Thankfully, I’m not planning on making a career change to full-time criminal but Pay Day 2, the first-person-bank-robber simulator from development studio Overkill, isn’t a game that you want to play on your own. You’ll get frustrated with it pretty quickly. I did.
It’s a game best played with three friends who can fill the roles of the three members of your hard-as-nails crew, replacing the computer-controlled AI – which is pretty bad.
How bad? When I botched a heist – I forgot to subdue and handcuff all the bank staff and one of them triggered an alarm – I ran out into a side alley, hoping to confuse the recently alerted police. Suddenly, my three colleagues appeared beside me, shooting at the police instead of, I don’t know, staying in the shop and grabbing the jewels that we needed to complete the mission. Thinking about it, the single player isn’t the best.
In fact, it’s almost as if the game’s makers felt obliged to include a single player mode just because it was expected by the public – when really all they wanted to do was make an online four-player co-op game.
Objectives will vary from job to job – one might involve using a thermo-drill to open a safe, while an other might see you having to upload data to a computer – but they all follow the same format: case the joint, start the mission then hold off increasing waves of armed police until the objectives (objectives) is done and you can scarper to the exit point.
Visually, it’s not a pretty game – the character models are ugly but a game primarily designed for online doesn’t want fancy pants graphics slowing things down now, does it? – but Pay Day 2 is best when it’s played with three other humans who can work together, complete the tasks then get the hell out of doge. That’s when Pay Day 2 is at its best.
Pay Day is a bust if you play it just for the single player mode – and it’s not a game that will hold my attention for too long – but if you can muster together three friends to play it, then you’ll have a lot more fun.