During the Microsoft show at E3 2018, a very exciting announcement was made. A sequel to the beloved 2014 Open World zombie game Dying Light, made by Techland studios. It was planned to be released in ‘Spring 2020’. I was watching the Livestream, I think it was around 6 am in Sydney, and I was talking to my friends on Discord, having played dozens of hours of Dying Light in singleplayer and coop, we were all very excited. At the time Spring 2020 seemed like a lifetime away, but here we are. Dying Light 2 was following a steady road of marketing and promotion standard for a AAA title, which was given a second wind when the very impressive 30 minute E3 Demo was released on Youtube. But on January 21st 2020, Techland announced the game was being delayed indefinitely.
So, why is this delay any different from the rest? 2020 has been a year of delays, the vast majority of games and films set for release this year were delayed after the COVID-19 outbreak turned into the COVID-19 pandemic. Another game that has been delayed again and again is Cyberpunk 2077, both due to ongoing global events and development decisions, but Cyberpunk is now seemingly (fingers crossed) set in stone for a November 19th release date. But DL2 is different, the DL2 delay had nothing to do with COVID-19. Likely, Techland underestimated the work that such a huge project would require, and need more time to deliver on what they have promised.
Not sure what this guy did to deserve being kicked off a building, but I’m sure he will be the first of many
DL2 was promising to be massive, a map over four times the size of the original game (all districts combined, slums, old town and countryside), with an expanded parkour system and a dynamic, choice-based story that can drastically change the look and feel of your game world. The game’s protagonist is Aiden Caldwell, an infected survivor who is caught in a war between not only the living and the dead, but the vying powers of the last human settlement left standing. It’s fair to assume this follows the ‘drink the vial’ ending of Dying Light: The Following, a DLC continuing the base story, where protagonist Kyle Crane seemingly gives in to his infection and becomes a ‘Night Hunter’, the most dangerous of all the infected subspecies, and then promptly escapes the quarantine enclosing the game’s fictional Turkish setting of Harran. This would unleash the Harran Virus on the world, and Dying Light 2 is set in an unnamed European city approximately 15 years after the initial 2014 Harran outbreak.
We have no details about the game’s setting beyond its size, parkour potential and European locale, but some concept art features roadsigns with a Germanic looking language written on.
After getting the global gaming community hyped out of their minds, DL2 disappeared. The delay went public, and it’s been nothing but rumours since. A tweet circulated claiming the game was in a disastrous state and the development team was struggling, but these rumours were quickly squashed by Techland. An interview conducted with lead game designer Tymon Smektala in September 2019, which you can read for yourself here mentions a ‘Spring 2020’ release window, but Smektala went on to say “Again, please keep your fingers crossed because this really is a huge thing and we need all the support we can get”.
Aside from the legions of Zombies, DL2 will feature copious Human enemies, sorted into several factions intent on ruling what’s left of the world in unique but largely unsettling ways.
And that is the note it was left on, Spring 2020 has come and gone, and Techland has yet to announce a release window, let alone a date. I have been eagerly waiting for any news I can get, I had hoped that we would get some news at the Xbox Showcase earlier this year since the initial 2018 reveal was during the Microsoft show at E3. Don’t lose hope, Dying Light was a huge success and just received its largest update in years, the Hellraid DLC. Techland is unlikely to abandon this project, but there is no easy way to predict when exactly we will get an update. It could be like Watch Dogs legion, which got a new release date mere months after being delayed indefinitely, or Cyberpunk 2077, which was first announced in 2012, and is only releasing just over 2 months from now. So, don’t give up hope because Dying Light 2 is bound to be, based off of what we’ve seen so far, one of the biggest games of the year. Which year, however, remains to be seen.
To watch DL2’s last and most impressive appearance, the 30 min E3 gameplay demo that showcases the games story, parkour system, open world, some of its activities and a sprinkling of zombies, click below;
And to watch DL2’s first-ever appearance at E3 2018, click below;