Payday 2

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Payday 2
Payday2cover.jpg
Developer(s)Overkill Software
Publisher(s)505 Games
Director(s)David Goldfarb
Producer(s)Almir Listo
Designer(s)Ulf Andersson
Composer(s)Simon Viklund[1]
Gustaf Grefberg
EngineDiesel Engine 2.0[2]
Platform(s)Microsoft Windows
Linux
Xbox 360
PlayStation 3
Xbox One
PlayStation 4
Nintendo Switch
Release
Genre(s)First-person shooter, stealth
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Payday 2 is a cooperative first-person shooter video game developed by Overkill Software and published by 505 Games. The game is a sequel to 2011's Payday: The Heist. It was released in August 2013 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. An improved version of the game, subtitled Crimewave Edition, was released for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in June 2015.[3] A version for Nintendo Switch was released in February 2018.[4]

Two years after the events of the previous game, a new gang comes to the Washington, D.C. area to perform another heisting spree. The player takes control of one of the gang's twenty one members and can perform heists alone, or with up to three teammates. The player can participate in a variety of heists, including but not limited to robberies of banks, shops and armored cars, and producing and distributing narcotics. The game differs on the previous by allowing much more customization of the player (aesthetically and gameplay-wise), somewhat improved graphical interface and experience, more variety and playability in levels, and has reworked stealth mechanics.

An accompanying web series was produced to promote the game.[5] The game was profitable from pre-orders alone[6] and received positive reviews. Payday 2: Crimewave Edition which offers improved graphics, new content and all previous DLCs, was released for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in June 2015.[7]

Gameplay[edit]

A screenshot of a player engaging with enemies during an assault wave in a bank heist

The game consists of a variety of 'heists' that a player can opt to either carry out by themselves, with the AI, or as part of a multiplayer game. There are heists such as bank robberies, drug trafficking runs, rigging an election, or stealing smuggled nuclear warheads. Some of the heists put a large emphasis on stealth, often leading to bonus experience points and money on completion.

The level selection menu is styled as a fictional website, Crime.net, where missions pop up periodically as contracts in a map of Washington D.C.[8][9] The player can pick up an open contract, join a contract another player has started, or buy a contract with in-game money in an offshore bank account. There are seven difficulty levels, with increased money and experience payouts for higher difficulty levels. Independent of difficulty was the "pro job" condition - pro jobs give additional experience, but cannot be retried if the players fail, later removed in an update. Some contracts in Payday 2 take place over multiple days, with each day represented by a separate level with different objectives.[10] After certain days of heists are completed in 'loud' (In which the alarm has sounded) the game may add an escape level, where the players' original escape is thwarted and they must survive to reach their backup getaway.[9]

Many jobs in Payday 2 can be completed in stealth. If players avoid getting caught on camera, evade or silently kill security guards, and keep any civilian witnesses from calling the police, the alarm will not be raised and the players will receive an experience bonus. Otherwise, players will have to achieve their objectives, carry out any loot they find to a dropoff point, and then reach their escape point under the pressure of constant police assault waves. Most of the enemies are SWAT units sourced from DC Police, then FBI SWAT, GenSec private security contractors and finally the DHS as difficulty increases. Mixed in with these are special units; all versions of Payday 2 include the "Shield" and the "Taser" - both named for their signature equipment, the "Bulldozer" - a SWAT team member in a modified near-bulletproof bomb suit, and snipers. The Crimewave Edition and PC version include the "Cloaker" - an infiltration and hand-to-hand combat expert. Exclusive to the PC and Crimewave editions are near-indestructible SWAT van turrets, capable of area denial, a medic capable of returning an enforcer to full health with no status effects, and Captain Winters, a well-protected veteran police officer who sustains assaults and buffs enemies until he can be driven off.

If a player takes too much damage they will be knocked down and incapacitated. If no one helps them back up, or if they are downed a number of times without healing, they will be taken into custody. On lower difficulty levels players in custody will eventually come out of custody after a set time period, but otherwise, their teammates must take a hostage to trade to get them back into the game. A job is failed if all players are downed or in custody (but some jobs have unique failure conditions, such as the stealth only heist, Shadow Raid.).

Players can use skill points to obtain various abilities and bonuses on skill trees representing five criminal archetypes and playstyles. The Mastermind skill tree is pictured in this screenshot.

