Watch Dogs Legion - any excitement for this?

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Humanity

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Legion is coming out in a day and it seems like almost no one is talking about it. It feels like excitement has been dwindling with every video since they debuted the "recruit anyone" gameplay back at whatever E3 when those still existed. Personally my history with Watch Dogs in a nutshell is that I really enjoyed the first one and then thought they course corrected way too much on the second while also placing way too much emphasis on the drones to do the work for you. Legion seemed pretty wild when they first showed it but somehow the novelty of recruiting anyone seems to have worn off and from everything I've seen so far it appears to be just another Ubisoft open world game - but somehow less polished.

The few gameplay clips I've checked out make Legion look weirdly rough as if it's not a modern game, and definitely not one coming out for these next gen systems around the corner. Granted the next-gen bump was probably an after thought way late into development but still. I haven't played Watch Dogs 2 in a while but in Legion your characters all appear to move in this weird swimming motion. It's hard to describe but they seem to flail about like they're on the bring of ragdolling. Maybe thats just how it looks and the game plays fine so who knows. Overall it's really hard to describe but it all just feels kind of dated.. I do love me some open world nonsense that I can dick around in for hours and I'll probably be getting this at some point but I can't help but feel like this is a game from the past with a nicer coat of paint. With RTX on there are some nice reflection effects in the puddles and surfaces in the world but the characters still look like dolls and the animations make the NPCs look less life-like than ever.

Anyone here at all interested in this or is Legion kind of destined to come and go without much attention?

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bigsocrates

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I think some people are excited and I also think that this year is very light on big releases so this will probably sell well. Ubisoft is basically dominating the end of 2020, with three big open world games up against...not much outside the Sony first party stuff, which is mostly on a system nobody is able to get.

Assassin's Creed Valhalla is much buzzier, but if people don't like AC and want a more modern setting or more shooter focused gameplay, this is probably going to be their choice.

Personally...I hated Watch_Dogs 1 and I didn't really enjoy the first part of Watch_Dogs 2, though I only played a little of it so maybe it improves later, but I'm waiting for reviews on this because it's a series that so far I just don't enjoy. I like open world games and have even been known to enjoy some Ubisoft joints, though they're not my favorites, but I'm not a huge stealth guy and something about Watch_Dogs just rubs me the absolute wrong way.

I'm really curious to see reviews, which are apparently coming out today (Wednesday) so we should know soon if people think this ultimately came together after all the delays or not.

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mackdack

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#3 mackdack  Online

I may pick it up purely based on the fact that I feel not much is out. Perhaps that’s not a good reason to buy a game, but I want something to mess with until Hyrule Warriors.

The game looks like a silly sandbox etc, which I think I could use right now in my life.

The graphics look a little rough but the gameplay looks unique and interesting. I think a systems heavy game like this will be fun to discuss with friends and also to hear what the duders think.

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Humanity

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#4  Edited By Humanity

I just remembered that you can basically get a free 1 month trial of Uplay which seems like a good way to test this out. Jeff mentioned on the Bombcast that the game wasn't running too hot on his PC and I still "only" have a 1080 in mine with some aging parts - no longer the powerhouse it was a few years ago - so I'm a little worried about how this will run. Nothing can ruin a game more than poor performance.

EDIT: I guess I mixed something up or they aren't offering it anymore but after checking there is no free trial. Still you can get one month of Uplay+ and then cancel which is still cheaper than buying Legion brand new.

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stantongrouse

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As a resident of London I have been looking forward to seeing the city represented in a game - particularly as right now it doesn't feel like it's actually far off being in the state the version of the country depicted by Ubisoft. And Stormzy in a game ain't no bad thing.

However, old PC and lack of an up-to date console means I might just wait for the game to have the inevitable GotY version or a big discount rather than hop in straight away. I've WD2 in my digital 'to-be-played' pile so I might hop on to that once Legion releases to get my fix as it were.

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Bane

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I bounced off the previous Watch Dogs. There's something about this series that turns me off. I don't know what it is. So no, I doubt I'll get Legion.

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CreepingDeath0

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I've never really gotten into Watch Dogs as a series but it is set in my little corner of the world and does come with the 3070 so I guess I'll at least check it out?

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BaneFireLord

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Yeah, nominally. The gimmick seems interesting, I enjoy an Ubisoft-'em-up and I haven't bought a big full-price AAA thing in a hot minute and that's always good for a quick dopamine rush which have been rather hard to come by In These Unprecedent Times. However, it's not exactly bringing down the house with reviews at the moment and as far as Ubisoft-'em-ups go I still have most of the AC Odyssey DLC left to tackle. I'll probably get it eventually but whether it's sooner or later depends on the Quick Look and my impulse control when I'm at the store this weekend.

