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Dying Light 2 lead designer teases future co-op class system

Dying Light 2
(Image credit: Techland)

Like the first Dying Light, Dying Light 2 is going to be a big open world game you can play by yourself if you want to—but why, when wailing on zombies is such a good time in co-op? I expect that's the way most people will end up playing Dying Light 2, because brains just bring friendships closer together.

After playing about four hours of Dying Light 2 in a recent demo (solo, tragically), I interviewed lead designer Tymon Smektała and asked if Techland had thought about adding character classes for co-op. I had Borderlands on the mind, which shares some similarities in its light RPG systems and piles of loot, but gives each character a specific role in combat. Dying Light 2 has a skill tree, but it looks more like the type you completely fill out by the end of the game, rather than one designed to hone in on a specific playstyle.

Could dedicated tanks and scouts work in Dying Light 2? 

"It is freeform as you start playing in co-op," said Smektała. "This is something that you have to find your own strategy for. But at some point I think we will support something that you have just mentioned."

I'm intrigued. The first Dying Light has at this point received years of free and paid DLC and in-game events to keep players engaged, and Smektała told me that Techland hopes to support Dying Light 2 for just as long. Expanding co-op with a more involved class system seems like a shoo-in for an expansion.

You can read more about Dying Light 2 in my preview, where I dive into the combat and parkour that return from the first game, and the branching story structure that's new to Dying Light 2. I had a good time with the action, particularly the feel of Dying Light 2's weightier melee weapons, but the story was a letdown. It's reaching for some impressive differences based on who you side with, but I'm not convinced the writing will actually make those choices (or characters) very interesting. 

After multiple delays, Dying Light 2 is set to come out on February 4.

Wes Fenlon

Wes has been covering games and hardware for more than 10 years, first at tech sites like The Wirecutter and Tested before joining the PC Gamer team in 2014. Wes plays a little bit of everything, but he'll always jump at the chance to cover emulation and Japanese games. When he's not obsessively optimizing and re-optimizing a tangle of conveyor belts in Satisfactory (it's really becoming a problem), he's probably playing a 20-year-old RPG or some opaque ASCII roguelike. With a focus on writing and editing features, he seeks out personal stories and in-depth histories from the corners of PC gaming and its niche communities. 50% pizza by volume (deep dish, to be specific).