Published on June 3rd, 2014 | by IceCube
Summary: Step into the digital age as Aiden Pearce, a modern-day electronic hacker, in this third-person, open-world action game set in Chicago.
Concept: As wild as the action and open-world freedom is, there’s a cool story with great characters and a variety of cyber-age missions to play too, with stunning new-gen cutscenes. Aiden can do the usual GTA-like things in the open-world like fist-fights, shoot-outs and police car chases – but it’s the focus on digital hacking that separates this game from the rest. Aiden can hack into anything electronic using his smartphone, like activating traps, changing lights and emptying cash from ATM’s. It’s an original and an ambitious idea that is well-executed and easy to use.
The pole is mightier than the car.
Graphics: The huge open world is intricately-detailed from urban to rural, and dawn to dusk. It also runs very smoothly for such a large game with so much going on. We really like the character animations and the entire game is a sight to behold. Scanning random civilians displays a brief, personal history of that person, adding some depth to the people you’d normally ignore.
Gameplay: Aside from hacking and running amok in the streets, there’s plenty to do in this game. The core campaign is around 20 hours long, but there’s an additional plethora of side missions like: gang hideout takeover activities and crime interventions to play on top of this. We had no issues with any of the cover-based stealth or combat mechanics – it’s smooth, plays logically, and the enemy AI is quite human-like. Driving around plays smoothly too, though it feels quite “arcade-like”, and lacks the depth of many open-world racers.
Riding around the city was a smashing good time.
Sound: Voice acting is spot-on and the music is very subtle, new-age digital. Most of the tunes sound like subtle-but-tense electronic hums and drums you’d hear in, say, bomb-defusing scenes in films.
Multiplayer: You may turn off the multiplayer option, but with it on, you’ll be drawn into several kinds of multiplayer missions throughout your campaign, like car or bike chases, or track-and-hack, hide-and-seek-style of missions. These are great ways to take advantage of the games’ unique offerings instead of dull ol’ Deathmatches and Flag captures. You can also spend some time evading police using the free iPad app, integrated with the game.
Baton: one, Gun: zero.
Awesomeness: Since its debut reveal two years ago, Watch_Dogs has been the generation-defining game many of us have been highly-anticipating, and it lives up to the hype. Clearly, a lot of painstaking detail has been put into making sure it doesn’t disappoint, and the wait was worth it.
Final Word: With so much to do, excellent graphics, and great story and many unique gameplay offerings, Watch-Dogs is a tough game to fault. It’s an undeniably impressive piece of work, and it raises the bar for future triple-A titles.
Score out of 5 bugs
Summary: 1 = Poor, 2 = Average, 3 = Good, 4 = Great, 5 = Amazing