GAME NAME: Dying Light: The Following
PUBLISHER(S): Warner Bros.
PLATFORM(S): Xbox One
GENRE(S): Survival Horror
RELEASE DATE(S): February 9th, 2016
Techland made a very positive impact on the “next gen” gaming last year with the successful release of their survival horror game Dying Light. Since that release they have been releasing DLC for their game to keep players occupied and engrossed in this epic stunt filled zombie apocalypse. All of was this leading up to the release of The Following, which shouldn’t be considered DLC and instead an expansion. The Following is included in the Season Pass for those who already own it, but it can be purchased separately if desired. The base game of Dying Light is required to play this and if you don’t own it I highly suggest considering the Enhanced Edition release as it will include the game and all the released content. This expansion isn’t just a rehash of the same map or just adding new quests to an already familiar world, it literally took the survival nature out of Harran and into the huge open fields, farms and small quaint towns.
The Following starts out by you (Kyle Crane) talking to a man that is hysterical and dying, he briefly states that people aren’t turning when bitten from the zombies outside of Harran. You get a map from him that shows a way out of Harran and that is where you head to get more answers of this phenomenon of not turning, especially because antizen is overly scarce and people are dying.
Upon exiting Harran through a cave you come out on top of a rocky mountain overlooking a luscious landscape of open fields and land. You will soon come into contact with a farm that has survivors on it who aren’t willing to talk about the idea of not turning when bitten. After talking with a few locals, you end up meeting a man who sends you to steal a dune buggy, which is your main way to travel around this newly found countryside. This is about all the story I am willing to divulge as I feel The Following is something you should experience spoiler free.
There is a decent amount of story content here along with a slew of side quests that can keep you busy for hours on end, but I honestly found myself just driving around plowing over undead hordes while exploring this huge and engrossing expansion. Some of the side quests are major fetch quests that do get redundant, but it definitely adds more gameplay. Weapons are definitely stronger out here and you seem to have more access to guns and ammo, since bandits are around a lot more now. There is also a new skill tier called “driver” and this is leveled up by running over zombies, landing jumps and driving as fast as you can. Just like the 3 previous skill trees you will begin spending skill points to add new features or abilities to your buggy.
When scavenging you will still acquire items needed per usual with the new addition of being able to search car hoods and fuel tanks to retrieve vehicle parts and fuel. You will need fuel to drive as you may have guessed and you will also need to upgrade or repair your parts on the vehicle as you drive around. There are tons of broken down cars, trucks and other vehicles all over the countryside for you to scavenge. Virals can jump onto your vehicle to attack you and this causes some intense moments, especially at night with the volatiles chasing you down. To knock them off either brake or ram into something to send them flying.
The visuals of The Following are much improved from the base game, although whether you bought the enhanced edition or got the free update then the original game will have updated visuals as well. There is some minor screen clipping in a few areas, but it doesn’t hinder the experience at all. It still amazes me that we are getting such a realistic look in some of these newer games and Techland has done a superb job at creating an immersive visual world such as this.
Dying Light has always had great ambient sound and the expansion is nothing different. The sound effects are phenomenal and at night it always creates that edge of your seat feeling while cautiously listening for oncoming or near infected.
Techland has achieved what most developers dream of when creating expansion content for their games. The Following is by far one of the best expansions to a game I’ve experienced in a long time. The story is more captivating than the original game’s story and the world is so much more enjoyable to explore. You can still play 4 player coop in this expansion just as in the main game, which will definitely increase the fun. This content will give you an additional 10+ hours of gameplay and will keep you asking for more.