If you’ve never experienced a AAA game on a fifty foot screen, it’s probably time to round up those pennies and get to building your own theater. Before diving into the finer points of Payday 2: Crimewave Edition, which is set to release on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on June 30 (release date plugs end now, hooray), it’s worth noting that I do not own a home theater. Granted, there is a bit of big-screen action going on in my current gaming set-up, being that I’m damaging my eyes daily by sitting no more than two feet away from a 32-inch HDTV. As such, experiencing a game in a movie theater, courtesy of the folks at 505 Games, was one of the craziest gaming experiences of my life. Let me take you down a wonderful fantasy road loaded with all of the pixels one could possibly ask for.
My experience with Payday 2: Crimewave Edition, a game that’s exactly the opposite of the high-octane, speedy shooter titles swarming the AAA space makes the appeal appeal of bringing the full PC experience to current generation consoles clear. This demonstration was meant to show us what Payday 2 felt like away from the mouse and keyboard on the grandest scale possible. Yes, you can get your bank-robbing fix on previous generation consoles, but having that higher level of fidelity gives your crimes more of a sense of realism.
While this generation’s early stages are largely defined my independent dominance and cash-grabbing ports, there seems to be a movement towards adding as much content to a remastered edition as possible. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection is set to introduce a great deal of first-time console buyers into the complete edition of Borderlands 2, one of the best action-RPGs of last generation, and the maligned, but time-sucking, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel. Not only is every released downloadable content available to players in next week’s Handsome Collection, but future Pre-Sequel downloadable goodies will be included as well. Payday 2: Crimewave Edition includes all of that juicy DLC that players are busy sinking thousands of hours into, no joke, on PC, including the much-discussed Diamond Heist. The latter piece was the subject of much discussion during the movie theater event, as 505 made the curious decision to highlight this piece of December DLC in its Crimewave Edition presentation. Still, shooting enemies in the face while seeking out a cursed diamond, which Hitler owned at one point, is too weird not to discuss.
Crimewave Edition plays exactly how Payday 2 fans would expect it to, though it’s worth noting that those who are completely new to the series might find themselves a bit shell-shocked. As was stated earlier, if you’re looking to boost around the map like some sort of human rocket, you probably should look elsewhere. Payday 2‘s biggest draw is its methodical nature; planning out every move, devising new strategies, and being as precise as possible are the name of the game here. It’s weird to hop into a shooter nowadays and not have seemingly endless speed (this is why playing the first three Halo games feels so odd), but that’s an absolute requirement here. Don’t worry though, if you’re playing on a giant movie theater screen, you probably enjoy the slower pace; those visuals aren’t going to admire themselves.
Look, I’m sure you’re sick of ports coming to your current generation system under the faint veil of being content complete. For those of you out there that can’t possibly take anymore, you can rest easy knowing that there’s a wealth of wonderful independent titles and major exclusives on the horizon (just wait until some of these studios start announcing their games). There’s a great deal of people out there, however, who are just getting into the wonderful world of console gaming, and what kind of people would we be if we denied them the opportunity to rob banks with their friends? Payday 2: Crimewave Edition is the closest you can come to playing a content-complete version of the PC edition without springing the heaps of cash necessary to build a rig, and to that we say, “Why the hell not?”