Tag Archives: the division 2

The Division 2’s Opening Is As Subtle As A Sledgehammer

The Division 2, an apolitical game about amassing purple quality backpacks, is currently playable for Gold And Ultimate Edition users. I’m having fun surviving battles alongside friends and finding secrets down side alleys, but I have some questions about the game’s opening cutscene.

In it, America has been ravaged to the point of near-apocalypse by a viral terror attack. We see a shot of a latte with Christmas lights glittering in the background slowly panning out to a “Free Wifi” sign on the cafe window—when internet and power were lost, people survived. (There’s a strange dig about free coffee here, but whatever; the message is mostly aspirational.) Then, a breaking point: Hospital services shut down, resources were limited, and basic health problems became life-threatening. But people came together—our narrator points to the power of human resilience. We see sweeping swaths of green: flowers blooming in the midst of a ruined city, verdant fields as far as the eye can see. They helped each other, built communities, persevered. “What we want,” the narrator explains, “is also truly what we need.”

We see a point of no return, and we see people coming together. What does the scene tell us was the crux of that transition? The narrator offers the answer via a question mid-scene:

“With no police to protect you, did you own a gun? Did your neighbor?”

Sir, this is a Wendy’s.

Of course, it’s not shocking that The Division 2 has such a pointed, if unsubtle, focus on guns. This is a loot shooter. You gotta shoot to loot to get more shooty things to help you do more looting. You can customize your guns, and there’s perks to expand your arsenal, missions to gain different types of modifications, and even cosmetic skins that you can slap on to higher-rarity weapons. Last night, I bought some of the in-game currency to test out the microtransactions. By the end of the night, I had found a blue-quality marksman rifle and added a 4x ACOG scope and a decent muzzle modification. It’s powerful and has a satisfying kick when you fire. For the microtransaction, I bought a trippy weapon skin—a sort of tie-dye pink and purple puke design—and added it to my weapon.

I’m enjoying exploring its dilapidated Washington, DC, and surviving tough missions with my friends, but I’m uneasy. It’s just hard to focus on that when I’m looking down the barrel of a cutscene so heavy-handed it looks like a Heckler & Koch infomercial. And yet, when night falls and I wander the quiet streets, the world sucks me in. When I expand my base and add a small game room for kids to play in, I see flashes of a game focused on community that I want to play. These human moments are what I think of when I consider community building. The game’s opening is a stark reminder that this is a Tom Clancy game, with all the problems that come with that name.

Fortunately, this is, again, not a political game, according to the developers. In 2018, Kotaku Editor-in-Chief Stephen Totilo interviewed creative director Terry Spier about The Division 2’s arrival into a charged political climate. Spier stated: “ So, the goal isn’t to make a political statement. It’s not to reflect on any of the things that are happening in the current world, in the live world.”

Cool.

This is part and parcel for the military genre and post-apocalyptic storytelling. It’s also just part of The Division. Yesterday, I streamed The Division 2 with my coworker Paul Tamayo and we hit up a Control Point. These locations, dotted throughout The Division 2’s districts, are sometimes occupied by enemy factions. If you clear them out, you gain access to a supply room with multiple chests and boxes to loot. This usually results in tons of gear and a few new guns. When I was playing with Paul, I was pretty damn excited to find some new guns. When people in chat asked what my loadout was, I was more than ready to explain that I had a decent rifle and a good shotgun. In spite of all those conflicted feelings above, The Division 2 is fun to explore and play. Finding new loot is exciting, and I’ve enjoyed the easy curve upwards as I’ve been showered in loot. I want to explore this game. I want to build more than just a play room at my various outposts. I want to rebuild communities.

I’m going to play The Division 2 more tonight. I’m almost level 10 and there’s tons of missions left. I still need to try structured PvP and explore the Dark Zones, where players can gather loot and kill each other freely. I’ll probably snipe some unsuspecting player and take his guns. I have a lot of guns in The Division 2 already. I’m excited to see what I’ll get tonight.

Anyway, do you own a gun? Shout out in the comments if you go to the range. I used to.

Source: Kotaku.com

The Division 2 Rewards Players If They Dance Together Or Do Other Nice Things

Ubisoft’s newest mega-game, The Division 2, gives players points and virtual patches for 125 tracked activities, some of them expected, some of them not, and some of them seemingly designed to encourage positive behaviors in multiplayer. That’s always a nice thing.

