Welcome, DedSec, to our first entry of Tea Time With Bagley! This fortnightly blog series will bring you the latest behind the scenes news, sneak peeks, and deep dives into the world of Watch Dogs: Legion.
Today, we’re digging into some of the content that arrived with Title Update 4.0 last week. In addition to the release of Mina Sidhu, new Co-Op missions, and new character abilities, the update also included quality of life features, such as:
- Operative Deep Profiling: A long requested feature we’ve worked on is the ability to access the Deep Profiler of operatives – in addition to recruits. So, when you see that operative that has a relative with your exact last name, you can actually go find them and start a little family reunion of your own.
- Improved operative bios: A feature we believe has a lot of potential in the Operative Bio, a space to help players both discover more about who an operative is and what they have done with them. But it’s also a feature that is pretty hidden and very dense with information, which leads to some readability issues. With TU 4.0, we laid some groundwork to help the Operative Bio live up more to its potential by cleaning up the layout and text formatting, as well as providing some space for players to see more of what each operative has done as they play them.
- Paste-Ups icons now distinguish between those you’ve already completed: We realize all those little knicks and scratches can add up, and this section is dedicated to those subtle, important things.
- Friends Only mode in Co-Op Missions: We know that there are times when you just want to play with people you know, so we added this feature in the latest update. Our community was loud and clear that they wanted this, so we prioritized getting this into the game as soon as possible To start a Friends Only co-op mission session, just toggle the privacy setting when launching a co-op mission, from “Public” to “Friends Only”.
Additional changes and features that arrived in TU 4.0 are:
- Unlocking access to all Shops in the hackerspace after visiting them in the world.
- Rotate character model in shop interface.
- Toggle clothing on/off in the shop interface.
- Increased recent event memory cap from 5 to 15.
- Operative Stats section added to the bio.
One of the biggest features introduced to this update was Character Customization. We sat down with Character Technical Director, Kieran O’Sullivan, to talk about the work that went behind creating this, and how the community’s feedback and suggestions were involved in making this happen.
How did you decide which design features to include?
Watch Dogs: Legion is a bit different from other games in that it’s a story about recruiting a team and swapping between these characters to use their different skills and abilities. We have millions of different characters with their own lives and personalities, so we wanted to make sure that we kept that individuality, while still giving players the option to give their DedSec recruits their own unique spin. That is why we decided to focus on hair, beards, tattoos, makeup, and piercings
What was important for you to include when working on the feature?
Adding a good variety of hair styles and tattoos were the obvious options that everyone wanted. I was really interested in the makeup, because it’s a bit more subtle. Throughout the world we have characters with different skin complexions, bruises, sun damage, and so on. With the makeup we thought it was important to have choices with different levels of foundation, so the player can choose how much of the original skin detail was visible through the makeup. This way you can choose if you want to cover the bruises, sunburns and natural skin details, or if you want them to show. I think that helps tell a visual story about how your operatives might have changed since they were recruited.
Aside from the items available in the body customization shop, the other important feature is that operatives keep their customization when you’re not controlling them. In the past when operatives were not doing DedSec missions they would change back into their civilian clothing or work uniforms based on their schedule. With this update we knew it was important that customization was persistent and based on player feedback we decided that should apply to their clothing customization as well.
Did you face any interesting challenges?
I think the biggest challenge was squeezing all these new items into the player’s save game, which sounds easier than it is. When an operative is saved, an ID number is generated, with each bit of it describing different parts of the saved character. Originally, we didn’t plan to add these new categories for hair, tattoos, etc. so the trickiest part was figuring out how to implement these customization options into the existing save system.
What are you most proud of about the feature?
I’m most proud of giving players more options to choose how they want to experience the game.
For me, personally, it’s been a long journey to reach that goal. Years ago, we had a vision for a new advanced character customization system to assist developers in creating complex characters. From there, we worked to improve and expand on what it can do, and now with TU 4.0, both developers and players can access and use more of the features in that system. For me, that’s been a really rewarding part of this feature.
Mina bug fixes: Players really embraced Mina as part of their DedSec and we’re happy to see so many of you trying out her powers and finding new, creative ways to use her abilities. We’ve also seen bug reports coming in through our website. Thanks to those reports the team has been busy working on fixing these issues; many which will arrive with TU 4.5. The following Mina related bugs will be fixed in TU 4.5:
- Mina will keep the weapon of a formerly possessed NPC
- Players are unable to return to Mina if the NPC they control dies
- Players are unable to exit Mind Control
- A bug where certain NPCs will gain Mina’s skills and abilities
- A bug where players can Mind Control NPCs they shouldn't be able to
- An issue where players are forced to restart the game if they use Mind Control on an NPC when going out of bounds
You’ll be able to read full list of TU 4.5 fixes and improvements when we release the patch notes closer to launch.
TU 4.5 also brings the Tactical Op, Project OMNI, as well as one of the biggest requests from our next-gen console players, 60FPS performance mode. We’re very excited to bring this to the game!