Watch Dogs Legion (WDL) has 22 Oppression Defiance Challenges marked by Red Icons (Borough Activities). Doing them is needed to turn all boroughs defiant for the Take Back London trophy and achievement. This guide shows you how to complete all of them and turn the boroughs defiant (including their liberation missions).
The red icons to these Defiance Activities are automatically marked on the map after one of the first main quests “Clarion Call”. There are 8 boroughs (districts). Each borough has 3-4 red icons for challenges that decrease oppression. Doing all in one borough unlocks a unique Defiance Mission. Doing that mission will result in an Uprising and liberate the entire borough / turn it defiant.
Once you turn a borough Defiant it reveals all Tech Points on the map (skill points), you get a very powerful special agent, and people’s opinion of you increases (easier to recruit them).
None of these borough activities are missable. You can still do them after the story in free roam. The borough of Camden is automatically liberated during main mission “Reporting for Duty” early in the story. This leaves only 7 boroughs with those red defiance quests to complete.
It’s highly recommended you play as a Construction Worker. You recruit one automatically early in the story during “Reporting for Duty”. The Construction Worker’s Cargo Drone allows you to fly everywhere and get to rooftops easily. Simply select the Cargo Drone from the Construction Worker’s item wheel, hijack it, park it on the street, climb on it and fly up. Also keep a Spiderbot as your equipped Gadget, you’ll need it a lot for these Challenges.
Types of Borough Activities with Red Icons:
- Rescue Freedom Fighters – free prisoners from hostile areas
- Disrupt Propaganda – hack consoles, usually on rooftops that are best reached with the Construction Worker’s Cargo Drone
- Hack CtOS Hub – hack a console that will make you control cameras, jump between cameras and scan the environment to find data
- Photograph Evidence – use news drones or take photos yourself, these are the most tricky ones to figure out
- Sabotage – interact with a console in a hostile area
- Neutralize VIP – defeat a certain marked enemy
- Collect Evidence – similar to the photographs but you need to pick up the evidence instead, either with a Spiderbot or yourself
- Digital Deface – reach a console high up on tall buildings, use Construction Worker’s Cargo Drone
City of Westminster #1 – Rescue Freedom Fighter
On the ground floor of the hostile area “New Scotland Yard” you can find this freedom fighter. Use the circuit box (Screenshot #2) in the same room to open the door to the freedom fighter.
City of Westminster #2 – Disrupt Propaganda 1/2
The ctOS console you need to hack is on a rooftop. The easiest way up is to climb on top of a Cargo Crone and simply fly up there (Construction Workers have the Cargo Drone skill). Simply climb on top of your drone and fly up the building. The ctOS console is in a fenced area. There’s an air duct leading to it, which requires a Spiderbot. The trouble is that the air duct is blocked on the other side. So use your Cargo Drone to pick up the box blocking the Air Duct (Screenshot #2). With this out of the way you can summon a Spiderbot to crawl through the air duct and hack the ctOS console (if you don’t have a Spiderbot you can summon it to the left side of the ctOS console). Cargo Drone can also be summoned on the rooftop above the ctOS console).
City of Westminster #3 – Disrupt Propaganda 2/2
This ctOS console is on a rooftop. Simply use a Cargo Drone to fly up there (summon the Drone, park it at street level, climb onto it and remote control it to fly up). Construction Workers have the Cargo Drone skill. Nothing more to it, once you’re on the roof you can easily access this console.
Defiance Mission: Like Clockwork
After doing all Oppression Challenges you need to do the Mission “Like Clockwork” which spawns outside your Safehouse (marked on map). This will liberate the City of Westminster. In this mission you need to use a Spiderbot to navigate up the Clocktower of London, which is basically just a series of platforming sections.
City of London #1 – Hack CtOS Hub 1/1
To enter the area with the marked challenge, simply walk through the doors of the building (accessible from the street to the east). This leads you to a homeless shelter with a locked door. To open the door, hack the nearby drone (Screenshot #2) and fly it up the balcony above (Screenshot #3 – still inside the homeless shelter, not outside). You can scan the area by pressing R3 / Right Stick to see a key icon on the minimap. Up on the balcony there’s a datapad you must scan with the drone. This unlocks the key to open the gate. So go ahead and open it to find the CtOS console. This will trigger a minigame of sorts – you’ll be in a hideout where you can only use cameras. Press R3/Right Stick to scan the mannequins and / to jump between them. First, scan the main console after jumping to the first mannequin. It will show you that it requires a password. To get the password you must scan 3 computers around the room for text files (Screenshots #4-#6). So press R3 / Right Stick to scan the mannequin and jump between them using / to get to all 3 computers. After that you can hack the main console on the stage to finish this Challenge.
