Content of the article: "Sometimes You Still Lose: guide that goes into way too much depth but please give me a chance this took like two hours to write"
Ok, I know I'm like 6 years late on this, but I wanted to share my story and my wisdom in the hopes of helping anyone who's still playing the game. I planned out a technique to play in the least effort way possible (spoiler, it was very high effort for me, but not for you because I already made the guide) for those who are stuck and just want to watch the final cutscenes. (If you don't want dramatic backstory, skip down to the ~)
To set the scene, I got the game around 2017, or whenever it was available for free with Xbox gold. I know it took me a while, but here's the thing. I'm no good at video games. I love them, but I lack basic coordination and finesse necessary to do the most basic of tasks. It took me a year to get through Dressed in Peels. I finally went back to the game about a month ago, determined to defeat this beast.
In my most recent confrontation with WD1, I consistently found myself stuck on missions that posed even the slightest challenge. By Any Means Necessary? Pure fucking pain. I'd heard the dark tales of Sometimes You Still Lose. I knew what a pain it had become for many players who were forced to give up hope of finding the jarring and cinematic ending that lie just beyond the three hacking checkpoints. I knew I needed to approach this differently from other missions, or I wouldn't stand a chance. So even before picking up a controller, I researched like hell. (I've always played a bit dirty, but when you're as much of a bumbling fool as I, you'll do anything to get through a checkpoint.)
I soured guides, forums and play-throughs for any solutions. Aside from the Impossible Hack (see no coordination above), there were few corners to cut. Yes, I could take a boat to the first two points, then drive from the ctOS station to the middle of the loop for the last one, but I knew there had to be a lazier way. By improving upon this method and understanding the mission's mechanics in advance, I, a buffoon who can't drive in this game to save my life, completed act V in one attempt. If I can do it, so can you. Trust me.
- From the ctOS HQ, drive south (toward the bridge) to the inland hack point. Start with this one because its the most difficult, and if you act fast, you can do most of this before the police start trying to kill you. Emphasis on act fast. As soon as you regain control after the hack mini game, start driving there as fast as you can. Use every second of T-bones call and Damien's speech to your advantage. Combined with a few jam comms, you can finish the download before the scan is over and escape unopposed.
- Drive straight east through the park to the dock. Take a boat to the next hack point, and park on the south edge of the dock. These few blocks to water will really be the only actual police chase you'll have to do. Make sure you have a fast car and a clear path. On the water, try to get a speedboat, but those fishing boats with the funny roofs work just fine. Use some disable helicopters if necessary. For the dock part, it's just right by the gate to the ctOS centre with a clear shot to the hack point.
- Download the hack, prance away, and take the boat over the top of the map to the final hack point. Yes yes, it seems way more straightforward to take the canal shortcut, but it is so much easier to shake the fuzz on the open tides, well away from any roads and mean guys who want to shoot you. It gives you the chance to download the last hack during a scan instead of a pursuit, especially if you use some jam comms. Mostly, I added that part to give me a moment to breathe during gameplay. Take my advice or don't, I'm not the fun times police. While this last hack downloads, hide in the water or on the rocks at the shore.
- Stock up on jam comms, system keys, and electronic parts.
- Memorise the locations of the hack points before starting. Not just on a map, but understand where they are in the world, and what the surroundings look like. I walked through my entire route beforehand to learn where gates, barriers, and shortcuts were. The dumbest way to mess up is to get confused by the extra objectives on the map.
- The cops have terrible aim. If you find yourself closed in by police on foot when leaving a hack point, just run.
To quote a wise sage somewhere on a mountain, probably, "glhf"
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