Whenever a sequel to a live service game comes along, the immediate question that arises is "why?"
"Payday 3" fails to answer that question of the bat, and while the answer may well be buried somewhere deep within, I doubt whether it's worth the time and effort to discover it.
While there is nothing overtly wrong with the four-player heist mechanics, which are suitably refined and improved from the game's predecessors, there just isn't enough juice here to justify even the $40 entry fee, much less the $80 Gold Edition.
I suspect that much of the player base will come from the crowd on Xbox GamePass, on which the game launched day and date. Sunken costs of the subscription fee aside, this feels and looks like a free-to-play effort through and through. If your GamePass-subscribing buddies ate up the first two Payday games, then by all means squad up for this one.
For the rest of the crowd, you deserve better than what amounts to a map pack. Like one of its protagonists who dons a mask before breaking into a fortified sanctum to seize the goods, it doesn't deserve your hard-earned dough, and isn't even trying all that hard to nab it.
Publisher sent review code.