After the Ubisoft conference showed off some gameplay of the upcoming Watch Dogs 2, the developer sent off a list detailing more of the features players can expect when the game releases on November 15, as well as a blog on the PlayStation blog.
The press release states that Dedsec, the fictional Anonymous expy, will have a much larger focus in Watch Dogs 2. While the game will introduce more characters who operate under the Dedsec name, the game will mostly focus on the main character’s relationship with 3 specific members: Wrench, Sitara, and Josh. Wrench is the anarchic cyberpunk that excels at causing chaos, digital or otherwise. Sitara is the face of Dedsec and one of its most prominent members. Josh is the best programmer Dedsec has to offer. Together, they work to take down big businesses who have been using their wealth and influence for their own nefarious ends. The tone of the game is also very different from the original game, where Aiden Pearce approached every situation with a grim seriousness that not a lot of people liked. Watch Dogs 2 looks to be more light-hearted in tone, with the emphasis in the story focussing on Big Data instead of public surveillance.
Members of Dedsec – which includes Marcus, the character you play – can gain followers by completing missions. These followers allow you to do bigger and more powerful hacks, provided you have accrued enough followers to begin with. While you build your little botnet of followers you will be able to unlock hacking abilities as well as completely new operations. There’s also an in-game app store where you can download new apps to increase the functionality of the phone.
The press release also gives us more details on main protagonist Marcus Holloway. Marcus’ personal story starts when he gets accused of a crime he didn’t commit:
Marcus was identified by crime prediction software as being responsible for a nearby hightech burglary that required the technical expertise he possessed. The evidence fit him, he had no alibi, and the crime prediction was the nail in the coffin that allowed the cops to press charges and close another case. It was only because of a sympathetic judge that Marcus escaped a harsh sentence, but the damage was done… Marcus had a record. He was flagged.
Your cell phone will once again be your most important tool in your arsenal as it allows you to hack remotely, set up multiplayer matches or take part in virtual missions.
The hacking itself has also been given an upgrade since the original game. You can use your phone for all the things you used it for in the first game, but now you’ll also be able to remotely control vehicles to cause a distraction, start gang wars between rivaling factions in San Francisco and put the police on a fake trail by sending them falsified records.
In addition to your phone hacks, you will also have access to two remote-control devices. The Jumper is a small 2 wheeled device that can sneak into buildings while the drone can be used for recon in the sky. These vehicles allow Marcus to infiltrate and explore areas and buildings without putting himself in harm’s way, or use them to distract guards so you can sneak by unseen.
Marcus also uses a weapon that’s unique to his character: the Thunderball. This is a billiard ball attached to a lanyard made from 550 paracord. It’s a small projectile, but capable of knocking most people unconscious with one big swoop. In addition to this, Marcus will be able to use his 3D printer to craft a wide variety (a taser and a grenade launcher are given as an example) of other weapons, depending on your playstyle.
Driving around in the original game could be a bit of a pain, with vehicles handling more like boats than cars. The whole driving system has been completely rebuilt from the ground up, using tech developed by Ubisoft Reflections. Hopefully, this will make it so that the driving becomes more of a pleasure and not just a hindrance.
Watch Dogs 2 will also have a non-linear mission structure, with players deciding for themselves which missions they want to tackle in the order of their choosing. The way these missions unlock depends on how you play the game. Like mentioned before, missions can be unlocked by gaining more followers, which act as a currency you can invest in 3 different playstyles: the aggressive combat hacker, the sneaky ghost hacker, or the trickster hacker, which has a range of abilities to help players completing entire missions using their tech. In fact, it will be possible to beat Watch Dogs 2 without using lethal force in the game. In terms of missions, it’s also possible to just happen upon them while you’re out exploring the city. While this is true for most missions, there are some key story missions you’ll need to do before you can unlock additional missions.
These missions also feed into the game’s co-op mode, with a ton of missions tuned for 2 players. While you’re out in the world, you’ll also come across other players while you’re partaking in events around the city. If you decide to team up after, you’ll be able to play the co-op missions. This entire process occurs without loading screens. While most of the missions and activities can be undertaken by 2 players, some of them are only singleplayer.
You will also come across Hacking Opportunities while you’re out exploring San Fransisco. These missions saw their debut in Watch Dogs and are back in full force, with players able to use the more complex hacks like remotely controlling vehicles to their advantage, making these little missions a lot less predictable. These opportunities, as well as other multiplayer content, are completely optional. One thing to note is that your avatar will have a different face to other players. You yourself will always play Marcus, but facial features will appear different to players you’re grouped with. Your choice of clothing, however, will be shown to other players so you can show off your stuff.
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