The activities are listed in the game’s Commendations menu and give players many feats to try to pull off. There are your standard tasks, like getting four different types of enemy kills for five Commendation points, or killing an elite enemy by destroying all its armor in a minute for 50 points. Commendations are grouped into categories, including Combat for feats involving fighting enemies and Discovery for feats that encourage or reward less violent, exploratory play.

Most compelling are the 25 Commendations collected under the Teamwork tabt. Most are obscured for people just starting the game, but the eight available show that The Division 2’s designers are trying to nudge people into being helpful and playful in multiplayer.

A Teamwork Commendation titled “Lifesaving Distinction” rewards players who “respond to a group’s call for backup in a main mission,” “revive an agent in the group and complete an objective with the group, without using any healing skills or med packs.” That gets players 50 points.

The “Peacock Award” requires players to dance in one of the game’s public areas and have another player do the same.

The “Synchronization Award” goes to a group of four players who manage to perform the same emote at the same time.

As with its predecessor, much of The Division 2 can be played solo, though all its missions and its open world can be tackled by groups of four. The sequel allows players to regularly ping the player base at large to provide backup, and some of the Commendations are meant to reward people answering those calls and being helpful. In the Division games’ treacherous Dark Zone regions, players can fight enemies but also betray each other. Even there, the Commendations might provide a boost for people trying to play in a helpful way. A multitiered Teamwork Commendation called “Dark Zone Medic Merit” rewards people for healing other players in the Dark Zone who are not in their group, incentivizing players to help strangers.

Some of the Commendations in The Division 2 seem designed to accommodate differing play styles. Others seem to cater to publisher Ubisoft’s desires for its customers to not stop playing its games. A cluster of Commendations labeled as “Service” offers players points for playing the game a lot. One challenges players to play for at least an hour on 100 different days and give 20 resources to in-game allied forces at control point locations each time. Another rewards players if they play the game 14 days per month for 12 months, another for playing for at least an hour 30 days in a row. A Commendation called “28 Days Distinction” is awarded to players who play for 672 hours.

The Division is a Tom Clancy-branded game, so of course there’s some of that macho military game weirdness in the form of Important Quotes from Important People. The Commendation for destroying every piece of an elite enemy’s armor is listed next to a quote from Sun Tzu: “He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.” A Commendation for rescuing civilians and taking pictures of enemies is listed with a T.S. Eliot quote: “We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” That 672-hour Commendation gets a quote from, you guessed it (you did not), Nelson Mandela: “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” Yeah, OK, Tom Clancy video game.

Weird packaging aside, the Commendations seem to largely serve a net good. They recognize the range of ways people might like to play the game. They also dole out wearable patches and at least one unlockable emote for gaining points and hitting new point thresholds. The ones about playing the game a ton might lead to some unhealthy habits, but the ones encouraging players to be positive forces in each other’s games may well do some good in fostering a better online experience. Now if only the people in these safe houses will start dancing when our guys do. 

Source: Kotaku.com

Twitter Account Asks The All-Important Video Game Question: Can You Pet The Dog?

Image: Fallout 4

Whether out on the sidewalk, at a party in somebody’s house, or fleeing from a pack of wild dogs, what’s your first instinct—as a rational, sound-minded human being—upon meeting a dog? That’s right: you want to pet it. Video games are meant to let us fulfill our wildest fantasies, and yet, many of them won’t grant us that simple wish. One hero has taken to chronicling every game that lets you pet dogs—and those that don’t.

The “Can You Pet The Dog?” Twitter account describes itself as “a catalog of pettable and non-pettable dogs in video games.” Each entry gets straight to the point, saying whether or not you can pet a dog in a particular game and providing visual evidence. Despite its relative simplicity, it’s resonated with people. After being created earlier this month, the account already has nearly 60,000 followers. This outburst of interest is understandable, because while some video games now have hyper-detailed animations for things like shaving and pushing aside tree branches, some can’t be bothered to let us pet our scruffy canine friends! If, in real life, it came down to a choice between being able to pet dogs and being able to shave and avoid trees, I’d let my beard grow until my face was a forest whose trees I couldn’t stop running into—no question. Clearly, many people, like me, feel that video games need to get their priorities in order.

A very sad dog in The Division 2
Image: VonRaf

The creator of “Can You Pet The Dog?”—who prefers to remain anonymous—is one such person. For them, the breaking point was a recent game: The Division 2.

