Payday 2 PC Technical Review



Company: 505 Games
Author: Sean Ridgeley
Editor: Sean Ridgeley
Date: August 15th, 2013

Graphics options, visuals, performance

Graphics options

Payday 2 includes a total of nine graphics options, among them Effect Quality, Vsync, Depth of Field, Texture Quality, Frame Rate Limit (you can choose between 30, 45, 60, 75, 90, 105, 120, and 135), and Field of View (FOV) Adjustment, to exclude a few.

Frustratingly, Effect Quality and FOV can only be adjusted with a slider as opposed to numerically, and the slider doesn't display which ends indicate low and high. Also, adjusting Effect Quality has no actual...effect. Meanwhile, increasing FOV makes pistols look far too small.

All told, though, this represents a strong enough list that includes some key options, some of which are unfortunately overlooked in many other games.

Visuals

Mostly, textures are of very high fidelity, but frequently enough to be memorable, you'll notice a very low resolution texture that sticks out like a sore thumb. In some cases it's downright glaring, like the sky and clouds, both of which are borderline painful to look at.

Apart from that, shadows and lighting -- aided by Ambient Occlusion -- are rich , carefully placed, and prove immersive, and interiors and exteriors of buildings as well as streets are all finely detailed.

The world as a whole is respectably crafted, and graphics enthusiasts should find themselves mostly satisfied. It's not bleeding edge, but it's not so far off as to be bothersome.

Performance

In my reasonably extensive testing, I very rarely had trouble maintaining the maximum 135 frames per second, and no stuttering was observed besides the rare bit seen from network lag.

On the topic of network performance, matchmaking is usually quick and smooth; here and there matches will fail to set up as expected, but it's nothing worth docking the game over.

Load times are minimal as is typical these days (at least with an SSD cache); alt-tab is clunky but doesn't cause crashes or any other serious issues.