Announced at E3 in 2016, Days Gone, was created by the Sony studio Bend. Described by some as The Last of Us meets Sons of Anarchy, this third person, action- adventure, survival, horror game, features an open world exploration of the Pacific Northwest, where a deadly virus has infected most of humanity.
After initially announcing the games release would be in 2018, then with the game receiving a further delay to February 2019, fans have been eager to get their hands on Days Gone. With yet another push back again to the ever close April 26th this year, to “further polish the game” the countdown to play, is finally almost over.
Set two years after the infection that turned most of the population into mindless, cannibalistic mutants, players will rough it as rogue biker turned mercenary Deacon St John. Described by Sony as “a drifter and bounty hunter who would rather risk the dangers of the broken road than live in the ‘safe’ wilderness encampments”, players will be able to explore the vast open world at their leisure, while cruising on Deacon’s trusty bike known as The Drifter which acts as your right hand man-bike.
Living life on the open-road has its advantages, you can scavenge, build new weapons, find and build mod’s for weapons, find and create food and health potions, hell, why not explore the landscape for a while, but there is unfortunately the much larger issue of those pesky infected hordes of…
Freaker’s as they are known, *cough must not say zombie’s cough cough* who are much akin to the threat in the likes of Left 4 Dead and The Last of Us. While not the undead, they are of course, as usual, cannibalistic, arriving in enormous hordes, and all have a sole purpose of eating your face.
There are four different types of Freaker’s in this vast open world that players will encounter, with the first being Swarmer’s which make up the majority of the foes (see above). These, as the name states, travel in groups, are relatively easy to kill, but when in swarms can be hard to overcome. The next to encounter are Newts, which are adolescents, who have also been infected by the pathogen. These un-nerving childlike beasties, crawl on all fours and generally aren’t as active as the Swarmer’s. These will only attack Deacon when his health is low, or if he gets too close to them, so players need to keep an eye out when knee-deep in looting, that they aren’t close by.
Next are the Screamer’s, and again as the name suggests, scream/roar and alert hordes to your presence. Killing these should be the players number one priority, especially if trying for a more stealthy approach. Lastly we have, and only recently revealed, – The Breaker‘s, a behemoth of infected humans, they are imposing, muscular and can withstand enormous damage, and obviously killing humans is easy for these brutes. Deacon may need to level up before taking on one of these too early.
Granted the power’s of super strength and speed from the virus, the infected have the ability to swarm in seconds, and it’s not only humans the virus has struck. Wolves known as Runner’s, with speed that can outrun a motorcycle, (yes not even Deacon’s old faithful bike Drifter can guarantee safety) bears known as a Rage Bears, which are bloodied tanks that are covered in barbed wire and weapons, unfazed by the pain, will come after Deacon (as if more enemies were needed), and Ravens which also swarm and attempt to overwhelm, have also succumbed to the virus. There are even rumors that some aquatic life may have fallen to it’s grasp, so it’s a pretty deadly world out there for players to explore.
That’s also not including the groups of humans that the virus didn’t infect. Violent Marauders who operate out of their own camps and set about to ambush, stalk the land, as well as Mad Max style cults called Rippers, who along with having R.I.P carved in their foreheads, have no fear of death and will self-sacrifice to serve their leader. Yikes.
But that just means more inventive ways of killing stuff, right?
Correct. You can approach enemies in a variety of different ways, using either stealth or full-blown aggression, and more often than not different situations will require both. Deacon can carry two weapons, long and short-range, as well as a variety of equipment including Molotov Cocktails, sharpened axes, varied tools for creating fire, and of course using your faithful motorcycle to GET THE FUCK OUT OF DODGE when in a tight spot. Also, if so inclined, it’s possible to unleash hordes of Swarmer’s into Marauder and Ripper camps while delighting in watching them engulf and destroy the settlement, bringing an imaginative and varied choice to how you want to kill things. Even the weather affects the players interactions with both the humans and the Freaker’s behaving differently, with cold weather giving Freakers’s more speed, but lower visibility (snow and cold weather also slows your motorbike) and rain dampening sound, therefore their hearing is limited, giving the player a unique experience every time. It is this unpredictability when it comes to any interaction that players have with enemies in-game, that is where the fun will really begin and really keep things interesting.
With the game play hours fluctuating from several sources at 30 hours for the average story mission’s, as well as the subsequent side mission’s that follow, it is no wonder that this large open world full of exploration, imagination and ingenuity, that looks as beautiful as it is terrifying, is smothered with anticipation. So come April 26th, will you be fighting against the Freaker’s?