Watch Dogs: Deception, Murder & Crime – The Surprise Hit Of E3 2012, Exposed
Watch Dogs defied convention when it was revealed at Ubisoft’s pre-E3 conference. Here was a new IP that came completely out of the blue and, one gameplay demonstration later, was generating more internet buzz than the Microsoft and EA conferences combined. This rarely happens.
Why? Because not only is Watch Dogs a refreshingly ‘new’ concept – and by new we mean, not another shooter, reboot or sequel – it looked gorgeous and came with a stunning, innovative twist that no body expected.
You can watch the Watch Dogs gameplay footage here, but be warned, this clip doesn’t include the huge shock twist that we’re about to reveal in this article.
Join us as we run down the secrets behind Watch Dog’s reveal as well a the mind blowing twist, and explain why this could be the game to beat at E3 2012.
Watch Dogs stars anti-hero Aiden Pearce, a master hacker
Developed by Ubisoft Montreal, Watch Dogs focuses on a future where global corporations control the flow of digital data, giving rise to a new breed of hacking saboteurs. Aiden Pearce is one such hacker, and he has a massive range of skills at his disposal.
Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs gameplay demo showed Aiden trawling the dark streets of Chicago in search of his target, media mogul Joseph DeMarco, who is driving around in his car.
Aiden monologues about how – through exploiting his target’s personal data – he knows how they think and can follow the “Digital shadow” they cast.
Watch Dogs visuals and lighting are truly mind blowing
After a brief intro, Watch Dog’s true gameplay begins, as Aiden strolls down a street as the sun sets, casting some truly revolutionary lighting across the environment, as civilians wallk around minding their own business.
Aiden’s coat flaps in the wind, as parasols outside a bistro shakes around and shadows flicker and dance on the pavement. The format being played wasn’t confirmed, but the visuals look like they’re running on a high end PC.
On the other side of the street, a neon sign for a seminar hosted by Aiden’s target DeMarco flickers on the front of an old cinema. Outside, a queue hangs around the entrance and a newscaster and camera crew cover the event.
Watch Dogs gives you a ton of hacking and espionage tools
Aiden then hangs around casually at the entrance to the cinema, and the player selects a tool from an ability radial that lets him jam all nearby communications. Using the skill, all nearby mobile phones cut out, causing confusion from the crowd.
With his diversion in place, Aiden slinks past the bouncers at the cinema door and slips inside undetected. The walls are covered in television screens showing a video interview with DeMarco, giving the player insight into his character without interrupting gameplay.
Entering a bar full of patrons, Aiden surveys the scene, which is full of near-future art and automated drink vendors. Aiden has the option of hacking the phones of any patron in the building to reveal details about them.
Watch Dogs has stellar voice acting and mo-cap
It’s clear that Ubisoft has been smart with Watch Dogs, as Aiden meets a contact in the bar and the pair strike up conversation. The dialogue isn’t cheesy or cliched, and while there is swearing, it dosn’t feel purile or included just for the sake of giving the game a bad attitude.
Aiden’s informant asks if he is at the DeMarco event to kill “A target”, suggesting they are part of the same organisation. The informant seems shocked when Aiden reveals that it is DeMarco himself who is the target.
Receiving a gun off the informat, Aiden then starts scanning the room in search of DeMarco’s associate, revealing tons of personal information on the attendees.
Aiden finds the associate, a woman who is calling DeMarco to warn him of Aiden’s presence. DeMarco tells the associate that his is heading to the event to confront Aiden, and that security are everywhere ready to take him down.
Watch Dogs has brutal melee takedowns, cover shooter sections
Sensing the net closing in on him, Aiden makes a break for an exit but is approached by a bouncer. Aiden uses a retractable baton and smacks the goon until he collapses into a writhing, gurgling heap on the floor. It’s rather grim.
Running out of the building, Aiden flees through the rainy streets. He quickly becomes soaked by the torrent of rain, showing off some truly stunning visual effects.
Spotting DeMarco’s car arriving to the scene, Aiden approaches a crossroad and hacks the traffic lights, causing an huge car pileup. DeMarco’s goons exit the vehicle and engage Aiden in some light cover shooting action.
It’s important to note that Watch Dogs is not a shooter, but Ubisoft has implemented these bursts of action well to shake up mission pacing. using the piled up cars as cover, Aiden slinks around, picking off goons one by one.
And now, for Watch Dog’s big shock twist…
With the goons dispatched, Aiden pulls DeMarco out of his car. DeMarco warns that if Aiden kills him, he’ll ‘Open a door that he’ll never close”. Regardless the player executes him with a gunshot to the head, before leaping in a car and speeding off.
The big twist you didn’t see in Ubisoft’s trailer, is that after Aiden makes a getaway in his car, the camera pulls pack to reveal more characters who have been watching Aiden’s movements from the rooftops.
These other characters are there to support Aiden, but they are not just NPCs – you must play as them as well, and the evidence suggest that these characters are being controlled by multiple players in co-op.
Switching to a male agent, the player then runs across the rooftops to follow Aiden’s car, free-running across vent systems and low walls before the shot pulls back to reveal the whole city.
Watch Dogs was an incredible reveal from Ubisoft from start to finish. It’s also refreshing that – in a pre-E3 day that included such heavyweights as Black Ops 2, Halo 4 and The Last of Us, that a new, unknown IP could steal the spotlight.
We’ll have more from Watch Dogs as it happens, but in the meantime…
- Watch Dogs E3 2012 Gameplay Footage – A Stunning, Violent Debut From Ubisoft
- Ubisoft Announces New IP Watch Dogs, A Multiplayer Bourne Identity