Watch Dogs: 10 Reasons It Sucks

10. The Mini-Games Are Lame

What do chess, Carmageddon, that ball and three cups guessing game thing, slot machines, a shot-drinking contest, hold em' poker, alternate reality shooters and parkour have in common? They represent the majority of mini-games in Watch_Dogs. If that seems like a REALLY strange grouping, you'd be right. The thing with mini-games in open-world titles is that the best ones serve to inform the world or introduce you to something new and fun you didn't expect. The taxi missions in Grand Theft Auto III were awesome because an entire game about driving a taxi - Crazy Taxi, came out barely three years prior, and its still compelling gameplay was impressively condensed into a side activity. Even better, Red Dead Redemption introduced legions of people to the little-known joys of Liars Dice, which fit perfectly with the western aesthetic, was an absolute blast to play, and easily modifiable into a 'real life' drinking game as icing on the cake. But it seems Ubisoft has trouble with this sort of thing. Assassin's Creed III featured Checkers and Bocce, which are almost laughably mundane activities to participate in where there's naval battles to be had. In Watch_Dogs, it seems like they picked games out of a hat, and then settled on the least appealing ones. Opening up the world map and browsing the various points of interest yields such a "meh" reaction. Did you really pay 60 dollars to play newspaper-esque chess challenges? What about engaging in the equivalent of the 'you've been knocked down' mini-games from EA's Fight Night series? If you did, then this is the game for you. But you probably didn't, and it's disappointing to look at the offerings and not find one that peaks curiosity the same way Liars Dice did. The games offered in Watch_Dogs are fun, and they do have depth if you find yourself enjoying them a lot, but in a general sense they're not compelling enough to warrant spending time with them just because you can, which sucks.
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Paul is a writer, video producer, gamer, lover, and tie-fighter. E-mail him at