Watch Dogs Is Best Experienced With Player Invasion Turned On, More Multiplayer Details

With Watch Dogs‘ launch just around the corner, multiplayer details are becoming clearer and clearer as developers at Ubisoft unravel its seemingly complicated and ambiguous set up.

According to animation director Colin Graham, the studio’s number one goal was to create a multiplayer experience that blends in seamlessly with the single player experience. That means no loading times, no lobbies, etc.

“One of the things that we’ve been talking about is that we have seamless multiplayer,” Graham told “Angry Joe” from the Angry Joe Show. “So when you’re playing the game, you don’t have to go to another menu, load it, and you’re also not always necessarily always playing against the ‘elite’ multiplayer every time you’re playing it. You’re playing against other guys who are playing their story mission. You go seamlessly into their game. They quite often don’t know they’re there. You probably got hacked. You probably didn’t know the guy was there until he was into your game for quite a while.”

While there are those who may find the idea of being invaded unappealing, Graham insists that it’s the way Watch Dogs is meant to be played. “You don’t have to accept the observation missions and you can also turn off other players from being able to invade you,” he said. “But it does kind of cut back a little bit on what the real Watch Dogs experience is. The dev team? Nobody ever turns this feature off.”

Should you choose to keep it on, however, creative director Jonothan Morin notes that the game will actually track your interest in the feature and will use that information to alter the frequency in which you world is invaded by another.

“The way it’s designed is to make sure you don’t get invaded all the time,” Morin told PlayStation Access in a recent interview. “First of all, we track how interested you are to the feature. So if you invade other players, it will increase the chance that you get invaded afterwards.

“There’s kind of a shield underneath the system that gives you around an hour of break when you’re free roaming,” he explained. “If you invade a lot, that shrinks. If you don’t invade at all, then that grows in time so we don’t bother you with that. The goal is to make it as organic as possible so that players don’t feel like they’re getting all the time invaded for nothing.”

In the interview, Morin got into a number of other multiplayer details, including some of the game modes that will be available out of the box, one of which is only accessible on next-generation platforms.

“One of them is the hacking, which I think most people know by now, where you can go into someone else’s game, stalk them, hack them, and grab some information that gives you rewards afterwards.” That mode in particular was clearly demonstrated in yesterday’s 9-minute multiplayer gameplay video. “The second one, tailing, [the player] doesn’t necessarily know you’re there,” Morin added. “It creates that kind of paranoia.” He didn’t quite specify the exact goal of that game mode or what sort of rewards it might yield, however.

“Then there’s more classic one that you can also access in a more seamless way so you can race with other players in the world. You can also do – there’s a team vs. team mode. This one is on the next-gen version only, where you can actually seamlessly go from one contract to another and, next thing you know, you’re working with other players against other players.” Again, all of this is seamless, as Morin stressed that “once you stop that, you just turn the corner and do a single player mission. It kind of feels pretty weird the first time you do that.”

Of course, players can choose to create their own rules in Watch Dogs’ free roam mode. “For us, it’s a bonus where we give you the game and you can decide whether or not you’re friends or enemies with the people you are with, and then just grab a pen and paper just decide what the hell you want to do with it and have some fun,” Morin detailed.

He also explained that both multiplayer and single player share the exact same progression system, though actions in multiplayer can increase or decrease your Notoriety. Specific skills will also be associated with Notoriety that can be gained or lost, depending on your Notoriety level.

Lastly, while players will always view their character as Watch Dog’s main protagonist, Aiden Pearce, you can customize the way you appear to other players who view you as an NPC during multiplayer sessions.

“The only thing you can customize is the appearance that you’re going to have for other players,” Morin said. “So if you don’t want to look like an old women with a machine gun type of thing, you can at least choose what you’re going to look like to other players.

“But the old woman can be a nice trick.”

Watch Dogs hits next-gen and current-gen platforms, as well as PC, on May 27. Watch the Limited Edition unboxing here.

  • jameslara

    Can’t wait to get my hands on this. We’ll be sure to give you guys a multiplayer review once we’ve played through it thoroughly.

  • Dirtknap

    Very diverse, and more and more intriguing. Before the Watchdogs MP bomb was dropped a couple of days back, I would have considered myself someone who wouldn’t sign up for invasion. It seems clear now, that this is where the real point of difference lies and I would be diminishing a great deal of the true experience should I opt out of these features, mind officially changed.

  • MegaMan3k

    Oh yeah? I might even play this. Maybe.

  • Grif

    I thought the whole invasion thing in Watch Dogs would get annoying after awhile, but it seems really cool. I think everyone can safely say this will be a sweet game.

