The Division’s Expansions Delayed To Improve The Game

Ubisoft have delayed the next two paid DLC expansions for The Division [official site] because they feel the base game needs work first. Good! That’s the way it should be done. Ubi explain, “it has become clear with your feedback and our own observations that our priority should now be on improving the core gameplay experience.” Good-o! So the next two expansions are delayed, and Update 1.4 will launch separately in October to smarten the place up.

Ubi say their main areas to focus on for update 1.4 and beyond are:

• Fixing bugs, including those listed in our Known Issues as well as many other ones
• Making loot drops more relevant to the player
• Enemy difficulty and time to kill
• Gear Sets and weapons balancing
• Solo player experience
• Dark Zone and PvP balancing
• Quality of life additions based on community suggestions (such as weapon skins no longer taking inventory space)

So! While the second expansion, Survival, was due in October alongside Update 1.4, it’ll now come at “a later date this year.” The third expansion, Last Stand, is pushed back to “early 2017.” That may be a bit of a bummer for folks who bought the DLC season pass.

Still, isn’t it better to fix up a game before releasing more paid DLC for it? Ubi say that while the first expansion and previous content updates “have allowed us to bring more gameplay variety, the overall experience has been affected by lingering issues that have accumulated since release.” All those nasty little niggles can accumulate in a game and drag the rest down.

But hey, I don’t play The Division – that’s just what I’d want from a game I was into. How about y’all, Divisioneers?

From this site

18 Comments

  1. Bull0 says:

    Cool! I quite enjoyed Division but I hit the level cap and felt I ran out of stuff to do. Dark zone is a bit of a mess. I would fire it up for another go if they make decent efforts to improve the base game.

  2. Maxheadroom says:

    I dropped this shortly after finishing the main story and fully upgrading my base, which in its self became a slog towards the end.

    My main gripes were the difficulty when playing solo (which was most of the time) and even the trash mobs being huge bullet sponges.

    So since it looks like both those points are being addressed I guess I’ll blow the dust off and give it one more shot.

  3. Kirudub says:

    Like my 2 other fellow Divisoneers, I felt it was fun for a bit, then it became an obvious compulsive behavior enabler. After a few solo “hard” missions to earn Bird Bux, I haven’t played it in months.

    Obviously some folks get their jollies running the same mission over and over to get a new pair of gloves, but, in the words of Pvt. Hudson: “You can count me out”.

    I think the devs really screwed the pooch on this one, but that seems par for the course these days.

    • lglethal says:

      I’m actually interested Kirudub, if this was sold as a standalone game just on its story, with the option of a bit of multiplayer for fun, something kinda more like Watch_Dogs, would you have enjoyed it more?

      Everyone I know who has played the Division pretty much says what you’ve said i.e. they played it for a while, got to the top level and then walked away.

      If that had actually been the game – complete the story, max your levels and walk away would you have enjoyed it more? Rather than it being sold as a game that you would be expecting to be playing for months on end?

      My basic thought at the moment is that so many studios want these “living” games for want of a better term, where players play on forever or at least a long time and they keep developing it, but so few games, especially RPG’s, work well like this. I’m interested what your thoughts on this would be, in regard to the Division?

      • Maxheadroom says:

        just to chip in, and this is just my opinion mind, in a single player experience like Skyrim for example, the game is in the levelling – getting better gear, new abilities etc.
        Where as more multiplayer focused games put you through the levelling process as sort of a gateway to the real ‘meat’ of the game in its end-game content. And in the case of the Division that was largely absent (or so im lead to believe. As I mentioned in a post above I quit even before that).

        I imagine this is why so many MMOs release expansions that come with a level boost to skip the levelling process entirely and go straight to the ‘meat’

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          Nauallis says:

          The Division was really bizarre in that way. My impression from the hype-articles and reviews was that it was attempting to be “the next thing better than Destiny” or at the very least “something to do other than Destiny” (it was the latter, if we’re being completely honest – I do play Destiny). The Division was fun to level to 30, and the main story was interesting if not particularly engaging, seeing as how the missions can be done in a disjointed order or not at all. I was lucky enough to be able to play the entirety of the story in co-op, so I missed out on most of the “this is bullshit” bitterness that our compatriots have expressed. Unfortunately the thin mechanics are hidden behind the joy of “OMG LOOTZ” while leveling up, but as I got into the upper 20’s it started to become rather apparent that the only strategy was “shoot a lot of bullets and don’t get shot.” And the fact that, as other commenters have mentioned, the bosses and higher-tier enemies are just bullet sponges without any particular explanation for why they are that way, with the added fun of them being able to one-shot or two-shot the player, which becomes extremely frustrating. At the very least Destiny explains this by way of most of the bosses being aliens, and raid bosses require new mechanics to even be affected by direct damage.

          TL;DR – The Division was fun to level up in, if you didn’t have any further expectations about it.

