A lot of gamers have been wondering whether The Division has been downgraded. And while we did provide some comparison screenshots a couple of days ago, we were unable to talk about some stuff that needed to be showcased via a video. Well, thankfully YouTube’s ‘Candyland’ has released a comparison video between the game’s closed beta build and its E3 2013/2014 demos.
As we can see, there have been some changes to the actual game. For starters, the dynamic material shaders have been scaled back. While in the tech demo they were used in good effect to show the environmental differences, in the actual game that effect is not used to its fullest extend.
The same can be said about the game’s dynamic global illumination lighting system. While it is still present (as can be seen by the smoke effects), it’s been scaled back. For example, the real-time bounce lighting from completely dynamic light sources (like the flashing lights from cars) is not as advanced as it was in the E3 2013/2014 demos (this can be clearly seen at 3:13).
The biggest downgrade, however, comes from its procedural destruction system. It appears that this system has been severely downgraded. In the E3 2013 demo, the damage system appeared to be procedural in every way. In the closed beta build, however, it feels more like what we get from most games. It’s still great, however it’s not as advanced and mind-blowing as it was in the E3 2013 demo.
All in all, The Division has been downgraded (or scaled back if you prefer) from its original state. While most of the features that were showcased are still present, they have been scaled back and they are not as advanced as they were in the E3 2013 demo.
And before people start cursing Massive Entertainment, even with this downgrade, The Division is easily one of the best looking games out there. And yes, this downgrade is not as bad as the one that surrounded Watch_Dogs (or even The Witcher 3).