At the end of each heist, the player is presented with a screen with three cards, one of which is to be chosen by the player (called a "Payday"). These bonus cards can be either weapon modifications, masks, colors or materials for masks, bonus experience or money. Players can purchase and customize masks, although these are purely cosmetic and have no effect on the gameplay.

Throughout the game, players accumulate money and experience. The money is divided into two parts. 20% of the money is given to the player to spend on weapons, masks and skills, and 80% is placed into the player's "Offshore Account", which is intended as part of the story to be the player's retirement fund, however the player can use it to purchase heists from a broker, to buy bonus cards without performing a heist, to become infamous, or a player can press a button in their safehouse to 'burn' all of it.

As players earn experience points, their reputation level increases. When a player's level increases they earn skill points, allowing them to buy abilities and bonuses from skill trees representing five criminal archetypes and playstyles.[11][12] It is not possible to max out every single tree and players are often encouraged to mix and match skills from each tree to maximize usefulness. Players also receive "perk points," in proportion to their experience earned, that can be used to unlock additional bonuses from 17 "perk decks." Players can switch between 15 profiles of skills, perk decks, weapons and equipment at no cost before starting a heist.

When a player reaches level 100, they can opt to raise their "Infamy" level, up to twenty five (as of 5 March 2015; there are only five levels of Infamy on PS3 and Xbox 360). Becoming Infamous grants a player access to special skill trees and items and gives them special poses in lobby screens. However, raising one's Infamy level causes them to lose all of their spending money and experience, and a sum of $200,000,000 is deducted from their offshore account until they reach Infamy level 5 (going 'Infamous' after this point is free)

Plot and characters[edit]

While the game has no set linear campaign, each heist takes place around the same time that it was released in the real world. In addition, some other plot details are presented through web comics, trailers, and the 'FBI Files' website.

Payday 2, when first released, allowed players to control one of four pseudonymous robbers, three of these returned from Payday: The Heist: former Chicago mobster Dallas (portrayed by Eric Etebari, voiced by Simon Kerr), ex-Swedish software developer Wolf (Ulf Andersson), and rogue Navy SEAL and mercenary Chains (Damion Poitier). The fourth member of the gang, the English crook Hoxton (portrayed by Josh Lenn, voiced by Pete Gold), was arrested by the FBI in between the events of the two games, so Dallas' troubled younger brother Houston (voiced by Derek Ray) is recruited to take his place.

The gang's command and control, the secretive Bain (portrayed by Digger T. Mesch, voiced by Simon Viklund), sets up Crime.net, an online service for contractors to hire criminals for jobs that they need doing. Bain arranges for the Payday Gang to relocate to Washington D.C. and helps them set up heists and jobs in the area, and connecting the gang with other contractors. The first is Vlad (Ilia Volok), a Ukrainian gangster trying to reassert his power after getting out of prison. They assist him by intimidating mall and store owners into paying him protection money, in addition to harassing his rival, Dmitri, by robbing his nightclub and stealing a tiara made for his wife. The next is Hector Morales (Gary Daniels), a Colombian drug trafficker trying to oust the rival Mendoza cartel. They start by protecting a shipment of cocaine as it is ambushed by police, then weaken the Mendozas by destroying their weapons shipments and burning their stored money at a local bank. When the surviving Mendozas try to give evidence to the FBI in exchange for passage out of the country, Hector has the gang assassinate them. Finally, there is The Elephant, (Bokeem Woodbine) a corrupt Republican politician who hires the gang to aid his party, framing a local senator by planting cocaine in his apartment, or by exposing an arms deal made by that senator.

Later in 2013, the gang rob a diamond store as well as number of armored truck convoys (and a train) run by the GenSec security company. Their next job comes in early 2014, when the Elephant tasks them with tampering with the upcoming election to ensure that his ally, Bob McKendrick, becomes mayor. In order to achieve this, the gang tracks a truck carrying voting machines to a warehouse at night. They infiltrate the warehouse, find the voting machines, and hack them in order for their votes to swing in the Republicans' favor. Thanks to their trickery, McKendrick is elected as mayor of Washington. They also assist weapons smuggler Gage (Dash Mihok) by performing a midnight raid on a warehouse belonging to the Murkywater PMC.

