The Division an addictive and rewarding RPG
Tom Clancy's Division is an online, loot-driven RPG cleverly shrouded in the tropes of a third-person shooter, set in the grim aftermath of a biological attack on New York City.
Possibly the most immersive game ever to bear the Tom Clancy prefix, The Division always makes your actions feel meaningful. Key moments receive full cutscenes, and in between, you constantly hear radio banter that explains exactly how your next objective contributes to your broader mission to save New York from vicious opportunists.
You are, however, never painted as a superhero. The Division rarely shies away from its commitment towards a bleak, grounded vision of the apocalypse.
Every neighborhood in The Division's version of New York has its own distinct style, and no matter where you roam, you're bound to stumble into a breathtaking structure or a heartbreaking disaster site, even if you end up hearing a few repeated lines of NPC dialogue along the way.
The variety and authenticity of the world invite exploration just like the deserts of Red Dead Redemption and the mountains of Skyrim.
Enemy AI is, unfortunately, consistent to the point of being predictable. Every one of the four enemy factions have identical unit types. No matter who you are up against, you know exactly how each easily identifiable enemy is going to come at you, which can make certain lower-stakes gun fights feel like a chore. The ommision of crouch/prone from the gameplay is also incredibly irritating, particularly when coupled with the extremely poor auto-cover mechanics that have taken their place.
While there is four player co-op throughout the game, it remains fun even if you are going alone. If you feel less cooperative, you can always visit the Dark Zone - a massive PvP area in the middle of the city.
The Dark Zone contains both AI and human players inside. The AI guard loot while it is up to the players whether they want to cooperate with each other in order to share the spoils or to simply stab each other in the back for the lion's share of the loot.
Tom Clancy's The Division is not perfect by any means but it is an incredibly engrossing world that is occasionally marred by clumsy gameplay and a repetitive structure.
Make no mistake, though, The Division is as addictive and rewarding as they come.
TOM CLANCY'S THE DIVISION
PC / Xbox One / PS4