As it is with most open-world/sandbox games, players are first given access to certain areas with specific objectives after which other areas on the map are unlocked. The availability of regions is basically based upon your progress through the game’s storyline.
Watch Dogs though will deviate from this model; offering the entire map to players right from the start.
“You can go anywhere you want,” reminded the game’s creative director, Jonathan Morin, when speaking with The Average Gamer.
“Within the free-roaming the player will have to progressively invade certain strategic points from the city OS system that’s going to make it possible for him [Aiden] to get connected in a district,” he said. “It’s going to grow and we call this “monitoring grid”. It’s like its own network to listen to what’s going on in the city. That unlocks tons of different side activities and events that the system can detect so we can actually go and intervene into them.
“We really wanted the player, through the free-roaming, to feel that he is building his own hacking system. It would have been a bit weird and magical to just have it.”
Note that Watch Dogs is going to feature a pretty massive world, similar to what Rockstar has going for them in Grand Theft Auto V. Being able to connect to every area and take on its specific activities is probably something that players are looking forward to.
Watch Dogs releases for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC on November 19, 2013.