Later in the year, Dallas is introduced to "The Dentist" (Giancarlo Esposito) - a middleman for a number of wealthy clients, who seems to know a lot about the gang. Dallas initially refuses his offer of work, but when The Dentist reveals that he can use his connections to help free Hoxton from prison, he changes his mind. In order to test their skill, The Dentist makes gang rob the Benevolent Bank, which had never been successfully robbed in its two-hundred-year history. Satisfied, he has them assassinate a Russian mob boss known as 'The Commissar', who has ties to Washington's district attorney. With the Commissar dead, the Dentist uses his connections to force the DA into giving Hoxton a retrial at a local courthouse, giving the gang a perfect opportunity to ambush his guards and free him. While glad for the rescue, Hoxton is annoyed that his alias and mask were usurped by Dallas' brother and insists that they rename him Houston, but he is allowed to keep Hoxton's old mask. After escaping the police, Hoxton and the gang raid the FBI headquarters to obtain intel on an informant who helped to imprison him.

Around the same time, Chains is on vacation in Sweden when he is ambushed by Interpol agents. He is able to escape thanks to a tip off from John Wick (Dave Fouquette), an old friend from his time in the Navy SEALS. Having recently come out of retirement to enact revenge on New York's Russian mob, Wick tells Chains that he is looking for a crew, to which he responds by inviting him to the gang. After rescuing Vlad's brother-in-law from a plane crash in the woods, the gang descend upon the McKendrick museum in order to steal 'the diamond', a valuable gemstone that the Dentist is interested in. Hoxton's former partner-in-crime, the Irish burglar Clover (Aoife Duffin), is recruited to help, becoming the first female member of the gang.

In January 2015, Bain is contacted by a Croatian weapons smuggler known as the Butcher (Mira Furlan), who sends Dragan (Dragomir Mrsic), a crooked Interpol agent, to help the gang steal a thermobaric bomb. The gang steal the weapon in one of two ways - either by stealing it from a ship at the docks, or intercepting a train carrying it in the middle of a forest. After the job is complete, Dragan stays in America as a permanent member of the gang. After this, Hoxton is contacted by an old associate named Bonnie (Rhona Cameron), who possesses information vital to finding the rat that sold him out, and she bargains this information in exchange for a place in the gang. Knowing where the informant is hiding, the gang infiltrate his FBI safehouse to find that it was Hector who ratted on Hoxton. They kill him and recover the evidence that the FBI have about them. Around this time, Jacket (protagonist of Hotline Miami) joins the gang through unknown means, just as the gang further humiliate GenSec by stealing money from various display vaults at their newly built arena, during a concert by Swedish DJ Alesso.

Later in the year, the Dentist gives the gang his final job - a heist on the Golden Grin Casino in Las Vegas. The vault beneath it is tougher than any they have faced before, so Bain recruits Russian hockey star Sokol (Alexej Manvelov), who moonlights as a casino thief and possesses expert technical knowledge, to help them. With his help, they build the 'BFD' (Big Fucking Drill) and use it to break into the casino's vault. The Dentist's target is a strange box hidden deep within, though the gang make off with the money inside the vault as well. Soon after this, Bain recruits former Yakuza member Jiro (Togo Igawa), who travels to America in search of his long lost son, Kento.

In September, Mayor McKendrick, becoming increasingly unpopular due to Washington's rising crime rate, betrays the gang by hiring Commissioner Solomon Garrett in an effort to end their crime spree. Garrett uses Captain Neville Winters in the field in order to assist and inspire regular police in their fight against the gang, but his presence has little effect. After protecting one of Vlad's weapon shipments in an earthquake-hit Los Angeles, the gang are forced to work for Murkywater officer Vernon Locke (Ian Russell) after he hacks into Crime.net. Locke puts them in contact with Bodhi (Josh Lenn), who helps them raid a Murkywater black site in Nevada, and steal pallets of cash from a Murkywater cargo plane.

