The Division Beta - How to Survive the Dark Zone, Find Keys, Chests and Rare Loot - Prima Games

The Division Beta – How to Survive the Dark Zone, Find Keys, Chests and Rare Loot

by Bryan Dawson

The Division Beta is now available on all platforms and that means everyone with a pre-order or anyone who was lucky enough to get selected for the Beta has headed to New York City to indulge in Tom Clancy craziness. A big part of the Beta is the Dark Zone where players can battle against one another, defeat AI enemies, and claim some of the best gear in the game.

We already covered the primary story mission in The Division Beta, so today we’ll be discussing not only how to survive the Dark Zone, but also some tips to help you find rare weapons and gear. To help you get a jump start on your competition you’re going to need all the help you can get, so let’s move right into it.

Surviving the Dark Zone

While you may encounter other players in places outside of the Dark Zone, you can’t attack them unless you’re both in the Dark Zone area. This is the only place where player vs. player combat can occur in The Division Beta. The catch is that once you attack another player in the Dark Zone, you can anyone you’re partied with is labeled “Rogue” and marked for all other players in the area. A bounty is placed on your head and rest assured a lot of people will be gunning for you.

To survive it’s best to travel as a party. In order for a party member to turn on you, they have to remove themselves from the party first. If this happens all party members will be notified so you’ll know something it up. While it may happen from time to time, if you’re partied up with a few people (especially friends) it’s unlikely they’ll turn on you. It’s in everyone’s best interests to stay in a party and fight off other parties and AI enemies.

Extraction Points

Finding rare gear is the main focus of venturing into the Dark Zone aside from the PvP action. However, finding loot is only half the equation. Once you find gear you need to get it to an extraction point, wait for a helicopter, then tie your loot to a rope so the chopper takes it back to your base of operations. Until your loot is attached to the rope, you won’t be able to hold on to it should something unfortunate happen in the Dark Zone.

There are two types of players in the Dark Zone: those that find the loot and those that camp extraction points. Everyone is notified when someone accesses an extraction point, and it’s then that you need to worry about defense. If you’re trying to extract something, take up a defensive position around the extraction point and prepare to be bombarded by attacking players. If you just want some easy loot, stay back a bit from the extraction point and let the other players duke it out, then step in when most of them have been killed and finish off all who remain.

No matter how you plan to play, if you want to hold on to any loot you find in the Dark Zone, you need to be ready to defend yourself at an extraction point. The Beta has limited skills available, but you definitely want at least one member of your party to have the First Aid skill so they can heal your party if they take damage. It’s also important for everyone to have a full stock of medkits. If you have a party member or two with a ballistic shield (under the Security wing skill set), they can generally survive much longer during these fire fights.

Dark Zone Chests

As you navigate through the Dark Zone you’ll come across chests. While some chests can be opened by anyone, to open most of the chests you need to be a specific Dark Zone rank (obtained by killing and looting in the Dark Zone), or you need a Dark Zone key. Your rank will go up quickly as you engage hostiles in the Dark Zone, so that’s just a matter of playing the game more. However, if you’re looking for Dark Zone keys, they can be a little more difficult to obtain.

The Dark Zone keys in the Beta are held by high-level AI enemies. If you see a named enemy surrounded by a few other high-level foes, chances are that named enemy is holding a Dark Zone key. You will need a party to take on these enemies as going in alone is virtual suicide. It’s also recommended that you reach level eight before you really start to hunt for these keys. Most the loot you’ll find once you’re level 8 will be marked as rare blue (Dark Zone Rank 8 required), superior purple (Dark Zone Rank 10 required) or high-end yellow (Dark Zone Rank 12 required). Obviously the higher the rank required the better the gear will be.

Remember to play through the story mission to increase your rank before you explore the Dark Zone too much. The higher your rank the better your loot drops will be. You don’t have much time to play the Beta so make sure all of your loot drops count. Stay tuned to Prima Games as we continue to cover The Division leading up to its March 8, 2016 retail release.

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