'The Division' Guide: Tips And Tricks To Get Started

The Division is out and it is a surprisingly deep game for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC players. The first step is to hit the ground running, understanding some of the basics of the online shooter. The following is a collection of tips to help players find their way around a gang-filled New York City following a bioterrorism attack.

Unlock the Security Wing Base Upgrade First

The first mission you want to take on after clearing the Base of Operations is the Security mission. This will upgrade the Security Wing first with the Situation Room. This gives a 10 percent XP boost via the Experienced Agent perk to all activities in the game, which is fantastic to have starting off with.

The Medical mission is probably the next mission you'll want to take on next for the Pulse skill followed by the Tech mission. From there, carefully plan what part upgrades you want to make to each wing of the base to carefully build your character.

Loot All the Things

New York City is a big place in The Division and there are assorted loot boxes, backpacks, and satchels spread around the game world. Explore the nooks and crannies of streets and alleyways while paying attention to your mini-map. You'll see an indicator for loot resources.

One particular type of loot resource you'll want to be on the lookout for is materials such as electronics, weapon parts, and fabrics. These are necessary for crafting. The minimap will display gray areas that may have these. Go into the gray area and it will expand narrow down to the individual boxes or bags.

As you level up your character and unlock items in the various Base of Operations wings, you'll gain new abilities and modifiers to those abilities. Pulse with the Recon Pack mod that is unlocked via the "Quarantine" Medical Wing upgrade is the combination that will help the most, as it will mark all the loot nodes for you.

The Division (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
[Image via 'The Division']Focus on Missions and Side Missions to Level Up

If you want to go all in on getting through the game as fast as you can, Missions and Side Missions will provide the most experience in the game. The latter will also provide crafting blue prints you can use to make better weapons and gear.

Don't totally skip out on Encounters and other smaller experience gaining opportunities. If you're smart, you'll plan your path from one mission to the next to take you through one or more Encounter, Missing Agent Marker, or Lost Cellphone on the map.

Unlock all the Safe Houses

Fast traveling is a necessity in The Division and Safe Houses are a must to help facilitate this. Using completed Missions as fast travel points is also a big help.

Use Matchmaking for Missions

The Division scales the difficulty based on the number of people on the team, but it is also more rewarding. You'll gain extra experience and loot during your run in approximately the same time as if you ran solo.

Just make sure you are at least the recommended level for missions. The game can be brutal to those that are under-leveled and you could actually be dragging your team down, especially if you choose Hard difficulty.

Always check your teammates abilities, too, and set yours to compliment. Not all four players need a Pulse and a Turret.

The Division (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
[Image via 'The Division']Dismantle/Sell Weapons and Gear as Needed

Some will suggest you need to dismantle all unneeded weapons/gear and horde your crafting materials for the end game while others will encourage you to sell your items so you can purchase better. A middle ground is probably best.

You certainly want to hold on to as much crafting material as you can for later in the game. However, you also want to get to the end-game. There will be times when you can craft or buy a better weapon or piece of gear than you currently have that will make your journey easier. That's when you want to make that move.

As a general rule of thumb, the item that is crafted or purchased will need to be either a level above you or the same level if you just leveled up. You don't want to waste material or money on a level 14 Assault Rifle after your just turned level 15.

Look for Traversal Clues

The Division will have you scaling buildings and scaffolding. It's not exactly Assassin's Creed style parkour, but you do need to look for certain visual cues. Ladders that need to be used will flash gold while blue tarps will mark a ledge where you can drop off safely. There are also red objects such as a utility box or a vehicle will indicate places you can climb up. This all helps when trying to get to the one side mission or encounter on your map.

One more tip, hold down the left trigger to slide down ladders.

Move from Cover to Cover

It's tempting pop up out of cover and attempt to run for another piece of cover, but don't. Use The Division's built-in cover movement instead by highlighting where you want to go and holding the A or X button. Your character will have less of a chance of being spotted and and being shot.

The Division (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
[Image via 'The Division']Use the D-pad for Consumables and Marking Enemies

If you want to be an even deadlier agent in The Division, use consumables by pressing right on the D-pad. Water gives you an extra 20 percent damage against Elite enemies, Energy Bars remove status effects, Canned Food increases healing effects by 40 percent for 30 seconds, and Soda reduces skill cooldowns by 30 percent for 30 seconds. There are also Incendiary and Explosive Bullets that have a chance to either light enemies on fire or deal an area of effect damage to enemies.

Pressing on the left D-pad lets you choose which grenade to use.

You can also mark enemies by highlighting one with your cursor and pressing up on the D-pad. Holding up on the D-pad will start a countdown time from 5 seconds so your crew can coordinate an attack.

Build Character focused on Health

Survivability is key in The Division. It doesn't much matter if you can put out an insane amount of damage if you can't survive a single shot. Focus on equipping items that will boost your character's health first followed by Weapons and Tech.

Team Up in the Dark Zone

This should probably fall under "Captain Obvious" territory, but the Dark Zone is not some place you want to spend a lot of time in alone. You can do it for a while, but it gets more difficult against higher level NPC enemies plus you are painting a giant target on your back anytime a group of players spots you by yourself.

If you do go alone, consider using skills such as the Turret to provide distraction and fire power along with Pulse with the Scrambler mod to protect against enemy pulse scans. Alternatively, consider a tank build with Survivor Link and First Aid modded with Booster Shot. This will greatly increase your odds against two or more opponents.

Have any tips you'd like to add? Share them in the comments below.

[Image via Ubisoft]