Deacon St. John, the outlaw biker protagonist of Days Gone with an pornstar’s name, will be riding into stores next year. Sony just announced it will be released on February 22, 2019.
On the surface, Days Gone is a game you’ve already experienced half a dozen times before. Deacon St. John is a white dude drifting across the zombie-infested hellscape of post-apocalypse America. Pockets of survivors persist, so our protagonist won’t want for non-player characters to upgrade his gear and progress the story. If we see our bearded white dude spending a disproportionate amount of time with any particular character, we can expect to see them get killed in the inevitable scene of noble sacrifice against a horde of zombies.
And you know what? I’m still kind of digging it. Days Gone is inarguably built out of clichés, but the gameplay trailers made it look just different enough to stand out.
The narrative matches up with the setting pretty well too. Deacon St. John was an outlaw biker before the world went to crap two years ago, and now he’s working as a bounty hunter. It makes a lot of sense. There aren’t many sane humans left in the world of Days Gone, but there are enough of them to build town, plus a few holdouts across the Pacific Northwest. These survivors still need laws to function, but it’d be very easy for any criminals to avoid justice by simply escaping into the vast, barren world.
So naturally, people like Deacon would emerge, offering to hunt down these fugitives in exchange for whatever currency is used in what’s left of the Pacific Northwest. It’s a totally logical story device that gives players some direction in a huge, open world and justifies why Deacon travels so much.
And the bike! One of my biggest frustrations with open world games is how boring and unintuitive traveling can be. Motorcycles are fast, maneuverable, and most importantly, fun. Making Deacon a biker is another nice narrative device that explains why he’s so comfortable in the saddle.
Days Gone is basically The Last of Us with Boba Fett on a motorcyle, and I’m totally cool with that. Bring on the zombies!