Reviewing Roundup Watch Dogs 2

As Watch Dogs 2’s launch draws near, reviews for Ubisoft’s latest hack-’em-up have started to appear online.

With a more lighthearted tone and new setting, Watch Dogs 2 represents a small but significant departure from the original game–and it appears to have gone down well with reviewers. Many reviews are currently scoreless however, with multiplayer issues meaning Ubisoft has temporarily pulled the plug on PVP.

We’ll have our full review up once we can test the game in real-world conditions. Until then, take a look at a collection of opinions in the list below. We’ll continue to update this as more reviews surface and as scores are finalised.

For a wider view on Watch Dogs 2’s critical reception, check out GameSpot sister site Metacritic.

Game: Watch Dogs 2
Developer: Ubisoft
Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC
Release: November 15 (November 29 on PC)
Price: $60
GameSpot — No score [review in progress]

“Watch Dogs 2 makes a life of cybercrime in San Francisco almost irresistibly fun. In what turned out to be a smart maneuver, Ubisoft dialed back the self-serious cyberpunk drama from the first game, aiming for something closer to an absurd hacker sitcom with Grand Theft Auto’s irreverent atmosphere. Playing Watch Dogs 2 offline that you can have a lot of fun , but multiplayer–when it works–shouldn’t be ignored. There are emergent PVP events that allow you to hack or hunt down other players, and special missions where you and a partner can infiltrate networks and private property together. We will continue to experiment, so check back later this week to see if Watch Dogs 2 can seamlessly marry single and multiplayer gameplay, and what that means for the game at large.” — Peter Brown [Full review in progress]

Polygon — 8/10 [provisional review]

“In expanding the first game’s clever hacking options and through a story about taking on a system overwhelmingly stacked against the people, Watch Dogs 2 strikes an even more powerful chord at this precise moment in time. And if it went just a little bit farther in embracing that story and found a better balance between silliness and seriousness, it would be essential, rather than just cathartic.” — Phillip Kollar [Full provisional review]

IGN — 6.5/10 [Not final score — review in progress]

“By expanding on a lot of what the first game and its expansion got right and mixing action, stealth, and puzzle gameplay with handy remote-control drones, Watch Dogs 2 impresses with open mission designs with multiple ways to reach your objective and some great toys to find them with. I’m conflicted about the tone of its story and characters, but I had a great time exploring its Bay Area map. Once its serious multiplayer problems are hopefully resolved, this will be a significant improvement over Ubisoft’s first draft of its action-hacker series.” — Dan Stapleton [Full review in progress]

IBTimes — 4.5/5

“I was expecting Watch Dogs 2 to be more enjoyable than its predecessor, but I didn’t expect it to be so well designed and full of heart. Watch Dogs 2 isn’t reinventing the open-world game and fans of Ubisoft’s special brand of go-places-and-pick-things-up gameplay will feel right at home, but it’s one of the best examples the genre has to offer – as long as you don’t want to shoot anything.” — Jake Tucker [Full review]

The Telegraph — 4/5

“Watch Dogs 2 feels like it’s making a statement. Rudyard Kipling once said, ‘San Francisco has only one drawback – ’tis hard to leave.’ While Watch Dogs 2 isn’t as faultless as Kipling’s vision of Northern California, you’ll still want to spend tens of hours wandering this virtual recreation of the famous city and on into the Bay Area beyond.” — Kirk McKeand [Full review]