River City Pixels: Watch Dogs

 

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So, this is the way I felt by the end of Watch Dogs; it isn’t such a bad game, but I stopped enjoying it halfway through due to its narrative issues. Mostly, I tried my best to get along with Aiden Pierce—this title’s main character—, but the game mechanics and narrative just broke anything that could lead me to believe this could actually be a real human being.

When you start the game, Aiden is a criminal getting his way at stealing money from rich people’s bank accounts, then something goes wrong while doing some high-profile theft, and as a result he becomes the target of… someone who sends someone else to terminate him, but instead of killing Aiden, he ends up killing his sister’s daughter.

And even though the cutscenes and flashbacks sprinkled all over the story make absolutely clear that Aiden regrets and blames himself a lot for what happened—going as far as saying that “he killed his little niece”—, he doesn’t seem to learn anything from the experience!

He’s still a criminal, he still steals money from people’s accounts, he keeps messing up with everyone’s lives, but now he has a reason to… do the same thing he was already doing?

With all the hype surrounding Watch Dogs’ release I would’ve expected something better scripted, but it feels a lot  like the developer started working the game’s narrative after everything else was already done. So this “plot device” felt more like a reason to immediately jump into Act 2, instead of properly building the character and the story of a roughly 40-hours game.

Daniel Castro

Daniel Castro

Daniel is an engineer, teacher, and freelance writer and translator. He considers himself blessed to be born during the the times video games were created, and has followed their development as an entertainment and artistic media ever since. He loves talking about video games as much as he enjoys playing them, and he's always ready to introduce gaming culture to a newer audience.

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