England is in a right pickle lately, isn’t it? It’s not so much that it has shot itself in the foot, but that it took a Brexit-branded Tomahawk missile and used it to remove vast chunks of leggy real estate in a hare-brained scheme from unrepentant liars looking to line their pockets with a career in politics. The United Kingdom now finds itself between the proverbial rock and a hard place, with half the population unwilling to swallow its pride and admit that Brexit was an awful idea that they got tricked into backing.
The future of Britain doesn’t look great, is what I’m saying. And it’s that potential dystopia that Watch Dogs Legion is taking place in. Big Brother is watching you more closely than ever before, information warfare rages across the streets of London and the fight ahead against a ruthless private military corporation that has taken over, is one that cannot be won by a single hero. It’s going to take an army to overthrow Albion, and that’s where you come into play.
“Virtually every character in Watch Dogs: Legion’s version of London is a playable protagonist. As you work your way through London’s open-world streets, you’ll discover that everyone you see has different attributes and skills,” Ubisoft senior content manager Zachary Ryan explained on the PS Blog.
One passerby might have a knack for melee combat; if you recruit them as an Infiltrator, they’ll be great for getting up close and personal with the enemy. Another might be a doctor, granting your team an overall health buff; get them on the team, and you can survive even the toughest encounters. These character traits aren’t decided at random but are intrinsically tied to each character’s background.
It’s this variety of stats and expertise that will drive you to recruit characters from all over London, but it’s not as simple as walking up to them and giving them a membership card. Every character in Watch Dogs Legion has their own personal life and routine.
The hacker you’re pursuing may have a loved one in the hospital, or owe a tremendous debt to a loan shark. As a member of DedSec, you can hack into the hospital’s mainframe and prioritise care for your hacker’s family or take a more aggressive route and meet the hacker’s loan shark in a dark alley and send them a message with your fists.
Either way, you’re having an impact on that character’s life and daily routine, and sooner or later that hacker will come to see DedSec as an ally and join your team. How you choose to get them there is completely up to you.
This new system will allow you to assemble a squad of up to 20 members who’ll join the DedSec cause, but you’ll always be able to pull new recruits out of the general populace when you run short on cannon fodder I mean noble revolutionaries, each one bringing their own field of expertise to the game and allowing you to create your own gang. “Enforcers prefer automatic rifles and sticky bombs. Hackers control their environment from afar, relying on their trusty Spider Bot to access hard-to-reach places,” Ryan explained.
Infiltrators are up-close attackers with the ability to cloak themselves from view for brief periods. You can switch between characters to utilize each of these diverse classes, all while leveling up your operatives and earning additional perks and modifications to help you take down the establishment. But don’t get careless.
DedSec may have become a global entity, but that doesn’t mean you’ve got unlimited resources. The world around you becomes more dangerous as you escalate conflict. Stick to melee attacks, using the completely reworked melee system, and your aggressors will do the same.
The moment you pull out a gun, however, your enemies will not hesitate to return fire. If you get shot down during the mission, you can surrender or keep fighting. Choosing the former will send your character to jail, and you’ll need to play as another DedSec member to bail them out. If you choose to keep fighting, you’d better be a good shot, because a new permadeath system means that if you do down again, that operative is out for good.
So far, the idea looks brilliant in theory. I’m already hoping to run through the game with nothing more than a gang of homicidal grannies who happen to have murky pasts as contract killers. Watch Dogs Legion hops across the pond to merry ol’ England on March 6 in 2020.
Last Updated: June 11, 2019