Watch Dogs: Legion’s ‘Play as Anyone’ unlocks unprecedented opportunity

Ubisoft /

Ubisoft released a new trailer showing off Watch Dog: Legion’s innovate gameplay

Ubisoft impressed everyone last year when they first revealed the hook for Watch Dogs: Legion — the ability to play as any NPC in the game. During this weekend’s Ubisoft Forward digital conference, we got an extended look at the game via a seven-minute gameplay video highlighting the “Play as Anyone” mechanic.

This is an innovative mechanic does exactly what the name says, allows you to recruit any NPC in the game to join your resistance movement, and, ultimately, play as them. What makes this approach truly fascinating is that each NPC you recruit has their own backstory, personality and skillset.

Now I haven’t gone hands-on with the game so I don’t know how deep this backstory and personality actually go or how truly unique each character’s skillset is but the gameplay trailer certainly seemed to suggest an unlimited opportunity for variance in how you play the game.

You can have up to 40 unique characters in your DedSec Resistance at a time. You can select from this pool of characters, the one you want to take on a mission. Their skills and abilities will determine the approach you can take.

In the video, Ubisoft shows the numerous ways you can approach a mission. In one particular mission, you must break into the Albion headquarters to dig up some dirt on Nigel Cass, one of the opportunists seeking control of the city.

We are shown just a few of the many different characters and they all certainly look unique. Not only that but the weapons, abilities and skills they have also differ greatly. It’s not a set standard for any character either.

Thaworn Lim, a spy, has a unique silenced weapon along with a spy watch to jam enemy weapons and a spy car that has missiles and can cloak. He’s also got some sort of drone gadget. Arthur Griffin is a construction worker with a nail gun and wrench for his weapons and a cargo drone that he can summon.

Watch Dogs: Legion
Ubisoft /

We’re shown a bit of Arthur’s gameplay and his approach is very head-on and direct. It’s much different than the second approach by drone expert Amy Zhao, who has the ability to summon her own drones and hack others. It’s an entirely different gameplay experience between the two.

Then we are shown a third character, Brielle McCoy, an Albion Contractor. While Albion Contractors are much more difficult to recruit they have their perks — like being able to just walk into restricted Albion areas. This is a much stealthier option that required absolutely no combat at all.

Three unique characters, three different ways to approach the same mission. A second mission is shown in the video as well which, again, showcases the different approaches you can take towards a mission.

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Assuming the NPCs in Watch Dogs: Legion are really as varied as Ubisoft says, there seems to be nearly unlimited gameplay opportunities here. This ensures no two players’ experiences will be the same while also allowing you to craft your gameplay experience towards your preferred playstyle.

If you prefer stealth, control a drone expert or a spy. If you like barging through the front door, I’m sure there’s some sort of weapons expert or demolitionist. The point is, the “Play as Anyone” mechanic lets you play how you want to play rather than shoe-horning you into a specific archetype.

Watch Dogs: Legion is set to launch for Xbox One, PS4, Stadia and PC on October 29. It will also be released for Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 “upon the launch of the consoles” with a free upgrade from the current- to next-gen consoles.