Analysis by Tom Clancy's section 2

Once you enter the imposing building that houses the Massive offices in Malm, the visitor comes face to face with a large-sized model in the center of the hall. On the table was burned under the remains of a bank branch on the ground and at any juncture were scattered small barricades and bags, full of body or waist barriers made from a rubbish pad. or the median of a highway. There is a lower tank in the middle of the asphalt, and a few feet away are the remnants of the collision between a tourist and a patrol car. relatively safe track to try and shoot the position after a shooter approaching her.

On all of these elements, on the windows, the tips of the barricades and the half-open doors of the burned vehicles, a series of colorful stickers indicate a certain interactivity: yellow, for example, the obstacles appear to indicates what can be surrounded without losing cover, a maneuver that may sound like the first game veterans. "Core Gameplay Walk" reads the plaque placed under the set, and I read it. I can't help but think of Davide Soliani, the guy who burst into tears on E3 because Miyamoto presented his game and later shared A story full of offers, from sleepless nights and also from humble prototypes based on zeal and cardboard. The division is not Mario + Rabidds, and its phenomenal production values ​​can surprise everything else, but at the heart of both projects, the same enthusiasm, the same beliefs, resides in a set of good ideas that do not need motorsimos graphics engines. to work. Miniature, colors, dice. Game design, simple and simple. I find it difficult to be objective with that kind of purity.

A few years have passed since the first skirmishes played on that board, but in the background and fireworks apart everything comes down: to reverse, to a position with nails and teeth to defend, flank and do not flank. After more than fifty hours of play in this sequel, I participated in a few shooting ranges that could not be played on the cardboard asphalt, and that is exactly that board structure and this solidsimo set of rules, the primary loop, the one who maintains all the weight of the chiringuito. The division 2, as it was the original delivery and beyond the colored pistols and unprecedented gadgets, is their battle and in the form and background the battle is nothing but a real-time XCOM. Hardly anything.

And this is a risky approach, because banned removals and abandonment in the jungle of the online multiplayer shooter must take a system bait not long to thrive with chaos and mere salads. Section 2 is still an industrial meat grinder that is ideal for talking about football while the trigger is heated. This is true, but lowering the wait in excess usually costs expensive, and on each of these seemingly routine shootings plans a latent threat that always, always, has to do with designing the scenario & # 39 ; s and with an opposition designed to take advantage of them. With the dead spots we have left, with the teachings we can no longer see as we move forward, and with an artificial intelligence that really makes trouble leaving you in the marbles: this is true that we with lots of meat can get closer to our naked and shaky position and fire with the side gun (The Division 2 is one of the games with the greatest commitment to molar at any price I remember in time and I celebrate), but while we are from they roasted which is more certain that three of his colleagues took a detour to make our backs. Even the infantry gangsters are ready as the devil, and what to say about the kamikazes wearing plastic explosives, the damn remote cars and the bastard wearing a demolition club; of all the other pieces that set the game to sharpen their scenarios and force us to move the ass. Towers, queens, bishops. & # 39; A false move, the queen falls, mates.

I don't think any of these will surprise the veterans. Section 2 does not propose to revolutionize, but to refine, collect under one umbrella, respond to & nbsp; a whole range of requests and requests that often feel like a definite version, such as video game that deserves the model. Obviously the fans have been heard, and if aspects such as the endgame or their interpretation of the cooperative make it very clear, the same thing happens with a statistical component that can be the other big pillar that supports everything. In a loader shooter, at the end of the day, the loot is at least fifty percent of the comparison. And in this sense there is news, most importantly, the base is still solid and surprisingly deep. Section 2, in spite of its contemporary and more or less realistic setting, is one hundred times closer to any of its science fiction religions; It's still a statistic of statistics, of the modifier, and of some sort of search for synergies that transform the obvious features of each piece of equipment into a beginner's trap.

So they work their weapons, their backpacks, their knee pads, all defined by damage or resistance indicators that provide the passive skills that offer the highest ranks (of course a position of color) and for endless footnotes on the page, or more specifically on the right-hand side of the screen: we may be interested in maintaining a lower level of body protection because, along with two other armor pieces from the same manufacturer, it gives us a recharge bonus, or the ability to roll out the fire or put a bonus on the defense of the group after each successful break compensates for the lower fire speed from an old machine gun. Or it can, and it's the very nice thing, that we decide to trust our pipe, because we love how it feels.

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Because the study understood that the dose of dopamine that accompanies every bright object on the ground should be supported by something more than numbers, and therefore there are guns that carry the bullet with an overwhelming power and also completely automatic weapons. which is in distribution and weight they earn in gross cadence. They are pieces with personality, with their particular touch, at least in the beginning: there are also craftsmanship and modifier crafts, and tone, stability, reload speed or critical probability statistics that can be supported with interchangeable guns or chicks, and even A re-calibration station that allows statistics from one weapon to be transferred to another to keep track of the pieces we conquer for their feelings, but have become obsolete. That's exactly that kind of game, and the kind of fuel for obsession.

