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Watch Dogs Was Originally A Driver Follow-up Before The Project Refocused Into The Hacker Action Experience


So far, Watch Dogs in its more than half a decade of existing has established two mainline installments alongside a spin-off that is currently the newest entry. In that, Watch Dogs: Legion branches from the near-future approach of technology grasping on society as government oligarchs and big tech control everyday life with the dystopia settings of modern London. Additionally, the game comes with a nice goodie for fans of the original game.

With those that purchase the Gold Edition or higher for Watch Dogs: Legion will find that 2014’s Watch Dogs will be provided at no additional cost. While information on when that is to come is still unknown, it is suggested to coincide with the ‘Complete Edition’ listed for next-generation consoles previously. Altogether, the original game is now perceived as a legacy release enough so to bundle it in the premium options for Watch Dogs: Legion.

However, the series was not originally aimed to be a hacker action-shooter experience. Initially, Watch Dogs was planned to be a Driver sequel to 2011’s Driver: San Francisco. Speaking with sources at Ubisoft, VG24/7 discovers that the project evolved from a sequel to an entirely new IP.

The game that was released as Watch Dogs started life as a sequel in the Driver franchise, but was always largely what you see in the final product. It was always modern day, it had on foot, parkour, combat as well as driving, all set in a large open-world city, and the main hook was always modern technology and hacking. After a while trying to make this concept fit into the Driver franchise, the decision was made to turn it into its own, new IP.

Back in 2013, Ubisoft North American president Laurent Detoc told that the Driver project was ultimately cancelled as pieces from the initial work later formed the foundation for Watch Dogs. But, the sources at Ubisoft goes on to explain that it was the end of the series with the refocus. Then, it was put to be a Grand Theft Auto alternative from Ubisoft before the identity Watch Dogs has now.

“They just did their own thing and convinced Yves [Guillemot, Ubisoft CEO] he could have ‘his own GTA’ instead of the low selling Driver.” Furthermore it was told that the plans when shifted was fueled by developer experimentation with the potential new series. “Devs love working on new mechanics and new settings without limitations. Business loves the safety of making sequels and expanding a franchise with a loyal player base.

“Now and then a team push the bounds of a franchise too far, and if they can persuade business to get behind their concept, a new franchise is born.” The situation can closely be considered an ongoing trend at Ubisoft. Similarly, the firm when initially working on an Prince of Persia sequel later found to be crafting Assassin’s Creed which later released in 2007. Even more now, both IPs crossed over in a new DLC for Watch Dogs: Legion recently which you can read more by heading here.

Are you surprised with the outcome of Watch Dogs initially sprouting from a Driver project?

Source: VG24/7

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