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Tips for Starting Out in The Division 2

Michael Bitton Posted:
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We’ve been playing The Division 2 in early access the last few days and there’s just a ton to take in with this game. With The Division 2 launching for everyone later this evening, we figured this would be a great opportunity to highlight some tips to start you out on the right foot.

Customize Your UI

The Division 2 has some decent options when it comes to customizing the UI to your liking. There’s a UI section in the Settings area that will let you move around and scale HUD elements. You can also do things like change your inventory to grid format (press the button for Options with your inventory open) or have the ability to see your squadmates’ skills and their cooldowns by toggling the option on in the Gameplay settings.

Performance an Issue? Try Resolution Scale

If you’re playing at higher resolutions (1440P+) but you’re struggling to hit the sort of performance you’d like or have to turn down a bunch of options to get there, try turning your Resolution Scale down to 75 or 85%. Of all the settings, this is the one that will give you the most performance uplift, and it’s also a setting that even the game’s developers suggest trying as the game will look almost indistinguishable from 100% scaling at higher resolutions when dropped to these levels.

Choose Your First Skills Wisely

You’ll be stuck with them for a little while before you can replace them. Not forever, mind you, but if you’re like me and took Pulse as one of your first two abilities, you’ll feel like you’re going through the game with one ability until you can replace it. There are a number of different ways you can go here, but I would suggest that you can’t really go wrong with the Assault Turret and Fixer Drone to start. The turret can be used to cover your flank or even set one up on enemies. The Fixer will heal you constantly while it’s out and it can even be sent to heal the turret if it’s taking fire. These two are like having your own personal healer and tank with you. If you disable them early (hold their assigned button) it will cut their cooldown in half, allowing you to redeploy them sooner for the next encounter.

Some other helpful combos are the Healing Chem Launcher and the Revival Hive. The Chem Launcher seems a bit overpowered right now since you can use it a little too often (double tap the button to heal yourself with it) and the Revival Hive is useful for its ability to auto revive you if you go down. This is kind of a double edged sword, since it can end up reviving you out of cover, which means you’ll likely just go down again, but it’s something to consider.

Free Vanity Items

This is an old tip from the first game, but if you liked some of the vanity options available during character creation, just make a couple of different agents with them to permanently unlock them for your account.


I wouldn’t agonize over perks too much as you’ll end up having enough SHD Tech to unlock just about whatever you want by the time you’re level 15 or so, but if you want to get the most out of your choices early on, I suggest grabbing the five Accolade perks immediately to help with experience gain. The Deconstruction line is also useful for getting the most out of salvaging gear.

Join a Clan!

The Division 2 has a surprisingly robust clan system. Clans get their own quarters at the Base of Operations (BOO, for short) and a number of different benefits for leveling up the clan, including special vendors, bounty boards, and even a weekly cache of items. You won't unlock clans for a couple of levels, but it's worth joining one early.

Clans also get dedicated in-game voice channels, which is quite neat.

Faction Keys

You’ll occasionally come across locked chests that require keys belonging to their associated factions. These keys are often found in the underground (look for underground entrances marked on the map) and can be used to open these chests for some good loot. Exploring the underground is useful in general, so don’t neglect the space.

Beeline for Safe Houses

The first thing you should do when entering a new area is beeline for its Safe House. Unlocking the Safe House gives you a handy respawn point, unlocks the zone’s Projects, and also reveals all the SHD Tech locations for the zone on your map.

Exploit Weak Points

If you want to up your game, always keep an eye out for weak points. The most obvious way weak points factor into combat are your encounters with heavily armored enemies. You need to physically strike their weak points to break the armor off and get through to their health bar, but there are some less obvious ways you can exploit enemy weak points. You’re also able to shoot grenadier grenade pouches to blow them up (this even works on dead enemies), instantly kill medics by shooting their defibrillators, and so on. Look out for these possibilities and you may be surprised by what you find.

Skill Power Works Differently

Skill Power is not interchangeable with Electronics from the first game. It’s not a stat you stack to up your skill effectiveness, it instead works as a requirement for installing skill mods. Massive has decoupled your main attributes from skills and has chosen to instead leverage the expanded mod system to allow you to mod your skills to your desire. Maybe you want to focus more on cooldown reduction on your turret over damage, well you can now configure your turret the way you want. The catch is that if you want to be able to install more powerful skill mods, you’ll still need to stack Skill Power to do so. It just doesn’t do anything on its own.

Activate Your Ubisoft Challenges

Find the Ubisoft tab under your Progression menu and make sure you manually activate your challenges. These challenges will not activate on their own and you’ll also need to claim their rewards once complete.

Donate Junk to Projects

Feel free to mark items you want to deconstruct as junk, but don’t go and deconstruct them all before you check in with your Projects at the Settlement or BOO. Some Projects will ask you to donate specific types of gear and there’s a button in the Projects menu that will let you donate all the junked gear required. Once you’ve done this, go ahead and deconstruct the rest in your inventory.

Got any of your own tips to share? Post ‘em in the comments below!


Michael Bitton

Michael Bitton / Michael began his career at the WarCry Network in 2005 as the site manager for several different WarCry fansite portals. In 2008, Michael worked for the startup magazine Massive Gamer as a columnist and online news editor. In June of 2009, Michael joined MMORPG.com as the site's Community Manager. Follow him on Twitter @eMikeB