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Payday: The Heist

Payday 2 is a co-op first person shooter created by Overkill Software, in partner with Starbreeze Studios. It provides as a sequel to Payday: The Heist. The game was released on August 13, 2013 for the PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. The game revolves around four main characters executing a variety of heists. This allows the player to rob banks or help transport drugs while surviving through endless waves of SWAT/FBI reinforcements.

Gameplay

Like it's predecessor, Payday, games can be for up to 4 players along with 4 different playable characters: Dallas, Hoxton, Wolf, Chains. The main goal is essentially to complete the goals of each heist and make it without the entire team getting downed (or rather than, put in jail). Depending on the heist, the performance of the team and small bonuses, players can gain different amounts of Experience Points and Cash in order to unlock/buy new weapons, armor, or masks (which has no gameplay value other than looks).

There are a lot of features brought over by the original Payday: The Heist:

  • Shout - An action with different purposes depending on the object/person the player is looking at. Examples include Shouting at a teammate will call them over or even with a chance of reviving them with the appropriate skill whilst shouting at 'special' enemies will outline them in red for your team.
  • Hostages - These are civilians who are restrained by any team member. They can be used to trade for fellow arrested members.
  • Waves - There are limited amount of enemies that can spawn per Assault Wave. Every time a specific limit is reached or time limit has been drained of, the wave ends giving time for the team members to recuperate and continue onto their task without worry of enemies.

And then there are plenty of new features added to Payday 2:

  • Stealth Mechanics - Although, Payday 2 at all means does not have perfect stealth mechanics, Payday 1 certainly had almost and if not no stealth (with exception to the Mercy Hospital heist from Payday: The Heist). Guards, Security Cameras and even civilians will be alerted if a heister is in clear view for an amount of time. A number of things adds to the stealth factor like the concealment of a hiesters Weapons, their Armor and if they're in 'Casing' mode or not.
  • Loadout Customization - Payday: The Heist did not have much customization for each piece of equipment necessarily, but rather a preset of weapons with preset upgrades as the player leveled along. In Payday 2, the customization for each Weapon, Mask and Skill Tree has increased drastically to the point where an experienced player can complete any heist on any difficulty with ease as long as they have the proper loadout. The player can entirely customize their weapon with a variety to choose from (Assault Rifles, Sniper Rifles, Shotguns, Machine Guns, etc.)
  • Difficulty of Heists - Depending on the difficulty of heists, different enemy types can spawn and their health points affected. For harder missions, enemies will have a drastically increased health along with even more advanced, harder to kill units. A major improvement in Experience Points and Cash rewards is one of the main reasons a player would want to complete a harder heist.

Customization

The customization in Payday 2 is a drastic improvement compared to it's predecessor, Payday: The Heist. This includes the player's loadout, skills and even some heists itself. Players can unlock most weapons by leveling up, but some are exclusive to skills or Downloaded Content (which usually requires cash). Attachments for weapons, customization for or masks themselves are usually gained by a 'Payday', a card drop game where a user selects a randomly generated card with an unknown item under it.

Weapons

In a given loadout for each player, they're required to have one of the following:

  1. A Primary Weapon
  2. A Secondary Weapon
  3. A Melee Weapon

The Primary Weapon is going to be the most used weapon, spanning from Assault Rifles to shotguns. This category usually has a huge number of attachments/customizations to add to such weapon like a barrel extension, different magazines, grips, stocks and sights. The Secondary Weapon on the other than is more like the backup weapon, offering only with pistols, submachine guns and shotguns. Usually, the number of attachments anyone can add on these isn't that great. The melee weapon is a Close Combat situational weapon, where the instead of expending valuable ammo at a nearby enemy, they player can strike them. There are a massive selection of melee weapons ranging from just the heister's butt end of the stock to a Bat filled with nails. Any these weapons can really be used at any time, but really just depends on the situation.

Armor

In Payday: The Heist, players are equipped with the same type of armor throughout, but damage reduction is increased as they continue to level their character. In Payday 2, the player now has a variety of different armor with game changing statistics suitable for differnet heists. Damage Reduction is a main factor in armor, as they take damage from any source, the higher the reduction value, the less damage a player will take. Speed is another factor to take care of, as damage reduction increases, this usually means heavier armor so the overall speed of the player will decrease in walking and sprinting. Evasion is the change of a player avoiding a bullet shot by an enemy, lighter and faster armor usually means that the player has a higher chance of evading damage along with their high speed. Concealment is a huge factor to stealth missions, the higher the concealment factor the slower it takes for enemies to respond back to the player. Walking in with a light armor in loud missions is not always the best idea nor vice versa, but it's really up to the player if they wish to do so.

