There are some rad changes coming to Ubisoft's online shooter very soon.
As part of a livestream this afternoon — the archive is right here — the company revealed a bunch of changes coming to The Division's endgame.
First and foremost, there's incursions, which seem similar to Destiny's raids. These extremely difficult challenges can be played over and over again for more loot, and require players to work together to have any chance of surviving. The first incursion, set in water treatment facility hidden in the sewers, will go live with the game's big update on April 12.
A big reason the incursion might kick your arse? No checkpoints!
The gameplay Ubisoft showed didn't highlight the kinds of unique mechanics and situations Destiny's raids have become known for, instead focusing on fighting off waves of enemies. However, the developers promised there were tricks to the encounter, stuff they didn't want to spoil.
One key difference with The Division is that players are allowed to use matchmaking for incursions. The incursion's default difficulty, hard mode, will have a "recommended" gear level to ensure people don't get wrecked when they try it, while a required gear level for "challenge" difficulty.
Gear level? Yep, The Division is adopting a system similar to Destiny's light level. (I think this is standard in most MMOs, though?) Even though the level cap is 30, players can acquire gear that essentially pushes them past level 30. During matchmaking, the game checks your inventory, so players can't lie about gear level, and people are getting matched appropriately.
There are a bunch of other small but important changes, too:
- Gear sets are being hidden throughout the game, via loot and blueprints, and equipping a certain number of pieces will get you a unique talent. (Individual gear set pieces will not have talents.)
- Players will be able to trade items with one another, but only within the group that generated the drops, and with a two-hour time limit. In the dark zone, players must head to a gate in order to trade items.
- A new daily mission system, assignments, are meant as "bite-sized" experiences, such as killing 10 cleaner enemies.
- The dark zone is getting hourly supply drops, where high-level gear will drop somewhere in the area, and only the first group there can have it. It will be surrounded by high-level enemies, though.
I'm still working through the main missions, but this all sounds awesome.