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Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Weapon degradation will return in Dying Light 2

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No one’s favorite game mechanic, weapon degradation will make a comeback in Dying Light 2. As producer Szymon Strauss explained, in its setting—two decades after the previous game—things have continued to wear out, and “people start building stuff from scraps and other material on the fly.”

Durability systems are often controversial, usually thanks to games that lay them on thick and have gear that falls apart in minutes instead of months. (One of the only things I didn’t like about System Shock 2 was the way guns broke after a handful of uses, though that was both re-tuned and made optional in a patch.) Most of the time weapon degradation just means more menu management as you juggle an inventory full of spares and repair kits.

On the other hand, it provides motivation for you to get out there and scavenge for parts and replacements, as it did in the original Dying Light, and to try weapons you might not otherwise. The Dead Rising games rely on weapons wearing out to make you try its kookier options, of which there are many. Hopefully Dying Light 2 gets the balance right. Strauss mentioned that if your weapon breaks you can try inventive solutions for dealing with packs of zombies, like finding higher ground, then luring a cluster together with firecrackers or meat bait before dropping a grenade into the pack.

Some weapons won’t be appropriate for certain enemies, Strauss explained, like the quick-moving banshee. “I cannot imagine hitting her with a bow,” he said. Players will want to rotate gear to suit the situation, as well as when it falls apart. He also mentioned that one of the sound designers working on weapon sounds broke his machete while recording, and the authentic audio of that will be used in-game.

Dying Light 2 was scheduled to come out on December 7, but has now been delayed into 2022.

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