“I started this account after playing The Division 2 beta and Far Cry: New Dawn in quick succession,” they told Kotaku in a Twitter DM. “The latter has a satisfying dog-petting feature, whereas the former does not. The Division 2 is made worse in this respect because from what I can tell, you can only interact with the dogs in the game by means of violence… Even for a game set in the post-apocalyptic wasteland, that is a needlessly bleak and cruel way to design a neutral creature for your world.”

Last year, I wrote about the subject of petting animals in games and said that the ability to do so doesn’t just make a game world more realistic; it adds an extra dimension to both the character doing the petting and the pet. It creates a physical bond of support and trust between them, something that’s rare in a medium where most direct, player-triggered interactions between characters involve violence. And yet, the creator of “Can You Pet The Dog?” has noticed an unfortunate trend toward violence against dogs even in some of their favorite games. They cited Spelunky as an example.

“You can pick up, whip, throw, and even sacrifice the dog to a dark god, but you cannot pet this dog,” they said. “I forgive this game only because you can also rescue the dogs and get dog kisses upon exiting the level.”

Whether or not you can pet dogs might seem like a simple binary, but there are more shades of gray in this shiny, alluringly pettable coat than you’d think. In the case of Fallout 4, for example, some people reacted to a “Can You Pet The Dog” tweet by pointing out that your character does, in fact, pet the dog in a scripted scene shortly after you meet him. Additionally, mods exist that let you pet the dog whenever you want. By the Twitter account’s criteria, however, Fallout 4 didn’t pass the test. When I asked about this, the account’s creator walked me through the finer points of the complex mental task that is discerning whether or not you can indeed pet the dog.

“Each word within the phrase ‘Can you pet the dog?’ can be interpreted in numerous ways,” they said. “Does it count as ‘you’ if a dog is pet during a cutscene? Does a ‘dog’ count as a dog when it is a four-legged alien from a distant planet? I have come to accept there is not an objective ruleset for the account, but rather a loose guideline. Defining a pettable dog is a bit like defining obscenity in that way; I will know it when I see it.”

Surprisingly, the creator of “Can You Pet The Dog?” does not have a dog of their own. They grew up in a household with dogs and are interested in adopting some, but said it’s “not a good time in my life to do so.”

“My current real-life dog situation might be a contributing factor as to my strong feelings about virtual dogs,” they said.

When asked about their favorite pettable video game dog, they gave the only possible correct answer, irrevocably proving they’re the right person to be running this account.

“I have ruminated on this question for a long time,” they said. “I have come to the conclusion that the best pettable dog is all of them. They are all good dogs.”

Source: Kotaku.com

Apex Legends Finisher Stopped At Last Second

Today on Highlight Reel we have upside-down VR, great Apex Legends clips, Division 2 dogs and much more!

Watch the video then talk about your favorite highlight in the comments below. Be sure to check out, like, and share the original videos via the links below. Subscribe to Kotaku on YouTube for more! Catch up on all the episodes on the Highlight Reel Youtube playlist!


Highlight Reel is Kotaku’s regular roundup of great plays, stunts, records and other great moments from around the gaming world. If you record an amazing feat while playing a game (here’s how to record a clip), send it to us with a message confirming that the clip is yours at [email protected] Or, if you see a great clip around that isn’t yours, encourage that person to send it in!

Source: Kotaku.com

10 Hours With The Division 2’s Gargantuan Beta

I spent 10 hours playing The Division 2’s beta this week and didn’t see half of it. The March 15 shooter about combat in a ransacked Washington D.C. is going to be another super-sized Ubisoft game, and even its beta was bursting with interesting things to do, amid some spots that got me worried.

The good news is that The Division’s core mechanics as a cover-based shooter still feel satisfying, and the world they’re set in is once again terrific to look at. At the most basic level, The Division is about running through a city, pressing your character’s body up against cover and shooting at enemies.

Zoom out a little more and the idea of what you’re playing is the adventures of a member of a Tom Clancy-branded sleeper cell of pro-government fighters who are activated after a terrorist attack to restore order, mostly with bullets. The first Division was set just after a biological chemical weapons attack in New York City on Black Friday. In this sequel, players are in D.C. the following summer, using the White House as a base of operations while helping civilians rebuild and resist a variety of paramilitary gangs that go by such lovely group names as Hyenas and True Sons. [Correction – 12:49pm: I had mistakenly described the attack setting up the first Division as a chemical weapons attack, but it was a biological weapons attack involving poisoned money. Apologies for the error.]

