My first demo on the first day of Gamescom 2018 was probably one of the most impressive games of that day. The main concept of the game revolved around the idea of a narrative sandbox.
Dying Light 2 is a choice driven game that will determine three key elements - the narrative, gameplay and systems. As an example, three factions are fighting for control of a swimming pool and have their own uses for it. It is up to you to decide, through gameplay and narrative choice, who gets to take over it. There is no right or wrong answer, and have every choice has good and bad consequences. You need to talk to the members of each faction, and other NPCs before making this choice.
Let's say you let a particular faction win, they will then utilize it to sell drugs to you, making you stronger. But your enemies will also have access to the same drugs. If you let the Peacekeepers take over, they can set up a training area but as a consequence, you may be challenged randomly anywhere in the world.
The choices are extremely interconnected, to the point where no two playthroughs will be the same. If you keep supporting the scavengers, they will build a bridge that unlocks a whole new part of the city, leading to new quests and encounters. Otherwise, depending upon your choices, that is might be completely inaccessible to you.
The world looks highly detailed and there are traces of past event everywhere. After this, I saw a demo being played by one of the lead level designers in the team. There are many multiple ways of approaching the objective, and I saw him take a route through a museum, trying to make as little sound as possible. Dying Light relies on parkour for movement and I saw the character pull off some death-defying stunts, including using a rope to swing to another building and using his knife to slide down a poster. There is a stamina meter which does not refill until you have safely landed on your feet. Later on in the demo, I saw him climb a tower and had to use quickly multiple moves in succession because the stamina meter is constantly draining.
During combat, you can utilize the environment to unleash parkour based kicks. There are no firearms in the game and you must rely on melee weapons and your basic attacks to deal damage. Range weapons include a bow or a crossbow.
As the character climbed a water tower, he met two NPCs that had thrown a peacekeeper out of the window and wanted to control the water supply. In this situation, you can either kill them and let the peacekeepers take over or talk to them. I was shown both scenarios and was impressed by the results.
If you let the peacekeepers take over, there is noticeable branding everywhere and water becomes free. You can drink it at any time to heal yourself. But peacekeepers rule with an iron fist and I saw them conducting a hanging of three people, seemingly without a trial. The presenter explained that if you break any rules they will turn on you.
If you let the two NPCs control it, the area is a lot less developed and people are standing in line to buy water. Business is going extremely well for them but since you are also a part of their group, you get a cut of the profit. There are many other ways this scenario could’ve played out depending upon earlier choices, the two NPCs might never make it to the water tower, or they might take control of it without you, resulting in the player not having access to free water and not having a cut of the profit.
It’s this consequences system that makes Dying Light 2 so appealing. We will have to wait and see how it all materializes in the final product, but the ideas and concepts behind the game are incredibly exciting. Dying Light 2 is coming out sometime in next year and has quickly shot up my list of most anticipated games.
By: Parth Bagaria...