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deadeyes

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I'm not super excited for it, but I am cautiously optimistic that I'll at least have a bit of fun with it.

The fact I got it for "free" with the 3090 sweetens the deal a little. Don't know if I'd be willing to drop £40(Cheapest I've seen so far) on it however.

I'd like to think since it's a pack-in equivalent with the 3000 series cards that it should at least run pretty well.

We shall see tomorrow I guess!

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TheRealTurk

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I'm kinda cold on it, to be honest. It looks like a cool concept, but I really didn't like either of the first two games in the series. There's also a pretty bad tonal disconnect from what I've seen. The game looks to be very firmly in that wanting to have it both ways "We're not political!" Ubisoft camp. On the one hand, it wants to be a serious game about a surveillance state. On the other, the marketing focuses on grandmas shooting people in the face.

Plus, some of the gameplay stuff they've shown has been really off-putting. Apparently, they've tried to use some kind of AI trick to blend multiple voice samples for NPCs so that none of them sound quite alike. That's a cool idea, but in practice it tends to sound horrible. The previews I've seen had characters moving from sounding south-Asian to Chelsea to Dutch to East London to Groundskeeper Willie in the span of about two sentences.

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bmccann42

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Really uninterested, but I have been feeling a lot of Ubisoft fatigue these days and haven't purchased any of their software since Division 2.

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Humanity

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@stantongrouse: Is Stormzy a big deal in the UK? Last time I knew of a popular musician from over yonder beyond the pond was Dizzee Rascal and like.. Lady Sovereign.

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stantongrouse

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@humanity: Yeah, he's a pretty big artist - especially in London, his hometown. But more recently he's done a lot for getting younger people into voting, donating to BLM causes and sponsoring kids of usually underrepresented backgrounds to get the elite universities that are usually out of their reach even if they have the academic levels to go.

He's famous for being a stand up guy as much as anything else.

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FacelessVixen

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I still have to finish 2...

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mattchops

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I enjoyed the previous titles and quite liked the second one. The reviews seem a little mixed, though, and makes it sound like the gimmick wears off pretty fast. I may pick this up on sale if one happens before Cyberpunk

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Humanity

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@stantongrouse: Thats great to hear. Always rad when someone makes it and then gives back to the community.

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capnhaggis

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This is a day one purchase for me, but I'm a huge mark for open world games and the idea of playing as multiple characters for whatever reason. I'm also happy that they'll be letting you upgrade for PS5 for free

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Gundato

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I'm excited for the latest alt-right dog whistle (or outright propaganda) that a few outlets will acknowledge as "fucked up" for five minutes before never mentioning again.

I'm also excited for the game to be broken and lacking a lot of content but to get a lot of DLC or a patch in a year and get the "Wow, Ubi did it again. They really support their games. Buying a ubisoft game is an investment" treatment

Bonus points if they have a quest that pokes fun at people reporting abuse to those complicit in it.

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Humanity

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@gundato: It sort of sounds like you mean the opposite of all that and you're not excited at all!

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ToughShed

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#21  Edited By ToughShed

Yeah it sounds like the game has all the structural problems and Ubisoft open world repetitive bloat issues that you'd expect (especially with other parts of the structure being pretty radical) and it didn't overcome any of those things. Without doing so, I don't think switching to random characters is any salvation to a boring open world game.

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ToughShed

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#22  Edited By ToughShed

Enjoyed Austin Walker's review of the game. As he highlights, I think these systems being part of a such a samey and boilerplate open world game make it all feel kind of pointless and a step back from the last game in ways that might feel like busywork when the gameplay is almost exactly the same.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/pkdy5y/watch-dogs-legion-review

Unfortunately, the Play As Anyone system is itself a technological Band-Aid placed on the gaping ideological wound that is the AAA Game. Yes, it allows for the crisp metaphor of swapping out a focus tested hero for a big tent collective of like-minded citizens. Limits to the system itself and other design and narrative decisions throughout Legion undercut the game’s goal of revolutionizing open world games.

Partly, that’s because Ubisoft Toronto chose a very high bar to try and leap over. It is a game about fighting not just abstract, hypothetical, sci-fi fascism, but the fascism that is growing in our own streets right now. That means there is a very thin line between abrasive verisimilitude on one side and facile pontification on the other, and depending on your tastes, Legion is likely to fall into at least one of those modes.

......

