So far I’ve enjoyed the missions as well. The end game is to save New York by restoring order, but Ubisoft also wants this game to be playable forever. This makes me wonder exactly how much of New York is saved before the “end” of the game. But for now, you go around and help find missing people, repair tech, take back buildings and so forth. My favorite mission involved assaulting the stronghold for The Cleaners and taking out their leader. Lots of fire.
The gameplay itself is pretty good so far. It’s a loot-driven shooter, so no matter how good your headshot game is, you still need to get better gear in order to have a fighting chance at all. The shooting is good, and you’ll feel the itch to upgrade your guns before too long. So far I’ve only come across blue and green items, so slightly better, but not miraculous. Yet.
Most guns and gear have slots for mods, hinting at a very deep customization for your gear. You will also come across lots of cosmetic gear, and it’s nice that your aesthetic look is separate from your gear. So if you have armpads that give you a great attack advantage, they don’t clash with that cool parka you just picked up. Unlike games like The Witcher 3 or Destiny your gear and your look are independent giving you some nice control over your look. The customization options for your character at the beginning of the game do appear to be permanent, and in that area I think most would have welcomed more chances to make your guy look like you. I’ve seen no women players and all the men have the same build. In that area I hope there is more coming down the line. You also don’t appear to be able to change your appearance later on, so make sure you’re committed to those Aviators before you venture out.
I’m about 1/3 to halfway done the story portion of the game. Much like Destiny you can replay the missions at a harder difficulty. You can tackle everything in this game solo or co-operatively. The matchmaking in The Division works quite well so far. I usually found a mission quickly and was able to join that game within 60 seconds. Most of the teams I’ve rolled with have worked well together too. I usually avoid talking on mike to other players I don’t know, but for the majority of the games, we worked well together and the wordless communication is effective. Players also get a variety of skills to utilize, and it really feels like everybody is contributing. I use a medkit device that can heal me and other players. I also am set using a sticky bomb that I can detonate. Most of your skills also have unlockable mods that come from upgrading your base. But what is cool is how you can decide to be a support player or an offensive player. It reminds me of the variety of loadouts you’d find in Battlefield 4 for example.
So far it’s pretty good. The story isn’t anything miraculous, but it’s very well reinforced by the world-building. This New York feels down but not out. There’s an air of determined optimism that permeates everything you do. It’s an uphill battle, but you’re slowly and surely putting it back together.