Watch Dogs places you on the scene as Aiden Pearce, a hacker who someone wants dead because they killed your niece.
That’s the basic premise in this title which does one of the most difficult things in gaming – taking on the mighty Grand Theft Auto and making a damn good job of it with lots to do and oodles of vehicles to drive. Sure, I don’t think anything can beat GTA overall, as there’s always so much packed into it, but what we have here makes a superb fist of giving us another open-world game in a city full of main missions and side missions (the latter such as Cash Run and Fixer Contract, both of which can be seen in video form on page 2) in which you fully want to get involved.
As well as doing some of the basics including taking cover to move around a room in order to avoid baddies, as well as crafting a lure and then throwing it to distract someone’s attention so you can sneak past – which is basically like throwing a stone to do the same thing, what Watch Dogs does different is allowing you to hack into CCTV cameras and changing from one to the next, effortlessly like Tarzan swinging from one vine to the next – as long as it’s in view of the current one – in order to see enemies you otherwise wouldn’t be able to, and access panels to open doors and explode explodable items, of which there are rather a lot for the baddies to walk past, which is a bit unfortunate for them.
In fact, my favourite thing to do is injure or kill the bad guys by accessing the cameras, finding those who have explosives strapped about their person and then setting them off. Often, they’ll die, but once, one guy threw his away just in time, and inadvertently at me!!! 🙁
Watch Dogs – Act I levels (720p HD)
When it comes to the graphics, Watch Dogs shows there’s still a hell of a lot of life left in the PS3, so it’s a great shame that developers of some new games don’t produce a version on either there or the Xbox 360, relying solely on PCs and the ‘next gen’ consoles. It’s like the ‘current gen’ of consoles are starting to be abandoned.
There are lots of side missions to complete including the ‘cash run’ (collecting coins in an 8-bit video game stylee) and 40 Fixer contracts (basically, chasing after bad guys)
Also, PS3 and PS4 players will also get an exclusive 60 minutes of gameplay comprising of four additional missions centred on a faction fighting for freedom in the digital age. As Aiden Pearce, you can help them get revenge against a Chicago tech mogul who did them wrong. Upon completion of the extra missions, players will unlock an exclusive suit for Aiden Pearce. I wonder if he’ll do a song like Mr Burns did in the Simpsons when he wore a new vest?
Note that, in addition, there is an online multiplayer mode, for up to eight players taking part in both co-operative and competitive gameplay in a recreation of the single-player setting. However, I’m just a single-player kind of guy, so haven’t played the multi-player.
Go to page 2 for more thoughts on the game.
Watch Dogs – general dicking around (720p HD)
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.