It’s clear to see (for those that played the first Watch Dogs game) that this sequel has built upon what the first game got right. Watch Dogs 2 moves the franchise forward with open world missions and various ways to reach mission objectives. However I found that the character (Marcus) made cringe-worthy jokes and did not take himself too seriously (in a good way) but personally I just don’t buy Marcus as a killer who runs around with an assault rifle killing anyone who gets in his way, for example he is portrayed in cutscenes as a man who rants against the misuse of people’s personal data, overall he comes across as a good guy, yet after the cut scenes he might wander around wiping out a group of police officers, security guards or gang members. Somehow the character in the cutscenes doesn’t match up to the character that’s then playable in missions and although it doesn’t affect the mechanics of the game, it was certainly something I can’t ignore when playing the game.
One of the things that are new to Watch Dogs 2 is the use of drones, these can be used to fly or drive through small spaces that Marcus simply can’t reach and they are great for scoping out an area before going in yourself. Another improvement on the first game is the AI, who are now better at using cover and flanking you. There are a few elements of fun within the game, for example using hacks to detonate explosives that are carried by enemies, there’s a cheap thrill in seeing the enemy look around and realise that the explosive device he is carrying has been detonated. But one of my personal favourites and completely new to this game is the ability to summon gang members and or the police and target whoever you like simply by fabricating evidence, it’s not just a great way of attacking your enemy it’s also great fun to watch the police arrest a completely innocent individual. Hacking, in general, is also much more flexible than it was in the first Watch Dogs game, you normally now have more than one hackable item, for example, you can detonate an electrical box to make it stun someone nearby or turn it into a mine that will detonate whenever someone gets close.
Watch Dogs 2 has a great open world map ripe for exploration, which when added with the hacks that can be performed is a very enjoyable experience, even if only to find a way to hack into traffic lights and see vehicles crash into each other. With all the fun that can be had within the game, there is one major aspect that I simply cannot get past, the lack of a story, unlike the original Watch Dogs there is no vengeance story or even much of a backstory to the main character at all, it pretty much seems like all Marcus wants to do is bring down the establishment and have fun doing it, and while this can be fun in the beginning it does get rather boring fast, the lack of a proper story mixed with repetitive gameplay, really cheesy jokes and the repetitive hacking puzzles (hack systems to unlock system).
If you are looking for a game with a strong and immersive storyline, this game is not for you. If however, you are looking for a game that offers a fun way of hacking and taking down opponents then you will want to give Watch Dogs 2 a try. Whilst not a perfect game Watch Dogs 2 is definitely an improvement on the first Watch Dogs. Let’s hope Ubisoft can build on this for Watch Dogs 3.