Payday 2 Resumes Development, Scraps Forever-Free DLC Amid Starbreeze Woes

Payday 2 Resumes Development, Scraps Forever-Free DLC Amid Starbreeze Woes

"To get it out of the door immediately; yes, I know we’re breaking a promise."

A year ago, Payday 2 development concluded as it seemed Overkill and Starbreeze were ready to move on to the next thing. But after a year of financial woes for Starbreeze, the studio has undergone a "purgatory fire" and is resuming production of Payday 2 DLC, which includings going back on some of its promises about forever-free content.

In a blog post from Starbreeze CEO Mikael Nermark, the publisher and studio head goes over recent troubles the company has gone through. Late 2018 saw Starbreeze in acute liquidity shortfall, and in December of last year, the company went through reconstruction; Nermark compares it to Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US. "On December 3rd, we only had projected cash reserves to run the company until mid-January 2019," Nermark writes.

Add on a sizeable number of layoffs, the cancellation of Overkill's The Walking Dead, and a raid from the Swedish authorities, and you can see Starbreeze was in a tough place. In resuming development on Payday 2, Overkill and Starbreeze seem to be attempting to return to what's worked for them in the past, albeit with some changes.

Nermark confirms that Overkill and the Payday team is working on the first of new updates to the game, which had originally concluded development in 2018. He also says that a la carte DLC will be re-introduced, so legacy content will be available to purchase on a piece-by-piece basis; but those who have purchased the Ultimate Edition, billed as the "forever-free" option for Payday 2 DLC, will have their versions changed to a "Legacy Edition" and have to start paying for future content.

"To get it out of the door immediately; yes, I know we’re breaking a promise," Nermark says. "We do not do so with ease or take this lightly."

The promise of the Ultimate Edition was to "get everything Payday 2 in a package, until we release the next installment of Payday." But now, as it seems like Payday 2 is the future and the studio is in need of some cash flow, Nermark says they're breaking the promise of forever-free.

"We want to move forward and make more of Payday 2, and to do so we need your support to continue producing content," Nermark says. "New DLCs will be a mix of paid and free updates."

You can see which content will still be bundled in the Legacy Collection on Payday 2's Steam store page, and the price will still be discounted if you own some pieces of content already. Whether Payday 2 can actually fix Starbreeze's woes, it seems like the hopes are pinned at least somewhat on the co-op heist shooter. It was a fixture for years in online co-op gaming, and at least for now, it will have to be the future of the series as Overkill and Starbreeze try to bail out enough water to stay afloat.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Eric Van Allen

News Editor

Eric is a writer and Texan. He's a former contributor to sites including Compete, Polygon, Waypoint, and the Washington Post. He loves competitive games, live music, and travel.

In other news

Marvel's Avengers Has Yet to Make Back Its Development Costs

Square Enix is saying it will continue pushing toward making the game profitable, however.

Kate Bishop's Marvel's Avengers DLC Has a New Launch Date and Time Travel Shenanigans

The first story content drop from Crystal Dynamics and company is coming next month.

The Last of Us Part 2 and Hades Lead 2020's Game Awards Nominees

Supergiant and Naughty Dog have racked up the nods at this year's Keighley-tastic show.

Ubisoft's Skull and Bones Studio Just Lost Its Managing Director, but He Hasn't Been Fired

Hugues Ricour, once the boss at Ubisoft Singapore, will remain employed in a different position after a leadership audit.

Need help?

Luigi’s Mansion 3 Achievements: How to Check Your Achievements

You’ll earn Achievements while playing Luigi’s Mansion. Here’s a full list of them, and some info on how to check the ones you’ve completed so far.

Borderlands 3 Shift Codes List (August 2020)

All the info you need on getting and redeeming SHiFT Codes in Borderlands 3, plus how to get Golden Keys to earn loot.

Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee - Beginner's Guide, All the Essential Tips

Here's our guide to both Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu, and Pokemon Let's Go Eevee, detailing how you can get started on your adventure.

No Man’s Sky Ships - Ship Classes, Exotic Ships, Sell Ships and More

In No Man’s Sky, a Traveller’s ship is their best friend. Here’s all of the info you need to know about ships in No Man’s Sky, up to date as of the No Man’s Sky NEXT update.