Monitoring the Watch_Dogs Multiplayer Gameplay

By Mark Delaney, 5 years ago
My smartphone lets me hail a taxi, order pizza, watch viral videos, and run through virtual temples. I used to think that was enough. Used to. Now all these Watch_Dogs previews make me wish my upgrade was due so I could get all the cool stuff that comes on Aiden Pearce's phone. From the E3 showfloor, our first look into Watch_Dogs' unique multiplayer offerings has emerged.

Unfortunately no video of the demonstration came with the details but what was shown hints at a new approach to online gaming. The demo highlighted an omnipresent multiplayer component wherein players from around the Xbox LIVE community can join your open world and interact with it in different ways. You can drop into the busy streets of near-future Chicago and hack into the host's phone (for currently non-specific reasons). From your point of view, your target looks like an NPC and you remain in the role of Aiden Pearce. In the host's viewpoint, the opposite is true. Both players remain as Aiden from their own screens, making the cat-and-mouse difficult for the player being hacked because he is searching among a sea of NPC-looking characters, trying to prevent the hack from completing. It sounds a bit like what we've seen online in the Assassin's Creed franchise.


The relationship between host and guest isn't necessarily adversarial, however. There are meant to be different objectives for you as the guest; some will include assisting the host, and if you really want to be creepy, you can just watch someone else play. If it sounds like it could get messy during missions, don't worry. The ability to join another's game is disabled when they are playing a main or side-mission, and if you really want to be aloof, you can disable the ability entirely. It's in the times that you aren't progressing through the game in any measured way that this type of emergent gameplay arises, which will hopefully keep Watch_Dogs fresh long after you've snooped on everyone's private business, Mr. President.

Watch_Dogs releases for Xbox 360 and Xbox One this November.
Mark Delaney
Written by Mark Delaney
Mark is a Boston native now living in Portland, Oregon. He's the Editorial Manager on TA, loves story-first games, and is one of three voices on the TA Playlist podcast. Outside of games he likes biking, sci-fi, the NFL, and spending time with his fiancée and son. He almost never writes in the third person.