    • Samson

      No thanks, I dont need some little kid in the back of mommy’s mini van poking at his iPad and trolling my game.

      • Grif

        Just turn off the online function in game, simple as that. And I doubt there will be any kid intrested in the ctOS app for the iPad.

  • KillzoneVII

    At first I thought the invasion aspect might get annoying after a while but now I don’t think I’ll ever turn it off. Hope I can get my internet stable by the time this launches, it’s been cutting off about every half hour for the past month and my ISP won’t do anything about it because they “can’t find the problem”…

    Word of advice guys, don’t EVER get Charter, lol.

    • MegaMan3k

      Are you on wi-fi? I just fixed a similar issue, but it was a wi-fi thing not an ISP thing.

      • KillzoneVII

        I am but the router is across the house so running an Ethernet cable isn’t really an option. Plus it’s 2014, wifi should work right? (though sometimes it doesn’t). The only thing they said it might be is the router which I’ll have to spend around $100 to replace, which I’m hesitant to do since it may not actually be the problem.

        • Dirtknap

          If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that ;)

          What advice has your ISP given you? Have you isolated your router i.e., remove all other devices from your phone points, leaving only your router plugged directly in. Tried this simple setup in each phone point and tried another filter? (You would want to have a laptop/PC hard wired for testing purposes). Drop out troubleshooting is just a process of elimination, last port of call would be to borrow a friends router for a couple of hours if your the other steps you’ve taken don’t identify the origin. If you have no joy at this point it’s either aninternal wiring issue or a bona fide

          I’m not sure what kind of foundation your house has, but if you have access hardwiring is always a far better option (it’s pretty much an essential for gamers). It could be worth your while to drill a couple of holes and scramble about in the dirt if you don’t want to fork out for smart wiring once you’ve resolved your drop out problem.

          • KillzoneVII

            Thanks for the tips man! As for the advice my ISP gave me, all they said was to buy another router from them, or from netgear (the current one was bought through them, but it was a netgear product). We also don’t have a Lanline phone, just cell phones, nor do we have a pc that will stay on long enough to hardware and test the connection (it overheats and is really slow). I’ll probably have Charter test it again, hard wired this time, they do bring their own laptops for purposes like that. Hopefully it will actually cut off while they’re here because the last few times it has been just my luck that the only time it works properly is when they are there to test it. If all else fails I’ll either buy another router or take the plunge and run an Ethernet across the house, hopefully it doesn’t come to the latter, lol.

            • Dirtknap

              No prob, I gotta help other gamers out where I can.

              Hmmm, given your limited tools to troubleshoot, you should at the very least be able to isolate your router overnight and contact Charter the next day to have them advise whether dropouts have persisted in that time (connection history monitoring is a super basic diagnostic tool that all ISP’s should have at their fingertips). With no land line I imagine you’re pretty much already isolated, is there any filtering present, if so, can it be eliminated/swapped from your setup for testing? It’s a tedious way to troubleshoot but it sounds like your ISP provides shoddy customer service and the resolution process needs to be customer led :(

            • KillzoneVII

              Oh they’re pretty bad when it comes to customer service, believe me haha. Oh and did I mention that when it cuts off it only goes off for about 2-6 seconds? So their system can’t see when it cuts out because I guess it’s not long enough to show up (or that’s what they told me at least). It literally cuts off long enough to kick me out of whatever multiplayer game I’m in, and it’s literally back on before I’ve finished loading out of the game it just kicked me from. Aggravating as hell, I’ve reset it many many times too and that ‘sometimes’ fixes the drop-outs… For a few hours, then it’s back to cutting off again. It’s crazy.

              So by isolating it overnight, what do you mean by that? I know the basics of internet set up etc… But never had isolation fully explained, lol.

            • Dirtknap

              Either they have archaic systems or they are flat out lying. Every time a customer connects their credentials have to be accepted by the ISP’s authentication server. If they can’t see the drop outs taking place that could lend credence to the suggestion the issue lies with the wi fi signal.

              As far as isolating goes, you just need to get your router physically connected in the simplest way possible, which means removing phones, faxes, filters etc (it sounds like you already have a fairly simplified setup). You basically simplify it to the point you gain a consistent connection (or not which would indicate a fault of some sort), then you begin to add each product back to the setup until dropouts start again. By this process of elimination you can determine what’s causing the dropouts. Though I’m not sure how much merit there is pursuing that line of trouble shooting when your ISP allegedly can’t see any disconnections.

              You mentioned earlier that you don’t have a land line, is that because you’re on fiber or a naked DSL service? Or do you have a dial tone but not utilize the phone? With the regularity of your dropouts the issue could also be linked to a faulty central splitter (which is like a big filter that’s hardwired into your internal wiring at the phone lines point of entry to your house), if you have a monitored house alarm that sends frequent “calls” to the security provider.

