The Division and its sequel sees the activation of the Strategic Homeland Division, a network of sleeper agents embedded in the general population committed to restoring society after a collapse. While both games provide compelling reasons for the existence and actions of members of the organization, their motives can still sometimes seem questionable when you break it down to what the core gameplay loop is – killing individuals deemed to be threats to what has become of society post-pandemic in pursuit of societal order and better weaponry to take on the frighteningly well equipped factions of these games.
I have a couple of questions when I'm looking at this.
A) While the "enemies" are self-centered in killing opposition that encroach on their territory, minus large acts of obvious moral depravity, there are really only a small number of individuals in the activated cells who have to decide whether the opposition is a threat or an organization to support. While the game draws the line clearly to reduce the moral ambiguity, picking and choosing which factions are provided military support seems like a difficult and fraught line to draw, especially given the rates at which Americans are armed in general. What if a faction you're supporting falls out of line with what the Division agents like? Would they prevent an allied faction from making decisions that would be to the benefit of themselves but harmful to the Division or other groups? What happens if different cells don't communicate and end up supporting groups which are rivals? Should the Division enforce local rules or "Division" rules?
B) Agents of the Division are nominally Federal agents devoted to restoration of American society, with its constitution and bill of rights. While the suspension of some rights seems justifiable at first in a post-collapse society with the inability to enforce the rule of law, picking and choosing which rights and parts of the constitution apply leads down a slippery slope that seems hard to recover from if society were ever to recover – you are executing people without trial, and while they're designated "the enemy", at some point if things were to get better walking back the reduction of rights seems difficult when they can easily be justified as maintaining order, perhaps indefinitely. What's your interpretation of the Division's approach to citizens, military, and the law in a domestic collapse situation?
I'm curious to hear everyone's thoughts about the implications of the, well, frankly, policing and military operations you do in this game, especially given the context that this is nominally drawn from the Tom Clancy universe which I feel warrants further interrogation for the values they inadvertently espouse.
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More about Gaming NewsPost: "Can we talk and think about the frankly untopical themes of the Division series?" specifically for the game Gaming News. Other useful information about this game:
- Some clarification on spoilers and leaks and r/Nintendo
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