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Platform Win, 360, PS3, Wii U, PS4, Xbox One Publisher Ubisoft Developer Ubisoft Montreal Release Date 2014-05-27

Video Review

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297 Comments
8.0

Watch Dogs review: spook country

First shown at E3 just shy of two years ago as the first "next-generation" video game, developer Ubisoft Montreal's newest title missed the next-gen console launch last fall. Now, after a six month delay, Watch Dogs has finally come out of the shadows. In many ways, Watch Dogs feels like a synthesis of some of publisher Ubisoft’s flagship series, mixing the open-world and navigation of more recent Assassin’s Creed games with the shooting and modern environments of series like Splinter Cell. There’s a sense of trying to be all things, all under the umbrella of modern day paranoia of surveillance and privacy. But Watch Dogs is at its best when it’s the most fenced in.   undefined   Watch Dogs stars protagonist Aiden Pearce, a contractor for hire who steals...

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Watch Dogs will be 'the only mature game' Ubisoft publishes for Wii U

Ubisoft will shift its focus when it comes to publishing games for Nintendo's Wii U. While the company will continue to release types of games that are already doing well — like the Just Dance franchise — it will back away from more mature titles. Speaking with Game Informer, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said that Watch Dogs for Wii U will likely be the last mature game published for the console. One of the reasons for this is the poor reception for Assassin's Creed games on Wii U. Both Assassin's Creed 3 and Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag received Wii U versions, but neither game appears to have done as well as the Just Dance games. "What we see is that they are very interested in Just Dance, very interested by other kinds of games," Guillemot said. "So what we are trying to do is to...

Analysis
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Mass surveillance, Watch Dogs and the militarized police: When strapping cameras on people is a good idea

That police shooting has led to a week filled with protests, a week marred by accusations of police violence. One photograph has stood out as emblematic of the police response to these protests. It's a photo of an African-American man, arms raised to surrender, walking backward. Nearly a dozen heavily armed St. Louis County officers march towards him. But look closely at the picture above. Do you see it? There, near the center of the photo, bolted to one of the officer's black helmets. It's a video camera. Serve and protect When the St. Louis County Police prepared themselves to deploy to the scene of the protests this week, they loaded their M-4 carbines, they checked their gas masks and they strapped on their body armor. And they made sure their cameras had batteries, turned...

Culture
7 Comments

Going deep with the composer of the Watch Dogs score and Song Exploder

Song Exploder is a podcast where musicians take a deep dive into their own music to explain how it was made, piece by piece. The latest episode features Brian Reitzell, who created the score for Watch Dogs. He played drums in Air and Red Kross, and also creates the music for Hannibal. If you've ever been curious about how video game music is put together, this is a great place to start, from a very talented musician.

30 Comments

Watch Dogs may be commuting to New Jersey this fall

Ubisoft's open-world action-hacking game Watch Dogs may be taking a trip to New Jersey this fall, based on information posted on the game's official Twitter account. "The city of Camden, New Jersey had the highest crime rate in the US in 2012. A 24/7 surveillance program is now in effect," Ubisoft tweeted on its Watch Dogs Twitter account. Responding to a fan who asked if that was in reference to downloadable content for the game, @watchdogsgame responded that it's coming this fall. In 2012, the FBI named Camden as the most violent city in the United States with a population of more than 50,000. It ranked first in homicides in 2011, based on its population of 77,000. Watch Dogs was released on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, Xbox 360 and Xbox One in May. A Wii U version is...

Culture
47 Comments

Real-world adaptation of Watch Dogs retains what's gross about games

Director Thomas Falcon created a short film inspired by Watch Dogs. Two notes before you watch: 1.) If you're like me and only speak English (and what remains of my high school-level French (and yes, I'm aware this video isn't in French)), you will want to turn on closed captions. 2.) Like Watch Dogs itself, the short is a mixed bag of good and bad ideas. Feel free to skip the pick-up artist opening. It's awkward and plays the manipulation of a woman's privacy as a meet-cute. The interesting section begins about halfway through, when the short becomes an action film, recreating the gang hideout side mission. That's kind of neat. But come on, how does this happen? How does this gamification of women — this idea that the female character is a winnable object, if you play your cards...

