Part II: Tom Clancy’s ‘The Division’ 1.4 Update From a Hardcore Player’s Perspective

By Michael Moraitis | 10/23/16

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For those interested, you can read part 1 of this post here: “Why ‘The Division’ Changes are Perfect for Casual Gamers

Ubisoft and Massive finally had a “coming to God” moment after admitting “Tom Clancy’s The Division” was broken on so many levels. Casual players who truly love the game fought their hardest for the game on websites like Reddit, as everyone agreed ”The Division” had so much potential if not for how excruciatingly difficult and unrewarding it was.

Many hardcore gamers didn’t take kindly to the casual players’ concerns and the most often response was to get better and stop whining. To make these two groups despise each other even more, it was routine to see casual players getting smoked in the Dark Zone and having their hard-earned loot taken by these same overly-dedicated players.

As of update 1.4, casual players are getting exactly what they wanted and overall, it’ll be much easier to obtain great loot in one of the best-selling games of 2016. As a hardcore player myself, I am happy to see this, but not without a bit of salt.

I completely understand the grind for loot was tedious and seemingly impossible at times, as I often found myself playing an entire night with zero upgrades to my build. With an angry shrug of the shoulders every time I wiped on wave 13 in Falcon Lost or got my loot stolen in the Dark Zone, I would chalk it up to the game being the game and hope the next day would be better.

I understood obtaining the gear and weapons I wanted was a marathon, not a sprint.

Against all odds, us hardcore gamers managed to optimize our gear and become PvE and PvP powerhouses. While it made me want to pull my hair out at times, getting that piece of gear I desired left me with a rewarding sense of accomplishment. Overcoming the broken mechanics and overpowered NPCs was something to be proud of.

Now that the game will be simpler from a grinding loot and enemy difficulty standpoint, I can sit here and complain about how I had to get over the problems of “The Division” and everyone else should have to do the same, however I’m too reasonable not to see the big picture here.

As people became more frustrated, more and more dropped out of the game and the player base has eroded considerably. It’s a lonely feeling when you’re running around the Dark Zone and nobody is there or when you’re matchmaking for a mission and the icon to show matchmaking in progress just keeps going around and around with no conclusion.

The game was dying and in many circles, it’s already considered dead. That’s not what I want for one of my favorite games of all-time. I want it to thrive and have a community that can play with one another well into 2017, while also having fun and not getting beaten over the head doing it.

The changes coming to ‘The Division’ are for the best. There are still two paid DLCs left – which I would have played regardless of whether the game was fixed or not – and it won’t be any fun if there aren’t any players left. The casual gamer makes up the majority of “The Division” players and there would be no future (and especially no sequel) to the game we all adore without them.

Follow me on Twitter: @michaelmoraitis