Hack the City
Imagine a version of Chicago, Illinois very much like the real one, except for one very important difference: the Central Operating System, ctOS for short. In the world of Ubisoft’s next big open-world adventure, Watch Dogs, the system links together the entire technological infrastructure of the Windy City, from its traffic management to crime prevention. Even people’s key information is connected. In exchange for privacy, it has resulted in better living standards for many of the city’s citizens.
But for all its power, ctOS is vulnerable to the skill and devices of hackers, hackers such as Aiden Pierce. A man whose violent past once led to a family tragedy, he'll be pushed into taking matters into his own hands and working the system vigilante-style when his family is once again threatened.
Luckily for Aiden, he won’t have to rely just on weapons like guns and a retractable baton. In Watch Dogs, the city itself is both tool and weapon. Using Aiden’s smartphone, players will be able to open up each district by hacking into its respective ctOS service station to gain access to the various machines and devices.
Freedom is the most important aspect of Watch Dogs’ gameplay. With a city filled to the brim with technology that can be hacked at the mere push of a button, the number of different paths for players to go down is dizzying. In total they will be able to perform 75 different hacks, letting them peek through security cameras, raise traffic barriers to stop cars in their tracks, sneak into bank accounts for some quick cash, and even temporarily black out the city to ditch the authorities, to name a few.
Hacking will also open up a look into the lives of the people around Aiden, their professions and hobbies. Through ctOS, players will be able to predict if a certain person is at risk of becoming a victim of crime, giving them the choice to intervene before things get out of hand. Ultimately, players are free to build up Aiden’s vigilante reputation how they see fit, but they will have to be prepared to deal with the increasing attention from the police, the media and fellow hackers.
With just a few months before we traipse into Watch Dogs’ Q2 2014 launch window, fans of Ubisoft’s open-world games won’t have to wait too much longer before they can indulge in the game’s impressively-realized world and freedom to bend it to their will.
A writer, journalist, and aspiring storyteller, Peter Grimm has been gaming since the days of the Nintendo 64, and reporting on the goings-on in the World of Gaming since late 2011. His base of writing operations is located within the void between Here and There, or so he would have you think.
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