The gang's first job of 2016 comes from Vlad, who is eager to capitalise on a power vacuum in Washington's drug trade that was created as a result of Hector's death. He has them intercept a shipment of goats with bags of cocaine smuggled in their rectums. Though an accident scatters the goats around a city block, the gang retrieve them and take them to an associate to have the packages removed. Unfortunately, they are ambushed by a Honduran cartel before this can be done, forcing them to extract the goats by plane as they fight off both cartel members and police. Once this is done, Dallas meets with the Elephant again, who offers them a job from the mysterious Akan. Before Dallas can agree, he and the gang meet a strange man named Jimmy (Sharlto Copley[13]), who convinces them that Akan is evil and offers them an alternative job. With Jimmy's help, they steal an EMP bomb from a Murkywater train yard and use it to break into a hidden laboratory run by Akan in Russia. While fighting off mercenaries, they steal data relating to Akan's super soldier project and destroy it.

Ron Perlman voiced and portrayed the heister Rust

The next addition to the gang, Australian Kelli 'Sydney' King (Georgia van Cuylenburg), introduces herself sometime later, showing up unannounced during a bank heist and using the surprise of her sudden entrance to steal a bag of money. Impressed by her audacity, Bain offers her a spot in the gang. Not long after, the Elephant requests the gang's help again, putting them in contact with Tom 'Rust' Bishop (Ron Perlman[14]), a former member of the Overkill motorcycle club, who has information regarding a BCI helmet that is in the hands of the club. Rust refuses to part with this knowledge, however, until the gang rescue his friend Mike, a mechanic, and help him fix up his personal bike. After obeying his requests and getting the info they need, the gang steal the helmet from a freight train in transit, fighting through waves of bikers and police before escaping by helicopter.

The gang go quiet until October. Hoxton, frustrated with the gang's small safehouse beneath a local laundromat, destroys it, organising for them all to move into a larger one elsewhere in the city, contacting his old family butler Aldstone (John Cleese), who agrees to fly to Washington to tend to their new home. The Continental Hotel, an establishment in Manhattan that caters exclusively to criminals, offers to have some associates help improve the new safehouse in exchange for their 'Continental Coin' currency. As Christmas approaches, the gang help Vlad's brother-in-law again when he is cornered by police at a local mall, before they are given another job by the Butcher. One of her ships in the Caribbean was sunk by the local Sosa cartel, so she has them travel to Miami and assassinate the cartel's boss, Ernesto, who resides in the old mansion of Cuban drug lord Tony Montana. At this time, an impersonator or descendant of Montana (André Sogliuzzo) joins the gang.

In early 2017, the Continental requests the gang's help. An employee, Charon (Lance Reddick), has been ambushed by mobsters in Brooklyn. After saving his life, Charon repays the gang by tipping them off about an amount of illegal money kept hidden on a yacht owned by Mayor McKendrick in New York harbor. In retaliation for his betrayal, the gang infiltrate the yacht while it is used as a venue for a re-election fundraiser, stealing the money along with a hard drive containing the passwords to McKendrick's offshore bank accounts.

In April, Locke contacts the gang, informing them of the existence of a mysterious organization which seeks to destroy them. Locke tells them that an informant of this organization can be located downtown, and the gang set off to meet them. Upon arrival, the informant is revealed to be Matt Roscoe, a former driver who betrayed the gang two years ago. Roscoe escapes in a van, while the gang pursue him on foot, mirroring the scenario of Roscoe's previous betrayal. The van crashes into a nearby construction site, where the gang set the van on fire to force Roscoe out, which succeeds after a prolonged firefight. As Roscoe is forced out of the van, he offers information about Kento, Jiro's son, in exchange for his life. Jiro interrogates Roscoe for the information, and it is revealed that a member of the Yakuza, known only as 'Kazuo', may know something about Kento's whereabouts. Using his contacts, Bain engineers a prison riot to necessitate a prison transfer. During the transfer, the gang ambush the convoy on Green Bridge, free Kazuo, and escape. Shortly afterwards, Mexican Cartel member Sangres (Joseph Balderrama) joins the gang, introduced to the Payday gang by Gage.

In October, Duke (Nicholas Colicos) joins through unknown means. Locke contacts the gang to help with a weapons deal. He is smuggling weapons to the Butcher, and needs some extra muscle to back him up. When the train arrives in Alaska, he double-crosses both the Payday gang and the Butcher. Heavily armed police forces arrive on the scene, and apprehend the Butcher's mercenaries and attempt to take the Payday gang into custody. The Payday gang manage to fight their way out and free the Butcher's mercenaries, allowing both groups to escape on a ship. Seeking revenge, the Payday gang steal diamonds from the Garnet Group, who are linked to Locke, and put a dent into Locke's financial resources by crippling the Garnet Group.

