Game critics will not be able to review The Division until after its servers go live on release day, publisher Ubisoft has confirmed.
The corporation said it would be more beneficial for reporters and reviewers to assess the MMO in a live environment, as opposed to a simulated one. It has told fans to not expect reviews of the game until after release date, which is March 8.
Such a practice is becoming common as triple-A games hinge more of their features on network connections. Bungie, for example, did not provide the press with review opportunities for Destiny prior to its release. However, other online-centric games, such as Titanfall and Battlefield 4, were assessed by media in controlled environments prior to release.
Writing on the Ubisoft blog, the corporation explained: "The Division was always designed to be a seamless online experience, giving players the option to play solo or group with fellow agents to tackle missions and infiltrate the Dark Zone as a squad.
"Since it's impossible for us to populate the servers in a way that would adequately replicate playing The Division on launch day, reviewers will start playing the game along with everyone else when it's released on March 8--after the servers go live officially and globally at 00:01 A.M. Australian Eastern Daylight Time (AEDT)."
The Division's recently concluded open beta attracted 6.4 million players across PC, PS4 and Xbox One, representing a new record for a new IP's beta on new-generation consoles.