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August 2, 2018

The Division 2 for PlayStation 4: Everything you need to know

by John_A

Save Washington, D.C. from falling into the enemy’s hands.

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Back in 2016, Ubisoft introduced an original new IP called The Division. Set in New York City, The Division’s roots started firmly in the loot shooter genre. The genre isn’t difficult to describe: you shoot a bunch of baddies, get a bunch of gun, skill, and equipment upgrades, and then shoot bigger baddies to get even better upgrades.

The Division did this well at its core, but a lack of end-game content in the early going hurt Ubisoft up against games like Destiny. That changed over time, however, as the company spent the next couple of years doling out regular dosages of content and giving players something to do once they’ve reached the highest plateau.

Now, it’s time for the sequel and considering Ubisoft is going to take everything they’ve learned from their first crack at bat, expect The Division 2 to come out of the starting gate strong. Everything you need to know about The Division 2 is right here.

What is The Division 2?

The Division 2 is the sequel to an original loot shooter brought to us by Ubisoft. The game tasked you with taking on a rising threat of criminals in a New York City ravaged by disease and outbreak.

As with the original, The Divison 2 is played entirely online, though you can choose to tackle your missions solo if you so wish. But it’s always better with friends, right? You can finish those missions with up to three other people, either those you invite or through a matchmaking system.

The game is developed by Massive Entertainment, and the studio will receive help from all over, with Ubisoft Shanghai, Ubisoft Bucharest, Ubisoft Annecy, Redstorm, and Reflections all lending a hand to complete this massive undertaking. The game will be built on an updated version of Ubisoft’s Snowdrop Engine, which has been used to make much of the company’s current generation games to date.

What’s the story? Spoilers Ahead

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In the original game, you are dropped into the middle of a New York that has been quarantined for a smallpox outbreak. The outbreak occurred on Black Friday and was transmitted by a virus that was planted on various banknotes. The distribution method and timing of the attack points to terrorist activities, but despite knowing it was a criminal act, the attack was too big and fast to handle.

That outbreak was significant enough to wipe out much of the civilization in New York City. Your job as an agent of the Strategic Homeland Division — otherwise known as The Division — was to get in, rebuild the agency’s base of operations, and help drive out the criminals who have taken control of much of the areas.

The plot eventually goes on to reveal that a biochemist known as Dr. Gordon Amherst developed a virus called Green Poison, with his goal being to wipe out much of humanity in efforts to preserve the earth. While Amherst was eventually killed by his own creation, a rogue Division agent ended up believing in the cause, so much so that he went rogue, killed a bunch of his colleagues, and took on the challenge of carrying out Dr. Amherst’s dream.

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In The Division 2, a new epidemic has made its way to Washington D.C. It’s currently unclear whether the outbreak is based on the same smallpox epidemic that hit New York City or if it’s Dr. Amherst’s virus making its way to the nation’s capital. We do know that the backdrop for the story will be some sort of civil war, however, and that one group appears to be planning a coup to take control of what little government remains. Your goal will be to thwart those efforts, because if Washington, D.C. falls then so does America.

The game begins at level 30

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The Division 2 will take after the original with its mix of loot shooting and RPG gameplay. While a riveting story will usually be enough to drive the player to finish the game, the promise of new abilities, equipment, and guns as you level up serves as the addictive mechanic that’ll keep you coming back. You’ll find new backpacks, gloves, armor pieces, guns, and a whole assortment of mods and attachments, each with varying degrees of rarities, status, and bonuses.

Players can choose between three classes — survivalist, sharpshooter, or demolition, each with their own set of subclasses — which will shape how they build their character. The survivalist is the medic of the crop, going around and healing teammates and fixing deployments to keep everyone alive for the fight. The sharpshooter naturally sits back to try and pop foes from a distance to make it easier for the guys up front. And demolitions experts will, of course, be the official proponents of blowing things up. Each class has its own skill tree with a variety of abilities and items to support any play style.

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And that’s where The Division 2’s end-game will draw in the most dedicated and hardcore of players. You’ll spend much of your time after the campaign collecting and optimizing gear that enhances your preferred abilities and attributes. A sharpshooter might find a sniper rifle that adds 25% more damage on headshots, alongside a grip that lessens the sway you experience when aiming down sights. The goal is to get stronger in order to take on more challenging content, and it’s this system that explains why the game doesn’t truly begin until you hit level 30.

As far as content and modes are concerned, we know that the Dark Zone will be returning. This was an interesting area in the original game where things were far more dangerous. Enemies are tougher, and there are areas you can’t go without having proper anti-viral equipment on. While many of the enemies in the Dark Zone are still NPC enemies, you can also get into firefights with other players.

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Much of the conflict that breaks out here is typically over the extraction of loot. You see, the Dark Zone is where the strongest gear is found, but to get it you have to first extract it via helicopter. Some players will be too busy finding their own loot to bother yours, but others might just as well shoot you and take everything you’ve worked for. It’s an intense dynamic which made the lack of a more structured PVP mode sting less.

And in The Division 2, getting that loot out of the Dark Zone will be more important than ever, with Ubisoft planning to introduce raids. These raids can be joined by up to 8 people, all of whom will work together to complete their objective and come out with some serious rewards.

The best part of all this is that Ubisoft is planning to make the entire first year of content for The Division 2 absolutely free. Community fragmentation due to premium content is one of the biggest things that contributed to the original game’s early stumbles, so it’s nice to know that it’s being addressed for the new title.

Play The Division 2 Beta

There will be a beta test for The Division 2, and fans can sign up to play it once available. Ubisoft has mentioned that the first of these betas will be closed, which sounds like there may be more than one beta period before the game’s launch.

In any case, signing up is easy: simply head to Ubisoft’s website, sign in with your UPlay account, and select which platform you’re interested in. You’ll get an email with further instructions if and when you’re eventually selected.

Sign up for The Division 2 beta

When can you play it?

The Division 2 launches March 15th, 2019. You’ll be able to play it on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. To get ready for the game, Ubisoft is running an event in the original game called Road to The Division 2 which lets you complete monthly challenges to earn exclusive items for the new game. You can find The Division for sale at Amazon.

See at Amazon

PlayStation 4

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