But the strength of these more traditional gameplay elements still doesn’t add up to anything as grand as the promise to revolutionize the open world action game. While I still generally like Watch Dogs’ combination of sneaking, puzzle solving, and combat, Play As Anyone doesn’t really do anything to make Legion any more than “another one of those.” How could it? It doesn’t matter if you can Play As Anyone when you’re still stuck playing the same damn game.

Even though the verbs of play are distributed among different characters, Legion is still a game about covert traversal, camera hacking, drone-based puzzle platforming, and the occasional overlong gunfight. With the exception of a broadened melee system, none of these gameplay systems feel dramatically different than Watch Dogs 2. I played through Legion the same way I played through both previous Watch Dogs games, except back then, I didn’t need to button through a slow and unresponsive menu system to select my stealthiest character before executing on the plan.

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cikame

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Sure, i liked the first two games and i'll probably like this.
I prefer to have one cool character over a bunch of random dudes and i imagine i'll probably just find the one i like and stick with it, unless they find a good reason to swap around a lot, so the selling point of this game is lost on me but i'll still play it.
However my backlog doesn't care so i'll probably get around to it in a couple years time.

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Wlleiotl

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#24  Edited By Wlleiotl

looking forward to it. i'm not expecting a massive intricate story, i'm expecting a loose basis so that the characters are the story, like an xcom.

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OurSin_360

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Looks cool

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TheHT

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Loved the first one, really really enjoyed the second one, but this one looks a little too over-the-top for me.

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inevpatoria

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Loved Watch Dogs 2. Without really following most of the coverage, I'm willing to take the plunge on Legion on that basis alone.

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zoofame

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Not even a little. I'm beyond done with the AAA marketing playbook where they pretend to tackle a dark real world issue in the pre-release hype phase, and then turn it into yet another tone deaf shooter that ends up trivializing everything in a South Parkian "durr hurr both sides are dumb" *wet fart noise* **Cartman does a bigotry for cheap laughs**

The idea of whitewashing the overtly fascist reality of policing with some cardboard cutout PMC is atrocious, especially in the wake of their ongoing violence this year against peaceful protestors, members of the press, and innocent bystanders. Let alone the fact that it's the police who are supporting roving terrorist gangs of white supremacists to murder Americans with impunity. And abusing their stranglehold over district attorneys to subvert justice to their own ends.

If that wasn't the background already, Ubisoft is on my permanent shit list for their decades long campaign of abuse within every echelon of their organization, which they continue to bury in tacked-on chickenshit production notes before they press play on the next game ad.

And if that wasn't enough, Watch Dogs is a terrible series of disappointments. The first one also had enormous hype around a technical gimmick that turned out to be smoke and mirrors. The protagonist was a shitty unsympathetic wannabe batman with guns. Watch Dogs 2 fixed the character element and set you in a much more interesting environment with their stylized rendition of San Francisco. But the core of the game was still the same boring GTA-clone with weak hacking that consists of pointing cameras at each other and pressing the "hack" button.

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Humanity

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If you're looking for a stand-in Quick Look, then this up-n-coming YouTuber Dan Ryckert has posted a first impressions video.

Loading Video...

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ll_Exile_ll

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I have it because it came with my 3080, but I'm not sure I'm going to play it any time soon. I was massively disappointed with the first game and pleasantly surprised by the second, but I'm not too hyped for this one. Between Demon's Souls, Miles Morales, Destiny 2 Beyond Light, and Cyberpunk I'm going to have plenty to play for the rest of the year.

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ll_Exile_ll

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@gundato said:

I'm excited for the latest alt-right dog whistle (or outright propaganda) that a few outlets will acknowledge as "fucked up" for five minutes before never mentioning again.

To be fair, the patented Ubisoft "this isn't political at all expect it totally is" politics of the previous game most certainly was not alt right in any capacity. It touched on police abuse of power, the lack of minorities working in the tech industry, and of course the overarching theme of giant mega corporations violating privacy and manipulating democracy.

Of all the politics in Ubisoft games that they pretend doesn't exist, I felt Watch Dogs 2 touched on real issues in a pretty decent way.

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Solh0und

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#32  Edited By Solh0und

I'm somewhat here and there in terms of excitement. I got it for $20 on Amazon( $40 price error plus a $20 Amazon Gift card collecting dust) so I figure why not. The multiple characters thing plus the permadeath option sounds really promising. Hopefully the story will shake out towards the end.