Zoom out even more and, in the abstract, The Division games are another version of Diablo or Destiny. They are games full of loot and ever-increasing character stats that give players so many types of missions and activities, all of which involving getting more loot and trying to improve even more numbers. Such games threaten to be as consuming as a full-time job, without the benefit of a paycheck. Fun as much of the beta was, its biggest downsides were the aspects where it felt most at risk of feeling like work, mostly by occasionally feeling monotonous.

The beta gave players access to two large zones of virtual D.C. out of what appears to be a dozen on the full map, along with the White House HQ and one of three contaminated Dark Zone areas. All of that terrain was stuffed with things to do: main missions, side missions, semi-random world events, safe houses to be unlocked, a civilian-filled settlement to upgrade, checklist “projects” to complete, enemy control points to take over with the help of allied militia, audio logs to listen to, and more.

In my 10 hours I didn’t touch the game’s player-versus-player Conflict mode. I only did the introductory mission for the Dark Zone, that returning concept from the first game that mixes player-versus-environment and PvP in a high-stakes setting where you’re finding contaminated loot and calling in a helicopter to extract it, or attacking other players to take theirs. With its own leveling system and stacks of unlockable perks, Dark Zone seems to be a game unto itself, one I just didn’t have time for yet.

Entering The Division 2’s Dark Zone East

I spent my time in the game’s open world and in its missions, detouring on Sunday to then try the beta’s slice of The Division 2’s endgame, which is set after a new enemy faction, Black Tusk, shows up and “invades” the game map and some (all?) of the game’s story missions.

The open world is as lovely as virtual devastation can be. The first game’s snow-filled disaster of late-November, early-December New York City has been left behind for the overgrown swamp of post-disaster D.C. in the summer. Plants are thriving, even if people aren’t, and deer regularly run down the street.

It’s startling for a returning Division player like me to see so much green on the ground and blue in the sky, though the game obliges any nostalgia for the dreary with the occasional downpour and flash of lightning.

There’s much to see, and it’s tough to sustain the reflex to just stop and admire all of the stuff Ubisoft has drawn into the world. No one, just no one in video games renders a pile of trash bags like the people making The Division 2.

Despite the addition of a photo mode, The Division 2 is not primarily being sold to be gawked at. It’s a mega-game from a mega-publisher designed to give you a mega amount of things to do.

Those main missions and side missions I tried were okay. I generally crept into a building (a hotel, a mall, et cetera), ambushed some patrolling enemies, used my guns and my special drones and turrets and rolling seeker mines to fight them, plunged forward to some central objective involving another gunfight, and then would be directed to fight my way back through the way I came, fighting enemy reinforcements along the way. Moment-to-moment combat mostly felt good, but the mission design was basic and reminded me of my disappointment about how forgettable the missions in the first game were.

More promising were some of the activities out in D.C.’s open world, which feel designed to give a sense of an evolving city that offers visual and gameplay changes as you build it up. I’m a sucker for upgradeable bases in video games, so I was delighted to enter the first of the sequel’s Settlements, a new location idea for the franchise involving civilian-run zones that can be improved over time. The beta’s settlement is called The Theater and started as a bare-bones set of decks where people were struggling to get by. Soon enough I was able to get one of the people there to head back to the White House to set up a crafting station and also unlocked a slew of side missions. Various messages popped up as I played suggested that more upgrades to my settlement would unlock even more side missions and that other settlements would contain other people who would move to the White House to expand that base’s functionality.

Soon enough I was adding new facilities to the Theater, some of which were just cosmetic but gave the feeling of a community rebuilding.

After I finished a side mission involving civilians trapped in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library, my rewards weren’t just some experience points but the creation of a game room back at the Theater settlement.

Without me, the kids at the Theater wouldn’t have a TV on which they could play For Honor and wouldn’t have access to a board game version of Ubisoft’s little robot adventure Grow Home.

The discovery of Settlements and Safe Houses also seem to be the triggers for another new concept in the sequel called Projects. These are glorified Destiny bounties—or really any other kind of gaming checklist task that offers a light amount of narrative justification for a to-do list that doles out experience points and a new item.

I did some Projects and got some upgrades for it. I couldn’t unlock more Projects, because I couldn’t upgrade my Settlement all the way and couldn’t reach parts of the map where there are others,

The beta kept the community upgrade loop short, though the first time around was plenty satisfying. In the full game, the Theater can be upgraded four levels, and the White House will eventually be staffed with six special recruits as it, too, is upgraded. If the rounds of upgrading keep offering interesting side tasks and a compelling sense of societal recovery, great. If they feel like just more rivers of effort for frivolous outcomes, not so great. It’s hard to say, because Ubisoft games are renowned for being based on gameplay loops that feel satisfying the first time but aren’t always wonderful when the player is asked to do them a hundred times more. The conceit of these loops is good, though, and hopefully will prove to be a good showpiece for the development team’s artists.

