Release: October 19th, 2021
Reviewed on: Nintendo Switch
Dying Light finally makes its way to the Nintendo Switch. But good things come to those who wait, as the Switch gets the platinum edition, which includes quite a bit of content: the base game, Dying Light: The Following (which is a whole new story), Dying Light: Bozak Horde (which has a side story), Hellraid, and a bunch of new outfits and weapons.
Probably everyone’s biggest concern is if the hardware will be able to handle such a massive game, and I’m happy to report that the game runs really well on the Switch. The game runs smooth and I never had an issue with any lag, it felt really good as I parkoured through the city. There were a few minor issues where a few items like trash cans or some small details didn’t appear in view until I got a bit closer, but these were minor issues and didn’t affect my enjoyment of the game.
It would be remiss of me if I didn’t say that the game does show a bit of its age. Most of the zombies look very similar (except for the unique zombies in the game) and the graphics look like something out of the Xbox 360 era. There were a few times when the hair on some characters looked stiff and at times the Switch had a hard time with rendering the texture of some of the hair. But this game was first released in 2015 (I can’t believe it’s been that long) so a lot of that is forgivable. What is amazing is that you can play this game handheld and it feels so good.
If you have never played Dying Light, the story is a post apocalyptic zombie story. You play as an undercover agent named Kyle Crane whose job it is to infiltrate a rebel group in the Middle East and take back a stolen file from the rebel group. To win their trust, you need to go on missions to get close to their leader and retrieve the stolen file. The missions have you go into a dynamic open world filled with zombies as you parkour from rooftop to rooftop trying to avoid zombies and get to your destinations. The game features a day/night progression mechanic and at night, there are many more zombies (and they seem to come out of nowhere).
Besides how smooth the game played, the other impressive aspect of the game is the atmosphere that the game builds. Between the dynamic daytime/nighttime mechanic and the music that blends both a sense of the rich cultural background of the land and the intense sounds of zombies growling, the game really sets the tone very well. There were moments where I found myself enjoying the scenery and the next jumping as a zombie appeared around the corner. The game is fun and intense and really captures the overall sense of what the characters in the game are going through.
My one complaint was the fact that I had all these cool outfits that were unlocked but I never really got to see my character in the outfits. It’s a minor gripe, but it would have been cool to have seen more of my character in the outfits. I didn’t get to play the online multiplayer, and I suspect that this is where you can show off your outfits. As I said, it’s a minor gripe, but a third person perspective would have been nice.
Final Grade: A
My biggest concern going into Dying Light was if the Switch could handle the game. My fears were put as ease as the game runs smoothly on the hardware. It’s great to be able to play Dying Light on the go and while the price might seem a bit steep for a game that’s six years old already, the fact that it’s the platinum edition and includes a bunch of expansions makes the price point reasonable. If you never played Dying Light and are looking for an intense experience with a really good story, consider picking this up on the Switch.