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Review: APB: All Points Bulletin - PC

by Steven Williamson on 5 July 2010, 15:08 2.1

Tags: APB: All Points Bulletin PC, Realtime Worlds, PC, FPS

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Open-world, online multiplayer

The actual fun part is when you are confronted by the other side – either the enforcers or the criminals – who will stop you from reaching your objective, or attack the objective you’re defending. If you play alone, other people will be told “Go and stop player x”, but they rarely bother – chasing one bloke who’s fetching a parcel isn’t exactly riveting – so the key to the game is to play in groups. You can set up your own, or join one that’s already been created, and typically with 5 or 6 allies, you’ll embark on a variety of missions. Now the game gets more interesting, as another group will be despatched to oppose you, and you can suddenly find three of you in an SUV, with the first player driving to the objective, whilst the two passengers gun down rooftop defenders from all angles.

Problem is, it doesn’t pan out like that. Firstly, the cars are awful to drive. They corner like a drunk blue whale, and wait a second or so before responding to each instruction. Secondly, the guns feel like peashooters, with no feedback or recoil, no sights, and pathetic gunshot sounds. Thirdly, you’re relying on TPS players to work together (try not to laugh) through the two primary methods of communication, but VOIP is effectively “A Beginner’s Guide to Multi-Lingual Insults”, and nobody reads the text chat because it blends in with all of the normal announcements.

So what actually happens is this: two of your allies jump into nearby vehicles, and as you run to get in and ride shotgun, they run you over, largely because their cars have the turning circle of cruise ship. Undeterred, you get into another car, and head to the destination. Unbeknownst to you, everybody else is going to location two, so you arrive at location one alone. You try to coast in quietly, but crash straight into the side of a building. Then you creep up to the objective, spot an enemy looking the other way, and train your gun on him. You fire, but have no idea whether you’ve hit or not. Then he turns around with his premium firearm, and kills you in one shot. Repeated ad-nauseum every 10 minutes until you can’t take any more.
APB Gameplay Walkthrough (Oct '09)

Continued overleaf...