Watch Dogs is “truly a systemic game”, lead designer claims

By Brenna Hillier, Monday, 8 July 2013 00:41 GMT

Ubisoft Montreal wants Watch Dogs to be a truly systemic experience in which the player’s actions and decisions interact with a dynamic game world – not a heavily-scripted, cinematic snooze-a-thon, in other words.

“There are many questions about the systemic or scripted nature of the game. Many people have doubts that we’ve scripted everything we shown,” lead game designer Danny Belanger told GamingBolt.

“This is truly a systemic game – a good example is our E3 2012 demo with the car accident done by hacking the traffic lights, it depends on the amount of vehicles present at the intersection when it is triggered.”

Belanger said the gravity of the accident is ‘totally dependent’ on the speed and amount of cars at that particular instant – something which is not scripted.

“Our goal is to give a lot of interesting tools to the player to modify, affect the simulation and let him be creative in using them to achieve his goals,” he added.

Belanger also said that the game is designed to allow players to “express themselves”.

“We are building an AI that supports stealth and shooting with the transitions required between the two states. This means that the player can take advantage of not being seen to engage into gunplay when he decides,” he said.

“With this angle, using technology becomes a core component of our game.”

Examples include using cameras to spot enemies in order to ambush them; using technology to modify cover; or taking down enemies with electricity.

Those who prefer to go in guns blazing can dop so, too, because Belanger believes it’s less fun to impose a gameplay style on the plater.

“We also have a full range of weapons at the player’s disposal – from basic pistols to grenade launchers, these can be used anywhere the player wants and it can create quite the mess when a fight breaks out in downtown Chicago. It becomes even more interesting when you add the range of city hacks and vehicles the player can use in combination with his arsenal.”

Watch Dogs is coming to PC, PlayStation 3, Wii U and Xbox 360 in November, with PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions still to be dated.

Thanks, Kotaku.

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