The Division 2 is a game that we’re big fans of here at PowerUp. It’s a bigger, better and expanded version of the first game that features pulse-pounding moment-to-moment gameplay, an addictive loop and tonnes of loot. However, since its launch in March 2019, The Division 2 has grown somewhat stagnant.
Content drops have been few and far between and the game hasn’t really changed all that much since launch. Players and fans looking for a long-term engagement may have lost interest and wandered off to play something else.
Now, Ubisoft has released the Warlords of New York and it promises to reinvigorate the game, bring the players back and shake up the core systems.
The Division 2 Warlords of New York DLC Review
The first and most obvious, thing to state about this DLC is that it takes players back to New York. While The Division 2 moved the action to Washington D.C., this DLC returns Agents to NYC, the setting for The Division. However, where that first game was set during winter and featured a cold, snowy city, the DLC takes place during summer.
This New York has been somewhat reclaimed by nature. Vegetation grows on buildings and across the road and the DLC has an almost The Last of Us look to it. Still post-apocalyptic but vastly different from the winter of the first game. Additionally, while the original took place near Midtown, Warlords of New York is set in the financial district and Wall Street.
Warlords of New York bears all the hallmarks of The Division’s aesthetic and style but looks and feels as through the artists and level designers have been given free rein. There’s just so much detail on the streets, in the buildings and everywhere you look. It’s incredibly easy to be absorbed by the environment and forget what you’re actually supposed to be doing.
At least it was for me.
What you are supposed to be doing is tracking down Aaron Keener and his lieutenants. Keener is the big baddie from The Division and now, it’s time to take him down.
How this shakes out it up to you. Keener has four lieutenants and you can hunt them down in any order you choose. This felt reminiscent of Ghost Recond: Wildlands and the way you’d search for evidence, expand your knowledge and then finally close in on a suspect.
While this structure basically means the story is stagnant until you reach Keener, I enjoyed the open-ended, free approach. If I struggled with a mission, I could simply switch gears, chase a different enemy and come back later. It also helps that each of the missions in the lead up to the lieutenant are tense, action-packed and examples of some of the best combat The Division has to offer.
Not to mention, each round of missions includes some light puzzle-solving and a number of new and different mechanics to tackle. This is especially true of each of the lieutenants as they have their own special abilities you unlock once you defeat them.
Collecting these new abilities and using them against enemies is tonnes of fun.
Gear and Loot have been given a pretty hefty overhaul in Warlords of New York as well. In New York, there’s no Gear Score, but in Washington, it’s been raised to 515.
This is to maintain balance and fairness across players who do buy the expansion and those who don’t.
Essentially what happens for those playing the expansion is that they level up from 30 to 40 and then every level beyond that are awarded an SHD Level. With each new level, players can invest points into stats and boost things like Weapon Damage, Headshot Damage, Reload Speed and more. This infinite levelling system allows dedicated players to craft unique characters that reflect how they play and how they want to play.
You’ll find yourself carrying less loot, less trash and simply enjoying levelling up more. This new system might be a little convoluted and confusing at first but in the long run it provides a much clearer direction for players and helps to make the end-game that much more engaging.
A return to New York, new Gear and levelling system and a chance to track down Keener are all good reasons to play Warlords of New York, but the biggest draw remains The Division 2’s combat. It’s tight, tense and focused and the missions and levels in this DLC seem to exemplify the moving cover system better than ever before.
Labyrinthine levels expand into massive outdoor arenas filled with enemies that come at you from every angle and survival is far from guaranteed. Making it through an encounter in Warlords of New York feels like a real accomplishment and after you’ve completed the story, you’ll certainly have an appreciation for just how well put together this collection of missions is.
Warlords of New York is the perfect addition to The Division 2 and a great reason to jump back in if you’ve stopped playing.
Warlords of New York was reviewed on Xbox One using a digital copy provided by Ubisoft.
Game Title: The Division 2 Warlords of New York DLC