Masks

In Payday: The Heist, the only customization in masks was what character the player has selected, since different characters in the game wore different masks. In Payday 2, the player can now freely choose between hundreds of different masks along with a huge variety of decorations for them. Such customizations can include a variety of patterns and colors unlocked by completing heists. Masks only are held for decorational value, and does not affect the gameplay in any way. It's up to the end user if they wish to invest time and money into these masks.

Skills & Perks

In Payday: The Heist, there are three (or four with a DLC) different upgrade paths to choose from in the in-game menu. These can range from the Assault, Sharpshooter or Support classes found in a lot of first person action games (with a bonus Technician with a DLC). Players usually are met with upgrades to their existing setup along with new guns depending on their path and then upgrades to said weapon. Payday 2 has drastically changed the leveling, skill system. Rather than having a selection of different upgrades/unlockables as they level up, players are granted skills point(s) for every time they level up, in which can be used to unlock skills points later on. For every skill tree, the player has to unlock a tier preceeding it in order to advance to higher level skills. There are five different skill trees in Payday 2 as of December 7th, 2014:

  1. Mastermind - The description quotes, “The Mastermind is a manipulative leader who excels in situational control.” The Mastermind excels in teamworks and having other people to do their work. Notable skills in this category includes Double Medpacks, The Joker which allows players to convert enemies to fight for them, Pistol Messiah which revives the player after getting a pistol only kill and Inspire which allows you to shout at crew members to revive them
  2. Enforcer - The description quotes, “The Enforcer is a violent criminal, usually employed by crime syndicates to execute jobs that no one else can.” The Enforcer is typically going to be an assault class, usually equipped with shotguns and very heavy armor. Notable skills in this category includes Ammunition Specialist in which the player can carry two ammo packs, Fully Loaded which allows for increased ammo capacity and pickup, Portable Saw which includes the OVE9000 Portable Saw to breach through specific missions vital areas in certain heists and the Iron Man skill which includes the heaviest amor in game, the Improved Combined Tactical Vest.
  3. Technician - The description quotes, “The Technician is an expert in the practical application of criminal science, enjoying anything that goes BOOM!” The Technician is a support based class usually involved in assault/sniper rifles and special equipment to breach into mission critical parts of the heists where time is sensitive. Notable skills include Sentry Gun which unlocks a deployable equipment sentry gun to fight for the team, multiple drilling perks so that the efficiency or drilling is improved drastically, 6 explosive charges and Shaped Charge which allows the user to blow up specific paths/mission vital equipment at the cost of a charge.
  4. Ghost - The description quotes, “The Ghost is a stealth artist, capable of grand theft without force or violence.” The Ghost is centered around stealth heists, usually loaded with a very low concealment count and being able to avoid any contact with enemies. Their main equipment is an ECM Jammer which has multiple purposes, to breach through mission critical areas, disable any cameras near it and to incapacitate enemies. Notable Skills include ECM Specialist which allows the player to place down two ECM Jammers instead of one, Locking Picking Expert which allows the player to lockpick safes, ECM Overdrive which allows the ECM Jammer to breach through keycard locked doors and Camera Loop which allows a player to temporarily disable a camera for 10 seconds (but with unlimited times),
  5. Fugitive - The Description quotes, “The Fugitive is a survivor, always on the run and an expert at hiding from the law.” The Fugitive is more of a 'Jack-of-all-trades' type of class, combining skills from the last four skill trees into one. Their main equipment is a mini first aid kit deployable in which similar to the Doctor Bag, they can deploy one 'heal' at time and is very fast to interact with. Notable skills include Sixth Sense which allows the player to pick up any items in casing mode, Swan Song which allows you to move up to 6 seconds after getting downed, Uppers which increases first aid kits, Bullseye which regenerates up to 32 armor points for each eachshot and Akimbo which allows a player to dual weild a choice of specific pistols or submachine guns.

It's important to note that some perks will not affect some weapons. For example, a skill perk that increases the magazine capacity of a weapon will not affect the Mosconi 12G since there are only two barrels.

Heists

Heists are essentially the missions the player can undergo in. In order to launch a heist, the player has to access CRIME.NET, which is (completely fictional) means of criminals communicating with each other. This menu is treated as a program within the game, but is actually the server selection screen. In order to prevent grinding (players repeating a certain part of a game in order to quickly gain certain points), you'll have to wait until the heist you want pops up with the specific difficulty (which can be known yellow skulls). Alternatively, the player can create a contract which in return will cost 'Offshore Cash', money that isn't directly spendable but still an asset.