In December, Bain teams up with the Cabots to rob the Garnet Group boutique located in LA. After entering the store, they immediately find out that it was a police ambush when Mr. Brown is killed by a sniper. During the heist, Bain remarks about how he is encountering "odd interference" while hacking through the systems. After fighting their way out of the ambush and successfully securing the diamonds with Mr. Blonde, the gang creates a distraction to allow him to escape. However, when the Payday gang reaches their escape van, Bain is attacked and his transmissions encounter heavy interference before he tells the gang to "trust Locke". The next day, Locke reveals that his "betrayal" was coordinated with Bain as a ruse to quickly get the gang out of DC and into Alaska because somebody had been searching for the gang in DC. He takes over for Bain temporarily and helps them escape. Working off of clues Bain has left behind, he helps the Payday crew rob a bank in Brooklyn and steal a medallion containing important information buried under the foundation of the bank.

Sometime later, the Elephant is arrested through the use of falsified evidence, catching the attention of the gang. Locke orders the group to retrieve an item that the Elephant possessed before his incarceration. The gang perform a silent break-in on the FBI headquarters, the same building the gang raided immediately after Hoxton was freed. The gang discover the item, a box with an uncanny resemblance to the one found in the Golden Grin Casino, and secure it. Duke's study of the box reveals that the Dentist's box, along with a third box, is located at Henry's Rock, a Murkywater warehouse and research outpost located in the desert. The gang infiltrates the warehouse via shipping crates, and recovers the two boxes. However, as the gang leave, Jiro's son Kento, now a Murkywater officer, appears behind bulletproof glass, along with a broadcast of a bound, gagged and bloodied figure, suspected to be Bain, with the Dentist standing behind him. The revelation that his long-lost son is working for the very mercenary group he opposes horrifies Jiro. Back at the safehouse, Duke manages to open the boxes with the medallion, revealing the contents to be several ornately crafted rings, and an orb with a similar pattern, although the third box is empty.

The Elephant is freed from his incarceration, and provides a tip for the gang. The fictional Shacklethorne expedition to Antarctica, thought lost, was recently discovered quite a distance away from its intended destination, along with a sled containing numerous artifacts buried beside a mutilated corpse. The recovered artifacts are being auctioned off at an exclusive party in Salem, along with an item that is supposedly connected to the contents of the three boxes. The gang enters the auction and retrieves the item, which is revealed to be a black hexagonal tablet, the missing item from the third box.

Finally getting a lead on Bain's location, Locke assists the gang in infiltrating a Murkywater prison facility in order to break him out. Before they can successfully sneak in however, the Dentist reveals over the prison's intercoms that the entirety of the prison was already aware of their presence, also effectively revealing to the gang that he himself was in fact the one who orchestrated Bain's kidnapping and provided information to Murkywater. The gang then fight through the ambush and manage to successfully free Bain from his cell. Following the trail of death and destruction left behind as he made his way to the rooftop, they find Bain, bloodied and bandaged, having strangled Kento to death with his bare hands. Bain then suddenly collapses, before Locke appears and helps carry him to an escape helicopter. After Locke has some hired professionals inspect Bain, he informs the gang that Bain has been infected with a man-made virus, which was ironically stolen by the Payday gang in the first game.

Having retrieved Bain, the gang now plan to carry out "the heist to end all heists"; infiltrate the White House and steal presidential pardons. Thanks to Locke, the gang successfully manage to get into the White House and successfully escape with all of the pardons in hand. A dying Bain congratulates them on managing to pull off such a monumental heist, before he finally succumbs to the virus and dies.

Somewhere in Mexico, Locke and the gang hold a solemn ceremony for their fallen mentor. Standing around an open grave, they all take off their masks and throw them in, save for Dallas, and begin to quietly disperse. Locke gives a final salute to Bain, silently nodding at Dallas as he walks away. After a few moments, Dallas finally takes off his mask and takes a long look at it, before he too turns away to leave.

Secret ending[edit]

If the player manages to fulfill certain requirements spread throughout the game, a secret "true" ending that wraps up the remaining loose ends of the Payday 2 storyline will be unlocked.

