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Watch Dogs 2

PS4 Video Games Windows XBOX
8.3

Great

Game Reviews from around the web

98

The UI is wonderful. You have so much information immediately available to you. Nudle Maps always has a mini-map in the lower left corner, giving you a good look at the area. Bringing up information on people gives you a crisp, clear window. Hacking offers a menu with easily recognizable icons, so you always know what your button presses will do.

97

Watch Dogs 2 has created an immersive world, disturbingly close to the real one. It’s still a fictitious San Francisco, but sometimes it’s difficult to tell which bits are made up. With rich, in depth missions, colourful characters, and fun open world gameplay, this might just be the best game I’ve played this year.

95

It’s much better than the first in lots of ways.

91

What Watch Dogs 2 has done for the newly-minted Ubisoft IP, and for the hacking culture they so enthusiastically embrace, is prove above and beyond that the concept and foundation are sound. They’ve injected more fun and diversity this time around, and they’ve done so with a city backdrop that is truly alive, and is utterly inviting.

90

Its varied just enough to make the entire experience quite refreshing. And really that’s what Watch Dogs 2 comes down to. It’s a refreshing and easy going world to be in. Even when the narrative tries to up the stakes you can go on hacking the world and making it do whatever it is you want to do. The game is opened up just enough to allow for the insane to happen and when it does Watch Dogs 2 really shines. It’s not a momentous step forward for the franchise but anyone sitting on the sideline worried that Ubisoft slept on the criticism of the first, fret not, Watch Dogs 2 is a better game in every way from its predecessor.

90

Watch Dogs 2 is Ubisoft open world at its finest. Full to bursting with fun and interesting content, Watch Dogs 2 carefully balances hacker culture, serious moments, and engaging storylines to create a game that has something to say. With far more personality in its protagonist, it’s very easy to recommend Watch Dogs 2.

90

Watch_Dogs 2 is a textbook example of a great sequel. It takes what was so much fun from the first game, expands it and cuts away most of what the players didn’t enjoy.

90

Watch Dogs 2 it’s a triumph over the first game… And one of this year’s biggest surprises. Gameplay-wise it’s pure fun, the change of tone fits the story perfectly and the recreation of San Francisco might be the most vibrant and interesting virtual city we’ve had the pleasure to explore. All sequels should be like this.

90

Watch Dogs 2 is the proper way to do a sequel. The series is now back in my category of games I care about, which says a lot after how forgettable the first game truly was. I love the tone, the whimsical nature, and just exploring the gorgeous interpretation of San Francisco. Sure it has some bad story pacing, and plenty of useless open world mission types, but I still had a blast playing it.

90

Watch Dogs 2 is an engaging, exciting and challenging game with a clear identity. Everything that did not work in its predecessor is gone.

90

Watch Dogs 2 is such a fully realized mid-2010s time capsule that—even if the online features are unavailable down the line—it would make for an especially insightful playthrough a decade from now, personal San Francisco native bias notwithstanding.

90

The sincere belief in a pack mentality is just one reason why Watch Dogs 2 is such an improvement over its predecessor.

90

Ubisoft has successfully recreated what made Grand Theft Auto great, but incorporates enough original ideas to set Marcus’ journey apart and make it feel fresh.

90

Watch Dogs 2 improves on every aspect from the original game, San Francisco is a world I want to spend time in and Marcus is a protagonist I actually enjoyed. It’s charming and imaginative all while not taking itself too seriously. If you’re looking for a sandbox adventure to fill some of the time until Red Dead Redemption 2, then Watch Dogs 2 might fill that craving.

90

Watch Dogs 2 delivers a great story-driven experience and a cast of characters that are easy to like, but it also solves most of the problems of its predecessor.

90

Watch Dogs 2 is the game we wanted to play the first time around. It’s bold, beautiful and tells a story filled with people you care about and missions that are well built, exciting and sometimes hilarious. The hacking options are extensive and enable you to have a lot of fun and be creative with the missions, despite the often serious tone of the story itself. The player choice is immense too, fully putting the player in the driving seat. If the driving itself just had more personality, Watch Dogs 2 would be perfect.