Pre-Heist Screen

Before a heist starts, the crew can purchase 'assets' specific to individual heists, effectively making the heist easier and quicker. A loadout customization screen is also available here along with a 'Jukebox' tab so that each player can change their game's music to play during the heist.

Pre-planning

Specific missions like the Big Bank Heist and the Evil Eye heist allows you to drastically customize the heist, allowing players access an actual blueprint laying out the main area of the heist. The players can customize which escape route to execute, what drill to use, where should they medic packs or ammo packs, zip lines and even cameras. The point was to give Payday 2 players a feel like they're actually planning on top of a real blueprint, similar to an actual heist.

Lists of Heists

The following are going to be descriptions and objectives of most of the heists (I am excluding any pro and event only heists like Safe House Nightmare and White Xmas since they only come once a year). The format of these heists is so:

In-game Description: ""
Number of Days:
Contractor: 
Payout (always subject to change): 
Experience: 
Gameplay Restriction: (Loud only or Stealth only)
Day 1:
Objectives (Stealth):
#Objective 1
#Objective 2
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Objective 1
#Objective 2

(note that some heists have the same objectives regardless of a stealth or loud approach.)

The team is on a heist to steal paintings for profit.

In-game Description: "We rolled this gallery last year for The Elephant. This time, we do it for us."
Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Bain
Payout: Normal - 30k, Hard - 62.5k, Very Hard - 200k, Overkill - 300k, Death Wish - 400k
Experience: Normal - 6k, Hard - 18k, Very Hard - 36k, Overkill - 66k, Death Wish - 84k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Stealth):
#Steal at least 6 paintings with a red mark
#Escape
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Get into the camera room
#Override the security
#Steal at least 6 paintings with a red mark
#Escape

Bank Heist

A good old timely classic, a bank robbery. The goal here is simply to steal the cash inside a vault and then extract with the cash. (Note, this is only counting the normal bank heist, not any other variants of this)

Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Bain
Payout: Normal - 130k, Hard - 200k, Very Hard - 240k, Overkill - 350k, Death Wish - 425k
Experience: Normal - 10k, Hard - 30k, Very Hard - 60k, Overkill - 110k, Death Wish - 140k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Find the thermal drill
#Place the thermal drill
#Attach the thermal drill
#Wait for the vault to open
#Break into the second door (random chance)
#Loot the vault
#Escape

Big Oil

The team is hired by The Elephant to take out a machine with the intent to mess with The Elephant's political career.

In-game Description: "Gentlemen, oil is the blood of our world. Without it, we die. Time to make sure it keeps flowing."
Number of Days: 2
Contractor: The Elephant
Payout: Normal - 1000k, Hard - 1500k, Very Hard - 2250k, Overkill - 2750k, Death Wish - 4250k
Experience: Normal - 32k, Hard - 96k, Very Hard - 192k, Overkill - 352k, Death Wish - 448k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Find the safe
#Open the safe and retrieve the documents
#Escape
Day 2:
Objectives (Both):
#Find the security room
#Hack the computer
#Open the door to the lab
#Retrieve the correct fusion reactor
#Signal the helicopter
#Pack the reactor into the helicopter
#Repeat steps 4-6 if this was the right one, if not, escape

Diamond Store

The crew hits up the Diamond Store in an attempt to rob of it's jewelry.

In-game Description: "All the display cases in there are connected to an alarm. Disable the alarm and then steal the diamond jewelry. The escape driver is a bit jumpy so keep this quiet and methodical. Bag up everything. Let's get it all!"
Number of Days:1
Contractor: Bain
Payout: Normal - 30k, Hard - 60k, Very Hard - 150k, Overkill - 250k, Death Wish - 300k
Experience: Normal - 6k, Hard - 18k, Very Hard - 36k, Overkill - 66k, Death Wish - 84k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Steal and bring the jewerly to the van (amount varies per difficulty)
#Escape

Election Day

The team has to place a GPS onto voting machines so that they can rig the election.

