Ubisoft has announced The Division 2 today, but not until after a few last-minute leaks let slip it was coming.
In its weekly State of the Game stream, Ubisoft Massive confirmed that not only is The Division 2 in active development, but has been so in some form or another since roughly one month after the launch of the first game.
As well as Ubisoft Massive and Red Storm, Ubisoft Reflections (Grow Home/Grow Up/Ode) and Ubisoft Annecy (Steep) both also have roles in development, which is taking place on an updated version of the first game’s Snowdrop engine. Ubisoft Shanghai, Bucharest and the new Sofia studio are also involved in outsourced capacities.
Ubisoft was beaten to the punch ever so slightly, though, as the game’s logo was discovered on Ubisoft servers hours before the confirmation. This was then followed up by a leaked press release sent to German media (and picked up by 4-traders). It was later posted officially by Massive on the Ubisoft blog. Whoops.
In the same stream, the next few months of support for the first game were also announced. While most of it is the usual patching and tweaking you’d expect, there are some interesting features coming to keep people going until the sequel.
Firstly, in April’s 1.8.1, two of the story missions will be getting the ultra-hard Legendary difficulty mode, which adds new enemies and totally reworks boss encounters. Amherst and Grand Central will join a handful of other missions that already have the mode, and will be followed by two more, currently unannounced, missions in 1.8.2 in June.
There is also going to be a new item to farm for in 1.8.2, in the form of Shields. Shields will be earned in the first game, but spent in The Division 2, giving you something to work on while waiting for the next game.
Finally, for Xbox One X players, the optimisation patch will be coming with 1.8.1 in April, giving the console a graphical boost and improved performance.
Unfortunately, Massive has also confirmed it won’t be talking about The Division 2 any more until it formally unveils it at E3 in mid-June. That includes information like launch date and platforms, let alone new features or the story. It’s only a few months away, but considering the amount of time I’ve spent in the first game’s snowy New York, those months are going to be painful.