The Division releases on March 8, so with the impeding release of Ubisoft’s next big game just around the corner, we take a look at 10 things you might not know about The Division. Up until now, details about The Division and what kind of game it actually is have been hard to find, however with the lifting of the embargo, the floodgates have opened and information regarding the game is flooding out left, right and center.
So here are 10 things you might now know, but need to know about The Division.
1) The Division is most certainly an RPG
It’s been debated numerous times before about whether or not The Division is an RPG, we’ve even had those discussions here on Gaming Respawn, but I stand by the fact that The Division is most certainly an RPG.
For starters, you create your very own agent, unlock skills and abilities, earn experience points as well as having a customisable base you can build up as you seek to restore order in New York. The Division is very much stat-based and has a lot of the HUD elements you would expect in a MMORPG. It just happens that The Division also has very solid shooting mechanics. Ubisoft don’t tend to offer much when it comes to RPG elements in its games, but The Division is certainly the exception to that rule. The aim of the game is to restore New York and bring it back from the brink after the city has been ravaged by a virus. The aim is not to shoot and kill as many people as possible, unless you venture into the Dark Zone of course.
2) The Division’s concept is based on a real life simulation by the US Government
The background story of The Division and the game’s concept is actually based on a real life simulation which was run by the US Government back in 2001 to see what the impacts would be in the event of a smallpox outbreak and how would be best to contain such an outbreak as it quickly spreads throughout cities. The simulation was code-named Operation Dark Winter and it concluded that the US was not prepared for a biological attack on the country or for a virus outbreak, with infrastructure and society quickly collapsing under the pressure.
The Division shows players what it could be like if such an outbreak were to happen in real life.
3) You have your own base you can build up
One of the features of The Division which was kept relatively quiet until now is that you will have your own Base of Operations which you can clean up and expand as you attempt to re-take control of New York. Your Base of Operations will include different wings which you can upgrade to provide you with new buffs for your character as well as providing your base with vendors so that you can purchase weapons and gear to take with you out into the world. Not only that, but it will also include a crafting station so that you can modify your weapons and customise them. You can also upgrade and improve your base by completing tasks in the district that your base is located in.
4) Ubisoft announced The Division originally just for Xbox One & PS4
When The Division was announced back at E3 2013, the game was due to come out on Xbox One and PS4 only, with no PC release revealed. Ubisoft left the fate of a PC release in the hands of PC gamers however. The catch? If enough people signed a petition to bring The Division to PC, then Ubisoft would consider it. Nearly 140,000 people signed the petition to bring the game to PC and were therefore subsequently successful.
The question is, why did Ubisoft want PC gamers to shout loudly to bring the game to PC? Maybe it was a clever marketing tool to keep the game on people’s minds? Who knows, but it certainly hasn’t gone away since 2013 that’s for sure!
5) You can create and customise your own Agent
Just in case there are still those people who doubt The Division’s RPG credentials, the game allows you to create and customise your very own agent. That’s because it is an RPG game and gives players that attachment to their character, just like in an RPG. Funny that?
While it’s not the most in-depth character creator you’ve ever seen, it does allow you to change a number of different factors including skin colour, eye colour, tattoos, hair style and accessories as well as your actual face to make yourself look unique and standout from the crowd. Check out the video above to see it in action.
6) New York City is recreated and modeled accurately in The Division
Since The Division is set in New York City, it would be pretty shit if the environment didn’t resemble much of New York wouldn’t it? Thankfully, that’s not the case, with New York being recreated accurately and features all of the landmarks the city is famous for, including Brooklyn Bridge and The Empire State Building as well as other areas such as the James Farley Post Office Building and Madison Square Garden. Of course, Ubisoft’s version of New York looks a little bit messier than it does in real-life, but that is due to the devastation that has hit the city, despite that, you will feel familiar in the game’s virtual New York, especially if you live in or have ever visited the city. While it’s not an exact 1 to 1 copy, it is pretty darn close.
7) The Division has seemless multiplayer and no loading screens
Yep, the only loading screen you will encounter in The Division will be heading into the game. Once you have selected your character and jumped into New York, there are no more loading screens. Players can drop in and out of co-op play seamlessly with up to 3 other players, as well as entering the Dark Zone and engaging in PvP. It’s all seemless and no loading screens are in sight. You can even literally stumble across the Dark Zone and find yourself in the middle of PvP action without realising it as the mode doesn’t need loading. Pretty sweet huh?
8) Cash Contagion? The virus in The Division was helped spread by banknotes
In The Division, the pandemic which destroys New York all started on Black Friday, with the virus being transmitted via banknotes. Due to the quick turnover of money, the virus is able to spread across the United States quickly and efficiently, bringing the collapse of society with it. Ubisoft ask the very real question of what exactly is lurking on our banknotes. In one single day, one banknote can come into contact with multiple people in just a matter of hours.
Ubisoft took this a step further and created its Cash Contagion tool, which allows you to discover what is really lurking on the surface of your banknotes. The tool allows you to select either Pounds or Euros for your banknote, the amount it’s worth along with its serial number before revealing where it originally came from and how much urine, cocaine, marjuana and bacteria are on its surface. These are just estimates though, but Ubisoft say the results are estimated based on real-life data.
9) You can modify and craft weapons and equipment
The Division features extensive weapon modifications and customisation, allowing you to improve upon the base model of a gun so that it can suit your needs. Not only can you attach different mods to your weapons, but The Division also gives players the ability to craft items in the game such as weapons and equipment, including attachments. You can also change the skin of your weapons as well as how they handle, giving players the freedom to choose their own style. In addition to customising your weapons, you can also customise the look of your character and their equipment, including their armour.
10) You can create and play as up to 4 characters
In The Division, you can create and play as up to 4 different characters, meaning you can have four characters all on the go at the same time. When you load up the game, you can then pick what character you want to play as in that session. This mean’s that if you have a friend who has just joined the game, you can create a new character so that you can level up together. This is useful if your main character is much more polished and is a higher level. It also adds to the replayability and means that RPG fans can have a different character for a different playstyle.