It's been a few months since Ubisoft gave The Division some significant tweaks with update 1.3, but it sounds like the game is about to get an even bigger overhaul with the impending update 1.4. Gear, armor, weapons, and skills are all on the table for big changes, and it's all part of Ubisoft trying to make the game more challenging.
"One issue facing The Division today is that the power difference between optimized and non-optimized builds is too great. We still want people to optimize their gear and min-max to their heart’s content, but in order to balance the game, we need to reduce the gap between the two extremes," reads a post on the game's official website. "As part of Update 1.4 we also want to bring back the shooter feeling, add more decision making and hard choices when building your character and add more variety to the viable builds."
There is seriously a lot to digest, so if you want the full breakdown, I suggest setting aside some time to read the official notes. Otherwise, check out these recaps:
- All gear in World Tier 2 and higher will have all three base stats – Firearms, Stamina, Electronics – on them, one of these stats will be higher than the others.
- Other bonuses, like crit chance and headshot damage, will be scaled down to fit the new game balance.
- Gear will lose their skill bonuses, but backpacks, holsters and knee pads will gain new performance mod slots, making them easier to customize to fit your build.
- Gear Sets will have their Gear Score adjusted to the same levels as High End gear.
- Stat overlaps between Gear Scores have been removed.
- High End gear talents have been rebalanced.
- Scavenging has been removed from the game.
- New DPS formula on weapons has been introduced, but is a work in progress and will change over the course of the PTS.
- The damage and roles of certain weapons have been changed. Some weapons have seen a damage increase; others have had their damage lowered.
- Named weapons will not be changed in this update.
- Weapon mods will now come with one major bonus and an amount of smaller bonuses, depending on the quality of the mod.
- Damage bonuses are now additive instead of multiplicative, reducing the current spikes in damage which made the game hard to balance.
- The Firearms stat will become a much more significant source of damage output, leading to more decision making when building your character.
- Weapon talents have been rebalanced; some have been buffed, others have seen their numbers reduced.
- The identity of your gear will remain the same, even if the scale of stats and bonuses might change.
- Stamina will be the main source of toughness.
- Armor value will have different results of damage mitigation depending on the World Tier you are in.
- The four-piece bonuses of Gear Sets have been rebalanced.
- Two-piece bonuses will focus more on utility instead of stat bonuses.
- Five-piece bonuses have been removed from the game.
- Reclaimer and BLIND have their four-piece bonuses inactive on the initial PTS version while they are being worked on.
- Electronics will be the main source of Skill Power.
- Skill Power will not scale linearly anymore, instead it will follow a curve of diminishing returns.
- Certain skills are currently much more popular than others. Some skills are overpowered, others underpowered or bugged.
- Skills have been rebalanced to fit the new game balance or to bring them up to par, in the hopes of creating a more varied meta.
- First Aid no longer allows for multiple heals, since those happened due to a bug. First Aid’s healing has been increased to make up for this fix. It will now heal instantly.
- Smart Cover and Pulse have been reworked. Smart Cover is now more defensive and Pulse’s high damage boost has been lowered to make it balanced with the new enemy health.
- Ballistic Shield and Support Station have been given more health. Support Station’s healing has been increased.
- Many bugs associated with skills have been fixed.
No word on when exactly update 1.4 will go live for everyone, but if you've got a copy of the game on PC, you can jump into the Public Test Server and try them out now.
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