Can Watch Dogs 2 Restore Consumer Faith In The Franchise and Ubisoft?

Can Watch Dogs 2 Restore Consumer Faith In The Franchise and Ubisoft?

Watch Dogs created such immense hype when it was initial revealed during E3 2012. It looked so fresh, so wonderfully ‘new’. After a good long while of teases, trailers and footage, Watch Dogs was released to a mixed reception.

Downgraded visuals, repetitive gameplay and barely anything you could honestly label as new, Watchdogs was disappointing. Ubisoft are no strangers to using misleading trailers, but Watch Dogs seemed to be the last straw for many. So how does Watchdogs 2 make sure not to follow a simialr path?

It’s already under scrutiny, people are cautiously approaching the game, prodding and poking. Comments on the reveal trailer range from excitement to comedic jibs over downgraded visuals and such. The first Watchdogs was a finical success, securing a sequel before it even was released. But the damage to the brand name and trust could be a interesting factor when it comes to Watch Dogs 2.

Ubisoft’s issues in recent years have been well documented. Assassin’s Creed: Unity’s bugs and glitches , along with constantly downgraded visuals in final products, haven’t went down too well in consumers. Their by the checklist design has also been a issue many have highlighted, not to mention their recycling of assets in the likes of Far Cry: Primal. The original Watch Dogs was, and still is, the perfect accumulation of everything wrong with Ubisoft.

The world may have been large, but it offered very little. Repetitive side content, slipped in to pad out the game’s play hours. Mechanics that had promise but felt underdeveloped and a story so typical ‘gritty’ it quickly became dull. By no means was Watch Dogs a ‘bad’ game, it just wasn’t a very good one.

So how will Watch Dogs 2 rebuild faith with the consumer? Can Ubisoft get passed their modern day image of inconsistency? In fairness, at least Watch Dogs 2 looks like it has a bit of energy about it. Gone is the broody protagonist from the original, along with the ever so grey colour scheme of the world. Things look brighter, there’s much more life compared to the original.

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In typical Ubisoft style, the footage shown so far is not enough to go off. It would be naive and foolish to buy into the game’s marketing spiel, at least not yet. We should know by now that doubling down on what Ubisoft say is a fast track to disappointment.

Watch Dogs 2 could be an improvement on the original in every way. Will Ubisoft’s track record and history make it harder for the consumer to buy into the hype once again? As Ubisoft hit the E3 stage, more will become clear. You can be damned sure people won’t be so easily seduced this time around.

 

 

Sean Halliday


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