WATCH DOGS

EN­GAG­ING AND AD­DIC­TIVE

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - TEST BENCH -

If Harold Finch and John Reese from the TV show Per­son of In­ter­est are among your favourite char­ac­ters, Watch-Dogs is the per­fect game to tit­il­late your senses.

The main char­ac­ter is Ai­den Pearce – a hacker for hire and self­styled vig­i­lante who em­barks on a campaign to avenge the mur­der of his six-year-old niece.

The gloomy Chicago is the per­fect back­ground to the scene, where Ai­den can run amok, per­form­ing scripted tricks. Ai­den can hack any­thing – from mo­bile phones to ATMs, CCTV cam­eras, and even traf­fic lights. With a sin­gle push of a but­ton, you can trig­ger en­vi­ron­men­tal traps that can clean out a ci­ti­zen’s bank ac­count. But the most in­ter­est­ing hack is re­motely ac­ti­vat­ing a grenade dan­gling from your en­emy’s waist.

Ai­den’s can-do-it-all phone also moves fork­lifts, over­loads power junc­tions and vents clouds of gas from the city’s pipe­line. I don’t know what OS and app store

Ai­den runs on his phone, as most prob­lems can be sim­ply solved by the touch of a but­ton on his phone. It has its perks as it al­lows you to eas­ily fin­ish the tasks, but it gets dull af­ter some time.

Watch Dogs’ mis­sions are much more stealth-fo­cused and they auto-fail you if you’re dis­cov­ered. It has its fair share of gun clashes and high-speed rac­ing. When bul­lets fly, the cover-based gun­play feels good. The arse­nal and weapons are pretty un­ad­ven­tur- ous, apart from the pump-ac­tion grenade launcher. But then again, you can­not hope to sneak away un­de­tected af­ter leav­ing the mess by us­ing the grenades.

The game re­ally pops in­side sports cars and street bikes with the en­emy on your tail, like in an ac­tion-packed movie. Even if you drive like a maniac, you can see the en­e­mies clos­ing the gap. Of course, you can hack into their ve­hi­cles and trig­ger a trap to end the chase.

Then there are th­ese mini-games and the 100 Hotspots scat­tered around where you could col­lect re­wards and spe­cial badges, and leave gifts for other play­ers. An­other fea­ture is the pop-up mes­sage that al­lows you to ac­cept or deny in­vites for the mul­ti­player mode.

At times, the game may seem like GTA, NFS, As­sas­sin’s Creed and Thief cramped to­gether, but the mini-games and mul­ti­player mode take the ex­pe­ri­ence up a notch. In a sea of stealth games, this one rises to the sur­face.

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