If you looked closely at the patch notes for a Division update from way back in November 2016, you would notice an odd sentence: “Fixed a Weird Door.”
It would become a trend for Ubisoft’s enormous action-RPG, which would receive many more updates over the coming months. The following May, in Division patch 1.6.1, the game’s developers mentioned the following: “Fixed another weird door.”
Then in 1.7: “Fixed a weird door in the General Assembly parking lot.” … and… “Fixed some big weird doors in the Underground.”... and ...“Fixed an issue where enemies were unable to detect the player after going through a weird fire door.”
Eventually, in December 2017, patch 1.8 arrived, and with it: “Fixed some weird doors.”
Most recently, the game was patched to 1.8.1. The patch notes contained the inevitable: “Fixed a weird door.”
“We are always on the lookout for a weird door,” one of the game’s producers, Cristian Pana, explained to me over e-mail when I inquired about all these weird doors in Ubisoft’s paramilitary game set in a recreation of lower Manhattan. He acknowledged that it’s become a running gag in the game’s patch notes, but said the game has indeed had numerous doors that needed fixing.
The Division is a huge game that recreates hundreds of intersections and dozens of Manhattan city blocks. It is full of buildings that are full of doors, and judging by all those patch notes, it is not possible to fix every buggy or problematic door at once.
Doors in The Division can be “weird” in a variety of ways. Sometimes, Pana said, the doors are oddly-sized or don’t fit into their frame. Some doors could trap players behind them when the player opened them or could be passed through entirely by the player’s character. Those were the problems with the door referenced in the 1.5 patch, Pana explained. Because a game can use the same coded object or model in multiple places, the weird door that patch addressed could actually be found in several different parts of the game. “Once our [quality control] team found it,” Pana said, “we were able to fix it. By fixing the actual model, we fixed all instances of the issue.”
The “weird door” gag has proliferated across five sets of Division patch notes. Pana said the developers had fixed doors even prior to 1.5 and left the you-know-what open for the team to fix more in the game’s next patch, 1.8.2, which, among other things, is meant to added a system that will connect The Division to its recently-announced sequel The Division 2.
And what of The Division 2 and its potential for weird doors? Kotaku’s interview with Pana was conducted over e-mail via the public relations team at the game’s publisher, Ubisoft. At the end of a list of questions, we invited the developers to provide an exclusive about how The Division 2 will handle Weird Doors. We noted that this might involve needing to confirm that The Division 2 even has doors. Sadly, Ubisoft did not seem to be interested in providing us with this exclusive. Division 2 doors, weird or otherwise, remain unconfirmed at the time of publication.