90

They managed to retain that core ambition that they had the first time around, but adjusted quite well to the criticisms levied against their project. What resulted is a game that is the same at heart, but is alive with variety and a hero we could actually stand behind without question. Watch Dogs 2 is what a sequel should be in every sense. A bigger, better, bolder take on what the first entry only treads.

90

Ubisoft removes that painful thorn from its side with Watch Dogs 2, and they can boast they have a great sandbox franchise. Its not the fact that it creates anything really new, but that it improves every hack possibility, the main difference between Watch Dogs and the rest of sandbox games. What’s more, the lighting, the vibrant colors that compose San Francisco, and the sass of this sequel are exactly what it needed. Add a seamless multiplayer that rewards co-op action and you have stumbled upon the best sandbox of the year.

90

Watch Dogs 2 represents a great quality improvement over its weak predecessor. It features very polished graphics and a great story mode with personality and style.

90

The missions are varied and intense, and the characters provide plenty of great moments. If you’re craving a game with a gorgeous, busy and unique open world, this is the game for you.

90

I was expecting Watch Dogs 2 to be more enjoyable than its predecessor, but I didn’t expect it to be so well designed and full of heart. Watch Dogs 2 isn’t reinventing the open-world game and fans of Ubisoft’s special brand of go-places-and-pick-things-up gameplay will feel right at home, but it’s one of the best examples the genre has to offer – as long as you don’t want to shoot anything.

90

It’s a vibrant world, more upbeat and less cruel than what we usually see in the genre, and its main characters finally seem like they’re having fun as a goofy group of hackers should. Combined with improved gameplay systems, and you will also be having fun eventually. It took me a few hours to realize that Watch Dogs 2 really had turned a corner, and after a full playthrough, I went from high skeptical to undeniably impressed.

90

Most importantly, Watch Dogs 2 offers a sense of humor running through it that the series badly needed. You don’t need miserable family death stories in a ludicrous game about “smart cities” and cartoony hackers. You need writing that leans into the silliness, that has a laugh at its own expense, which is exactly what this game gets.

90

Watch Dogs 2 does a great job of demonstrating the potential perils of a too-connected world and improves upon the first game in multiple ways. This is not a guns over brains game – there is an interesting topic at play here about our society’s dependence on technology and Ubisoft deserves credit for exploring this theme. The characters and narrative are leaps and bounds more engaging than the revenge tale the original game tried to paint.

90

Watch Dogs 2 is the perfect sequel. It takes everything that made the first game unique and original, and expands on all of it. Everything is better, from the hacking, to the story, the setting and the variety of content. Watch Dogs 2 is far from being just more of the same. An apt comparison could be the jump from the first Assassins Creed game to Assassins Creed 2. While the first was a promising yet clunky new idea, the sequel delivered on that idea and turned it into one of the most iconic series of the last decade. With Watch Dogs 2, Ubisoft is well on its way to recreating that same magic.

87

It’s obvious how much progress Ubisoft has made in terms of quality of side activities: in Watch Dogs 2 they have their own cutscenes, dialogue and interesting set-ups. Even something as benign as taxi missions isn’t limited to moving someone from point A to point B: for example, you may get a fare who writes a blog about extreme lifestyle, so she’ll want you to make some risky jumps in your car. [Issue#214, p.36]

Game World Navigator Magazine

87

Watch Dogs 2 is a funny to play and very good looking game. It’s not perfect, though, especially when it comes to driving sessions. Overall, we have a very nice new entry in the free roaming genre.

85

Even though its style and characters are not so appealing, Watch Dogs 2 is certainly an improvement over the first game in almost every respect and one of the best games the “open-world” genre has offered in recent years.

85

Watch Dogs 2’s distinctive hacking and puzzle mechanics do a great job of reminding you that you’re not playing just another Grand Theft Auto clone as you tear through it’s beautiful Bay Area map. Marcus is a bit too friendly of a guy to be believable as our instrument of mayhem, but the flexible missions let you get through mostly non-violently if you’re good enough at stealth. And when it works, multiplayer is good unconventional cat-and-mouse fun, too.