              I forgot to ask if anyone else in your house has noticed disconnections on their devices or if you game on more that one platform and experience the same issue on each of them?

              If you can con a buddy into bringing their laptop and router to your house in exchange for burgers and beers or something, that would probably be a good option at this point.

              Sorry dude, so much content and so many questions. Nailing down these sorts of problems is damned difficult via text, which is why when my team receive email queries from customers I make them call our clients back. So much of this could be irrelevant to your situation but hopefully it will be helpful in someway or another at some stage :)

              EDIT: I also forgot to suggest you are well within your rights to escalate and complain to your ISP. Tell a supervisor/team leader/manager you have lost faith in their service and would appreciate a senior customer service rep taking ownership of your case and actually assist in determining the root of the problem rather than giving you generic responses and sending you on your way none the wiser.

            • Ryan ‘Ryman’ Clark

              One thing I used to recommend customers (when i worked at Target), if there is more than one gaming system that is usually online playing games, or any device that is frequently used for netflix, get a dual-band router. Hook up only the busiest systems to one channel, and the lesser used systems on the other. Or figure everything out and try and balance the load on both channels. It may take a lot longer to figure it out, but the results are typically a much, much more stable connection.

            • Dirtknap

              I concur, though I’d still start with the basics as it sounds as something else is afoot in Killzone’s scenario :)

            • KillzoneVII

              Thanks for the suggestion, I actually have a dual-band router and just realized I never even utilized having the second network. Connected my smartphone and so far it’s working, tomorrow I’ll test the consoles.

            • KillzoneVII

              Yeah when it cuts off, it’s on everything, not just the game console so it’s not strictly that. As for phone we had a land line at one point, and decided to discontinue the service because we only use our smart phones anyway. Tomorrow I’ll give them another call and have them send someone out with a laptop to test it with a hardwire, hopefully it will cut off while they’re here (but then on the other hand if it does cut off that means it’s not the router). I’ll also ask them if they can check the line itself again, they were supposed to a few weeks ago but we never got confirmation that they did.

              Thanks again for all the help man, sadly enough you’ve done more of an effort to figure out what the problem is than they have the past half-dozen times I’ve called them, lmao.

            • Dirtknap

              Haha, no prov. It’s a damned shame when companies can’t get the customer service delivery together. Good luck, let me know how you get on :D

        • MegaMan3k

          Try changing the wireless channel. Run a program like Wifi Analyzer to find a less populated band. Stick to 1,6,or 11 if you’re on 2.4Ghz, which you probably are.

          • KillzoneVII

            Will give this a shot as well, thanks!

    • Ryan ‘Ryman’ Clark

      Charter does suck, but in my area, they’re the most reliable and least evil of the options… CenturyTel is borderline criminal, AT&T is notorious for their horrible reputation and the others just aren’t even worth mentioning.

      • KillzoneVII

        Same, that’s the only reason I’ve stuck with them, my only other option is OneSource and I’ve heard they’re pretty bad. AT&T doesn’t even service my area. Haha

  • KennyKyle

    My penis is dripping.

    P.S. I sent some of these information to MP1st :P

    • KillzoneVII

      Good to know, lmao.

    • VEX_VEHIX

      *starts slow clap”
      ;)

  • KennyKyle

    “Of course, players can choose to create their own rules in Watch Dogs’ free roam mode. “For us, it’s a bonus where we give you the game and you can decide whether or not you’re friends or enemies with the people you are with, and then just grab a pen and paper just decide what the hell you want to do with it and have some fun,” Morin detailed.”

    GTA V Content creater? Anyone ?

  • VEX_VEHIX

    Feels like the Matrix. Took me awhile to understand that movie, too. Lol

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  • datdude

    This game keeps impressing me, more so every day.

  • Work Hard, Twerk Harder

    As explained above, it’s going to be a real unique feel not knowing whether someones there or not, I think I’ll have a paranoid problem or atleast trust issues when playing this game lol…

  • Ryan Schulze

    Going on two years now, this had been number one on my list for single and multiplayer and every reveal gets more interesting. I don’t care that the PS4 version isn’t going to look as good as the Ultra PC version they showed off. As long as it plays as well as it seems it will, I’ll be plenty happy.

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  • http://www.baye.com Drew Baye

    Invasions are fucking obnoxious. Coming from Ubisoft, this shouldn’t be surprising. Fortunately you can turn it off in the menu, or if you forget just shut off your console if some asshole tries to hack you.

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