For French video game publisher Ubisoft, today has to be very exciting. Not since The Division has the company been talked about this much within gaming circles. That game went on to sell millions of copies, which almost never happens when a title hasn’t proven itself with a previous release. The company is hoping that Watch Dogs 2, a game that arrives on store shelves early tomorrow will do the same. Its release is exciting for a totally different reason.
Watch Dogs 2 isn’t a totally new franchise for Ubisoft. As its name suggests, it’s an improvement on an idea that launched shortly after the Xbox One and PS4 got their starts. The original game mixed open-world exploration and missions with hacking tricks that let players shut off Chicago’s power, evade the police and use smartphones and cameras to their advantage. Watch Dogs 2 offers more hacking and more things to do. All the while, developer Ubisoft Montreal is attempting to right the wrongs of the original game. It has dumped its original protagonist and tone, focusing on a younger generation of hackers that care as much about social causes as they do about what’s going on in their lives. There’s more to hack and a more vibrant city to explore.
The Watch Dogs 2 release is set for tonight. Here are some tips, deals and more to get you through the day.
Watch Dogs 2 Release Date Tips: Midnight Launch Parties & Pre-Downloads
As is customary for big video game releases, GameStop is opening its stores at midnight for pickups of Watch Dogs 2. The same rules that have applied to other midnight launch parties at the retailer apply to this one. You get to pick up your title at midnight Eastern Standard Time/9 PM Pacific Standard Time. To get your copy, you’ll need to pay for it in full at the store earlier in the day. Remember to call ahead to your local store to make sure that it’ll be open.
At last check, Best Buy won’t reopen its stores at midnight Eastern Standard Time to give shoppers their copy. The events area on its BestBuy.com website doesn’t show a Watch Dogs 2 event at all. If you pre-ordered the game there, you’ll need to wait until morning to pick it up.
Most Wal-Mart locations are always open all night. You should be able to pick up the game there just fine after midnight in your time zone.
Watch Dogs 2 Release Date Tips: Watch Dogs 2 Deals
Watch Dogs 2 release date deals are pretty limited, but we’ve managed to track down a few.
Eager to lure in buyers of physical discs, the Microsoft Store is offering a $10 gift code for anyone that purchases a physical copy of the game from its stores. At this point, it’s a little late to purchase the game and expect it to arrive on release day. The company’s Xbox Rewards program is giving users 15,000 in rewards points when they purchase a physical copy of the game directly from the Microsoft Store. Unfortunately, you can’t take advantage of both offers.
Normally, GameStop likes to temporarily boost trade-in value when users pre-order a specific game. That’s not happening for Watch Dogs 2, it seems. Instead, Power Up Rewards Pro members get their usual boost in points earned when purchasing a new game.
Best Buy’s Gamers Club Unlocked and Amazon Prime still have the best Watch Dogs 2 deals around. If you’re a member of either, you get 20% off physical versions of the game. That discount includes the Gold and Deluxe Edition variants.
Watch Dogs 2 Release Date Tips: Pre-Order Extras
Watch Dogs 2 is a little light on promotional, exclusive content as a pre-order extra. That being said, there are some things to keep in mind.
GameStop is one of the few stores giving users something tangible when they pre-order the game: a pin set. This exclusive pin set matches the pins on Marcus Holloway’s messenger bag. He’s the protagonist of the game.
Anyone that purchases the game gets the Zodiac Killer Mission. It’s a story related add-on that comes packaged inside the game’s case. It focuses on the Zodiac slayings from the 1960s era that gripped San Francisco.
Watch Dogs 2 Release Date Tips: If Possible, Buy on PS4
Ubisoft is partnering with Sony to offer exclusive access to any and all mission packs to PS4 owners of the season pass a month before they arrive for everyone else. What this means is that Xbox One owners will pay the same $39.99 for the season pass that PS4 users do, but get their content updates after. Those that own both systems are better off buying on PlayStation because of this agreement.
There’s some exclusive content too. Pre-orders on PlayStation get a Watch Dogs 2 theme for their console. PlayStation Plus members receive a Bitflip Outfit at no additional charge. The Engineer Outfit, Radio Tower mission and ScoutXpedition Activity are exclusive to PS4, according to the PlayStation Store.
Good luck with the Watch Dogs 2 release date.