85

A more-than-decent sequel that aptly addresses the criticism the first game received. We could’ve done without the framedrops, however.

85

Watch Dogs 2 really adds up to its predecessor and comes up as a solid, entertaining product. It has a really nice set of gameplay mechanics and this time the city feels very alive. It truly is a great experience this time.

85

Watch Dogs 2 comes to define the gameplay basis of the series with a lot of options and variety. The game has a very good campaign, characters full of personality, tons of style, a rich and detailed open world and enough things to do that give us many hours of fun. It’s a real surprise for the franchise.

85

Watch Dogs 2 is definitely an improvement over the original. The entire vibe of the series has changed for the better, with likable characters, tongue-in-cheek scenarios, and a new hacks and gadgets that will keep you busy for quite a while.

85

Watch Dogs 2 is a really good game, better than its predecessor in every single aspect. It also carries some of the issues of the original WD, like the car handling, but it still is a solid adventure with a lot of content and great moments.

85

It’s a rare example of a big-budget game looking to make a statement. Even more rare, it succeeds by starting with a central thesis and communicating ideas through player action. That it also manages to be a rip-roaring good time is almost irrelevant. You can patch a framerate, but you can’t patch a story or gameplay, and on those fronts Watch Dogs 2 is nigh unimpeachable.

85

I expected Watch Dogs 2 to be a paint-by-numbers sequel — more guns, more cars, a bigger playground. Instead, it gives players freedom to play with the world with hackmagic the way they want to, and crafts a memorable, mostly light-hearted story that’s just a lot of fun. Considering the heavy subject matter woven in, that’s even more of an accomplishment than it seems like.

85

Watch Dogs comes with a very rich sandbox, full of beautiful missions and hacks, but the story doesn’t deliver.

85

Watch Dogs 2 is the game that the first one should have been and is a shining example of Ubisoft’s already proven ability to respond well to feedback. It offers true freedom and creativity to play the way you want, laugh out loud moments found in scripted events and self-made fun in a virtual city that needs to be seen to be believed. Starring characters that you’ll genuinely care about the more you get to know them you’ll have no trouble finding motivation to see this one through to the end.

83

Watch Dogs 2 is better than the its first installment, but it’s far from being perfect. We love San Francisco & Marcus, but the game’s narrative is not great, the driving is not good and we have been waiting for the multiplayer experience for almost two weeks after its initial release.

83

There’s a living world inside of Watch Dogs 2 that’s interesting to explore. If the game had some more variation in its mission structure, it would’ve been even better.

83

Ubisoft is definitely on the right path with their newest interpretation of open world action. For a metropolis like Frisco the streets could be more crowded, but the interactions you can actually witness are giving the impression of a breathing living city. That aside the hacking action relies a little too much on too similar patterns within the main missions, although in the last third there are enough pace changes and surprises to keep you going, while the script as well as the characters keep this more light hearted and cheek-in-tongue hacker tale alive.

83

Watch Dogs 2 is far superior to the original and is probably much closer to Ubisoft’s original vision than what they released back in 2013. It’s still a little unpolished compared to the competition, and the seamless multiplayer not being online may scare off some players at the moment, though the game certainly does a nice job scratching that modern, open world crime drama itch.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is a solid extension of the series and not the complete load of ctOSS it could have been. It’s not quite the Assassin’s Creed 2 of Ubisoft’s hacking brand, but it’s certainly a fun-packed and exciting ride, which benefits from less generic mission design and a vibrant open world to enjoy.

80

Whereas the first Watch Dogs was shackled to an emotionally-stunted protagonist whose personality made everything drabber around him, the new game feels like a hacker fantasy infused with the ensemble dynamics of a feel-good teen movie.

