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HEI$T

If you were a pensioner, and we said "1960s San Francisco" to you, you'd probably roll your eyes, or else go all misty-eyed and complain that you just can't get decent LSD anymore. It depends what kind of pensioner you are, really. As it happens, this is the exact setting for Hei$t, the Hollywood-inspired robbery sim from developer inXile - though the closest you'll get to any peace-and-love daisy-age nonsense here is driving your getaway car through a crowd full of hippies.

It's been a while since the last free-roaming crime sim rolled off the production lines. So is Hei$t, with its carefully chosen era and location, aiming to fill that Rockstar-shaped hole? Not according to Sean Patton, the senior designer at inXile.



"It's all about being a badass bank robber," he explains. "We didn't really think about other games when we were coming up with Hei$t, we just started with all the things that make bank robbery exciting. The perfect plan, the gunfights, leading a hand-picked crew of expert thieves, car chases and so on." Apparently, these are the raw ingredients of what makes robbing banks cool - in that hypothetical way where you'd have to be lightly psychotic to actually enjoy.

Hei$t will take you through the preparation, execution and getaway of a variety of different robberies. As Patton explains, the preparation comes in the form of "getting better equipment, developing and improving skills, or making allies on the inside." Once you're in, the execution will have to be tailored to the environment. It'll be a lot easier to keep the crowds under control on the floor in a bank than in a strip club, for example; people tend to want to leave those places when the hypnotic boobs stop swinging. And bouncers are more likely to act twitchy than the cops, so keep an eye out for them.

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