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"Watch Dogs: Legion" in the test: The Hipster Rebellion


Hacking networks and buying clothes in between and having fun: In the game "Watch Dogs: Legion", London becomes the colorful backdrop of a superficial surveillance dystopia.

There are many paths that lead the hacker to a well-protected computer: via a remote-controlled spider through the air shaft, creeping over gutters and ladders, using a cargo drone or simply shooting around wildly.

You can do it all in Watch Dogs: Legion. 

"Legion" is now the third part of the "Watch Dogs" series developed by Ubisoft.

In the very near future, companies will have taken over the organization and control of the community, and politicians willingly accept their surveillance technology.

Only DeadSec's hackers are fighting it.

First in Chicago, then in San Francisco, now in London. 

London goes well with the game: In hardly any other European city, surveillance cameras have been part of the cityscape for years as they are here, the police are testing facial recognition in many places.

That seems to be widely accepted, supposed security from the recurring terrorist attacks since the 1970s will probably be a reason. 

"Watch Dogs: Legion" starts right here, detonates bombs right at the beginning and lets the DeadSec hackers get caught between the fronts.

They are blamed for the attacks; private companies take on many state functions, playing police and secret services at the same time.

DeadSec is supposed to free London. 


Watch Dogs: Legion

Manufacturer: Ubisoft

USK: from 18 years

Manufacturer: Ubisoft

USK: from 18 years

From € 64.99

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Actually a simple story.

Unfortunately, it soon loses its thread.

The rebellion then makes detours via misguided transhumanism and criminal organ trafficking.

Issues such as Brexit, immigration or poverty are briefly touched on and not further negotiated.

Nothing has depth, everything looks like a picturesque backdrop, in front of which hipsters wearing absurd glasses hack through the world with smartphones and play rebellion.

You patronize someone who is lying in a sleeping bag in the subway entrance, you sigh at how bad things are for the migrants in the camp - and then go out to buy the latest clothes.

Because the only shops in the game only sell clothes.

Uprising becomes an event where you have to look good.

"Watch Dogs: Legion" takes its world just as little seriously as the rebellion.

At first glance, London looks great, but you soon realize that the city is empty, that it has no secrets.

London looks like a bad caricature, in which all the characters speak with extremely exaggerated accents (German dubbing was not yet available for the test) and praise the city with dialogues that seem to have been taken from travel guides.

It is an Instagram version of London that is about the quick kick, the beautiful picture, not about depth, history or even politics.

This is the only way to explain the ignorance with which a brutal gang leader from the East End is named after Mary Kelly, the last victim of Jack the Ripper. 

"Watch Dogs: Legion" gives away a lot of opportunities, including those of making something useful out of a new gameplay idea.

There is no single protagonist, there are many DeadSec.

Which is why you collect a whole group of characters in the game and keep changing them, all of them have different skills.

Some specialize in hacking and sneaking, others are better at guns.

Virtually every character that appears in the game can be made an ally.

That sounds great, but the practical benefit is small and usually annoying. 

The idea is like this: First you spy out a hiding place for your opponents using a drone or camera, then you decide which figure is best suited for the next steps.

In fact, you shy away from it because you decide on a person and a type of game and it takes a long time to change characters.

Often enough, you don't end up directly on site, and sometimes the progress of a mission is even reset.

Important aids are often enough nearby, which makes the advantage of a change even smaller.

Why you can't just switch weapons and equipment remains a mystery.

That usually works better and faster. 

more on the subject

  • "Watch Dogs 2" in the test: Grand Theft DataBy Carsten Görig

  • Ubisoft's test laboratory: Where players become guinea pigsBy Carsten Görig

  • "Watch Dogs": The first game for the post-Snowden eraBy Christian Stöcker

Many playable characters must also differ clearly enough.

In terms of appearance, it still works well, but less in terms of voice.

The developers rely on artificial voice modulation.

Unfortunately, it often sounds as if they had used the train to make loudspeaker announcements: it sounds artificial and overly clear.

It's all a shame, because despite some technical issues, the basic gameplay, the hacking, driving or shooting, the many ways to get there, and the city itself are always extremely fun.

Overall, the impression prevails that "Watch Dogs: Legion" is a game that relies more on appearance than on reality and does not dare to take the topics it deals with really seriously.

Which is annoying, because the game is closer to the world he criticizes than to its heroes.

It's more consumption than rebellion. 

"Watch Dogs: Legion" from Ubisoft, played on Xbox One;

approx. 60 euros, appears for Playstation 4 and 5, Xbox One and Series X / S, PC;

The versions for the new generation of consoles will be released on November 11, 2020, games for the current generation will receive a free upgrade;

USK: From 18 years

Source: spiegel

All tech articles on 2020-10-29

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