80

By shifting the tone and putting the emphasis on your hacker tools rather than guns, Watch Dogs 2 feels like a more fun and more thoughtful game, without losing the ability to create mayhem when the itch strikes. The controls can be an obstacle at times, and it’s a shame that it’s missing online features at launch, but it gives you a lot of room to experiment and play with your options.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is an excellent sequel that ditches the earnestness of its predecessor, pumps up the power fantasy, and turns players loose in a vibrant and engaging city. It’s one of the best open world games to come around in a while.

80

Better than the first game, but not quite up there where it should be. Too much hype is too much hype. Nice implementation of online play, though.

80

Watch Dogs 2 excels where the first part did not. If you can get over awkward characters and dull story you get a funny city action with colorful possibilities and lots of activities from the beginning to the very end.

80

The detail in Watch Dogs 2’s world, the colour in its characters and the sheer fun you can have mucking around with its mechanics make for a great, albeit not all-time great, open-world adventure.

80

The new, light-hearted tone and its likable cast of characters are a good fit for this series. But it’s a shame that Ubisoft couldn’t get its online features working properly before it launched.

80

Watch Dogs 2 manages to improve on almost every point that made its predecessor so disappointing. It’s a more robust open-world game, packed with meaningful content and mechanics that beg the player to experiment and toy with them. Though it still hangs onto some facets a little too tightly, this is one sequel that manages to make its opening act seem like a mistake best left forgotten.

80

Watch Dogs 2’s world is a step up from the first game’s dreary rendition of Chicago, and even though Watch Dogs 2 can’t go toe-to-toe with genre heavyweights, it’s hard to walk away from its fun-loving attitude and exuberant cast.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is a superior game to its predecessor and a thoroughly entertaining romp in a season light on open world offerings.

80

The tone shifts could leave a bad taste in some people’s mouths but overall, any negatives of Watch Dogs 2 are minor and far outweighed by the sheer amount of fun that can be had in this vibrant and exciting world.

80

Watch Dogs offers convincing hacking mechanics and freedom of play, but the futuristic scenario isn’t used as much as it could be.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is a very good game, at least in solo mode, as the multiplayer part of the game is closed right now because of strong issues.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is missing a bit of refinement, and has had issues with multiplayer, but joining DedSec is still a riot and a half. It’s high energy fun with engaging characters, and you can make an entire city your playground.

VideoGamer

80

No matter their preferred playstyle, gamers can expect an exciting journey through the Bay Area. With new devices and an entertaining ensemble of characters, this is an impressive evolution of the Watch Dogs franchise.

80

Watch Dogs 2 shows us how Ubisoft can right its wrongs and create a powerful and fantastic Open world full of possibilities.

80

A rare sequel where the developers took a chance instead of sticking by what was a successful formula. Although I personally wasn’t a fan of the original Watch Dogs, the game sold well and Ubisoft could have easily slapped some new paint on it and released another dreary, boring game. They didn’t though, and I hope it’s a trend other developers pick up on because Watch Dogs 2 is a superior product.

80

Watch Dogs 2 excels at variety and, although there are many repetitive chores that players can choose to do in the open world, the main campaign never feels stale or redundant. Each mission takes players to a new, unique location full of bizarre characters and pop culture references and the lengthy campaign manages to fly by thanks to the immersive environment and the entertaining company that Marcus keeps.

80

Packing a vibrant, immersive open world, likeable cast of characters, and an engaging plot, Watch Dogs 2 is a good-looking, entertaining hacking romp that’s not afraid to make a statement on today’s technology-obsessed society. Its missions can be tackled in a variety of ways: Combat is always an option, but the game really comes into its own when you’re using your suite of technology-disrupting tools to creatively outwit the enemy. It’s involving, rewarding, and a lot of fun.

80

Watch Dogs 2 has its main target on younger players, but can be an interesting free roaming for older ones as well. Despite a boring story and a imperfect driving model, the game is enough fun to be worth your money.

80

Overall Watch Dogs 2 is an improvement over the original. A fresh new protagonist and setting drastically overhaul the sombre nature of the original and create an enjoyable sandbox in the process. While Watch Dogs 2 doesn’t reinvent the wheel when it comes to open world gameplay, it does provide enough creative ideas to keep even the most seasoned gamer amused.