The problem is that it is relatively easy to get carried away, and also relatively easy to retrieve common sense in the middle of the night and consider what you are doing by in & # 39; a notebook the bonuses of & # 39; n to calculate empty gun. This is not an exclusive problem of his team's eye, and with regard to his world, his design of missions and a system of diabolic progression that irrigates the icon card with the ordinary coercion, but knows how to depend on each other as a quiz. Never before, the only possible answer that once scratched is a profound existential crisis. There are so many numbers, so many meters, so many settlements and so many bursts, that time evaporates under your feet, and if the game is, it's because it knows how to move it to avoid questions. To always set short, medium and long-term goals, divide the map into districts and free zones, and make quick travel points, depends on the liberation of certain bastions, as always, but also suggest projects that involve many different goals .

So, pick up a few collectibles and sign a path that allows us to release hostages without deviating too much. A global mission can complete that once again evokes the position of a boss or successfully complete a certain mission, can also allow us to recruit. A hairdresser or a group management specialist that allows us to gain access to the clans. The game always tries to run and camouflage bait. It's essentially a long and really complicated table of plots, targets and rewards under the guise of a human component, from a more noble goal: the release of "a few" water tanks in a secondary means, experience and loot, but also to get the water to the small garden of the survivors in one of the settlements that protect us. It is not particularly emotionally successful, because despite the idyllic scenes of children who eventually have electricity to play for honor (I don't find it out), the spreadsheet is just too obvious, but the question is that always have something. what to do, and we never insulted it. That our donkeys pursue a root, but the list of tasks always maintains the forms, without suppressing our path or breaking the contract by which we assume that orders are more or less indifferent when there & # 39; minimum intention is to justify them. Let's try not to fall into equations.

The problem, however, is that all that big tree of goals and rewards suffers to keep things really varied. And he does it because he has many pieces to work on. There are shootings, there are loot, there are displacements and with the three chords it is necessary to divide and take a ten-hour progression over a Washington in districts, basically three factions fight. With the particular aspects in terms of the background and the units that are usually in play, the three find their union point in their supporters to settle in historic places and shoot in the middle of the street, leading to & # 39; selection of major and secondary thousands of missions in gross numbers and above all a much greater hostility in the streets. Manhattan was far from a step, but the capital is an incomparably more dangerous place to get to death at any crossing, not at all scarce to see. And it's a pity, because if the random shooting and summary executions leave a breath, you want to stop and observe: the post-pandemic Washington is a decadent but beautiful place in its own way, & # 39 a hell of overturned cars and four-story trash When sniffing between the remnants in a while. That, and it eventually allows us to have a video game Run around the dam of the Lincoln Memorial "Jenny" shouts like a subnormal.

But what a fascinating image does not detract from the cruel reality: Section 2, despite a kind of muscle in relation to urban reconstruction, which at this stage is obviously seen in the company, is also a game that often falls into the monotone. It does so without a doubt at the level of tasks and goals of radio transmissions that need to be snapped up and indoor rooms that we need to secure, and if it doesn't fail with all the equipment, it's basically the same reason: muscles, on the scale, by the army of artists who form everything and I'm afraid it is difficult to find elsewhere through an economic potential. By converting each main mission and each of its secondary in exchanger scales into the playable scene, which presupposes something similar to an amusement park in terms of atmosphere: it is not the same to survive to a planetarium shoot to It does a few studies on television, or on the roof of a luxury hotel, or on the steps of the Capitol.

And it's not the same thing to do in the halls of a museum we take after the shelter behind the moon module, or later an aesthetic machine gun at the feet of a helicopter in a reproduction of Vietnam dismissal. It's the level, and it's really great that the game knows how to maintain it over a marathon duration that increases the content of the genre, although it sometimes makes concessions: the missions are under the remnants of Air Force One, and are the ones that save bees from certain types with mechanical saws. You can't have everything in life.

Yet, I insist that we talk about a deployment in terms of raw content and variety of scenarios that were undoubtedly addressed with a certain sentence to make a convincing survival drama, or at least & nbsp; an entertaining follet of espas and government intrigues. That is not the case. In the narrative, and it is a pity to say, the Division 2 is a zero on the left, a summary of pretenses without too much fist that does not even perform in the usual way, to know how to take us from side to side with a certain cause of causality. everything has an explanation. Whether you like it or not, is another problem, but here it is: if Section 2 does not bother to tell a story with foundation, it is because the intention is to co-operative. And it seems that both concepts are not mutually exclusive, until you find that & nbsp; & nbsp; a narrative with sense & # 39; a thread, requires events that cause or are similar to other events, & # 39; a consecutive series of missions and events that may not be compatible with the multi-cooperative golden rule: you've been playing for a week, I've just arrived, what we do.

