The Brilliance of The Division’s Dark Zone

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Rarely do MMO modes capture my attention like the Division’s Dark Zone.  It’s a simple premise; you and your group are up against other agents and the various enemies that litter the DZ.  This PVP/PVE structure is found in almost all modern multiplayer games.  What makes the Dark Zone an intense and sometimes visceral experience is that the loot you gather cannot be extracted by normal means.  You can’t just run to an exit and leave with your loot in tow.  That would be too easy and this post wouldn’t exist.

The Division2.jpg
Smile because there’s probably rogue agents hunting you.

 

First off, you can only extract a limited amount of loot and it can only be done in certain areas.  Secondly, and most important, extracting will force other players to know where your exact location is on the map.  Which, depending on your play style can be a blessing or a curse.  A blessing because you and your group of rogue agents want to ambush the next set of players who happen to fall into your trap.  Most agents that tend to be rogue within the Division are high ranking agents who as of right now, are rocking the Vector submachine gun that does a ridiculous amount of damage. Conversely, its a curse if you want to extract quietly, especially if you are close to finally attaining that sweet high end gear. Even though your exact location isn’t shown, and you may get lucky maneuvering around the allotted area, there’s no way that anyone can miss the helicopter positioning itself for extraction.

Tom Clancy's The Division™_20160404201356
Graceful and a job well done.

Now I know what you’re thinking, how in the world does this make the game fun if you aren’t the mischievous type?  Honestly that depends on your play style, you will have to constantly maneuver yourself around the Dark Zone and I’ve gotten lucky once or twice by forcing rogue agents into firefights with high ranking enemies.  The AI tends to focus its fields of fire on those that are the biggest threat.  So when they’re distracted and engaged there are two choices, fight or flight.  The experience you get from aiding the AI enemies in dispatching rogue agents is incentive enough to make an attempt to put them down especially if you are the risk-taking type.  But if you’re the type that wants to just be left alone to explore the Dark Zone, then wade around them an make sure you don’t stay in the middle of the street or an alley.  That’s just easy pickings.

 

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