Payday 2: Crimewave Edition review for Xbox One, PS4

Platform: Xbox One
Also On: PS4
Publisher: 505 Games
Developer: Overkill Software
Medium: Disc/Digital
Players: 1-4
Online: Yes

I will start off this review by saying I prefer to play most games solo, but I do enjoy playing certain games that support co-op, as long as the components are in place to make it enjoyable. That is the case with the release of Payday 2: Crimewave Edition. You can see our original review here.

Not much has changed in Payback 2: Crimewave Edition other than a slight graphics upgrade and the inclusion of all the previous DLC content with the release. The game does look better and it?s great to be able to play as John Wick out of the box, yet it still feels like we could have been given something more to encourage someone to repurchase the game.

Payday 2_1

One of the best features of Payback has always been its online co-op experience, and I can safely say, this is still intact. There is tons of fun to be had when you can have three friends join you in a complex bank heist or even just simple store robberies, which can include causing some serious damage to a shopping mall.

What helps drive the game is the music. I enjoy how the musical progression transitions based on the mood of the scenario. When you begin a level, the tone is calm and well fitted and will gradually get more intense as you are spotted. Then you end up in an all-out game of cops and robbers with driving music to fit the action. Sometimes music can truly take a gaming experience to a whole new level and I feel they did a great job in taking the time to work on this in Payday 2.

Payday 2_2

The extra DLC included in the Crimewave Edition gives you a much larger variety of weapons, armor, melee attacks, sub weapons, masks, and characters, which give the game a good amount of replayability. The level up system is pretty extensive as well allowing you to grind enough to unlock all of the skill trees and their appropriate abilities.

Even with all of the content included, it?s not enough to save the single player mode. Sometimes I like to play a quick heist on my own, but the A.I. made it extremely difficult to sometimes even get through a level. There is a button that triggers them to follow your character and most of the time ended with them getting gunned down before they reached me. It almost feels like a completely different experience when playing solo and I don’t encourage it other than to get familiar with the game. This takes away a portion of the experience, especially if you’re not comfortable communicating with strangers online.

Lastly, the biggest issue with Payday 2: Crimewave Edition is the existing visual bugs. What makes it more noticeable is the graphics being uprezzed. Every detail can be seen in full HD, including the lifeless and dated character models. Some other unaddressed issues are character clipping, sometimes unresponsive context sensitive button triggers when setting up a drill to open a safe, and random spawning of cops as they appear right in front of you while running around the level.

Payday 2_3

The good thing about Payday 2: Crimewave Edition is despite the shortcomings, playing the online co-op with actual people makes the game that much more enjoyable and will stick with the original review?s statement of this being an online experience. It can be a lot of fun when it works, and the DLC being included is a nice bonus. I just wished they had taken the time to polish the controls and single player A.I.

Maybe if we get a threequel that is built for the current gen consoles, the team will take the time to work on the game?s shortcomings.

Grade: C+