PAYDAY The Heist MEGA Review!

When I think of bank heists, two seminal movies immediately spring to mind – ‘Point Break’ and ‘Pulp Fiction’.

In ‘Point Break’ a hardened crew of sleek criminals, led by legging loving hunk Patrick Swayze, who wear amusing masks and business suits, enter various banks, whip out their automatic rifles and all hell breaks loose.
The crew shout “get on the floor” to the screaming, panicky customers, then find the bank manager, place the cold steel of a gun barrel to his head and demand he opens the vault.

In Pulp Fiction they don’t wear masks or suits and it’s just a man and woman holding up burger bars, or something, but it’s a very tense scene anyway – you must have seen it, “get down on the motherfucking floor you motherfuckers” scream the couple at the quivering families munching on their happy meals.

Or similar.

We’ve all seen bank heist movies with those tense, edge of the seat robberies, there must be hundreds of them.

Well, PAYDAY The Heist gives us the opportunity to be those bank robbers!

That’s right. You can wear a business suit and a Halloween mask, you can whip your firearms out and abuse innocent customers with cries of “get on the floor!” and “don’t move!” as they quiver in fear, and you can frighten the living daylights out of bank managers!
A dream come true for armchair sociopaths like me.

PAYDAY The Heist is a first person shooter with a single player mode and a online multiplayer, co-op mode for up to four players.
There are bots available to join you in single player and co-op and they do the job, you just have to live with them being a bit…..special.

PAYDAY is being compared a lot to ‘Left 4 Dead‘, which is no bad thing, and like that game, it’s best played in multiplayer co-op mode.I have a few Steam friends with PAYDAY and have had some great fun playing with them this week, but, I also played a couple of heists with randoms last night and had a great time.The servers are nicely busy with around 1,000 people online right now, and this will increase in the evening.

What immediately struck me about PAYDAY The Heist is it’s incredibly pleasing visual design. The menus are a work of genius – clean and clear, with beautiful photo-realistic images and uncomplicated, yet effective options. It really is a pleasure just to appreciate the menu art.

The game itself is also visually stunning, with complex, highly detailed maps that set the scene perfectly and create an effective sense of immersion. Talking of immersion, the sound design in PAYDAY is brilliant. There are a lot of subtle elements in the background that hit the subconscious perfectly, creating an impressive sense of realism. The voice acting is good and being British, I’m happy to say I approve of the accents, which are straight out of a Guy Ritchie film. Not literally, for that would violate international copyright law, I mean they are similar, okay?

As for the actual game, pulling off the heists is brilliantly tense and adrenaline pumping.OVERKILL have managed to totally capture the mood and realism of all those Hollywood movie scenes and PAYDAY is a real accomplishment. It very successfully transforms a movie indigenous concept to a video game, and that’s no simple task.

The game features four playable characters, and their loadouts can be customised at the start of every game to create the perfect crew. There are a large collection of firearms and equipment upgrades to unlock via challenges and all the stats and leaderboards you could wish for. What seems to be a unique feature of PAYDAY is that the game will automatically unlock the items that suit a person’s play style, via the completion of the role based challenges. Perfecting the six available heists will keep even the most avid gamers interested and there will be future DLC providing additional heists and more!

Each heist can take around 15 minutes to complete and if your crew are silly enough to get themselves shot and caught by the fuzz, you can trade a hostage for them!
The game makes great use of dynamic mechanics, meaning that no two playthroughs will ever be the same.
Replayability heaven, baby.

PAYDAY The Heist also uses Steamworks, so there are Steam achievements to garner, yeeeeeeaaaaaaaaah!

OVERKILL should be extremely proud of this game, and considering they were only created in 2009, PAYDAY The Heist shows impressive form. It’s also worth noting that community contact from OVERKILL is fantastic and they are highly active online.

This is a brutal, bloody and brilliant game.

Time played: 8 Hours

Score: 9/10

Official Website

Payday on Steam 


PC Used:

AMD 4200+ X2 2233 MHz CPU

ATI HD4670 512mb GPU

Windows XP SP3


I said this was a MEGA review, and so it is! To justify my grandiose title, PAYDAY The Heist is also reviewed below by our 4 pack competition winner, Matt Hart, AKA Redwish!

“PAYDAY: The Heist is a game by newly formed company OVERKILL software, who hail from Sweden (and if you haven’t guessed, they love capital letters.)

PAYDAY: The Heist is a co-operative orientated shooter, based on robberies, bank heists and anything involving stealing lots of dosh. Some of the missions are said to be based on films: HEAT STREET, for example, was loosely based on the film ‘Heat ‘ with Al Pacino.

I hopped into the game with three friends, started up the first mission, and needless to say it was very enjoyable. The first objective was never in the same spot (Which was the bank manager, who is played by Bo Andersson from OVERKILL, I might I add.) which kept us on our toes, similar to Left 4 Dead’s AI director, the game changes things up on the fly.

Cops of all sorts came flooding through different locations and gave us a run for our money a couple of times, especially the special police. Sort of like Left 4 Dead’s special infected, PAYDAY introduces unique enemies to face, such as the Bulldozer, which can take a lot of damage if dealt with incorrectly, the Cloaker, who’ll have you running in fear from smoke and tasers. Some have suggested that these special police are overpowered, being able to “Shock you through walls and tight spaces”, but to me and (Hopefully) my friends it’s a good challenge. It keeps your eyes peeled and your mind wary of your surroundings, but most importantly, it makes you work together to overcome them. The last thing I want to touch on is playing with randoms. Usually I got no communication between them, even with “Press T to type” our teamwork usually failed. Friends is the best way to play.”

This entry was posted by Ian Brown.

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