One of the most disappointing launches in recent history for gamers was the highly anticipated Tom Clancy's The Division. Across both console and computer, this Ubisoft title was an absolute trainwreck, and despite initial high sales, players quickly abandoned The Division after experiencing its poor state.
Determined to repair their game, the developers of The Division stuck with it and have been releasing incremental patches over the last two years. With the most recent 1.8 update, it finally feels like a solid experience. Players have been flocking back to The Division, reinvigorating the spirit of the once meager community and turning the game into one of the most popular games in the new year.
An example to others
The recent success of The Division is important to emphasize, because it was one of the most broken games of this generation.
Some of 2017's biggest names, such as Star Wars Battlefront II, Destiny 2, and Call of Duty: WW2, all share serious flaws, from invasive microtransactions to a lack of content to poor balancing, among some others. None of these games, however, were quite as bad as The Division was when it launched. Though its microtransactions were less invasive, The Division barely worked on any platform and almost every facet of the game was completely broken, along with balancing problems and lack of content.
These games overall have less to fix than The Division did, and that will make the job of these developers that much easier. If Ubisoft can make The Division succeed this much only two years after its legendary failures, then I believe any game can recover (at least mostly) from poor first impressions.
A game with a brighter future
A great example of a game on the road to recovery is Destiny 2. It's no secret by now that the Destiny fanbase has been incredibly dissatisfied with the game as of late, and because of this they began to demand transparency and information from developer Bungie about when and how things will be improved.
In response, Bungie detailed their development roadmap with Destiny 2, hoping to address and resolve several of the major concerns voiced by players. As long as Bungie sticks to their plan, the future for Destiny 2 looks hopeful.
A game forgotten in darkness
Mass Effect Andromeda had potential to improve, but was never given the chance.
A title that has, sadly, been left behind to rot is Mass Effect Andromeda. The game boasted a large amount of content at launch, but a lot of it was riddled with technical issues. On top of this, the fans found the game to lack creativity in general, which caused the expansive open world to feel bland and uninteresting.
After seeing this, developers BioWare Montreal revealed plans for future DLC content that would improve the game, but these expansions were cancelled when the studio was merged with EA Motive. Instead of giving the developers a chance, Electronic Arts instead chose to end support for Andromeda mere months after its launch. Games like The Division, though, show that if you build it, they will come; it's sad to think about how good Andromeda could have ended up becoming, given some time.
Do you think that flawed games should receive dedicated support post-launch in order to eventually fix all the issues, or do you think that publishers and developers should cut all ties, like EA did with Mass Effect Andromeda? Let me know your thoughts.
Tom Clancy's The Division is available now for $49.99 on both Xbox One and PC.
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