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Dying Light: Bad Blood does a great job reworking competitive multiplayer three years later

March 23, 2018 2 min read

Like the hordes of zombie antagonists it features, Dying Light refuses to die. There's a passionate community that keeps the game alive, and Techland is happy to oblige these players with continued support. Before a GDC demo in San Francisco this week, a Techland representative tells us there are still 2.5 million active players. That's a remarkable number, especially considering Dying Light isn't something along the lines of a persistent MMO.

Techland's next step in keeping people interested sort of follows industry trends while staying uniquely Dying Light. A standalone expansion called Dying Light: Bad Blood is set to release later this year on PC, PS4, and Xbox One. It's a competitive multiplayer mode, which is the first time it has tried this angle (aside from the Left 4 Dead-like humans versus zombies from the base game). This is piggybacking on the ever-popular battle royale billing.

It feels pertinent to get this out of the way up front: Bad Bloodis not really battle royale despite plenty of other outlets reporting it that way. Bad Blood is a six-player mode -- more of a battle miniature than anything else. Everyone has only a single life, so there is a pervasive cautiousness about it all. But a lot of games were doing that well before battle royale became so profitable.

Instead, Bad Blood leverages its systems to make a multiplayer mode that uses its existing environmental hazards, and simply adds a human threat. The premise has six players dropped off on a map, everyone with a different dumpster to land in (exactly where I belong, according to some people). They have to collect infected blood samples for their employer to come pick them back up. But, due to a helicopter design that seems awfully deficient, there's only one seat on the chopper. You see where this is going.

Dying Light: Bad Blood does a great job reworking competitive multiplayer three years later screenshot