The ambition driving Ubisoft Toronto cannot be understated. After all, this development team is designing a system where Watch Dogs Legion players will select and play as any NPC an open-world London. It’s beyond impressive. But what will this mean for a series whose previous entries involved stories revolving around one main character per game? Will its narrative become an afterthought, especially with so much focus being placed on technological innovations? According to one developer, fans will have nothing to worry about. The story will remains integral to the overarching Watch Dogs experience.
During a recent interview with Spiel Times, Watch Dogs Legion Game Design Director Kent Hudson, detailed the kinds of stories players should expect to encounter in the new title. Before doing so, Hudson, assured the experience still emphasizes the world of Watch Dogs‘ narrative. Hudson told the publication,
…I know “play as anyone” is kind of a crazy technological innovation with the simulation we’ve done, but story is still a huge part of the game, it’s a huge part of the franchise and this game is no different. We’ve got five different storylines in the game, so it’s five main–you could call them quest lines if you want. And each one of them is tied to one of our thematic pillars.
He then teased the different types of storylines featured within the larger narrative.
So, for example, we’re gonna be looking at today a storyline that’s about the surveillance state. It’s basically about the spies of the nation turning their technology inward and actually spying on the citizens of England and London. There’s one that’s about the surveillance state. There’s one that’s themed around the private military contractors who’ve supplanted the police in the city, and they’ve actually taken over.
This means there will be references to existing agencies, such as MI5 and MI6. However, Ubisoft Toronto has also created its own fictional intelligence agencies. As such, storylines spawned from both real world references and fictional agencies work to inform Legion’s main narrative and are “tied to [the game’s] thematic pillars.”
The wait to see how this will all play out in the end, thankfully, isn’t too long. Watch Dogs Legion will launch early next year for the PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One on November 6, 2020.