Payday 2 studio: ‘game support not possible without microtransactions’

In response to the negative response to the Black Market Update for co-op multiplayer game Payday 2 earlier this month, development studio Overkill has posted a response to Reddit. According to Overkill, the proceeds are needed to continue supporting the game.

Overkill producer Almir Listo held an ama on the Payday subreddit to mark the end of the Crimefest ingame event. The first question he decided to address was the one that has been the most preoccupation with the Payday community in recent weeks: why are microtransactions in the game now when the developer promised in the past that they would never be? And why do these create a ‘pay2win’ situation?

Listo starts by stating that they didn’t start developing Payday 3 after the release of Payday 2 in 2013. “We want to do everything we can to make sure Payday 2 is as cool as possible.” By this he means the multiple free updates for the game. “We only do paid DLC when we have to.” To work out all the ideas Overkill has for the game, the team has expanded from 25 to 75 people.

“88 updates later, we need to take steps to ensure the game’s survival. We’re putting the game on sale when we can and have even made all Payday 2 content permanently 33 to 43 percent cheaper to pay all wages here.” However, Listo also says that these strategies “didn’t deliver the results we expected.” The studio has therefore introduced microtransactions as an additional source of income.

“We never thought we’d get such a negative response from the community,” he admits. Nevertheless, the microtransactions seem to be permanent. “We hope we can convince the community that this is the best strategy to ensure Overkill’s viability as an independent developer and the continued growth of Payday 2.”

One of the developers’ arguments for why the skins’ stat boosts don’t hurt the gameplay experience is that Payday 2 is a PVE game; “you win or lose together with your team. An advantage of one of your team members is an advantage for you.” The reactions to Almir Listo’s statements in the Reddit post are undiminished negative.

In an interim update, Overkill has already ensured that players can also get the drills that need to be paid for at the end of a successful mission. However, it is not known how big the chance is that players will get their hands on such a drill for free.