Basically Dying Light is a better version of Dead Island Riptide (which itself was vastly improved over Dead Island) with parkour, a more serious story, truer open world, and much better game mechanics. Not to mention the graphics are great.
Going along with the switch from Deep Silver to Warner Brothers, this game has a better story (in a sense) and more sincerity than that of Dead Island, where it was just “We got to get out of heaah!”. That doesn’t mean the story is great or well written, as it is not. It embraces every zombie genre cliche remotely possible – from the guys who declare themselves lords of the wasteland to the journalists, movie producers, politicians and everything else turned psychopaths and leaders in Harran. Kyle Crane is dispatched to the city with a mission and things go very wrong very quickly, and thus begins the absolute predictability.
Thus also begins the “Do all this shit” questing for every jerkoff in the city. Although, at least the quests feel slightly more organic this time around. There also aren’t too many of them so while a lot of it is mundane – find a guys binoculars, spare glasses, etc., you won’t be doing them for long. Many of the quest chains also have a noticeable effect on the world. Often times when you do a quest or quest chain, it ends up clearing out a base for a group of people to move into, who will then give you more quests. In addition, NPCs will talk of your deeds ad nauseam, repeating the same lines literally every time you come anywhere near them.
Harran has a day/night cycle, which dictates the gameplay during the day and night hours. At night, zombies are crazy fast and powerful and if you end up getting chased, you better evade or kill them all and hide really quickly before the entire city is after you. So as many have said, during the day the game is more or less Dead Island with parkour, but during the night it is flat out survival horror and stealth. Make no mistake, even at lvl. 25 all three trees, you WILL be paying attention or else you will be dying at night.
As for the parkour and free running, it’s about as solid as Assassin’s Creed, Mirror’s Edge, or Shadow of Mordor. So what this means is it works well and its very fun to do, but occasionally you’re going to jump the wrong way and fall hundreds of feet to your death. In addition to the climbing and improving upon it through the agility tree, you get a grappling hook which essentially lets you run around like Ada Wong or Batman. Jokes aside, it’s pretty damn sweet.
Really the only thing to complain about is that like any game, there are some glitches. I fell through the map for the first time after 30 hours of play with no significant glitches, and I died. I don’t mind dying, even though dying makes you lose Survivor XP, but it happened. There are also a lot of texture problems but it’s not a big deal. The one thing though is, the two-hander zombies – i.e “goons” – will often hit you with their ground strike attack despite being way out of range.