When working to take back London from authoritarian opportunists, hiding your identity is crucial to survival. Of course, you’ll want to look good doing it too. The expert for the job, Patrick Ingoldsby, Watch Dogs: Legion’s Art Director, explains the concept and inspiration behind some of his favorite masks in Watch Dogs: Legion.
What was the initial idea behind DedSec recruits wearing masks in Watch Dogs: Legion?
Patrick Ingoldsby: "Operative masks played a huge role in solving a challenge we had with the Play as Anyone innovation. As a Creative Team, we kept asking, "When you become a member of DedSec, will you get a full costume or exclusive outfit? How will our DedSec look? How will players know they are part of the Resistance visually?" We also had to keep in mind that part of the recruitment motivation could stem from wanting to play characters they discovered, partially based on what they wear when discovered. So, we needed a solution that allows the charm of our discoveries to be part of who they are even after joining DedSec.”
How did the atmosphere and feel of London affect the design of the masks?
PI:“Considering individuality and the eclectic diversity of our London's population, we realized that the masks also had to reflect our values with Play as Anyone. They’re also a key signature to classic Hacker counterculture and resistance culture anytime people want their voices to be heard.”
When did the decision to use masks feel like the visual representation you were looking for?
PI: “We struck the right chord when one of our Associate Art Directors pulled a concept together that featured what our version of DedSec would look like in our game as an example ensemble. Right away we fell in love with how the masks could complement what already made diverse people in London special. You can be a banker from the City of London borough, a Socha DJ from Brixton, a Granny from Whitechapel, or a Cyberpunk Drone Expert from Camden, and all share a common desire to make a difference, to stand up against those who abuse power. The approach to this was our answer.”
How do masks add value and creativity for both artists and players?
PI: “Operative masks had to reflect diversity, and they had to feel like something a character would have found and modified/personalized to wear. This allowed our artists the freedom to explore as a team a range of fun and visually striking ideas that expressed and reflected London's deep culture and historical nature.”
Could you share some of your favorite masks in Watch Dogs: Legion?
PI: “This mask is one of my absolute favourites and has become one of our game's iconic ones. The symbol of the pig hits so many notes, ranging from Orwellian to a symbol of corporate greed. It's our tongue in cheek, stiff upper lip statement against those who leverage power for personal gain.”
How to get the Mask:
Finish the story mission DedSec Party.
PI: “We have a range of these classic WWII RAF pilot masks remixed in striking ways for the player to enjoy, but I personally love the more authentic historical one as it gives a feel that it was a mask a former vet would source, or a descendant family member of a war vet would find and wear. I've been obsessed with a recent string of WW1 and WW2 films, so I think this is part of my personal fascination of this side of UK and our world's history.”
How to get the Mask:
Find its box at The Sandstone Residence, located in the Islington & Hackney borough:
PI: “This is another mask with quite a few cool remixes in the game available for the player's operatives to wear. What I love about this remix is the 'DIY' touches it has with the hobby circuit board LED display integration on its crown, and the emissive paint design on the 3D printed skull pieces giving it a striking face to encounter.”
How to get the Mask:
Complete Watch Dogs: Legion’s main story
As you traverse the streets of London, be on the lookout for these treasured masks and share your fancy recruits with @watchdogsgame! For more underground info on the ins and outs of London, see Gameplan.