Gaming Reviews

Published on May 13th, 2016 | by gareth


Tom Clancy’s The Division

As if pulled directly from the headlines Tom Clancy’s The Division is a chilling look at New York in the aftermath of a deadly pandemic. Dubbed the Dollar Flu, after tainted money was released during Black Friday, Manhattan is a desolated region populated by scavengers, roaming gangs; people just trying to survive. It is into this scenario that players take on the role of an agent of an elite government division known as “The Division”, their task is to help restore order, investigate the outbreak, and bring facilities and a sense of normality to a devastated area. Playing from a third person perspective and mixing elements of a RPG and shooter, The Division is an extremely ambitious and highly detailed project. Players are tasked with several main missions but also have the option to do side missions which help them gain resources in order to upgrade their base and equipment. Weapons and accessories can be bought, sold, or modified, and various skill options ranging from healing to combat options become available as well.

One of the great things about the game is the ability to join other players to complete your missions. At the start of a mission, players have the option to be matched up with other players but of course the difficulty will ramp up based on the number of players that are currently assigned. The level of difficulty can be extreme but the enjoyment rewards of successfully completing the mission of this magnitude are worth it.

There was a lot of complaining online from gamers about the delays that the game had coming to market and I would say that the time has definitely been well spent. It is a deeply immersive game that is very impressive to look at in terms of the detail that Ubisoft has put into re-creating the city. The enemies are diverse and challenging and the storyline is extremely engaging.
I am not a huge fan of micromanagement in terms of having to sort out my gear and tactful upgrades I’ve always been more in favor of finding and using an item rather than crafting and purchasing because I do not like to have to decide what is worth keeping and what is worth discarding or selling. The great thing is the game gives me the ability to play in my comfort zone but also step outside it and take some new paths to enhance my loadout.

There are unfortunately a few bugs in the game as I remember one early mission in a department store were encountering a flamethrower equipped enemy on a staircase I backed up and dispatched them with a volley from my assault rifle. My triumph was short-lived as I found that I become wedged between an ankle high box and a mannequin and that there was no way for me to get out of that predicament without ending the game and then reloading. I have not encountered any of the exploits that I read about being deployed online but I also avoid The Dark Zone more than other players as this is truly a lawless area were players run amok.

Ubisoft has said they plan to address the issues and they also have upcoming DLC which will expand upon the universe. For now The Division is a very impressive game in that it provides a fantastic an open world scenario filled with numerous challenges and a great level of visual detail. I found myself to of been drawn into the game and it is managed to maintain my interest ever since release and also has me thinking about the game and strategizing even when I’m not playing. Hopefully the necessary updates and features will continue to, so this game can reach its full potential.

4 stars out of 5

About the Author

Syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. His work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site and publication “Skewed and Reviewed”. He has three books of film, game reviews and interviews published and is a well-received and in demand speaker on the convention circuit. Gareth has appeared in movies and is a regular guest on a top-rated Seattle morning show. He has also appeared briefly in films such as “Prefountaine”, “Postal”. “Far Cry”. and others. Gareth is also an in-demand speaker at several conventions and has conducted popular panels for over two decades.

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