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brian_

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I've never been the "open world, screw around with this sandbox" gamer. So it takes a lot to get me interested in one. Playing as multiple characters in one of those games isn't going to do it for me either. Nine times out of ten, I'm just going to stealth as many people as possible, then shoot everyone I don't get anyways. That's just how I play these games. I just don't find the mechanics of open world games fun enough to engage with the systems any deeper than that.

Also, fuck Ubisoft.

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theonewhoplays

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I haven't played a Ubisoft open-world game since AC3, and I'm not about to start now. Give me Child of Light 2 and I might be interested.

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Ulfhedinn

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It seems quite repetitive in gameplay, I do see it's appeal but it's not for me.

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Strathy

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None whatsoever guv'ner.

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noobsauce

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Haven't cared about a Ubisoft game for at least a decade. Think that'll continue

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Gundato

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@ll_exile_ll: Far Cry 5 was about religious preppers in Montana (?) with a cult who were proven right because they knew bad forces were going to start a nuclear war. Far Cry 3-4 (and sort of 2 but that was more just Heart of Darkness coupled with how the diamond trade destabilizes Africa) were about showing "savages" tear themselves apart.

A lot of the Tom Clancy games (which, to be fair, is pretty on brand...) are about operatives deep within a state trying to destroy America but heroic Americans fighting to prevent it. Sometimes by going up against America in the process. Like, as much as I still love SC Conviction and think the blackout scene with EMTs desperately trying to do anything is one of the better moments in gaming, it is Sam Fisher fighting against people who have co-opted everything to push their agenda. Same with Jon Berenthal originally being a ghost but now destroying ghosts with his shadow organization or whatever the hell was going on with the Ghosts franchise after they got tired of "savages gonna be savages"

Oh, and that mobile game pretty blatantly associated imagery associated with protest and civil rights with said deep state conspiracies.

And all of that is what I remember off the top of my head.

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VikingRk

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No for a few reasons.

There are the ones everyone had been saying: Openworld games in general, and Ubisoft's take in particular, have been tired for at least one entire console generation. I think these kinds of games are boring.

More importantly, even if Watch Dogs Legion was legitimately the best game ever made, I'm at a point now where no game is worth supporting bad people/companies. I'm honestly not sure what it would take for me to ever feel ok buying or playing a Ubisoft game ever again.

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wardcleaver

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I will probably get it for XSX or PS5, when those version are out. I am not hearing good things about how it runs on PS4, Xone, or even some PCs.

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aktivity

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Not even a little. The first game was disappointing and I rage quit the second game during the mission you had to steal a car and evade police. I'm really looking forward to Valhalla though.

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TheRealTurk

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@vikingrk said:

No for a few reasons.

There are the ones everyone had been saying: Openworld games in general, and Ubisoft's take in particular, have been tired for at least one entire console generation. I think these kinds of games are boring.

More importantly, even if Watch Dogs Legion was legitimately the best game ever made, I'm at a point now where no game is worth supporting bad people/companies. I'm honestly not sure what it would take for me to ever feel ok buying or playing a Ubisoft game ever again.

I don't entirely agree. I will agree that Ubisoft games are very, very same-y, but I do think that despite that they actually have a lot of interesting ideas going on in them. However, they are never comfortable straying far enough away from their "climb towers, do checklist" gameplay to really do them well.

For example, I think the Cult of Kosmos web in AC: Odyssey was a nifty idea. Unfortunately, it was about four times bigger than it should have been and just ended up being a grind, but the underlying concept was sound.

Same with Breakpoint's story web system. It would have been a really cool way to tell a story to just have a bunch of mysteries or puzzles a player needs to solve to figure out what's going on. Unfortunately, Ubisoft immediately undermined it by telling you exactly where to go and who to talk to to fill in the blanks, so it turned into just another checklist.

I get the feeling that it'll kind of be the same story in Watch Dogs. The idea of "recruit anyone" is really cool in theory, but I just don't have faith that it will be implemented in anything but the most generic of ways.

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Nodima

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Austin Walker's review is really good and did a good job convincing me this will be just another Watch Dogs game with a gimmick it doesn't dive deep enough into. For me, the extreme superhero nature of these "hackers" - not to mention the amount of Grand Theft Auto-level hijinx they get up to - has always felt too unfocused for me to totally buy into the game world. It's design aesthetic has also always felt a little contrived to me, with its beautifully rendered real worlds populated by characters that dress like they're straight out of Steelport (at one point in a Dan Ryckert stream, his character is wearing a Roman Gladiator helmet with a chainmail mask, a half-buttoned white button up with a half-tied tie underneath a leather jacket with spiked shoulder pads, the left arm unrolled and the right arm both the short and jacket rolled up to his elbow...why???) and once I notice things like that, inevitably I'm just overwhelmed by how superfluous so much of the Watch Dogs experience is.

