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Pure Opinion: Watch Dogs Was A Good Game

Seeing as Watch Dogs 2 is a hot topic right now, Pure PlayStation’s Kyle thinks back on the first game.

I swear I’m not making these just to go against the grain. I really do believe shotguns should be taken out of multiplayer shooters and I didn’t enjoy MGSV as much as its predecessors. Now another fun opinion of mine has cropped up after Watch Dogs 2 had a pretty interesting Gamescom 2016 outing. You can probably tell where I’m going with this but essentially I thought the first Watch Dogs was a good game. In other words it wasn’t bad at all. As usual this is all opinion and in no way fact. I’m sure someone somewhere will still be upset so before you bite my head off at least hear my reasoning.

Yes I am all too aware of the hype Watch Dogs had leading up into release day. The misrepresentation of the game’s graphical capabilities was also prominent. Which I suppose I’ll use to non-weirdly and casually slip into my first point. I thought the graphics for Aiden Pearce’s adventure were fine. I was never one to care about graphics but I would recognize vividly detailed ones for their hard work. However, Ubisoft making consumers think they would be better than they were was still a definite no-no. It is in that way I condemn the visuals. Not because they were bad but because of its creator’s marketing. Either way I had no qualms playing the game that had pretty good graphics to begin with.

Another complaint of the game was the way cars handled. I honestly don’t know if I just adapted to the vehicle controls faster than a mayfly’s lifespan but I had no qualms with the racing or car movements. The steering handled beautifully for me and I was doing awesome drifts and maneuvers before I realized it. Getting away from the cops was quite easy (especially in a boat but that’s not what this is about.) Because of this I really enjoyed the multiplayer racing just as much as Invasion or Team Deathmatch modes. I was skilled enough to do well and have fun when I didn’t. The video below will show you what I meant. This was recorded shortly after Watch Dogs was released. I could be failing horribly but still laughing the entire time. Do excuse the language if something like that offends you.

As I mentioned another multiplayer aspect I loved was Invasion. Basically someone came into your game and tried to hack your data but had to stay in range while you hunted them down or vice versa. One of my favorite things to do occurred when you failed collecting someone’s data and had to hightail it out of there before you were killed. I would normally grab a car and make a bee line to the nearest L train station. These stations were above ground level and had their own roofing. Here is where I would climb up to the tracks and continue on up to the roof. It was shaped in such a way that if you moved to one side when your opponent was trying to find you down below (assuming they didn’t see you make your way up here) they wouldn’t have a visual. Their mini-map would scream you’re nearby but they still couldn’t tell where you were because of the sneaky rooftop sleuthing.

The big detractor from Watch Dogs though was its story. People didn’t like it because our main character, Aiden Pearce, would willingly put other people in danger. From his family to everyday citizens of Chicago. He didn’t care who he used or hurt to get the job done. My response to this was it’s the whole point. Some people deal with loss and grief differently and it hit Aiden really hard after his niece died. This made him a man on a warpath to exact revenge without caring who he put in harms way or what negative things he did. I thought that was all apart of the story. Our protagonist was a selfish asshole because of death and that was a core plot point.

There were a few other things I enjoyed like the sprawling, lively city to explore, mini-games to play, (GIANT DEATH SPIDER TANK!) and things to hack around with. But do you really want me to show you my love for this game? You guys remember the drinking shots mini-game? You went to an assortment of bars where you had to drink with fellow patrons. The only way you could do this successfully was matching patterns on screen with your respective thumbstick movements. Once you reached the final few drinking games they got really hard. Like controller throwing, cursing everything in existence hard. Yet I completed all of them for the trophy (which eventually netted me the Platinum) before the patch Ubisoft released to make the mini-games easier.

I know Watch Dogs wasn’t a perfect game but I enjoyed it much more than people gave it credit for. It was a worthwhile open world title that introduced a neat concept for a new IP. Obviously I can’t wait for the second one considering the multiplayer is reported to be even more dynamic. Plus, with a new set of characters in another great, sprawling city might win some people back. After all the San Francisco Dedsec seems to be more traditionally hero inclined. Let’s just hope something cliche doesn’t happen like the leader of Marcus’ group turns out to be the villain all along.

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