In this ending, the gang breaks into a secret vault hidden underneath the White House. After decoding a series of ciphers and completing a puzzle that unlocks the vault door, the gang enters a large open chamber that houses a machine called the "Ark of the Watcher". However, once they make it inside, the Dentist arrives. He demands entry from outside of the vault door, with Bain and Locke held at gunpoint and a bag full of Mayan gold. The gang open the door for him, but manage to kill the Dentist before he has a chance to shoot Bain and Locke. The gang then proceed to take the gold and place it into specified slots in the Ark. Bright lights suddenly shoot from the machine, as the entire room lights up. Bain then thanks the gang for all that they have done, before supposedly dying.

Somewhere on an unspecified beach, the gang and some of their associates now relax and have fun at a party, thanks to their offshore PAYDAY. Most of the gang have already set off to other parts of the world to live their own private lives. Turning on a television, Dallas, Hoxton, Chains and Wolf watch as Commissioner Garrett is awarded a Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor by the President for his service and role in reportedly taking down the gang. As the President finishes giving a speech, the four men celebrate and raise their drinks. Locke wanders over, asking what he missed. Dallas simply replies, "the greatest heist of all." It is implied by the President's final line that the Ark's power allowed Bain to switch bodies with him and thus "steal" the entire country with the general populace none the wiser.

Downloadable content[edit]

Since release, over thirty downloadable content (DLC) packages have been released for the game including new heists, weapons and game mechanics. The weapon pack DLCs are usually named after the gang's arms dealer, Gage,[15] who was introduced in the Payday webseries used to promote the game.[16] Three weapon packs were later introduced through a new character, the Butcher, though lately most weapon packs have been issued by Gage again.

Payday 2: Hotline Miami is a collaborative project between Dennaton Games and Overkill which includes a heist influenced by Hotline Miami. The John Wick pack is a collaboration between Lionsgate and Overkill to bring the titular character from the John Wick movie to Payday 2.[17] In 2015, a second Lionsgate collaboration featuring Point Break has been announced containing two heists and a character inspired by the film.[18] The Goat Simulator Heist was added on 14 January 2016, in collaboration with Coffee Stain Studios.[19] The Hardcore Henry Packs were added to Payday 2 on 24 March 2016. The Packs were split up into two DLCs; the Jimmy Character Pack, and The Hardcore Henry Heists.[20]

On January 31, 2017, Payday 2 released a crossover with Shadow Warrior 2, which included a Steam sale on both games, sale on some DLC for Payday 2, and new masks, and melee weapons.[21]

November 22nd, 2017, "Payday 2" released a brand new DLC in collaboration with H3H3 productions, which is called "h3h3 Character Pack". This DLC offers a player new hats, weapons and voiceover lines from Ethan and Hila from H3H3.

Crimewave Edition[edit]

Announced for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, the Crimewave Edition of Payday 2 includes many features and add-ons from the PC version of the game. It was released in June 2015.[3] It includes all of the aforementioned DLC and graphical enhancements such as an improved framerate and texture quality. The developers have stated that future updates will not arrive on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 citing hardware limitations as the reason. In 2016, Payday 2: The Big Score was released for the PS4 and Xbox One, containing all of 2015's DLC.[22]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Reception
Review scores
PublicationScore
NSPCPS3PS4Xbox 360Xbox One
CVG8/10[23]
Eurogamer8/10[10]
Game Informer8.25/10[8]8.25/10[8]7/10[8]8.25/10[8]4/5[8]
GamesRadar+3.5/5 stars[24]3.5/5 stars[24]3/5 stars[25]3.5/5 stars[24]3/5 stars[25]
IGN8.0/10[26]8.0/10[26]8.0/10[26]
Joystiq4/5 stars[9]4/5 stars[9]4/5 stars[9]
PC Gamer (US)79/100[27]
Aggregate scores
GameRankings63.00%[32]78.52%[28]71.54%[29]69.07%[30]75.00%[33]67.43%[31]
Metacritic61/100[38]79/100[34]74/100[35]71/100[36]75/100[39]65/100[37]