City of London #2 – Photograph Evidence 1/1
This is a relatively quick one. Where the red Photograph Evidence icon is on the map you will find 2 Journalists talking to each other by a white news van. Next to the journalists is a News Drone (Screenshot #2). Take control of it and directly where the news drone is (behind the 2 journalists) there’s some red wooden planks on the side of a pod-like structure. There’s a hole between the red wooden planks, you can fly through it with your drone (Screenshot #3). This leads you to a very dark underground section. Luckily, your drone has a light on it. Navigate through the tunnel. You will reach a room with the evidence to photograph. You must press to toggle the camera.
City of London #3 – Sabotage
This one doesn’t need much explaining. Simply go to the red sabotage icon and interact with the console. All done. An easy way to get there is to ride on top of a Cargo Drone (Construction Workers have this skill).
Defiance Mission: Mind Games
In this mission, after taking an elevator up a building, you will have to summon a Spiderbot. You can find a Spiderbot station up the stairs after taking the elevator. Then find the air duct near the spiderbot station. This will lead you through several air ducts of offices until you eventually reach a yellow interaction point. Then you have to use cameras to hack 4 yellow computers (press R3/Right Stick to scan the environment once you take control of the cameras). After this the last thing is to hack a flying drone and use it to align a power grid.
Islington & Hackney #1 – Neutralize VIP
This one’s very straightforward. Simply defeat the enemy who is marked by the red challenge icon on the map. He’s guarded by a few other enemies but easy to defeat.
Islington & Hackney #2 – Collect Evidence
The evidence is inside a garage but it’s barricaded. Climb on the roof of the garage (via the garden in the back) to find a Cargo Drone pad. Call in a Cargo Drone and pick up the explosive containers in the garden behind the garage (Screenshot #2). Then drop the explosive at the wooden barricade (marked by a red X) at the garage entrance. This will blow up the barricade and you can now enter the garage.
Islington & Hackney #3 – Sabotage
Hack the console marked in red. The easiest way to reach it is by flying to it on top of a cargo drone (Construction Worker skill).
Defiance Mission: Fight of Flight Plan
This mission is quite simple and short. You just need to destroy 5 vehicles within a time limit using a drone.
Tower Hamlets #1 – Rescue Freedom Fighter
The red icon marks the exact spot of the freedom fighter. He’s locked in a cell of a guarded building. Enter the building from the door to the south (parking lot). Interact with the Closed Circuit Terminal opposite the door to the Freedom Fighter. This will open the door so you can free him.
Tower Hamlets #2 – Collect Evidence
First you must go to the graveyard north of the challenge icon (hostile area) and find a tall white tower in the middle (Screenshot #2). It’s best you clear out the enemies at the graveyard first. At the tall white tower you can summon a spiderbot. There’s a vent at the foot of the tall white tower that your spiderbot can crawl through (Screenshot #2/#3). It leads underground to a tunnel section. Follow the tunnels all the way to the end to reach a laptop with the evidence for pickup. Don’t let you spiderbot drop into the puddles of water along the way.
Tower Hamlets #3 – Neutralize VIP
Kill the marked enemy. This enemy is walking around in a fortress. To reach him summon a Cargo Drone (Construction Worker skill), hijack it, park it on the street, climb on it, then sit on it while flying to the enemy.
Defiance Mission: Driven to Distraction
This is a simple checkpoint race. Just drive through all checkpoints before the timer runs out. Remember you can / hack cars that are in your path to make space.
Southwark #1 – Photograph Evidence
There are two ways to complete this (both of them require a spiderbot). The first is to enter the enemy area where the marker for the Photograph Evidence is. In the lobby you can hack a datapad (Screenshot #2). Then go to the photograph evidence, summon a spiderbot, run it through the floor vent and open the door from the other side (Screenshot #3 – requires the hacked datapad from lobby). The second way is to come from the marina/harbor, it has a side tunnel that connects to the enemy area and you can also use a spiderbot here to interact with a circuit box and open the doors that way. Regardless of what method you pick, when you’re in the room with the photo evidence hold to open your item wheel and press (PlayStation) / (Xbox) to take a picture.
Southwark #2 – Digital Deface
Simply fly to the Digital Deface location using a Cargo Drone (Construction Worker skill). Summon Cargo Drone from Construction Worker’s item wheel, hijack it, park it on the street, climb on it, hijack it again and fly up while sitting on the drone.
Southwark #3 – Sabotage
The red Sabotage Location shows the exact spot of the console you must hack. It’s in a hostile area. Simply climb over the outer walls to enter the compound, clear out the enemies and then hack the console.
