Reviews - Updated on April 10, 2022

Hello Internet! .ru is in touch, my name is Max Solodilov, and I’m in Paris right now… oh, damn it, that’s a text article. Sorry habit. Usually I bring video material from press tours, but this time something went wrong, and the gameplay footage disappeared from the hard drive without a trace. Let’s assume the Yellow Vests stole them. Of course, this is not true, but the current situation in the French capital encourages similar thoughts: during the day, demonstrators dissatisfied with the increase in oil prices, demanding the resignation of the incumbent President Emmanuel Macron, organize processions, blocking the road to transport, and at night, crowds of people yell loudly in their melodic language, interfering sleep less conscious citizens and ordinary tourists. In general, a mess. The event itself was held in a covered parking lot, furnished in the style of shelters from the game, and because of all this massive unrest in the country, it was somewhat difficult to understand whether this was the idea of ​​​​decorators, or participants of the protest movement actually live here.

Moving to the capital

Surely many of you remember the announcement of The Division in 2013. Then the frosty New York amazed the imagination with its beauty and elaboration, and the ability to smoothly close the door, leaning against the car, caused puppy delight. Unfortunately, all the interactivity with the outside world, in fact, ended in hugs with corners and shelters, but in terms of design, the city had practically no competitors. Abandoned cars and things, rare survivors of people and animals, debris and snow flying due to gusts of wind, changeable weather and change of time of day – all this created a convincing atmosphere of a quarantined metropolis. And then suddenly warm and sunny Washington.Tom Clancy's The Division 2 превью

The White House is the main headquarters of the Division’s agents.

Like many, I was initially not particularly hooked by the new location. The short gaming session at E3 did not help to imbue the capital of the USA. However, after running around the streets for five hours and exploring the local sights, I came to the conclusion that the locations here are in no way inferior to the original. Washington has more open spaces and no skyscrapers, but the city is stuffed with the best architectural structures in America, and the greenery breaking through from everywhere turns it into a stone jungle. With HDR turned on, the picture looks especially juicy. The setting is reminiscent of individual levels from The Last of Us or Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, only the scale here is completely different.

But, as before, all this is just a decoration. Not all buildings can be entered, and destructibility is very limited. Even machines suspended from cranes cannot be dropped on someone’s head, although they could not only inflict substantial damage on opponents, but also create additional shelters. The latter just explains the static nature of the world. Bullets find the hero with deadly accuracy, so you have to constantly hide behind improvised and not very barriers placed here and there. If you allow the players to ruin everything, then this will hit the balance and alignment of forces on the battlefield. In this case, even partners will not save, although in general, running in a quartet is both easier and more fun. So you have to do with only explosive red barrels and cylinders, so as not to change the appearance of the area beyond recognition.

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 превью

All gamer instincts are screaming that it is necessary to shoot the cable.

From dirt to Kings

Seven months have passed since the events of the original. Despite the quarantine, the dangerous dollar flu broke out of New York and looked into nearby Washington. The previous agent, if you had one, apparently turned out to be less agile and remained sitting in his snowy lair, so you will have to create the hero again. For completing special tasks in the first part, you can get a number of goodies for the sequel, but pumping still starts from scratch.

Our freshly baked beggar rather quickly gets an appointment at the White House and begins to restore order in the district, where three warring factions are already rampaging with might and main: “Hyenas”, “Outcasts” and “True Sons”. In general, again, in their own way, crazy little people, ready to gnaw each other’s throats for influence in the city. We have to deal with their destruction. Shooting is basically the same – fall, roll and take cover – but it feels better. Aiming and hitting heads has become easier – either the weapon behaves more responsively, or the enemies have stopped making Neo out of themselves so much and dodging incoming bursts.

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 превью

Parts of the suit fly off from armored soldiers, exposing weak spots on the body.

In the first half of the beta, a couple of initial story missions and a few side missions were available, but they all boiled down to the typical rescue of useful citizens, returning resources to the base, and killing important bandit bosses. Completing tasks earns experience, increases levels and opens access to new skills, weapons and items. Clothing has become branded and gives additional bonuses if you wear everything from the same manufacturer. That is, loot, as always, is above all. But all this is so familiar and familiar that you involuntarily begin to wonder if you are playing the usual expansion. In a good way, “Division” had to follow the path of the Assassin’s Creed series, which has long abandoned the numbers in the title – at first glance, there are not enough innovations to be called a full-fledged second part. However, the developers have a project development plan.

Welcome to the jungle, we’ve got fun endgame!

The main problem of the original was the lack of content after reaching the maximum level. You had to either go through the second circle of the story on high difficulty, or entertain yourself in the “Dark Zone” – it’s a PvP mode. The first full-fledged addition had to wait for three whole months. During this time, the “Division” managed to lose part of the audience, and then also divided the rest into two parts, because the DLC was paid. The following additions did not improve the situation, although the game itself was diversified and refined. The Division 2 tries its best to avoid such a fate already at the start.

To keep you in Washington DC as long as possible, upon reaching level 30, you will unlock three specializations: Marksman, Survival Expert, and Demoman. Each “profession” contains its own skill tree and unique weapons, which, however, require special (and rather rare) ammo. Fortunately, you can switch between roles freely so that you can choose the style that suits you, and so that you don’t have four identical fighters running in your squad. Of course, no one forbids fighting alone, but the game is fully revealed only with close interaction with friends. In addition, it’s not at all a fact that the especially dangerous Black Fangs group, which you will encounter in the endgame, will be able to be eliminated on your own.

In the second half of the beta, we just went to deal with this special squad. It seemed that with the “purple” clothes no one could stop us, but excessive arrogance disappeared after the first skirmish. The guys from the capital are versed in technology and armed with all sorts of drones, radio-controlled cars with explosives and other robots, which, on the one hand, diversified and supplemented the list of opponents, and on the other hand, made life much more difficult for us. The voice chat was bursting with swearing and curses, while we broke through the crowds of enemies with pain and suffering. However, it was so intoxicating, epic and testosterone that we were seriously upset when the game session came to an end.

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 превью

I wonder if the engineers from Boston Dynamics would risk kicking this robops?

Now we can’t wait to see what “meat” awaits the players in the raid for eight people promised after the release. And in general, it is interesting to look at the development of The Division 2. The authors abandoned the season pass so as not to split the community, and promise to release three free story episodes in the first year. It is possible that then paid supplements will follow, but so far everything is limited to only “cosmetic” donations. We were assured of this by Game Director Mathias Karlson, who was present at the Paris event. He also confirmed that the extra stash space that is given for purchasing the Ultimate Edition will be available to all players, it will just have to be pumped – it is impossible to purchase the “expander” separately, thereby saving time. And this is a commendable approach.

***

Ubisoft knows how to make sequels. You don’t have to look far for examples, take at least Assassin’s Creed II and Watch Dogs 2. So the second “Division” looks like a modified and twisted version of the original. She is not trying to step into new territory in the genre, but simply takes into account previous mistakes and shortcomings and tries to correct them. And if the game doesn’t have technical problems (and I didn’t notice a single bug on the Xbox One X in five hours), then by all the laws of logic, its ratings should be slightly higher than the first part, that is, for 80 points.

Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 releases on March 15 for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, with the digital version for personal computers only coming to Uplay and the Epic Games Store. Matthias Carlson assures that the developer studio Massive Entertainment has nothing to do with the decision to bypass the Valve site. Also from February 7th to 11th, Ubisoft will hold a closed beta testing of an online action movie. Read all the details about the “beta” here.

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