Imagine Grand Theft Auto; if the script was written by someone like Edward Snowden and the timeline set in the future, that would be Watch Dogs in a nutshell. The game has been creating shock waves in the gaming community since it was announced back in 2012 June’s E3. This game was meant to redefine the term graphical performance by being announced as one of the first games for the new generation of consoles and PC hardwares, in a time when there was no hint of a new generation. So its very easy to fall under its spell if you think about it; people didn’t even know of a new generation and this game was supposed to redefine it. Ubisoft has pulled out all the stops to develop and distribute this game both financially and creatively. In America alone, more than 3500 branches of GameStop launched Watch Dogs on the evening of May 26th simultaneously.
So, can this game really handle all the hype it has managed to generate? Since its launch it seems to have already broken the records for the studio that created it; Ubisoft. Now if that name sounds familiar, you should know that they are responsible for hit titles such as Far Cry, Prince of Persia, Tom Clancy Combat game series, and of course, the Assassin’s Creed series. So they have experience in creating addictive hit titles, and for breaking Ubisoft’s record for the fastest selling game – this game must be really special. We are talking about game that was won over a hundred nominations and two Game Critics Awards for Special Commendation for Graphics and Special Commendation for Innovation. We are going to look at the graphics, the story, the themes and the ideology behind this amazing game.
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The game is set in a futuristic Chicago, which involves the city, open countryside and the slums. The game is played from a third person perspective, just like the GTA series and can be navigated on foot or with the use of vehicles. The gamers are in control of Aiden Pearce who uses his hacking skills to control Chicago’s central computer, CtOS, which manages the city of Chicago. Players have a choice of playing either for or against the law. The game also features multi-player mode, allowing up to 8 players to either do co-operative or competitive game play.
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The story revolves around Aiden Pearce and his adventure through the interconnected city of Chicago. He is a skilled hacker and an ex-con but after a failed job resulted in the death of a loved one, he decides to bring his own vision of justice to the perpetrators by utilizing Chicago’s CtOS, the supercomputer that controls every piece of technology in the city, and also includes information on the citizens and their activities.
The concept of the story is based around the information warfare; how information can be used against an enemy through the use of utilizing vulnerabilities in technology.
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This is the part of the game that everyone was really wanting and waiting to see and in that regard, this game does not disappoint. Many of the scenes in the game are truly breathtaking. Yes, you won’t see much when the weather is fine and dandy, but when the weather systems kick in, prepare for you jaw to drop; provided you have the hardware to handle the grunt. While the visuals are spectacular, it must be said that the character animations feel like a step backwards. All in all, if you want to know what your system is made of, this is the game to try it out with.
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In a nutshell; watch dogs is a really good game. Although, it must be said that the game play is a bit confusing. For example, the player has a very capable handheld device (a future Android maybe) which allows the character to hack their way into and out of anything. However, if you are in a car chase with the police, it’s almost impossible to get them off your tail except maybe to engage in a heavy duty gun battle, and that’s what’s odd because I would rather prefer to lose them completely with the use of my hacking tools. In short, while the game is good enough to raise your pulse and give your adrenaline a good workout, it doesn’t quite pull you in like GTA.