Tom Clancy’s The Division Review – Make NYC Great Again

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Tom Clancy’s The Division has been receiving a lot of attention ever since it was revealed a few years ago and rightfully so. It’s the most ambitious game Ubisoft has ever made.

We’ve seen a bunch of online only games like Destiny this gen but The Division takes it one step further with its massive explorable world. It’s a great technical achievement and something only Ubisoft can pull off considering their expertise with Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry games.

New York city has been wonderfully recreated in The Division. It’s authentic, looks amazing and there are a lot of small details that many players won’t notice but it does add to the overall atmosphere. From the snow laden streets to the tall buildings, numerous abandoned vehicles, wonderful lighting, and the chaos caused by the virus is very well showcased in the game.

If you’ve played Bungie’s Destiny you’d know what to expect here. There aren’t a lot of similarities with Destiny though, other than the loot system but you could make a case that The Division has been inspired a lot by Diablo than any other MMO-style game.

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The story of division is a bit incoherent and the pacing is off because you can do so many things instead of actually progressing through the game. There are three enemy factions in the game namely: Cleaners, Rikers and the LMB. The Cleaners are the best enemies to fight against because you can just shoot the tanks on their backs and watch them explode.

The main missions usually involves you fighting off waves of enemies but the level design is quite good. I loved the Russian Consulate mission and the last one and it’s clear the there has been a lot of attention paid to the game world in general. It’s the best thing about The Division. You can totally get immersed into the world and just do nothing for many hours. Thankfully, there are a ton of collectibles scattered across the map so you’ll always have something to do.

Once you create your agent your goal is to reach level 30 which is the end game level that allows you to equip high-end gear. Killing enemies and completing missions and doing certain objectives will all get you XP to level up your agent. It took me around 3 days to get to level 30 so it’s not that difficult.

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All the missions can be played with people from your friends list or randoms. There’s a matchmaking built in for every mission so you can get 3 more players easily without any effort. All the missions can be replayed at a higher difficulty for more rewards.

It’s a loot game at its core and the loot is divided into green, blue, purple and yellow tiers with the latter being the best gear available in the game. The stats are random and can be re-rerolled. The thrill of getting a yellow drop is quite amazing. To successfully complete challenge mode you need better gear.

Your weapons and gear determines the amount of DPS you do and your health and electronics score. Health is pretty obvious and higher the electronics score more frequently you can use your skills like putting turrets or a med station to heal or revive yourself and your teammates.

You can either grind missions in challenge mode or pray for a good drop but RNG will not be on your side. Fighting named yellow bosses can increase your chances of getting good gear. You also get a guaranteed yellow gear for completing challenge modes of some mission.

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If you’ve played the beta then you know about the Dark Zone. It’s an innovative PvE/PvP mode that is scattered with difficult enemies who drop good loot. However, the catch is that it’s a free-for-all zone. You could be killed by another player as you are extracting your loot and he may grab it all. It’s a risky area and you need to watch your back at all times.

Having a group is very advantageous here. The Dark Zone is broken into 6 levels of varying difficulty with DZ06 being filled with level 32 enemies. It’s very difficult lone wolf this area because the enemies especially the shotgunners can take you out pretty fast. The rewards are the best here though so bring a group if you want to gear up quickly.

The Division is not an innovative game but preys on the addictiveness factor of a gamer. The greed for better loot will make you play the game forever, repeating missions and going through the same areas, killing the same bosses. It’s quite like Destiny in many aspects but the sci-fi world of that game was quite fresh.

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The music and general sounds immerse you in the game as you explore a beautifully crafted NYC decimated by a deadly virus. I would recommend using a headset when doing missions because communicating with your teammates is what makes this game stand out than playing solo. In fact, a mic is absolutely essential when doing challenge mode as you would need to devise strategies on the fly.

Tom Clancy’s The Division is an ambitious game in many ways but ultimately it’s a loot game filled with repetitiveness. If you get hooked to its formula then expect to spend 100s of hours in the game.

Score

8/10