Columns: Patch 1.8 is the Best The Division’s Ever Been

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Forget Destiny 2, there’s a new (old?) loot shooter king in town and it’s Tom Clancy’s The Division. It’s been a slow burn and a tumultuous journey for The Division, but Ubisoft seems to have finally been able to realize the game’s potential with the game’s latest (and massive) free update, patch 1.8.

The Division’s live service history has been a mixed bag. The game got a lukewarm reception at launch, its season pass was mostly underwhelming, and the game’s free updates were often a ‘two steps forward, one step back’ affair. I enjoyed the game for what it was when I first played it, but the flaws were clear and I’ve been looking for a reason to really come back to it ever since. That time is now.

Let’s go through some of patch 1.8’s notable features.

West Side Piers

The game’s map has been expanded in patch 1.8 with the addition of West Side Piers, a pair of two new zones (Piers North and Piers South). In WSP, the game’s various enemy factions are working together towards a mysterious goal. The zones feature 38 new audio logs, which was always a great way for The Division to tell its story, but the real star of the show is WSP’s dynamic spawn system.

Unlike other zones in The Division, enemies in WSP aren’t just wandering around for you to kill – they will spawn in to hunt you down. There’s always stuff to do in the West Side Piers, too. Randomized Side Missions are always active in WSP, doling out tasks for players to accomplish. Spending your time in WSP is a great way to snag tons of loot and it’s also an excellent alternative to the Dark Zone for accumulating Division Tech, which is useful for max rolling your items using the patch’s newly added Optimization Station.

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