Screenshot of Watch Dogs 2 Cover Image

What is Watch Dogs 2?

Watch Dogs 2 is an open world that action-adventure videogame that continues the story of Watch Dogs. Both games were published and developed by Ubisoft and can be played on PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows and Xbox One. Right from the start it enjoyed favorable reception among both fans of the original and the critics. Developers paid attention to the feedback received and used it to improve the gameplay of Watch Dogs 2.

Key facts about Watch Dogs 2

  • Watch Dogs 2 has a huge world to explore and fancy graphics that bring San Francisco to life.
  • The concept of the game is similar to the one in the original, with Marcus Holloway as hero.
  • Watch Dogs 2 has an impressive soundtrack, with music that changes from one area to the other.
  • The controls are highly responsive and players find their way around the city with ease.
  • Watch Dogs 2 has plenty of side quests that further enhanced the excitement of the single player.

Gameplay of Watch Dogs 2

Watch Dogs 2 uses the same techniques that made its predecessor popular. Players need to use stealth and see the world from a third person perspective, as they roam San Francisco. The Bay Area is significantly larger than in the original game and can be navigated in vehicles or by foot. To encourage players to use cars, motorbikes and buses, the travel mechanics were greatly improved. It is now possible to shoot while driving, but in most cases a stealthy approach is better than coming out guns blazing.

The Watch Dogs 2 gameplay rewards those who evade enemies and approach them subtly to disarm them. It’s possible to complete the entire game by using hacking alone, without any violence. At the same time, those who prefer the aggressive approach have plenty of guns at their disposal. The upgrades system makes a comeback and all the items belong to three main categories. These go by the name of Ghost, Aggressor and Trickster and all can be upgraded to match a certain place time.

High-tech equipment and competent multiplayer

Marcus can use his tech prowess to hack into various devices via his smart phone and interact with the environment. Assuming control over a car or any other vehicle opens various possibilities. They can be used as intended to get players from one point to the other or send crashing towards targets. Players also have access to high-tech gadgets, such as a remote controlled car and a quad-copter. These can be used to solve the main quests as well as the side once commonly referred to as operations.

The Watch Dogs 2 gameplay shines the brightest in multiplayer, which has a cooperative mode. Players can get followers and jump on one of the two competitive mode called Online Invasion and Bounty Hunter. The former is the most exciting one for those who like to assume the role of lone wolves and play against their peers. Players can enter another game without their peers knowing and try to steal the data without being detected. The invaded player can win by identifying and killing the aggressor.

Screenshot of Watch Dogs 2 Beautiful Lies

Bounty Hunter is a new addition to the videogame and it is triggered automatically when players create too much turmoil in the world. Up to three other players as well as law enforcement officers will initiate the hunt for the bounty. If the players succeed they will collect experience points, but the target can also prevail by evading detection. The hunted also has the option of fighting back and killing the ones chasing him. Other players can join the fray on either side, which leads to exciting multiplayer games.

Plot of Watch Dogs 2

The Watch Dogs 2 story takes place in San Francisco, the second city to install the central operating system commonly referred to as ctOS. Marcus Holloway realizes that the system jeopardizes the freedom of citizens and takes action. He joins the hacking group called DedSec and together with Sitara, Wrench, Horatio and Josh take the fight to the enemy. They expose corporations and organizations that are corrupt and people who try to manipulate world politics and finance.

With the assistance of third parties and honest law enforcement officers, they inflict a lot of harm upon the wrongdoers. The deeper they dig, they realize that the corruption scheme is far more complex than initially thought. Dušan Nemec emerges as the main villain, as Blume's CTO, tries to assume control over the world’s electronic data. With the stakes as high as they get, the team of hackers goes on the offensive and hack the corporation’s servers in San Francisco.

Action heats up in the final chapter, when Marcus breaks into the headquarters. He manages to hack the servers and shed light on their nefarious schemes while revealing all their dirty secrets. As Dušan Nemec is exposed Blume goes under investigation, the hackers pledge their commitment to continue the fight. DedSec goes back in the shadows, but keeps a watchful eye over everything that happens in the Bay Area.

Screenshot of Watch Dogs 2 Fake Evidence

Development of Watch Dogs 2

Watch Dogs 2 was announced in 2016 at the E3 convention by Ubisoft executive Tony Key. The fans were anxiously waiting for the news, given the tremendous success of the original game. To make sure that the sequel was well received, the team worked closely with consultant hackers. They tried to make it as accurate as possible, with consultants telling them more about the right jargon and technical issues. Many references to real hackers are made in the game as a result of comprehensive research.

Ubisoft did its part and brilliantly succeeded at crafting a virtual San Francisco city that features all the important landmarks. Accurate locations are featured in the game for players to discover them as they navigate the Bay Area. Compared to other open world games, this one allows players to explore the entire city right from the start. You don’t even need to get to a high vantage point to see the surroundings.

Where can I download Watch Dogs 2?

Ubisoft has all its games available in the same place, so players only need to visit their website to download Watch Dogs 2. This is where the prequel can also be found and it makes perfect sense to download them as a bundle. Other games produced by the same developer are worth considering, even though they don’t belong to the same genre. Tom Clancy’s the Division, The Crew, Far Cry 3, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege, Far Cry Primal and Assassins Creed Unity would all make great additions.

The publisher occasionally has flash sales, so those who buy games in bundles can benefit from better deals. For a limited period of time in December 2016 some of their games were available for free. Watch Dogs 2 patches and downloadable content is released for free, so this is a one-time investment.

Screenshot of Watch Dogs 2 Golden Gate

What are others saying about Watch Dogs 2?

Watch Dogs 2 reviews were generally favorable and the ratings improved once most of the control issues were fixed. The characters are regarded as more charming than the ones featured in the original game, but more effective at what they’re doing. All the work put into the creation of a San Francisco Bay area that replicates the real thing paid off. Those who have played the original as well as people who began their adventure in the sequel were impressed. The visuals are great, but the game requires powerful PCs.

Players had mixed reactions to the stealth approach, with some claiming that guns should have been removed altogether. The stealth nature of the game was appreciated by most players, but melee and long-range combat failed to impress. Some noticed the inconsistencies in the actions of the protagonist as well as his companions. Developers were happy to see that game reviewers as well as players focused so much on the character’s personality.

My rating of Watch Dogs 2

Watch Dogs 2 isn’t exactly an innovative game, at least if you had the chance to spend some time playing the original. Having said this, I don’t think that Ubisoft intended to change everything in its sequel, given the quality of the first game. Instead they focused on improving the things that didn’t work as planned while paying attention to what players were saying. It’s probably because they took in all the feedback and make the necessary changes that this game is so good.

I know very little about hacking, so all the research and time spent on discussing technicalities with consultants was lost on me. However, I appreciate the fact that they tried to make everything convincing and come up with a realistic game. The San Francisco Bay Area is really amazing and I spent a lot of time just moving around. There’s more than meets the eye about Watch Dogs 2, a game that has a solid single player campaign and gameplay. For all these reasons I strongly believe that it deserves a rate of 9/10.