It’s that time again! For this round of pairing, I chose Tom Clancy’s The Division and BrewDog’s Tactical Nuclear Penguin!
A heavy hitting beer at 55% ABV and a game that gets insanely frustrating when you find yourself wandering around in the Dark Zone.
The Dark Zone?
The Dark Zone, or “DZ” as it’s better known, is the area in the game where the multiplayer component comes in. You can’t enter this area until you get your character up to level 5, which also controls how good the gear you can find is.
The DZ also has enemy AI present as well. Unlike the PvE area where AI enemy difficulty level matches to your player level, enemies in the DZ normally hover around the level 20 mark.
They say that the southern most area of the DZ has enemy level matched to yours, but I didn’t get that experience.
The very first wandering group of AI enemies I encountered spotted me even faster and completely wrecked me.
That was just the AI. The other players in the Zone are even worse.
See, Division’s multiplayer doesn’t have conventional modes of online play. It’s one area and players are free to enter and leave as they please. There are no teams in the typical sense.
Don’t go it alone!
It’s smart to group up with friends or other players you’ve met and go in together. Because of that enter-at-will component, other players love to grief those entering.
You also wouldn’t drink a bottle of 55% ABV beer by yourself. You do that shit with friends. Go it alone and there will be consequences.
Have a strategy.
Now, when you’re drinking a beer that has an insanely high alcohol content, you start slow. You may have a few sips and find yourself going “okay, this is good. I’m going to take my time with this.”
You don’t need to have a steadfast plan, but it’s smart to be looking ahead.
That’s how you need to enter the Zone. You have to pick your ingress point wisely and with tact. Guns blazing on entry will only serve to make you hate the Zone.
Players in the Zone are free to engage with anyone and they’ll try to goad you into firing first. Do not do this!
It makes you the bad guy AND allows for open-season on your triffling self.
The long haul.
If you drink a forty ounce bottle of liquor, you aren’t going to down it within a short amount of time. You’re going to sip it and make it last for a few hours.
You’ll be in the Zone for a few hours, too. Trust me. I went in by myself once and it was open season on me.
Anyone in the Zone by themselves is an easy target unless they have their skills picked correctly and know how to handle an onslaught solo. I didn’t have any of these.
I still spent the next two hours in there by myself.
At the end of it all, I hadn’t gained any experience but I had a few new toys at my disposal. I had to take breaks between fighting though to get my treasures out.
Going back to the bottle example, You have to take breaks to make it last. Too fast and you lose focus and get sloppy. That beer was also more than $650. You’re going to enjoy every sip.
And if you’re like me, you spent way too much on the season pass and a few extra DLC pieces.
Yes, I paid actual money for 5 new coats for my Christian Slater looking player character. They look fabulous, thanks for asking.
Extracting my new-found gear let me take a few minutes to recharge and resupply to head back into the lawless Zone. If I had been with a team or group of players, that extraction break would make the next adventure ten times easier.
Those friends sharing that treat with you will also appreciate that you’re taking it slow and that everyone is getting a fair taste.
How they go together.
You’re going to be working on that bottle for a little bit while you waste time in the Zone with those friends of yours. At the bottom of the bottle while leaving the DZ, You know that the experience was great and that you got some great stuff out of the adventure.
You also used some bomb tactics with your squad and had the penguin spirit guiding you. That and the buzz of victory will be even sweeter with some Penguin buzzing your head and knowing you dodged the bullets whizzing nearby.
Come back next time when I talk about how to play the DZ going it solo! I’ll be drinking a lower ABV beer, too. I’ll be able to keep better focus 😉
-Cheers til’ next time, Nick