Payday 2 has received generally positive reviews from critics with general praise from the cooperative elements but heavy criticism for the friendly AI. Vince Ingenito of IGN praised its cooperative gameplay, stealth mechanics and sound design, but was not as impressed at graphical quality.[26] David Hinkle of Joystiq was impressed at the depth of customization, level progression and random elements.[9] Dan Whitehead of Eurogamer described it as "When all its clunky gear suddenly align, the result remains phenomenal: a combination of Left 4 Dead's randomly generated mayhem and the muscular precision of a hardcore shooter, topped off with the big screen frisson of being the smart-suited, fright-masked guy with the AK, ordering the hostages onto the floor or standing in the street, holding off the SWAT team in a flurry of cordite and thunder."[10] Craig Owens of PC Gamer concluded that this game is a "smart co-op shooting slightly undermined by poor stealth mechanics and dogged insistence on withholding the best toys".[27]

Microtransactions[edit]

On 15 October 2015 as part of Overkill's second annual Crimefest celebration, Overkill announced the addition of safes to the card drop system that contained weapon skins, some of which modified weapon statistics. The safes needed to be opened with drills which were only available for purchase with real world currency, leading a fan backlash to their inclusion.[40] On 20 October 2015 the aforementioned drills were added to card drop system, however this did not quell the backlash and Overkill was criticized for poor management of the controversy and silence to the press.[41][42]

On 11 November 2015 Overkill announced the contents of a previously sold DLC investment called the "Completely Overkill Pack" would be a single random skin unique to said pack with a special EXP or Money boost for the team, after promising originally that the contents of the pack will be completely cosmetic. They also announced that seven other DLC packs would be made available for free to owners of the pack, but again, fans backlashed against this seemingly unfair revelation, including the people who bought the Completely Overkill Pack, as the store page for the pack declared it would not contain one of the DLC packs it ultimately contained, and it left the people who bought both the Completely Overkill and Overkill packs feeling short-changed. In response, Steam community moderators for Payday started a protest against this treatment abuse by fans by refusing to moderate the community until granted an interview with Almir Listo, producer of the game.[43][44]

On 30 May 2016 Starbreeze Studios announced that they have acquired the rights to the Payday franchise. They also stated that future safes would be completely free to open.[45]

Sales[edit]

Payday 2 is Overkill's first game to have a boxed retail release. The director of Payday 2, David Goldfarb, stated that "Payday 2 has become just too big to reserve release on Xbox Live and PlayStation Network alone." Reports of strong sales in the first week and shortages led 505 Games to work with retailers in distributing more copies of the game.[46] The game was still distributed through the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live and Steam services as planned.[47]

On 8 August 2013, just under a week before launch, Starbreeze Studios confirmed that the game was profitable from pre-orders, covering all of the money invested by the publisher 505 Games. All new profit will be divided between the studio and publisher.[6]

The game has sold 1.58 million copies as of September 2013. 80% of those sales were digital.[48] As of 1 November 2014, Payday: The Heist and Payday 2 together have sold more than 9 million units.[49]

eSports[edit]

A Payday 2 tournament was held at DreamHack Summer 2016.[50]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Clay, Sam (13 August 2013). "Music to heist to: Payday 2's musical masterpiece". VG247. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  2. ^ "WALKING DEAD DEVELOPER ACQUIRING VALHALLA ENGINE".
  3. ^ a b "Payday 2 Brings More Cops-Versus-Robbers Shooting to Xbox One and PS4". gamespot.com. 2014-06-12. Retrieved 2014-06-13.
  4. ^ "PAYDAY 2™ coming to the Nintendo Switch System in February". 2017-12-12. Retrieved 2017-12-12.
  5. ^ Gauntlett, Adam (2013-06-06). "Payday 2 Live Action Web Series Cracks Its First Vault". The Escapist. Retrieved 2014-08-28.
  6. ^ a b Mudgal, Kartik (8 August 2013). "Gamechup Payday 2 profitable before launch". gamechup.com. Retrieved 12 August 2013.
  7. ^ "PAYDAY 2: Crimewave Edition brings the ultimate heist experience on June 21st". Made For Gaming. Retrieved 2015-05-10.
  8. ^ a b c d e f Bertz, Matt (13 August 2013). "Payday 2". Game Informer. GameStop. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  9. ^ a b c d e f Hinkle, David (13 August 2013). "Payday 2 review: Take the money and run". Joystiq. AOL. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  10. ^ a b c Whitehead, Dan (13 August 2013). "Payday 2 Review". Eurogamer. Eurogamer Network. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  11. ^ "Payday 2 Skill Calculator". Retrieved 23 May 2014.
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