One of the first things you notice about Tom Clancy’s The Division is that, in contrast to other popular multiplayer titles, this is not a team deathmatch. While there are multiple teams active on the battlefield at once, they are intended to be neutral.
In fact, if you start shooting at other live players instead of focusing on taking down the computers and securing your objectives, then your whole team will be marked as rogues. What this means is that all the other teams on the map now see your team as hostile players instead of neutral; this makes it significantly harder to complete your objectives.
Before the round starts, you have the option to select from a variety of characters with different special abilities including a pulse, a sticky bomb, a turret, first aid for teammates, and more that can be activated with the left and right bumpers. Each character also has their own special ability that can be activated when selecting the two bumpers simultaneously. When selecting your team, it’s important to consider how these abilities will work together.
At the beginning of the round, players start in a neutral zone where they have a moment to prepare and then must enter what’s referred to as the “Dark Zone.” Once you’re in the Dark Zone, what you’re actually supposed to do in order to win is be the first team to complete your objective.
In the demo, we were tasked with collecting contaminated loot and delivering it to the extraction point. It sounds simple, but it’s much easier said than done. In the actual game, players will be able to keep the loot that they extract, which is said to be some of the most valuable loot in the game. And while we didn’t see this in the PAX Prime 2015 preview, developers have mentioned that you will even be able to betray and murder your own teammates in order to steal the loot for yourself.
Unlike Counterstrike, Tom Clancy’s The Division is not about rushing into the battlefield guns blazing. This game is more about developing an intelligent strategy and effectively using your options for taking cover. In this way, the game play is somewhat similar to that of the Gears of War franchise.
One detail that seems odd is the length of time you need to shoot at your opponent in order to execute a kill. Even when firing directly at your target’s head, it takes a longer than it should, making that part of the game feel unrealistic. Another unrealistic element of the game is that you aren’t able to melee your enemies when they get close to you. What? Why is that the case in this day and age?
Overall, it’s hard to get an overall feel for the game from the short multiplayer demonstration. As it’s designed to be an open-world third-person shooter RPG, in the limited multiplayer PvP demo, it was hard to get a feel for the full experience. While we can’t judge the entire game, we can say that the PvP multiplayer was a fun experience that provides varied content to set it apart from other third-person shooters.
What do you think about this game? Can’t wait for it to come out? Waiting to see more of the open-world experience before forming an opinion? Be sure to let us know in the comments!