And the reaction of other games is usually negative. There are usually insurmountable level differences, missions that require other missions, progress that is lost as a host, and only affect the host world. But Section 2 does not mean no, and its Solomon solution is to change its campaign into a set of missions that should not be played in essential rising order. So, if a friend wants to accompany us in one of the last chapters, but has just completed a few missions, the game allows him to temporarily inflate his statistics while in our group and returning to his world later with the order already exceeded. , something that will be difficult to use square with a linear structure. Similarly, matchmaking can work so that we can search the company for easy easy exploration or for any of the big missions of the campaign and also open up the possibility of our starting a flare when things get tough and someone decides to ed.

They are all amenities, which is why it is striking that the game is not considered for those who decide to face it alone. It can be undoubtedly done, but only with patience, patience and a mayscula tolerance to the repetition: to fall again and again with no one to revive us, to dust the way to & # 39 a mission to bite and again hundreds of yards from the goal. He'll even say it looks like a conscious decision, the relentless punishment of a match with a clear multiplayer spirit that doesn't look positive on the opposite option and refuses to face his challenges. much to escalate. Anyway, and the salvation of some tough end-to-end issues (paying attention to the harbor scene, which is even in the company), the finishing of section 2 alone is challenging but manageable. However, once that point is over, it's essential that we learn to make friends.

Because Section 2 does not end by abandoning the last fortress. I could afford to do this because, as I said, we talked about an expensive one that, in my particular case, comfortably exceeded the 40-hour mark of the final film, but for something we spoke to. about developing content expectations. This is their end game, the real core of the game in a genre that is increasingly aimed at competing for the long-term commitment of the player and a chapter in which the division 2 both trusted for absolutely critical aspects. retain its global supply. . This is the case, for example, of specializations, a system that gives agents a new system of experience, a new skill tree to unlock and more important, a new grenade launcher ( I miss why someone wants to choose the sniper or the crossbow, the truth) with which death and destruction are sown and which we simply cannot use in the initial campaign. This is what I call "big bet"

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But pursuing our new toys to the same goals will always be boring. That is why the game is the first time, and has been sent back for what is undoubtedly his star action, the Black Fangs, a group of apostate military contractors who are different from what has been seen so far to know what they're doing. Now we're going with professionals, with well-equipped types who aren't happy to win the forces of competitive factions, have done the same with missions, changing goals, and of course, the forces facing them. They are not radical changes, and the architecture is essentially the same, but the incentive to play again is there, and the challenge grows to the reward: the enemies are harder, but with level 30 and specializations it also gets the team point system, a simulation of the light plane seen in Destiny, already being tested in the original DLC and this accomplishes the search for competent booty in the new engine of the program. At least until we return to release all the forces and hit the new level, when everything starts again: there's a first round, a second and so on, which tops the top gear in each case. Increase and drop along the way new features like advanced contracts.

As it may seem, there is little room for PVP modalities, but Section 2 did not come to take prisoners. Yet, with the forgetfulness of the strictly competitive modes, I think it is smarter to dedicate the few lines I have left to a dark area, which, according to the general spirit of excess, is now unfolding in three, which the east, south and west of the government districts that use the agents to make each other's way. The fundamental desire, the location of targets and pieces of contaminated equipment to be evacuated in helicopter and leaving the fertile ground for betrayal and coercion, will make my excellent design and leave as many as possible the now three different types of environments. Remarkable of this new incarnation is again the way to fully understand your audience. To understand the essence of multiplayer and to say that human nature itself capitalizes on how miserable we are by a system of apostate agents that can now be activated to taste and go through three incremental phases: we can A little bit naughty, stealing some loads, triangular the position of a retreat just for apostates and returning to normal, we can use this state to get some kill friends and that thing is very complicated, or we can drop a murderous organ and try to survive the reward that falls to our head The emerging implications of this I give to the reader, but I insist : Within the triple A scene, it is extremely rare to see designs so pure, so minimalist, so extremely elegant.

And maybe the secret is that, simplicity. The purity and faithfulness of some are strong enough to support the weight of the skyscraper Ubisoft's attempted here. It does not always succeed, because as I say there are lazy moments and most of all flutter the shadow of that almost mathematical coldness that hampered the first delivery, but as a rule and beyond the narrative to The Division 2 It's hard to dive. Do not put anything new, but are in almost everything solvent, and even pay attention to the repetition of a scheme that we know well (excellent fight, forgotten history, lists of outrageous goals), which is so different from others recent releases. Perhaps, I repeat, it's just a matter of psychology, experience, and knowing how to work with these worlds. Maybe it's about the board, or maybe it's just a matter of tables.

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