80

I could not be happier with the direction Ubisoft took with Watch Dogs 2, casting off the serious tone of the first game and replacing it with bright colors, fun characters, and light humor. Combat is pretty boring, but the multiple hacking options almost making shooting obsolete in the right hands.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is everything the original should have been, complete with an interesting cast of characters, a vibrant city to explore, and the freedom to tackle missions as you see fit.

80

Even if San Francisco is a far better place than Chicago, Watch DOgs 2 still has some flaws like an insipid hero and a very bad driving feel. Still a pretty good open world game for wannabe hackers.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is everything that Watch Dogs was supposed to be. San Fransisco is the place to be with stunning environments that are hard to not love. On top of that, the story doesn’t take itself too seriously and feels a lot better this time.

80

Watch Dogs 2 has learned from the mistakes that Watch Dogs made. It has an interesting cast of characters, the city is full of colour and the smartphone is used well. It has some flaws however, but those don’t take too much away from the experience.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is no great leap forward, but it sees the series headed in the right direction with more colour, more flair and a real sense of fun. The action’s solid and the mission design much less generic, while Ubisoft Montreal has given you a great set of tools and the freedom to use them as you will. If the original Watch Dogs was a mean-looking hound, all bark, no bite, the sequel’s a more playful pooch that’s all about having a good time – and it’s all the better for it.

80

While I still think that the best from Watch Dogs is still to come, Watch Dogs 2 is a solid step up from its predecessor. Getting to be a hacker is phenomenal fun, but the game tends to stumble when it becomes a sub-par third-person shooter. If you’re willing to put up with a story that doesn’t always jive with the light-hearted feel of its characters, then you’ll experience one of the most interesting open-world games in years.

80

I’m genuinely surprised with how much I adore Watch Dogs 2’s world. Its satire works because it is always punching up, never down. As such, Watch Dogs 2 feels like it’s making a statement. Rudyard Kipling once said, “San Francisco has only one drawback – ’tis hard to leave.” While Watch Dogs 2 isn’t as faultless as Kipling’s vision of Northern California, you’ll still want to spend tens of hours wandering this virtual recreation of the famous city and on into the Bay Area beyond.

80

The new sandbox by Ubisoft enhances the gameplay of its predecessor, improving every respect of the formula. Yet, the narrative mood is often excessive and gross.

80

It’s still lacking a certain je ne sais quoi, but this is a definite improvement on the first game and a serious alternative to GTA V.

80

Getting the most out of Watch Dogs 2 requires a good deal of patience and the resolve to play the way you’re supposed to play – especially when you first start out.

80

The game’s protagonist and accompanying cast of characters are fun to watch, and the hacking mechanics are better than ever. It’s just too bad that the overall story is forgettable, as it never really sucks you in despite its best efforts. Even so, those looking for an open-world experience mixed with fantastic hacking mechanics likely won’t be disappointed with what Watch Dogs 2 has to offer.

80

Watch Dogs 2 is better than the previous episode gameplay-wise, but the new characters and the story show one step behind Ubisoft’s standards. It’s a fun game, though, so if you love open world titles with a lot of activities, you’ll enjoy this big and entertaining experience.

78

Watch Dogs 2 addresses many of the issues of the first game, putting hacking at the forefront, but its narrative struggles to stay engaging. Although the cast is unlikeable, the parodies and its ability to not take itself seriously brings charm. The stellar hacking mechanics can make your actions, such as taking control of a satellite in outer space, feel grandiose and unstoppable in entertaining ways.

75

Overall, I’m a lot more positive on Watch Dogs 2 than I expected to be. It doesn’t feel like it’s entirely finished (the multiplayer’s still pretty broken, for one thing), but it’s a huge step forward compared to the first game.

75

A vast improvement on the dull muddle that was the original Watch Dogs, Watch Dogs 2 embraces its chaotic, silly side without sacrificing the key components that gave the original such promise. It’s prevented from grasping further glory by some damaging technical issues and a seamless online experience being notably absent, but Watch Dogs 2 is still a big bundle of joy.

