The design, she be flawed!
All right, let me get my 2 minute review of APB out of the way first, and let's see if I can pack it all into one, long, bordering-on-run-on sentence.
"What I'm trying to say here is that the core design of the game is flawed."
One quickly realizes after 20 minutes of action district play that the matchmaking is a little goofy, cars drive like portable whales on wheels, contact missions repeat more often than Law and Order on TNT
, the animations for interacting with objectives don't always play right, items are cursed by Bizzaro Isaac Newton to forever float awkwardly in mid-air, and weapon balance exists as much as anti-matter exists. Actually, I think I avoided a run-on sentence with my clever use of commas. Nice.
What I'm trying to say here is that the core design of the game is flawed. Instead of feeling like a flowing world, it feels a directed mission system with open-world elements tacked on at the very last moment. Criminals have a better sense of a flowing world, as their shop thefts, car hijacks, and random muggings add a nice spice on top of their missions. Enforcers, on the other hand, can't shoot civilians in a world packed with civilians (unless you want your prestige, the game's way of offering you more rewards, to flush down the toilet) and most of their "open-world" options include either witnessing a crime or impounding the cars stolen by criminals. That's it.
All of this is multiplied by the game's unfortunate performance issues. Since launch, my copy of APB
has crashed out six times -- once during each of my play-sessions. Previously, on my 32-bit machine, the game was literally unplayable on a rig that can run Crysis
and Age of Conan
decently enough. Because it was 32-bit, the game locked me down onto the worst graphics settings and it would still have issues with my 2 gigs of ram, even though the rest of the rig included a quad-core processor and a nVidia 8800GT.
But, I still purchased this game of my own free will, and I'm still interested in actively playing it. Why?