Earlier this week, Ubisoft held a financial earnings call where the company revealed it has three unannounced games coming out before the end of March 2020.
Speculation is high as to what those three games could be. One very likely option is Watch Dogs 3. Come November, it will have been three years since the release of Watch Dogs 2. For Ubisoft – who, until recently, released massive Assassin’s Creed games a year apart, and had just 11 months between Far Cry 5 and Far Cry New Dawn – three years is practically forever.
So we feel pretty confident in building our excitement for a new entry into the Watch Dogs series. And it’s got us thinking: just what do we want from the franchise? We loved both Watch Dogs games, but they were both very different.
Moody Aiden from Watch Dogs 1 let a darker, more visceral action-led game. Watch Dogs 2‘s Marcus on the other hand, was hipper, younger and altogether more likeable. The game also had a lighter tone, thanks in part to its sunny San Francisco setting as opposed to a more dreary Chicago. Where Watch Dogs had you firing guns aplenty, Watch Dogs 2 led you towards stealth and non-lethal attacks.
So, just what do we want to see from Watch Dogs 3?
A new location
Rumours are rife that Watch Dogs 3 will be set in London. Ubisoft has not confirmed it – it hasn’t confirmed Watch Dogs 3 even exists, after all – but Ubisoft rumours have a tendency to be accurate. And London would make a great backdrop for the next Watch Dogs game. It’s a very varied city. The mix of old and new architecture makes for an interesting and exciting location to explore.
But if it’s not London, we’ll happily take anywhere that offers something a little different from Chicago or San Francisco. One was a bit too gloomy; the other a bit too bright and sunny. Watch Dogs’ themes are a little dark, after all. London feels like the perfect balance of those two extremes.
A balance of stealth and action
We loved Watch Dogs 2, but we didn’t like how it demanded pretty much every major action sequence to be tackled stealthily. Sure, Marcus’ gadgets – remote-controlled cars and drones – were cool, but we missed Aiden’s no-shits-given attitude of just walking in and opening fire. We hope that the Watch Dogs 3 allows us to tackle its biggest battles in whichever way we choose, with stealth or all-out warfare being equally valid tactics. As long as the bad guys are out of the way and we get what we want, does it matter how we get there?
A customisable protagonist
Both Aiden and Marcus were memorable, although not necessarily in the best ways. They were very different from one another, and the story of each game very much shaped around their personalities. We don’t necessarily want a massive Fallout 4-style character creator. We don’t mind if our character is a set person with a set gender. But we’d at least like to be able to shape their skillset and abilities a little. It would be good if their penchance for either stealthy non-lethal attacks or heavy gunplay was in some way influenced by the choices we make as players.
More ties to the previous games
Aiden Pierce popped up briefly in Watch Dogs 2, but it was very briefly. It would be nice if both him and Marcus Holloway played a larger role in Watch Dogs. DedSec, the underground hacking group at the heart of Watch Dogs, became a more intrinsic part of Watch Dogs 2, and it will undoubtedly be important in Watch Dogs 3, too. Aiden’s not a member of the group, but he’s worked with them, and Marcus is a key member of its outfit in San Franchise. We know it’s a worldwide group, so to see both Aiden and Marcus interact with the London brand of DedSec (or whichever city we happen to be in) would add some much-needed continuity to the series.
More hacking opportunities
Hacking is a big part of the Watch Dogs universe. It was practically Aiden’s and Marcus’ sole purpose, after all. While plenty of missions had us hack various things, it’s the hacking in the open world that we get the most fun out of. Whether it was hacking a traffic light to cause a massive accident, or hacking into someone’s laptop to see what they’ve been up to, there’s a lot of potential for mischief and mayhem.
And while our Watch Dogs protagonists may be fighting for the greater good, sometimes curiosity gets the better of them. We hope that Watch Dogs 3 gives us more opportunity to cause a bit of chaos and go snooping in places where we probably shouldn’t be looking. We’d even welcome some consequences to our actions.
Varied and inventive side missions
Being open world games, Watch Dogs has so far offered us plenty of opportunity to stray from the main story path and complete a variety of side quests. Some of these have been pretty inventive, such as piecing together grafittied QR codes and finding the right spot to stand in order to be able to scan it. And Watch Dogs 2 gave us that unforgettable mission where we sneaked into the Ubisoft offices and found information about an unreleased game. More of this please, Ubisoft! The nature of Watch Dogs allows for so much fun, and we’d love even more invention showing through in Watch Dogs 3‘s side missions.
Watch Dogs’ only means of multiplayer was an odd – but fun – mode that let you temporarily hack into another player’s game without them knowing. Watch Dogs 2 sort of had co-operative play in that another player could join you, but you couldn’t complete the main missions together. It’d be great if Watch Dogs 3 allowed for true co-op, where two players can team up and tackle the game together in whatever way they choose.
Whichever direction Ubisoft does decide to go in with Watch Dogs 3, though, we’re excited to see how it turns out. Although very different, we loved Watch Dogs and Watch Dogs 2, so trust that DedSec and Blume’s story will continue well in the next entry, in whatever form it takes. Fingers crossed we find out next month at E3!