MCV looks at Ubisoft's blockbuster new hacking IP.
Watch Dogs is in stores on May 27th for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. The title is set to come out to Wii U before the end of 2014.
Watch Dogs is a brand new IP from Ubisoft and the publisher believes it is going to be one of the biggest titles of the year. It was originally set to launch at the end of 2013 but was delayed so that the studio could polish it further.
As brilliant hacker Aiden Pearce, players can free roam on a digital recreation of Chicago. Thanks to the cTOS system that connects everything and everyone in the city – and the hero’s phone – fans are able to hack into anything they want.
Using this power, players can find out information about people’s lives, but also disrupt the world around them. This includes manipulating traffic lights, stopping trains to make an escape or mess with the power grid. Though hacking is the primary tool available, players also have access to weapons and cars.
How gamers handle different situations will determine how the media and the citizens of Chicago perceive Aiden. Being reckless and causing massive amounts of destruction will give him the reputation of a violent criminal; while helping the innocent and dealing wth situations peacefully will make him a hero.
The title also features an interesting multiplayer mode. Players can hack and invade other people’s games. Consumers will never know if you are alone in a game, or if the non-playable characters are other players.
Watch Dogs also comes with a companion app and second screen functionality. Using this fans can play anywhere on almost any of their devices.
Ubisoft’s new IP is being pushed with a tech-focused marketing campaign. The TV ads – alongside films and comedy shows watched by 16 to 34 year-old males – feature Shazam capabilities, as does the radio campaign.
The same demographic is being targeted by a 60 second cinema push. Furthermore, the title is being promoted online on both specialist gaming and mainstream web portals. This digital push will make use of second screens to give players a feel for the game’s subject matter.
At retail, the publisher has ads featuring NFC codes, which give consumers the chance to win a holiday to the game’s setting of Chicago. This is alongside a national outdoor advertising campaign.
On launch day, a selection of ‘top YouTubers’ will be playing the game over Twitch. This is to give fans a look at the hacking capabilities and multiplayer aspects of the title. It’s in association with Nvidia, whose graphics cards will be used throughout the Twitch stream.
Watch Dogs was revealed to the world at E3 2012 where it was the surprise hit of the show, capturing the attention of our retail and media partners alike.
Initially slated to launch last November, the choice was made to delay the game in order to deliver on the gameplay experience and level of quality that is essential in such a competitive market. But despite this it has remained one of the most hotly anticipated next-gen titles amongst the press and consumers. Finally, after years of work and collaboration amongst five studios, Watch Dogs is ready to launch and introduce a whole new level of next-gen, open-world gaming, where everyone and everything is connected.
Excitement for the product remains incredibly high and gamers are desperate to finally get their hands on the title. This is reflected in our pre-orders which are hugely promising for a new IP and reflect the enthusiasm that has surrounded the product since it was first unveiled to the world.
With Watch Dogs, Ubisoft are building a new blockbuster brand to stand alongside other top tier triple-A titles and we expect it to be not only one of the best-selling new IPs in recent memory, but also one of the best-selling titles throughout 2014.
Watch Dogs is a brand new IP for a new generation of consoles and has all the quality it needs to succeed in today’s market. We’re confident it has the right marketing plan in place to ensure we give it every chance to do so, and retail will benefit from a huge release in the lead up to the quieter summer months.