The Division experience for me began Tuesday evening with a phone call to Microsoft's store support line. Me and the rest of the gaming world who had chosen to order a physical copy of the game were without our copies on release day. The promise that the game would arrive within 48 hours was scripted and the customer service person on the line was uninterested in providing any help. An hour and a manager later and I had been credited with enough Xbox dough to pick up the digital copy of the Gold edition. The download commenced and I promised myself that no coupon was worth the obsolescence of ordering a physical copy of anything ever again.
At 6:00pm on launch day I was finally roaming the streets of Manhattan. And I was happy to observe that there hadn't been any huge changes since the open or closed betas. The atmosphere and pacing of gameplay were still just as exciting to me as they were a month or more ago. My initial reaction was that I had made a good call and I could look forward to many days of being dead on my feet at work. That reaction stuck as soon as my squad came together. Mark and two mutual friends logged in and we painlessly joined up and were running around in the streets in no time. In two hours of gameplay we took part in some of the best multiplayer gaming I can recall in years. Full of dynamic movement and awesome firefights and a general feeling of content with the experience as a whole.
This evening that feeling hadn't changed. On your own, The Division can be a lonely experience. Not bad, but certainly lacking after taking to it with a group of friends. There is more than enough to do and match-making is fairly easy for playing with people you don't know to get some help on tougher missions..It is when you are in a group with people you know well that the developers really seemed to have hit their mark.Unlike a standard shooter where in fun is available assuming you have a good group around you and a solid lobby, or destiny where you are rolling the dice every time you want to run a strike The Division has for me at least filled a void that has been missing since the days of LAN parties or couch co-ops.And i encourage anyone looking for that to invest in this title.
There are some things missing that were prominent in the early concepts and trailers. Or if they exist i haven't found them yet. Such as the ability to play on a tablet in some roll with others on the Xbox. Or a broader variety of classes. So far it seems like its down to three tracks on the same character which come down to a medic, a support and an engineer/hybrid. I'm not disappointed enough to count these against the game.
I realize that when I have mentioned The Division on the show I've not really gone in-depth on the gameplay itself. And barring any massive problems or setbacks in my time I'm most likely not going to do so. I may have more to say on specific points as time goes by, but i feel like there are many sites and people who have already put out some quality work and pieces for anyone looking for those details and i encourage you all to go and search them out from wherever your preferred sources are. At this point all i know is this; The Division seems awesome right now. In a month I hope it will continue to be and avoid the pitfalls of its current generation console predecessors.
Check back in a few weeks after more time has gone by and listen to next weeks show where I am sure there will be some things said by the both of us.