It never feels like a game with any intentions behind it, it just wants to be a video game, and I suppose I can understand why that appeals to people but these sorts of games suck me in and feel to me at their best when the worlds feel meticulous and intentional rather than an excuse for you to clear checklists. It's a fine line but you just get a different feeling from a Rockstar open world or even something like Spider-Man compared to Mafia III or Watch_Dogs 2, where the stakes of your actions in the open world are inarguably higher than they are in those other games, but because of those heightened stakes their outcomes are inevitably disappointing and obscured by Mafia or Watch_Dogs' desire to still give you the GTA stuff on the side.

There's a whole lot of meat to Austin's review and I really recommend it, especially since he's far more of a fan than I am, but he summarizes his thoughts pretty neatly right at the end in a way that's useful for someone like me that never hoped this game would be politically radical in the way he always will with this franchise: "The people who made it could never get the resources they needed to be pursue this ambitious experiment without also making it a blockbuster, 30+ hour long game. It could never wear its politics on its very fashionable sleeves, without also being tailored for style over substance."

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ll_Exile_ll

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@gundato: Ok? I wasn't talking about any of those games, nor was I denying that many Ubisoft games have some questionable ideological themes.

I was specifically talking about Watch Dogs 2, which tackles a lot of real world issues from a decidedly progressive perspective. Whether or not that carries over into Legion is another issue, I'm not going to be playing it any time soon so it's not as if I'm defending it in any way.

My point was simply that the previous game in the series portrayed a clearly progressive ideology, so dismissing Legion as alt right propaganda is kind of silly, even if other Ubisoft games have troubling themes.

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mellotronrules

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@nodima said:

It never feels like a game with any intentions behind it, it just wants to be a video game

yeah, that's a pretty succinct way of putting it. and when that approach of crazy hijinks is juxtaposed with ripped-from-the-headlines or near-future-dystopian storytelling- personally i get a lot of cognitive dissonance that makes me deeply skeptical.

i think i could tolerate something like Saints Row because that's a game that's never intended to be taken seriously- it's a sandbox for mayhem with zero gravitas. by comparison Watch Dogs seems to be at least trying to be taken half-seriously- which i'm just not sure it earns the benefit of my doubt.

but honestly the appeal of intricate systemic open worlds is starting to fade for me. i'm just more drawn towards games that have a specific story to tell with specific characters and mechanics that support that development. the concept of games as a 'possibility engine' where every player 'has their own story to tell' in that 'complete these tasks from the this map' isn't so appealing to me anymore.

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Undeadpool

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Not especially for a few reasons.

1) Already played/playing Assassin's Creed: Odyssey and the idea of jumping into another Ubi open-world game right after that isn't really appealing.

2) Their mealy-mouthed "WE'RE NOT POLITICAL" horseshit puts me off. Especially in a game like this: if you're not going to take a stand, why should I give a shit? Couple that with their "you can be anyone" style and it sounds like a recipe for Destiny's misguided "You make your ooooooooowwwwwwwwwwn story!" campaign.

3) But not as much as their laundry list of abuses toward staff that's even blush-worthy for this industry (and they REALLY DO get a pass on, apart from folks like Jim Sterling).

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Humanity

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@mellotronrules: the problem is that most open worlds are neither systemic nor intricate. Legion from all gameplay I’ve seen seems to be an open world ripped straight from 2014 at best. There is no visible push and pull from the environment - you’re checking off boxes on an extremely static world to enact a similarly pre-scripted state change. In 2020 you’d think some of this would at least partially feel organic in some way. I’m not even talking about pie in the sky ideas like the Waypoint review, which while kudos to Austin for superb writing, has some extremely lofty expectations of what you should be capable of doing in a video game. While the idea of consoling the family of a slain NPC is admirable it is completely unrealistic. Still I can completely relate to the exasperation at the currently stagnant state of open world games.

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nateandrews

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I'm enjoying it. It's maybe the most political game I've ever played, which is amusing coming from a publisher that tries to swear up and down that its games aren't political. Every five seconds someone is saying something that is very outwardly political and probably controversial to someone. It's a lot.

A somewhat early story mission has you meeting an Albion informant and I recruited him right away. It's been kinda game breaking being able to just walk into every Albion location (which seems to be most of them) and complete my missions with little difficulty. Pretty cool though!

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Shindig

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One thing I take from Brad's earlier footage is that they still can't get traffic right. London looks barren. What's the point of a congestion charge if it's got lockdown levels of traffic?

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