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Watch Dogs started out as a Driver sequel according to a report

Driver: San Francisco
(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Watch Dogs was originally designed as a game in Ubisoft's Driver series, according to a new report.

Speaking to several sources at Ubisoft, a new report by VG24/7 (opens in new tab) uncovers the original intentions behind the first Watch Dogs game. "The game that was released as Watch Dogs started life as a sequel in the Driver franchise, but was always largely what you see in the final product," original Driver co-creator Martin Edmonson told VG24/7.

While working on Driver: San Francisco, Edmonson was sent documents by a team at Ubisoft Montreal, who were currently working on what was intended to be the next Driver game. While it was an incredibly early build of the game, it did feature hacking traffic lights and other features that would go on to be present in Watch Dogs when it debuted in 2014.

One other noteworthy section is Edmonson and another source at Ubisoft saying that this changing of a Driver sequel to spawn a different franchise, like what happened with a Prince of Persia sequel leading to Assassin's Creed, isn't uncommon. We'd really recommend reading the full, excellent feature on VG24/7 for a complete look into the goings-on behind the scenes prior to Watch Dogs' release.

The Driver series would go on to release just one game after Watch Dogs launched: Driver: Speedboat Paradise, a free-to-play mobile game that launched a few months after Watch Dogs in December 2014. Right now, although the Driver series has accumulated sales of over 16 million units worldwide as far back as 2011, there are no current new entries planned for the series.

As for the future of the Watch Dogs series, Ubisoft is currently committed to adding new content to Watch Dogs Legion, the third game in the franchise, which launched last year in October 2020. Just recently, a new update hit Legion that added private matches for its co-op PvE online component, and Ubisoft has said that 60 frames per second is on the way for the PS5, Xbox Series X, and Xbox Series S.

For a complete guide to all the games Ubisoft has planned to launch over the coming months, head over to our new games 2021 guide for more.

Hirun Cryer
Hirun Cryer

Hirun Cryer is a freelance reporter and writer with Gamesradar+ based out of U.K. After earning a degree in American History specializing in journalism, cinema, literature, and history, he stepped into the games writing world, with a focus on shooters, indie games, and RPGs, and has since been the recipient of the MCV 30 Under 30 award for 2021. In his spare time he freelances with other outlets around the industry, practices Japanese, and enjoys contemporary manga and anime.