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Payday 2 Review

See PixlBit's Review Policies

On 10/23/2013 at 12:00 PM by Chris Yarger

Gimme yo' money!

Well worth the time if you have friends to play with, or you can easily overlook the incompetent AI.

I’ll openly admit that I’m not the best reviewer in the world; I’m far from it, actually. Hell, I don’t think I've had a writing class since Middle School; I just try to scrape by with my wits and endless assault of metaphorical quips. Regardless, that’s never once stopped me from attempting to write better than a toddler learning to pick his nose and scrawl in boogers. Also, in my world of candy-coated dreams is my love for heists. I’ve never tried a heist myself (unless you count the time I stole some Legos from my neighbor), but I love to read about successful heists and watch movies that feature incredible against-all-odds heists! So needless to say; when I was offered the opportunity to review Payday 2, I was able to combine my hopes and dreams of being a reviewer with my undying desire for some intricately planned heists into a singular experience of awesomeness!

While I’m not entirely sure what the real story of Payday 2 is, the presentation of the details of the game world is rather intriguing. It doesn't force itself down your throat like a proverbial endoscopy; instead you get to piece it together yourself, much akin to Dark Souls or Left 4 Dead. You can gather some of the details from the biography sections of each of the four main characters and from there you basically make it up and loot to your heart's content.

The game plays like you’d expect; you rob, simple as that. The best part of this though is that you can do it anyway you want. You can don your mask and barge in, guns blazing, or you can attempt to sneak around and rob everyone blindly without ever raising a single alarm. While I normally went in with fire spewing from my gun muzzle like a raging dragon full of vengeance, this was often the result of my immediate failure to be stealthy, thus forcing me to mow people down quicker than the Bubonic Plague. For some reason, the stealth mechanics are wonkier than Amanda Bynes on a crack binge. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t, and more often than not they’ll leave you wondering why it worked on a previous attempt and failed on your current attempt. There were times in which guards would instantly notice that I had shot down a security camera, and then other times in which they looked at the broken camera and walked away without a care in the world.

The awkward actions of the guards could be due to the completely incompetent AI. It's actually so bad that I was eternally grateful that my computer partners had unlimited ammo, because they regularly shot clip after clip into a wall for no apparent reason. There were times in which I also found an entire SWAT team kneeling beside me while I was breaking into a bank vault as if they were watching and waiting for tips and tricks. As a matter of fact, they would only return fire if I shot first, as if I broke an unspoken friendship between us.

The weaponry in the game is quite possibly the greatest feature of the game. There is a plethora of weapons and options to select from there are even more customizations offered for each weapon. Aiming is a bit difficult due to a lack of crosshair, but its absence added to the realism. Whether you're blindly firing from the hip or aiming down the iron sights, the shooting mechanics took some getting used to. There are some scope options to aid you, but unlocking new attachments and tools isn't simple. Not only must you complete missions, but you'll need to cross your fingers in hopes that the randomly assigned prize is something you can actually use. Despite being a frustrating means of upgrade dispersal, it kept me striving to complete each subsequent mission in hopes of receiving something worthwhile.

I could go on and on about the game's mechanics, but there’s one thing I'm certain of - Payday 2 is completely addicting. I've spent nearly two weeks playing this game and I have yet to put my finger on exactly why it's charming. It could be the numerous weapons, perks, and masks that are unlocked by leveling up or it could simply be my absolute love of heists. Either way, Payday 2 has the ability to hook you and not let you go no matter how much you struggle. Sure, it's basically a bunch of recycled missions that vary only slightly when you replay them, but they were different enough to continuously hold my attention. With plenty of DLC and missions on the horizon, I can say that I won't be off Payday 2's hook anytime soon.

Review Policy

In our reviews, we'll try not to bore you with minutiae of a game. Instead, we'll outline what makes the game good or bad, and focus on telling you whether or not it is worth your time as opposed to what button makes you jump.

We use a five-star rating system with intervals of .5. Below is an outline of what each score generally means:

All games that receive this score are standout games in their genre. All players should seek a way to play this game. While the score doesn't equate to perfection, it's the best any game could conceivably do.

These are above-average games that most players should consider purchasing. Nearly everyone will enjoy the game and given the proper audience, some may even love these games.

This is our middle-of-the-road ranking. Titles that receive three stars may not make a strong impression on the reviewer in either direction. These games may have some faults and some strong points but they average out to be a modest title that is at least worthy of rental for most.

Games that are awarded two stars are below average titles. Good ideas may be present, but execution is poor and many issues hinder the experience.

Though functional, a game that receives this score has major issues. There are little to no redeeming qualities and should be avoided by nearly all players.

A game that gets this score is fundamentally broken and should be avoided by everyone.




10/30/2013 at 10:28 AM

I've been thinking about getting this game as a alternative to the other stuff I've been playing. This review might have just convinced me. Is gaming online a dice roll, though? I'd hate to be teamed up with randoms that also don't know what they're doing. 

Chris Yarger Community Manager

10/31/2013 at 03:10 PM

You'd be surprised. Of all of the communities I've played in, Payday's community is probably one of the nicest of them all. They all are willing to work together and utilize full cooperation. Granted, there are probably going to be a few new players that are still learning the ropes, but I think you'd like it!

If you get the PS3 version, send me a friend invite and I'll hop on with you!


11/01/2013 at 03:45 PM

Sweet, I'm thinking about getting it tonight.

Chris Yarger Community Manager

11/04/2013 at 06:06 AM

Awesome!! Let me know what you think of it Rejo!

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