In-game Description: "Gentlemen, the vote in DC is about to commence. We need to swing a few voters to the right side. You can help."
Number of Days: 2
Contractor: The Elephant
Payout: Normal - k, Hard - k, Very Hard - k, Overkill - k, Death Wish - k
Experience: Normal - k, Hard - k, Very Hard - k, Overkill - k, Death Wish - k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Stealth):
#Get into the dock
#Find the correct truck with the machines
#Tag the right truck
#Escape
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Find the computer
#Hack it
#Escape OR hack the computer again
(Note, if you do not tag the correct truck, you're forced to execute Plan C of Day 2, which is loud only)
Day 2:
Objectives (Stealth):
#Locate the voting machines
#Hack into them
#Optionally Bag the gold next to the escape van and place them in it
#Escape
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Hack the voting machines
#Hack the computer
#Escape
Day 2 (Plan C):
Objectives (Loud Only):
#Find the server
#Scramble it
#Blow open a wall into the bank
#Get the thermal drill
#Drill the vault
#There's a chance that if the vault opens after the drilling, you can have stacks of cash or not
#Escape

Firestarters

The team has to weaken the Mendoza cartel for Hector by destroying their source of income.

In-game Description: "We're hitting the Mendoza cartel hard for money, information and blood. You're of great use to us now."
Number of Days: 3
Contractor: Hector
Payout: Normal - 350k, Hard - 475k, Very Hard - 625k, Overkill - 1000k, Death Wish - 1250k
Experience: Normal - 24k, Hard - 72k, Very Hard - 144k, Overkill - 264k, Death Wish - 336k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Find the hanger containing weapons
#Steal or Destroy the weapons (the weapons can be bagged into the van for a huge sum of cash)
#Escape
Day 2:
Objectives (Stealth):
#Find the server room
#Hack the computer
#Cut the wires
#Break through the sever room
#Break through the second door
#Bag the server into the van
#Escape
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Find the server room
#Break through the sever room
#Break through the second door
#Bag the server into the van
#Drill the shutters
#Escape
Day 3:
Objectives (Both):
#Shut the power off
#Get the thermal drill to the vault door
#Start the drill
#Break into the second door (random chance)
#Set the cameras
#Light fire to the money
#Get the camera
#Escape

Four Stores

The team is hitting up four stores on a single street simultaneously in order to fulfill the debt they owe to Vlad.

In-game Description: "I own cash flow from Four Stores on Maple Street. My steady income, my bread. Now some cocksmoker takes my operation, steps on me, I'M VLAD, huh!! You will go there, take all the money you can find and leave him hurt, you show them Vlad pays back what is done to Vlad."
Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Vlad
Payout: Normal - 45k, Hard - 90k, Very Hard - 225k, Overkill - 450k, Death Wish - 600k
Experience: Normal - 4k, Hard - 12k, Very Hard - 24k, Overkill - 44k, Death Wish - 56k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Steal 15,000$ from any of the stores
#Escape

Framing Frame

The team has to steal pictures from the art gallery in order to frame The Elephant's competitor in the Washington D.C. election.

Number of Days: 1 (as of October 24th, 2014, it was converted from a third day to a single day heist)
Contractor: The Elephant
Payout: Normal - 300k, Hard - 600k, Very Hard - 1500k, Overkill - 3000k, Death Wish - 4000k
Experience: Normal - 20k, Hard - 60k, Very Hard - 120k, Overkill - 220k, Death Wish - 280k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1: 
Objectives (Stealth):
#Steal paintings (depending on the difficulty of the heist, the amount of bags required varies)
#Escape
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Breach into the camera room
#Override the security room
#Steal paintings (depending on the difficulty of the heist, the amount of bags required varies)
#Escape

GO Bank

The team hits up a small bank in the Charlie Santa heist. (Note: This heist is a complete homage to Valve's Multiplayer FPS game, “Counter Strike: Global Offensive”)

Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Bain
Payout: Normal - 275k, Hard - 550k, Very Hard - 1375k, Overkill - 2750k, Death Wish - 3500k
Experience: Normal - 16k, Hard - 48k, Very Hard - 96k, Overkill - 211k, Death Wish - 268k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Stealth):
#Disable the cameras
#Find two keycards
#Insert the cards into the vault lock
#Answer the phone a few times while waiting for the locks
#Avoid the lasers from the vault door
#Bag the loot and bring them into the van
#Escape
Objectives (Non-Stealth):
#Drill the vault
#Wait for 3 airlift bags
#Assemble the cage
#Bag the money into the lift cage
#After deploying the balloon, wait for the pilot to take the cage
#Go through the servers
#Escape

Jewelry Store

The team hits up a small jewelry store for a quick run.

Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Bain
Payout: Normal - 30k, Hard - 60k, Very Hard - 150k, Overkill - 250k, Death Wish - 300k
Experience: Normal - 2k, Hard - 6k, Very Hard - 12k, Overkill - 22k, Death Wish - 28k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Steal bags of jewelry (depending on the difficulty of the heist, the amount of bags required varies)
#Escape

Mallcrasher

The team is hired by Vlad once again to 'collect' from multiple store's debt.

In-game Description: "Friends, my friends. You help me with small problem, yes? I need you to cause..."domestic problems"."
Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Vlad
Payout: Normal - 45k, Hard - 90k, Very Hard - 225k, Overkill - 450k, Death Wish - 600k
Experience: Normal - 4k, Hard - 12k, Very Hard - 24k, Overkill - 44k, Death Wish - 56k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Destroy 50,000$ worth of items inside the mall
#Take any valuables
#Escape

Nightclub

The team hits up Dimitri's nightclub, a local russian mobster in war with Vlad.

In-game Description: "His club will be full of people. Get past them to his safe. He should keep that close to himself, if he dies, he dies. If he lives, he's a lucky shit. Get the money and get out. Let them know Vlad started the party."
Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Vlad
Payout: Normal - 100k, Hard - 115k, Very Hard - 200k, Overkill - 300k, Death Wish - 400k
Experience: Normal - 10k, Hard - 30k, Very Hard - 60k, Overkill - 110k, Death Wish - 140k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Both):
#Breach Dimitri's office door
#Open the safe
#Bag the loot into the van
#Escape

Rats

The team suits up for meth heist in an attempt to weaken the Mendoza cartel after being hired by Hector. (Note: This was the first heist to feature meth cooking in the game. The player must add in correct ingredients in order to fulfill the proper mission. Failure to do so will result in worse rewards)

In-game Description: "We know the Mendoza is on the run seems they making a late hit on us to retaliate. Our meth lab is under attack, save the meth and save the cooks. You know how to treat the enemy. Do so."
Number of Days: 3
Contractor: Hector
Payout: Normal - 50k, Hard - 75k, Very Hard - 100k, Overkill - 150k, Death Wish - 250k
Experience: Normal - 16k, Hard - 48k, Very Hard - 96k, Overkill - 176k, Death Wish - 224k
Gameplay Restriction: Both
Day 1:
Objectives (Loud-Only):
#Cook and load at least 3 bags of meth
#Escape
Day 2:
Objectives (Both):
#Trade the bags of meth of information
#Get the documents and optionally, steal back the bags of meth after you received the information
#Escape
Day 3:
Objectives (Loud-Only):
#Kill all of the gang members onboard the bus
#Steal as much money as possible
#Escape

Shadow Raid

The team hits up a monstrous, heavily guarded warehouse with Private Military Company Murky Water guarding every position. The only problem is, not a single sound can be made. (Note: This is the first game to feature a 'Stealth-Only' heist. If the team were to trip upon any alarm, players will have only one minute to complete it)

In-game Description: "It's quiet tonight...Let's keep it that way."
Number of Days: 1
Contractor: Bain
Payout: Normal - 50k, Hard - 100k, Very Hard - 150k, Overkill - 200k, Death Wish - 400k
Experience: Normal - 10k, Hard - 30k, Very Hard - 60k, Overkill - 165k, Death Wish - 252k
Gameplay Restriction: Stealth
Day 1:
Objectives (Stealth-Only):
#Loot the warehouse without setting off any alarm
#Bag the loot (depending on the difficulty of the heist, the amount of bags required varies)
#Escape

Watchdogs

The crew goes on guard duty for Hector's coke.

In-game Description: "You'll ride on the meat truck. You'll ensure my products arrives at the harbour and make it onto the speed boat."
Number of Days: 2
Contractor: Hector
Payout: Normal - 300k, Hard - 370k, Very Hard - 625k, Overkill - 925k, Death Wish - 1300k
Experience: Normal - 20k, Hard - 60k, Very Hard - 122k, Overkill - 220k, Death Wish - 280k
Gameplay Restriction: Loud
Day 1:
Objectives (Loud-Only):
#Wait for the pickup to arrive
#Bag the cocaine into the vehicle
#Get to the first extraction, if he's dead then wait for the helicopter extraction
#Escape
Day 2:
Objectives (Loud-Only):
#Turn on the lights
#Wait for the boat to arrive
#Bag the coke onto the boat (for all the coke to be bagged, the boat must make several trips as it can only carry four at a time)
#Escape

Shooters


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