Some old ideas from the first game appear to be returning in new guises. The first Division had named enemies called High Value Targets roaming the world that were only discoverable after players did some tasks to get them to emerge. In the beta, completing one Project triggered the identification of a named enemy who was designated as a Bounty. Like a High Value Target, they were only trackable for a set period of time before players who failed to defeat them would have to wait for a new chance.

The first game also was busy with gear, including clothes to wear, stat-based tactical armor pieces to wear over that, and a slew of weapons to collect and mod. That’s all back, along with gadget-based skills that themselves have an eye-popping array of options for mods and upgrades. You don’t just get a drone that can hover near you, for example. You can earn the ability to use that drone to send small bombs or to snipe designated targets. That drone can also have its battery, hull, and more modded. Your loot can have loot, your skills can have skill trees. It all goes on and on. It’s a lot, and it helps make the prospects for this game teeter in mind between being fun and being an onerous spreadsheet. Which will it be?

The original Division handled allies and enemies poorly. Allies were either stumbling civilians desperate for a bottle of water or allied soldiers barely more helpful in a fight than a strong breeze. Enemies seemed pathetically desperate, too, save for the fact that they were bullet sponges who tended to take too long to kill.

Allies in The Division 2’s beta are green-marked civilians who run supplies down the streets and who will answer a shot in the sky from your flare gun with actually useful assistance. You can call them in when you try to clear enemies out of the new Control Point zones set up in the open world. I had a good time getting these allied pals to help me take over an intersection where massive construction cranes had fallen and also get control of a construction site. The loop for this is odd and could be annoying, as the allies who then run the control points need water and other supplies for the apparent perk of revealing more loot in the game world for a short period of time. It’s hard to tell from the beta if it’ll be worth it.

Enemies simply seem smarter and take fewer shots to kill, both of which make the combat in the beta immediately more fun than what launched in the first game. Even basic enemies that I fought in the beta moved around a combat area, preventing me from camping behind any one spot of cover for too long. Tougher enemies sent drones at me, hurled grenades, and aggressively flanked. If anything, the enemies might be too aggressive as higher-end enemies constantly spam drone and grenade attacks. The developers can tweak that and hopefully will.

The Division 2’s most interesting gambit is a supposed transformation of the game and its missions once the basic storyline campaign is completed. At that point, a new enemy faction called Black Tusk invades. Players who finish the campaign also choose what amounts to a character class, or in the parlance of this sequel, a specialization. All involve the addition of a signature weapon, a special grenade, and some new abilities. A Sharpshooter specialist wields a huge sniper rifle, a demolitionist a grenade launcher. I tried the beta’s endgame mission as a survivalist, which meant that my character was able to carry a crossbow that fires explosive bolts and could use a drone that could heal allies. I wish I could say I put those skills to good use, but I found myself just struggling to fend off Black Tusk with conventional means and wasn’t ready to learn these new skills. Combat against Black Tusk was tough. These guys have healers and jammers and robot dogs.

Compare a battle against regular enemies in a hallway of one of the beta’s missions with the invaded version.

Regular:

Invaded:

The invaded mission was far more difficult than the basic version of the mission. I got trounced a dozen times when trying to solo it, but when I matchmade with three strangers, we chopped our way through it. It reminded me what made the first game’s unexciting main missions much more interesting: the presence of other players in co-op. Real people enhanced the experience in the beta, too. Guess I probably should have enhanced their experience by actually using my healer drone. Next time!

I partially played the first Division for its peripheral story. It’s main story was generic Clancy-branded drama of doomsday weapons, elite soldiers, and the best use of ballistics. In the game’s ample nooks and crannies were audio logs telling multi-part dramatic personal stories of regular New Yorkers before and after the attack. The snowy streets also were a canvas for environmental storytelling written by tire tracks in the snow. Some of those good touches are evident in the Division 2 beta, which includes a smattering of intriguing audio logs that could be set-ups for more serial audio narratives. And even without the snow, the overgrown streets and city blocks of D.C. still wordlessly tell some stories.

