Watch Dogs was one of the first next generation (read: current generation) games to wow the community. When it was first announced at E3 2012, it generated a lot of discussion due to its graphical prowess and overall scope. For quite some time, it was arguably the most anticipated next generation launch title, with a PlayStation 4 launch bundle primed and ready to go. However, when the game was delayed, consumers had to find other games to pass the time.
When Watch Dogs finally released in May, it wasn’t what people expected. Perhaps Ubisoft raised expectations a bit too high, or perhaps some features had to be cut during development. Whatever the case, while Watch Dogs was a solid title and the beginning of what will likely be a lucrative franchise for Ubisoft, many people viewed it as a variant of Grand Theft Auto that was more story and hacker focused.
Nearly six months after the initial release of Watch Dogs, Ubisoft confirmed that the Wii U version will release on November 18. While Ubisoft has delayed other Wii U titles for a variety of reasons, the company made it clear that the delayed release of the Wii U version was to ensure that the development team at Ubisoft Bucharest, in collaboration with Ubisoft Montreal, would have the necessary time to take full advantage of the unique features the Wii U console has to offer.
First and foremost, a detailed and fully interactive map of Chicago will be on display via the Wii U GamePad. This alone is an extremely convenient feature. While playing through Watch Dogs on other consoles, you’re constantly pausing the game to look at the map. Either you need to figure out where the next mission begins, or you need to locate a store to purchase supplies and ammunition, or you need to see where the police are located to plan your escape route. While this is all available on the mini-map, having a larger and clearer view of the map on the GamePad will be a significant asset for Wii U owners.
To further take advantage of the Wii U GamePad, Watch Dogs supports Off-TV Play. This feature will allow players to play the full game using only the Wii U GamePad. It essentially makes Watch Dogs available on a handheld console, so long as you stay within the confines on your home or don’t venture too far outside to maintain the connection to the Wii U.
With most secondary console releases that come several months after the original, all of the DLC available for the original is included in the secondary release. Unfortunately, that won’t be the case when it comes to Watch Dogs on Wii U. Previous DLC for the other console versions of Watch Dogs offered lengthy missions for Aiden Pearce and extended the gameplay by quite a few hours. In addition, Ubisoft recently released the Bad Blood DLC, which allows gamers to play through a series of new missions as T-Bone instead of Aiden Pearce. None of the existing Watch Dogs DLC will be available for the Wii U version of the game, and there are no plans for new DLC.
While the DLC is MIA, everything else about the Wii U release of Watch Dogs will mimic the other console releases of the game. With the added GamePad support and the lack of M-rated titles on Nintendo’s console, there’s more than enough in the basic Watch Dogs package for Wii U owners. If you already own Watch Dogs on another console, there isn’t a lot to draw you in for a second purchase, but for people who’ve yet to take the plunge on a next-generation console, and didn’t pick up Watch Dogs on the PS3, Xbox 360, or PC, the Wii U version should be more than enough to satisfy your need to hack the city of Chicago.