the deal with Dying Light’s zombies?

As Techland has described in development videos leading up to Dying Light 2’s release, its zombies are a little different than those you might see in other games. The creatures are light-sensitive, making it much safer to travel by daylight than at night. That also means you’re likely to run into nests of zombies in interior locations, making exploration hazardous.

Techland released a trailer during E3 2021 that runs down what you need to know about its particular zombie apocalypse, while also filling in some details about protagonist Aiden Caldwell, which you can watch below.

Should you still play the original?

Though Dying Light 2: Stay Human is a continuation of the original game’s plot, which set the groundwork for the new story, the sequel works as a standalone game on its own. Set two decades later and in an entirely different location, Dying Light 2: Stay Human sticks with its narrative, with references from the previous game only serving to flesh out a sense of worldbuilding. Still, the original Dying Light is an exhilarating game that’s held up well. If you’re interested in the sequel but haven’t played the original, then definitely give it a shot. With that said, you won’t be at a huge loss if you want to wait for the sequel.

What’s new in the sequel?

The most significant change coming to Dying Light 2: Stay Human is the new adaptive storytelling. Throughout the game, Aiden Caldwell will rub shoulders with the various factions in The City, and at critical points in the plot, he’ll need to choose whom to side with to press forward. Depending on which factions control the districts of The City, you’ll see changes to the environment that reflect their ideologies. During E3 2019, we saw a gameplay demo that showed off a mission set at a fortified water dam. A faction had moved in and turned it into a safe haven. While it seemed like a peaceful place, your present task required that you break in and confront the leader, putting you at odds with the group. Choosing to take over the dam will not only claim the territory for your chosen faction, but it will also change the very layout of the district’s map itself. By manipulating the dam’s water levels, certain areas of the map will flood, making them inaccessible. On the inverse of that, other places will see the water drained, which will unearth new places to explore, along with mutated infected that will spread to the city.

Throughout the game, you’ll acquire new abilities and weapons to aid you in your fight against bandits and the more evolved infected. There’s a more significant emphasis on crafting gear, and in some instances, you can build modded weapons that have multiple uses. In the E3 2019 demo, Aiden picked up a special harpoon gun that can be used as a mace when you’re out of ammo. Along with that, modded weapons are far more effective in the sequel, but your enemies are also far more capable of taking you down in combat.

According to the developers, the sequel plans to take more cues from role-playing games to give players more choice in the flow of the narrative. Dying Light 2’s story offers a lot more flexibility when compared to the original’s static plot. This approach will, in turn, create more opportunities to shape the dynamic of The City based on your preferences. In addition to the returning focus on open-world exploration and melee combat, the adaptive narrative adds a new twist that makes the game’s world feel more like your own. In a recent interview, the Techland devs stated that to see the game’s 100+ hours of content, it will require multiple playthroughs of the game.

Dying Light 2 gameplay in action

As Dying Light 2 nears release, we got a lengthy, four-hour hands-on look at the game. Below, you can watch a 15-minute gameplay video showing off one of Dying Light 2’s missions, which demonstrates some of the game’s narrative, including Aiden’s interactions with Lawan, another character played by actress Rosario Dawson. It also provides a pretty in-depth look at open-world traversal, parkour, and combat, as well as giving you a look at Aiden’s paraglider, which you can use to quickly get around the City.

Editor Mark Delaney played Dying Light 2 for GameSpot’s preview and lauded the fluidity and freedom of movement the game presented in our hands-on session. He also wrote that, while the characters can feel a bit flat and story choices are often binary, the narrative feels like a step forward for Dying Light in general, and has potential.

“Dying Light 2 feels familiar, but not in a bad way,” he wrote. “The additions, be they original or derivative, tend to feel like good fits for this world, and because the game’s most special aspect, the parkour movement abilities, are clearly improved, it feels like Dying Light 2 is both a bigger and better sequel. Blatantly inspired by juggernauts such as The Witcher, Zelda, and Assassin’s Creed in different parts, Dying Light 2 still feels like it will manage to leave its mark on the sandbox formula. With the fluidity of a fountain, the exciting parkour should prove to be its signature when Dying Light 2 launches next February.”

Check out a video version of Mark’s preview below.

Will there be multiplayer?

Yes, Dying Light 2 will feature co-operative multiplayer for up to four players. Just like the original game, players can have others join their game to take on various missions, activities, and other open-world excursions. As of this time, there hasn’t been any additional info about what you can do in the open world with other players.

PC requirements

With Dying Light 2’s release date finally approaching, Techland ran down the specs your PC will need to meet in order to run it. The developer has defined multiple sets of requirements–both the usual minimum and recommended specifications for your PC, and a second set of minimums and recommended specs if you want to use ray tracing in the game. The non-ray tracing specs are below, but check out our full rundown of all the PC specifications for more details.

Minimum System Requirements (Ray Tracing Off):

For 1080p resolution at 30 FPS:

  • CPU: Intel® Core™ i3-9100 or AMD Ryzen™ 3 2300X
  • RAM: 8GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce® GTX 1050 Ti or AMD Radeon™ RX 560 (4GB VRAM)
  • OS: Windows 7
  • Available storage space: 60GB HDD

For 1080p resolution at 60 FPS:

  • CPU: Intel® Core™ i5-8600K or AMD Ryzen™ 5 3600X
  • RAM: 16GB
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce® RTX 2060 6GB or AMD Radeon™ RX Vega 56 8GB
  • OS: Windows 10
  • Available storage space: 60GB SSD

Trailers

In May 2021, Techland showed off extensive gameplay for Dying Light 2: Stay Human after years of no new details. The latest footage offers a renewed overview of the game’s various characters, factions, mechanics, and monsters.

We also got a look at even more of the monsters you’ll face in a trailer released during the summer.

Our latest look at Dying Light 2 came during the 2021 Game Awards, which debuted a new two-minute trailer for the game. The cinematic trailer gives a bit of a narrative look at the game, giving a bit of a character study that puts you in the game’s world that has a tragic ending. Check it out below.

The trailer also came with the announcement of a preorder bonus for the game: an exclusive skin pack created in collaboration with Dawson. The pack will include multiple skins for Lawan, including a new outfit, a skin for her crossbow, one for her backpack, and one for her paraglider. Aiden will also receive the backpack skin and the paraglider skin.

Pre-order guide

Currently, you can pre-order the game on various digital distribution platforms. For more details on the various editions you can get, check out our pre-order guide.

The products discussed here were independently chosen by our editors. GameSpot may get a share of the revenue if you buy anything featured on our site.

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