Southwark #4 – Hack CtOS Hub
Interact with the CtOS Hub on the rooftop where the red marker is. You can use a Construction Worker’s Cargo Drone to fly up there. Hacking the CtOS will bring up the camera of a plane’s cockpit. Here you must zoom in on two blue datapads and hack them for their data. This will reroute the plane and complete this activity.
Defiance Mission: Information Overload
Enter the mission building through the ground floor and head upstairs. Fight off the enemies along the way. There’s a yellow mission maker behind a locked door. To open the door, place a spiderbot and crawl down the air duct to interact with a circuit box. This opens the door and lets you enter the elevator to a new area. Here you have to complete a platforming section with a maintenance drone. First you fly through red openings in server towers, then have to avoid some steam from pipes and make your way past enemies (the last of them must be scanned to get the password to a door). Then you pick up the battery back and must backtrack all the way you came from. There’s one tricky part of the way back – when you’re in the wind tunnel you must stick to the corners where the wind can’t reach. It requires very specific placement of your drone – you must push the drone against the ceiling and fly from left to right behind some pipes. Then use you can fly above the wind turbines and make your way back. Drop off the battery where the waypoint marker is to finish this mission and liberate Southwark.
Lambeth #1 – Disrupt Propaganda
This propaganda location is on the rooftop of the museum. Play as a Construction Worker and use your Cargo Drone skill. Then you can land the drone, stand on it, and fly up to the roof to easily reach the propaganda box.
Lambeth #2 – Digital Deface
On the rooftop of St. Thomas’ Hospital (Skyscraper). This is up so high that even a Construction Workers Cargo Drone can’t reach it. Instead, look for a Window Washing Lift on the side of the skyscraper. Lower it, get inside, and raise it all the way to the rooftop.
Lambeth #3 – Photograph Evidence
This Evidence location is on the top floor of the restricted area “Albian Station Kennington”. Either fly up there with your Construction Worker’s Cargo Drone, or climb up. At the back of the rooftop (south-side) you can walk through a red security laser and enter an office. Here open your item wheel and press (PlayStation) / (Xbox) to photograph the evidence on the big screen.
Defiance Mission: Wheels in Motion
First you must interact with the marked console in the river (on a small platform that has a security drone and defense turret). This will make you fly an Albion attack drone. The rest of the mission is simply destroying some propane tanks near the Eye of London of then hacking a screen while defending it from hostile drones.
Nine Elms #1 – Sabotage
Just like with other Sabotage locations, the easiest method is to use your Construction Workers Cargo Drone to fly directly to the Sabotage point. It’s where the red marker is on the map. There are some enemies here so take them out if necessary.
Nine Elms #2 – Neutralize VIP
This VIP is an Albion Attack Drone on a rooftop. Simply fly to it using a Cargo Drone (Construction Worker skill). Summon Cargo Drone from Construction Worker’s item wheel, hijack it, park it on the street, climb on it, hijack it again and fly up while sitting on the cargo drone. The Attack Drone can only be damaged by shooting the orange glowing sticks that occasionally come out under its wings (shooting its body won’t do anything, just go into cover and wait for this weak spot to appear).
Nine Elms #3 – Photograph Evidence
This Photograph Evidence Location is in the hostile area “Parcel Fox Distribution Center”. The easiest method is to enter the building from the south-west (bottom left) corner. There’s a floor vent you can put a spiderbot through (Screenshot #2). Then use the spiderbot to interact with the physical circuit box in the evidence room, thus opening the door to it (Screenshot #3). The 2nd method is to hijack the camera in the evidence room, download the password from the laptop, and use the password to open the door. Regardless of your method, once inside the evidence room press to open the item wheel and (PlayStation) / (Xbox) to take the photo.
Defiance Mission: The Black Hole of Battersea
After talking to the quest giver, drop down one floor to the restricted area of the power plant. Enter the doors on the side (next to waterway) to reach an elevator. Take the elevator and you’ll come to a dark area where you must hijack a News Drone. There’s a locked door but you can fly the News Drone through the air duct to reach a password that opens the door. Next, there’s a dark room with some scaffolding and a physical circuit box. You must reach the box yourself to interact with it. Use the News Drone to light the way. In the third section you must solve a Circuit Puzzle with the drone and then again use it to light the way over some dark platforming sections. In the 4th section you must interact with a computer to free the hostages which ends this quest.
That’s all of the Borough Activities in Watch Dogs Legion (WDL). After liberating / turning defiant all boroughs you will earn the Take Back London trophy or achievement.
For more guides check out the Watch Dogs Legion Wiki & Strategy Guide.