If you fancy a free game about robbing and defending banks, then here's good news: Payday: The Heist is going free for 24 hours on October 18. This is happening thanks to the hard work of 1,050,000 fans, who undertook the laborious task of joining the PayDay 2 Steam group. It's part of Overkill's Crimefest promotion, which rewards loot to those who join the group, providing the studio reaches a series of membership milestones.
PayDay 2 game director and former EA Digital Illusions dev David Goldfarb has announced he will leave Overkill to form his own studio. Based in Stockholm, the as yet nameless enterprise already boasts four staff. It's part of Goldfarb's determination to "abandon AAA", preferring instead to work on new titles that shrug off in-vogue development trends.
PayDay developer Overkill Software has posted a big counter on its website. It's more than a month until we find out what it's counting down to, which suggests something significant. What could it be? Well, it's going to be a video game, probably. Hopefully it's not just more PayDay 2 content, or a big song and dance about the PS4 and Xbox One editions of that game, because that's not very signficant.
What better way to promote your upcoming DLC heist than with a four-minute dramatic retelling of said heist from the perspective of a seemingly innocent bystander. Well, for one thing, a four minute dramatic retelling of said heist from the perspective of one of its active participants, but Overkill are saving that for the game itself. Also, in this Payday 2—Big Bank trailer: opera. And bobbleheads. As I say, it's a very dramatic retelling.
Payday 2 already featured a bank level, because it's a heist game and so didn't have much choice. Its upcoming DLC—the game's second paid-for heist after Armored Transport—is slightly different. It's a bigger bank. Big Bank will, in fact, be the game's largest heist to date, featuring larger, improved vaults, and better rewards for those able to crack them. Overkill have released a new set of screenshots, giving you a chance to pour over the details before you rob the joint this June 17th.
It’s only appropriate that Payday 2, which is all about stealing as much money as possible, is by far Starebreeze’s best earning game. Today, a press release from the developer revealed that it made $6.1 million between October and December 2013, $5.3 million of which came from Payday 2.
Veteran Payday 2 players will know that at a certain level—it happened to me around level 70 or so—you’ve unlocked all the guns you want and maxed out the essential skills. From there on, the game is still fun, but there’s not much left to do. There’s even less to do after devoted heisters to grind to level 100. Well, no more—the latest Payday 2 update adds an option to reset your skills and levels, start over, and become Infamous.
Payday 2 continues to crank out content for fans, including this week’s Christmas DLC—dubbed Charlie Santa Heist—which went out free to all players on Monday. To celebrate, Overkill released a surprisingly affecting trailer, assembled from the point of view of a 911 call, cell phone camera footage, and news helicopters.
I could have made a really funny joke about Overkill having pilfered the U out of their own title, but such geographically targeted japes have no place on an international news juggernaut. Having had such hilarity snatched from my hands, I'll have to settle for telling you about Armored Transport: a new Payday 2 mission pack that's planning to launch an attack on its co-op crime fans tomorrow.
Developer Overkill Software has been uncommonly dedicated to communicating with fans of its recently released heist shooter Payday 2, absorbing feedback, and releasing sweeping overhauls of game systems. Payday 2 was solid but had a few problems when Craig reviewed it, but since release, Payday 2 has been updated 13 times, receiving a new heist, new masks, a rebuilt economy and unlocking system, new skill tree descriptions, and numerous balancing tweaks.
Overkill also frequently answers fans on Twitter with screenshots of new characters and plans for future updates. In a lot of ways, this continued support and free updating of a game is the kind of attention we’d see from the team behind an MMO. A Halloween update has already hit, and more free content is on the way. David Goldfarb, game director at Overkill, says that they plan to continue to support the game for the foreseeable future.
In theory, the job was easy. But then again, aren’t they all? Me and three other wiseguys would hit this bank, break into the vault and make off with the cash housed within. Being the people person that I am, my job was to make sure none of the customers got any funny ideas about being a hero, calling the cops or whatever.
So after I’d killed the security guard outside and sweet-talked the dispatcher on the other end of his pager, I’d waltz into the lobby – all calm and serious, like – and start tying up those innocent bystanders. In the meantime, our safecracker would kindly persuade the manager to hand over his keycard, shut off the security system and get drilling on the vault, while the two other members of our operation searched for any civilians we’d missed in the backrooms and kept an eye outside. Easy, right?
If dense strategy isn't your thing, then maybe the dense action promised today's other big release is. Payday 2, the sequel to Overkill's criminal spin on Left 4 Dead style co-op, is out now. To mark the occasion, here's a launch trailer that sweeps through a single moment of chaotic heisting. Of course, being frozen in time, what you don't get is the near-incomprehensible shrieking of your friends as your carefully laid plans fall apart.
A new video posted by Overkill Studios, developers of Payday 2, walks us through a bank robbery as played by the QA team. The walkthrough shows how the different robber classes and equipment will interact during a heist, and how the whole thing can fall apart in an instant. Plus, it looks like a lot of fun.
The problem with criminals is they're elusive. They'll do anything to slip the net and stop your from tracking them down. That's not the case for developers. They're pretty keen to let their players pinpoint the date and location of their games release. Which is why Starbreeze have blown the whistle on Payday 2, announcing the co-op heist game's plan to slip onto Steam next week.
Payday 2 showcased its four different classes of dirty rotten robbers t'other day, and now it's time for a rundown of the lovely things you'll be able to do with your ill-gotten gains. Jaunt to the Bahamas? A squad of private jets? A controlling interest in Facebook? Don't be silly. You keep it all in a big vault in a run-down house, so you can rub it all over your body, Scrooge McDuck style. Which is to say that Payday 2 features a between-mission safehouse, and quite a nifty one too.
Emptying the vault of high-security bank can be somewhat tricky. There are guards, cameras and that one bank employee who tries to be a hero and pushes the shiny red button under their desk when they aren’t supposed to. It’s why we bank robbers have specific roles to play, which Payday 2’s game director explains in this video.
What is Payday 2? For one thing, it's a co-op FPS about crims and their seemingly insatiable desire for money. For another, it's a follow-up to the enjoyable, if uneven, Payday. And, for a third, it's the name of a video by game director David Goldfarb explaining how they've expanded and refined this second attempt. If anything, the question it answers is more: "Why is Payday 2?"
The co-operative heist - a great idea for a game, and this time round Overkill are staying faithful to the high concept with Payday 2, giving players more time to plan their robberies and move in stealthily before doing the deed. Check out the latest trailer for some criminal footage, read our preview for more details, and catch some clowns red handed in the latest screenshots from E3 2013 right here.