Sunday, 30 October 2011

PAYDAY: The Heist Review

Overkill studios have come out with there "heat" style co-op shooter "PAYDAY". Does this game rise to take the world? Or does it wish to be someone?

PAYDAY is a 4 player co-op game split between 6 individual missions. Now some mechanics may seem very similar to another title concerning the living dead however with a few massive tweaks to gameplay. For one, the enemy has weapons which means moving slowly and diving from cover to cover is essential to your survival. Also there's a levelling up system, which personally i Found a little strange as it stops low level players from getting to later levels as equipment like ammo bags and medi bags become essential with "hard" difficulty.

Now you maybe thinking "why does that stop me playing later levels?" Well the last three heists in the game need to be played on hard or the game won't let you play them, is sort of a silly design decision as some players maybe a little unwilling to do so as they may think they won't finish the mission because... Well, it's too hard . I had this problem with someone online and he almost refused to play it because he thought we would be there for hours because we would be failing the mission over and over again. On hinge sight it wasn't really that hard.

The reason he was like that wasn't because was a wimp well he was sort of was, but apart from that it was because the games already hard. The reason this is, because the everyone has a really good shot poke your head out of cover and you get riddled with bullets. Most levels are designed with cover in mind however some areas do lack cover so you do get cheep killed now and then. Also the lack of the source engines director really shows. Enemies seem to spawn randomly sin some missions, which also contributes to the feeling your being cheep killed.

A mission is one big level with objective you need to complete. Let me give you an example, the bank heist, the first mission in the game. You start off looking for the bank manager to get into a room that holds all the thermite to get into the vault. The doesn't take more than ten minuets. After that you need to watch a drill and protect it as it opens a door. The problem here is that your stuck in one room there's nothing interesting to do but watch a drill and shoot at the police, luckily one person needs to delete security footage from a computer so two people get to do something the other two are rather unlucky as they just stand in a room shooting police and watching a drill.

This is the main problem (gameplay wise) of PAYDAY sometimes you just stand around for long periods of time defending or just watching something. Now this did happen in Left 4 Dead but L4D had very short parts where you just waited just a minute or two, however in PAYDAY these events can the 5 to 10 minutes and can be in quick succession.

Now seeing as I'm talking about death allot you may think it's all over, however you'd be wrong to a point. You see there's this hostage system which is used as a sort of lives system. When you loose all your health you go down like you would in L4D but you have a time limit on how-long you stay down before you die (in game they call it "custody" ). When you do die you go into limbo watching the game for around 2 mins, then if your team mates are still alive they can exchange a hostage that you've taken. At first you can only take to hostages per person but with some unlocks you can take four, plus with some police you can scare them and make them cuff themselves making them your hostage.

Now I did have one big problem, which was lag... However not in the way you would think. I'm not talking about players see what you where doing a minuet ago as your playing normally. It's very strange and I didn't even notice this till I was playing with friends on Skype. I know this problem will only last a week but it's good to let you know before you buy.

All in all PAYDAY is a OK game at best. I had fun playing, however I couldn't see myself playing it over and over again. I would pick it up for all you Left 4 Dead fans, but without any sort of mod support, You'll haft to wait for DLC which is uncertain at this point.

Liam Hackett

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