One of our teammates drops a bag of ammo. As you keep playing PAYDAY, you’ll experience points that can unlock perks for you to use in future heists. Some of them will allow you to improve your skill with various weapons, while others are team upgrades that provide statistical support to your friends, like increased team life or accuracy. Since PAYDAY is a very team-oriented game, OverKill is also adding a feature it’s calling “Noob Lube,” which will award players with bonus XP for protecting and helping new players who might not be familiar with all the ins and outs in PAYDAY’s various heist missions. “It’s a way to encourage experienced players to help out the new guy – and it makes it so that you don’t feel like you have to be the guy rushing ahead to do things on your own for XP,” explains Andersson – and there are over 145 level-up perks that can be earned so far.
Above: Gameplay footage from SOE’s booth at E3 2011
As we make our way to the next objective, which charges us with planting cases of thermite to melt through the floor of the room with the all the loot, we make sure to shoot down security cameras along the way. By removing them, we’re making our job easier. The game’s AI will monitor security feeds spread throughout the bank. If they see you or one of your teammates alone, for example, they’ll single that player out. Swarming him and stunning him with tasers.
Above: Enemy encounters aren’t scripted, so the way FBI agents and SWAT team members try to take you out should be a little different each time
Above: Sticking together with your team is important for any successful heist
Before we jump down through the melted floor to bag up our stacks of cash, one of our teammates experiences what it’s like to be left for dead. A hulking guard stuns our partner with a taser, preventing him from joining us on the floor below. There’s no going back now, and no way for us to fight our way back to his position to help him back up. But if we had taken more hostages, we might have been able to negotiate a trade to get him back. That’s how the revival system works in PAYDAY, which seems rather brilliant.
The World Bank heist will be just one of six missions available when PAYDAY launches this summer – and they’re not all bank robberies. One mission will find you and your partners in crime raiding a drug dealer’s den. Another charges you with rescuing a prisoner from a convoy. In that one, you’ll have to blow up a bridge to stop traffic in order to bust in and extract your target. There’s even a heist that’s going to be called the “Heat Street.” As you might imagine, it’ll inspired by the famous street shootout scene from the 1995 heist film.
PAYDAY: The Heist looks surprisingly good with higher production values than you'd normally expect from a downloadable game. It looks great when the SWAT team drops smoke grenades and the pacing during our first heist felt tight and fast-paced. We expect that lots of L4D fans will be taking a break from their journey to the safe house when PAYDAY releases. Let’s just hope everyone remembers to bring their headsets and mics when PAYDAY: The Heist launches on PSN and for the PC this summer.
Jun 16, 2011