      • Kirudub says:

        I didn’t really follow the game’s development, so I wasn’t invested in any way, and had no expectations waiting to be dashed. And a 45 years, I tend not to really care too deeply about something like a game, to be truthful. I see it as entertainment, and luckily I have the disposable income to indulge myself, even if it turns out to be a turd.

        I saw the Division as a game similar to Borderlands (kill mobs for “random” loot drops, upgrade your character, fiddle with inventory), which I’ve replayed quite a few times. My affinity for that series might be that it’s a FPS as opposed to a 3rd person game.

        As for the Division; my complaints are relatively few:
        – The controls can be wonky (I recall many a time where I slowly clambered on top of a box in a firefight when I wanted to grab cover)
        – It can feel like the AI is cheating (waves of bullet-sponge shotgunners one shotting you from distance since you let a centimeter of your poofy beanie be exposed).
        – Shoe-horning the PVP Dark Zone using a code base that was begging to be exploited by hackers didn’t help. After being walled leaving a safe house I was done in that cess pool of villainy.
        – The game world is pretty small, and I’ve lived in NYC, so past the initial “Hey, Times Square, neat!”, it soon became “Yup, this is why I moved” =)

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          Qazinsky says:

          Also, my favorite “What the hell were they thinking?”: Two button presses to look down the scope of a weapon.

          They could so very easily fix that with either a bindable key to go directly into scope or the option to invert the order so that you go into scope first and another keypress for the iron sight.

    • tslog says:

      Totally agreed.

      “Gameplay” now days, should really be called gamerplay, because it is increasingly publishers and developers that playing with us. exploiting and expanding gamer OCD’s as replacement for balanced, progressive, evolving, variety based… level design, or just gameplay in general.
      Most are lapping it up

  4. yogibbear says:

    They made a really great game. That just wasn’t worth playing beyond the first month. I hit 30 / DZ 50, bought all the items I wanted, and then stopped playing. :(

    • Premium User Badge

      Qazinsky says:

      If you only played for the first month and you like collecting loot, then maybe you should try it again after the next patch, they have added higher gear level stuff and set items since then. That is if you’re into loot, otherwise I don’t know if it is worth to go back.

  5. kyon says:

    To be quite honest, they should release the expansions as quickly as possible and let the game (and its playerbase) fade away slowly.

    I consider this game as one of the biggest failures of Ubi.

  6. Smoof says:

    Bought it when it came out, as I was hoping for a new MMO-esque fix, unfortunately, it got boring for me around level 20ish. That said, what I really hope is to be able to come back to the game in about a year and see some significant improvements and something that genuinely hooks me into playing.

    It has the potential to be a nice hobby time-waster, where I can sit on the couch and watch TV with my wife while I do silly shit in the game.

  7. Jessa Doom says:

    In the last six month the dev’s never realy fixed anything they just made the game worse and now they want to postpone the next set of expansions till mext year so they can fix the game now what a joke they have had six months to put thing right and nothing hasan’t been done since release and i have no confidence they fix anything in the next six months they probably want us all to walked away from the game and forget about it why do you think they keep shutting the server down for three hours evry few weeks so we get fed-up with the game and move on and after the last shutdown they couldn’t even till us what they did my bet nothing they just needed some time so they can all go down to the pub.

    • battles_atlas says:

      Is your use of punctuation a metacomment on the devs approach to improving the game? No effort then tack a perfunctory full stop on at the last moment?

  8. bl4ckrider says:

    Does it really make sense to put much more effort in it?

    Most people played it to some extend and then walked away. I can’t see many coming back to buy more DLC.

    Instead why not do Division 2, put it in another city and fix the flaws. I’d say that would be more profitable.

    I’d buy a new game with new missions. The Division was okay. I didn’t feel cheated buying it, but kinda empty when I decided to drop it. New DLC won’t change that. Even if it was free, I wouldn’t reinstall the game and their (is it Origin?) software.

    • epeternally says:

      They’re obligated to release the DLC, people have already bought season passes. It’s well known what each expansion consists of as well so they can’t just fake it. As far as delaying it, Ubisoft have invested a whole lot of money on this game and the idea of thus becoming a franchise, trying to relaunch the software is a much better short term strategy than abandoning it. At worst, people who bought the game are happy that it finally stopped being a broken mess. At best, the game grows in popularity and continues to be a solid revenue stream, while raising demand for a sequel. I do hope Division 2 will be single player first and foremost though. Co op is great, but there’s no salvaging the PVP. It’s not just that it doesn’t work in The Division, the entire system can’t be balanced and can’t provide fun for everyone playing, no matter how much you tweak it.

  9. dray says:

    I played the Div for a good while but just got sick of it, bugs, bugs, and more bugs, and the Dark Zone, less said about that the better.

    Decided I only had time for this or Destiny and Destiny was the clear winner, and that says a lot about the Div tbh.