Confessions Of A Criminal Mastermind
Payday 2 is not an open world game, this is a game where you accept a job from the menu and get set into an area scenario. The areas vary in size from a small 2 story 4 room meth house and its yard, to a train wreck and the entire mountainside it takes place on. Before entering the area you are set in a planning menu where you mastermind the heist with the information on hand. Say you select one of the bank heist jobs, you are given options such as where you want to pick up the vault drill, if you want to have a copy of the security room key set in a specific place before you show up, or if you want a tap into the security feed. Many of these options cost money and favors, however, you are limited in how many favors you can use per mission. You also have the ability to change your loadout, or gear set up, to suit the job at hand, or even just to suit your own play style.
There are two core loadouts that players typically choose from. The first being stealth. It may take a bit longer to complete the heist, and your team will be fairly slow moving throughout most of the mission. The upside to this is that you have a better chance to get away with more loot, and even receive an experience bonus for your next mission. The second is what we here at Random Encounters call, Shock and Awe. You grab the biggest, baddest gun you currently own, don your thickest armor and enact gratuitous amounts of violence upon any in your path. The police are often immediately called, but that’s expected. The loot is usually the bare minimum, if you even finish the heist, but it’s not the loot you’re after in a Shock and Awe mode. It’s the thrill of the firefight, and how your blood gets pumping.
The major draw for Payday 2 is its multiplayer capabilities. You can set it to allow just your friends, or anyone who happens to want to play that particular mission with other people. With its drop-in drop-out mechanic, you don’t have to worry about auto failing a mission because someone decided to leave. On the counter point, if you’re attempting to stealth a mission, and someone decides to drop into your heist with a shotgun and full riot armor, chances are, you’re not going to make it very far. Because the game is scenario based, you don’t have to dedicate hours of your time to it if you don’t want to. Depending on your play style and planning, even the largest missions can only take between 20 - 30 minutes per section and you are not obligated to finish every section thanks to the drop-in drop-out capability. You will however, lose out on loot from that mission. Each mission has a difficulty rating system. The ratings are: Normal, Hard, Very Hard, Overkill, and Deathwish. With each rating offering lower success rates, but increased loot rewards. (Valendro: Deathwish really does live up to its name if the police are involved.)
Aside from the missions, there is a slight RPG element to the game and we don’t mean Rocket Propelled Grenade. Although you don’t get to create your own character, you DO get to choose which character you’d like to play as. This limited option gives the programmers the ability to add depth and personality to the character you’re playing. There are currently 4 characters you can play as soon as you start the game: Houston, Chains, Dallas, and Wolf. Through completing missions, and of course DLC, you can unlock even more characters: Hoxton, Bonnie, Clover, Dragon, and more. Along with your character you also get to customize their gear (Guns, melee weapon, armor, throwing weapon, mask, and support item.) as well as their Perk Deck. The Perk Deck is where you personalize your character. How you want to be able to perform in the field, and advance as a character. As you complete missions you will gain experience and level up. This gives you points you can spend to advance your perks, and make your character better at whatever it is you like to do.
Currently, Payday 2 is available not only through Steam on PC, but also for consoles such as Xbox 360, Xbox One, Playstation 3, and Playstation 4. Unfortunately, there is no cross-platform support, so you would need a version of the game on each system, and characters do not carry over. As with most current gen games, Payday 2 comes with a plethora of DLC options. These can be as simple as mask packs, or as large as entire missions with new guns, masks, and other items. The DLC can vary greatly between platforms, as well as price range. The Steam version, for example, has community created DLC that is put out for down load for anyone owning the Steam version.
With this being said, on a scale of Derringer to AR-15: Random Encounters gives Payday 2: 7.5 oudda 10 You should play with your friends. (Caster’s Note: Would have been 8, except for the way DLC is handled on Steam and lack of console inclusion)