A game with this many parts needs two fundamental things: enough interesting stuff to do in it and enough people playing it. It’s hard to tell if Division 2’s loops will keep feeling fresh as they’re repeated, not without being able to play more deeply into the game, without seeing if the second settlement upgrade is as interesting as the first or if the next entire settlement is distinct enough from the first one, and without being able to climb the skill trees. Combat does feel better, but it isn’t without its own risks of monotony. The presence of other players will be a boon, should enough of them show up. Ubisoft is offering so many modes at launch—PvP, Dark Zone, open world and, soon after launch, eight-player raids—that a new standard question must be asked for this latest of Ubisoft games: will it be too big? Will we all have time for this latest mega-game?

The Division 2 launches in a month.

Bonus Details:

Let us ponder a game that spends four paragraphs telling us what Titanium is good for,

Spends a little less space explaining what a magazine is,

And lets you radically customize the head-up display (move and resize the mini-map and other elements in a console game? Yes, please.),

Source: Kotaku.com

Apex Legends Player Executed Between Dimensions

Today on Highlight Reel we have a bunch of impressive Apex Legends kills, The Division 2 clips, twisted video game physics, and much more!

Watch the video then talk about your favorite highlight in the comments below. Be sure to check out, like, and share the original videos via the links below. Subscribe to Kotaku on YouTube for more! Catch up on all the episodes on the Highlight Reel Youtube playlist!


Highlight Reel is Kotaku’s regular roundup of great plays, stunts, records and other great moments from around the gaming world. If you record an amazing feat while playing a game (here’s how to record a clip), send it to us with a message confirming that the clip is yours at [email protected] Or, if you see a great clip around that isn’t yours, encourage that person to send it in!

Source: Kotaku.com

The Division 2’s President Has A Different Concern About The U.S.-Mexico Border

The creators of The Division 2 have been clear that their “goal isn’t to make a political statement,” but the game’s new private beta is surely making at least a political joke, or maybe it’s a political wink? When your character walks into the empty, insurgency-wracked Oval Office, they find on the president’s desk an audio recording labeled “Border Control: POTUS discusses border policies with the president of Mexico.”

Except…this audio log is not exactly about what you are likely thinking about these days when you hear the words “president,” “Mexico” and “border” close together.

In the real world, the American president wants to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico to keep a lot of people south of the border out of the U.S. In case you haven’t heard, he’s really, really into this idea, even if the drubbing his party took in the midterm elections last year suggests that the country is not.

In the game world of The Division, the United States has been hit with a biological weapons attack that first ravaged New York City but has also turned D.C. and many other cities into lawless hellholes. It’s with that context that the audio log reveals that The Division 2’s president of the United States got on the phone with Mexico’s president to complain that the latter wants to shut down border crossings in El Paso to keep infected and/or desperate Americans out. “I know you’ve got a lot of people headed south from there right now that you can’t afford to take care of. Believe me, we don’t want to outsource our problems to you.”

It makes sense that border crossings would be an issue in a game about a U.S. overcome with disease, but how cheeky of them, right? Of all the topics there could be an audio log about on the president’s desk. Hmm.

Elsewhere in the White House, there’s an audio log called “25th Amendment: White House staff members learn that POTUS has died.” This is another audio log that makes perfect sense in the context of The Division 2’s story. In the audio file we hear that President Waller has died, and that “Mendez” will become the new president. It’s very serious and fitting for a game that’s got the Tom Clancy brand, but there’s also the great way it’s set up, which is….maybe a political joke? Come on, it’s kind of funny:

Unnamed person 1: Have you heard?

Unnamed person 2: Heard what?

Person 1: About Waller.

Person 2: No. What’s the latest? Has he decided Russia’s responsible after all?

Then it goes on to reveal he’s dead. Obviously they are talking about whether he thought Russia was responsible for the viral outbreak. So be it, but let’s hear it for a president with “Wall” in his name who is skeptical about Russia’s responsibility for some heinous act.

From the tiny bit I’ve played of The Division 2, I don’t think the developers are trying to make a point about Donald Trump, but I do think there’s a chance they’re having some fun here. (As the Ubisoft game Far Cry 5 did with its mission involving the fabled Donald Trump pee tape.) Whether you think that kind of fun works or is a poor stand-in for actually saying something about politics now is the players’ and critics’ call.

Ultimately a Tom Clancy-branded game’s politics involve a broader world view about the potency of the military and the delineation between good guys and bad guys. The Division 2 may well have other, deeper messages, but they aren’t apparent from the first half hour of the beta. We’ll have more impressions of how the new game actually plays after we’ve gotten a few more hours into the beta.

Source: Kotaku.com