75

Watch Dogs 2 tells the story of Marcus Holloway in a completely different way than the first chapter. There are some interesting additions that will be digested only if they’re close to your personal taste. This is a fun title that can entertain you for a few dozen hours without difficulty, but it isn’t able to emotionally get you in the beautiful but hardly-dynamic San Francisco.

73

Watch Dogs 2 is a lot better than the first Watch Dogs, but the story, the raison d’etre of the group and the reason for their behavior are all a bit vague. This game, full of bizarre missions and diverse gameplay is a very good solid game for the series though.

70

Overall, Watch Dogs 2 is a solid title that improves upon the original in gameplay and plot but still has some flaws. It’s too easy at times, and the plot isn’t structured well enough to have the desired impact, but that’s easy to forgive when you’re setting up a Rube Goldberg contraption to send a hacked car covered with sticky bombs into the middle of a group of gang members. It won’t drastically change your mind if you disliked the first Watch Dogs, but if you found it flawed but fun, you’ll probably enjoy the bulk of the sequel’s improvements. The drop-in multiplayer and freedom of gameplay do a lot to keep the title feeling engaging, but it depends on a player’s creativity in order to thrive.

70

Watch Dogs 2 is a bold sequel with some issues. Not all gameplay modifications are good, there are some bugs and performance on consoles isn’t perfect. What’s more the main story is pretty far from interesting but fortunately side missions remedy that. Ubisoft’s new game can be really entertaining but you can’t take it seriously. It works well as a cool and pretty funny product.

70

Strange sequel. The world is bigger and hacking is more advanced, but there’s a lack of real innovation. Story is mediocre and the new tone won’t sit right with everyone. Overall a solid game, with nothing exceptional to note.

60

For now, what looks at first like a few hopeful steps forward for this fledgling franchise turns out to be too much shuffling sideways. The protagonist is more interesting, the writing and voice acting vastly improved, and the tactical components more intricate and differentiated. But it’s too easy and tempting to exploit the most powerful among the latter, to play ants off ants ad nauseam, or just go in guns-a-blazin’, a blithe and hypocritical madman.

Game Reviews from around the web

It’s not a perfect experience by any stretch. Technical hiccups and pacing issues are glaring enough to leave Grand Theft Auto V’s open-world crown unmoved—but just barely. Watch Dogs 2 builds upon a pretty good foundation from the last game with most of the trappings you’ll want from a zillions-of-hours open-world quest.

Watch Dogs 2 builds upon the strengths of the original game, whilst polishing up aspects that lacked depth to deliver a coherent, comprehensive experience. Its diverse cast and (mostly) thought-provoking narrative trump the occasionally repetitive, maddening gunplay, and though the urban youth humour occasionally falls flat, for the most part its characters feel, talk, and react convincingly. The lengthy story mission alone offers hour after hour of combat and exploration but, unlike the original, I’m left wanting more once it’s all over… and this time, for all the right reasons.

I liked Watch Dogs 2, though perhaps not quite as much as it wanted me to like it. It is a significant improvement over its predecessor, filled with challenges that tested my problem-solving skills. It compensates for its technical shortcomings with a raft of interesting new ideas and a near-endless supply of things to do. Its motley crew of hackers won me over with their unflappable enthusiasm, and its loving recreation of San Francisco made me nostalgic for a city that I’m generally happy to have left behind. All that, and little flying robots, too.

In expanding the first game’s clever hacking options and through a story about taking on a system overwhelmingly stacked against the people, Watch Dogs 2 strikes an even more powerful chord at this precise moment in time. And if it went just a little bit farther in embracing that story and found a better balance between silliness and seriousness, it would be essential, rather than just cathartic. [Provisional Score = 80]

Summary

Watch Dogs 2 lives up to what the first game should have been. Much like the Assassin's Creed franchise, Ubisoft seems to take some time to get it right.
8.3

Great

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