News
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Watch Dogs modder releases final version of his PC graphics overhaul, TheWorse Mod

The modder who's been tweaking the graphics of Ubisoft's Watch Dogs, Federico Rojas (aka TheWorse), released the final version of his mod that originally aimed to return the PC version to its original, E3 2012 demo glory. "This is the last release of my modification," Rojas wrote alongside the release of TheWorse Mod version 1.0. "I did my best to improve graphics and performance as much as I could without degrading the quality." The release comes in two flavors: one with a high-resolution texture pack from another modder MaLDo and one without. Users of the Guru3D forums, which is host to a handful of lengthy threads related to Rojas' work on the Windows PC version of Watch Dogs, are posting comparison pics of the latest version with adjustments of their own. Rojas' mod gained...

News
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Ubisoft touts Q1 2014 sales driven by Watch Dogs success

Ubisoft's sales increased significantly year over year, thanks in part to the success of Watch Dogs since its May 27 release, the company announced today. According to a report focused solely on sales during Q1 2015, which ended June 30, they totaled €360 million (approximately $490 million), an increase of 374 percent over the €76 million in sales reported for Q1 2014. Ubisoft also reported strong sales in its digital segment, whose performance increased 149 percent to €84 million ($114 million), thanks to games like Child of Light, Trials Fusion and Valiant Hearts: The Great War. "Although the financial year has only just started, our confidence for fiscal-year 2014-15 has been reinforced by our first-quarter performance and the keen anticipation for our upcoming games," said...

News
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The future of Assassin's Creed will be carved out by Ubisoft Quebec

Ubisoft Quebec is taking hold of the reigns on future developments in the Assassin's Creed franchise, the company announced on its official Ubisoft blog. The Canadian studio is seeing a major investment which includes an increase in the number of staff and new facilities in the around Quebec's St-Roch district. Additionally, the game studio will be using $4 million of a $28 million investment for a new workspace that is being developed for state-of-the-art AAA development. Likewise, the city of Quebec is contributing $500,000 in financial support. Ubisoft Quebec has been one of Ubisoft's umbrella companies since the development of Assassin's Creed Brotherhood in 2010 and played a key role in the development of Watch Dogs. "Since 2010, our understanding of the franchise has increased...

News
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Watch Dogs' single-player gets new missions and weapons today

New single-player missions are available for Watch Dogs, along with a handful of additional weapons, bonuses and perks for protagonist Aiden Pierce, Ubisoft announced today. Players can unlock new goodies in one of three additional challanges. In the Palace mission, players must break into the luxury home of an internet mogul who has dirt on Aiden and Dedsec and is slated for a police raid. Aiden must wipe his hard drive clean, escape before the raid occurs and take out the mogul. The Signature mission is a little less intricate, but involves stealing and taking ownership of a powerful biometrics weapon that only works for the first person to imprint his palm on the handle. The final mission, Breakthrough, requires Aiden to locate and destroy surveillance scramblers set up around a...

News
120 Comments

Watch Dogs’ old render settings may deteriorate performance, Ubisoft says

Following a modder recently unlocking some graphical enhancements in the PC version of Watch Dogs, the development team has responded in a blog post stating that old render settings were deactivated due to possible deterioration of the gameplay experience. "The PC version does indeed contain some old, unused render settings that were deactivated for a variety of reasons, including possible impacts on visual fidelity, stability, performance and overall gameplay quality," the post reads. "Modders are usually creative and passionate players, and while we appreciate their enthusiasm, the mod in question (which uses those old settings) subjectively enhances the game's visual fidelity in certain situations but also can have various negative impacts." Earlier this week, a Watch Dogs tweak...

Watch Dogs Releases
North America
  • Windows
    • Released 2014-05-27
    • Publisher Ubisoft
    • Developer Ubisoft Montreal
  • Xbox 360
    • Released 2014-05-27
    • Publisher Ubisoft
    • Developer Ubisoft Montreal
  • PlayStation 3
    • Released 2014-05-27
    • Publisher Ubisoft
    • Developer Ubisoft Montreal
  • Wii U
    • Publisher Ubisoft
    • Developer Ubisoft Montreal
  • PlayStation 4
    • Released 2014-05-27
    • Publisher Ubisoft
    • Developer Ubisoft Montreal
    • Score 8.0
  • Xbox One
    • Released 2014-05-27
    • Publisher Ubisoft
    • Developer Ubisoft Montreal
    • Score 8.0
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