How Hacking Works in Watch Dogs

Ubisoft is putting together a new series of videos to illustrate the unique gameplay features in Watch Dogs. In the first episode of the series, Ubisoft explains how it’s “redefining hacking” and how doing so allows the game’s protagonist Aiden Pearce to turn the city into the ultimate weapon.

“Everyone and everything is connected by technology. Hacking into that connection can be very powerful,” says the trailer’s narrator.

“All these controls are controlled by ctOS, a city-wide centralized software created to cut costs and maximize efficiency. It manages transportation control, emergency response, utilities, crime monitoring, and much more.”

In order to use the city to his advantage, Aiden must unlock the city district by district by installing a backdoor virus into each of its territorial control centers, and everything within the area will be accessible through his smartphone.

Through the system, Aiden can gain unfettered access to the personal lives of anyone living in the city, through their home security cameras, intercepting texts and phone calls, stealing their passwords, accessing their computer, and even their bank accounts. According to Ubisoft, the data you steal will further increase your hacking skills.

You can also access the Chicago PD’s crime prediction system which uses the vast surveillance camera network and each citizen’s personal data to predict criminal activity. When the system alerts you to a crime, you can choose to intervene or turn a blind eye to the act.

Finally, you can use the system to track your enemies through the use of security cameras and create various ways of getting away while being pursued. You can, for example, create blockers, overload steam pipes, short out electronics, raise bridges, and even cause a massive blackout.

That’s part 1 of the series. The next part will cover the most surveilled city in the United States—Chicago—and what that means to the game.

In the meantime, check out our preview of the game from E3 to learn more about the game’s hacking.

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