Group PVP missions suffer a similar problem and are marred by an overwhelming sense of unfairness. These contests aren't won because of tactical skill, they're won based on which faction drove to the marked location the fastest. With the objective points being randomly generated, the nearest players have the upper hand and will inevitably camp the area, picking out the stragglers who have arrived late to the party. It's unfortunate considering the lack of control you have over the latest car you've ripped from the hands of a local. APB's driving controls make every ride feel like your car is controlled by a 16-year old who can't quite reach the peddles.
Cornering is unbelievably sluggish, to the extent that you have to start planning your turn a good half-road before you reach an intersection. It’s unwieldy and frustrating, particularly when you’re working against the demands of a ticking clock; even when you’re not colliding head-on with another vehicle, what should be a simple mode of transportation becomes an annoying hindrance to your mission.
Once you're in a fight it's a matter of shooting fish in a barrel, considering the lack of an established cover system beyond boxes and walls that you can dip behind when the bullets start flying. The shooting mechanics themselves are similarly awkward, amounting to pounding the correct key in the general direction of your target. Bullets can spray an enemy with little effect, meaning you can shoot to the head and your target will just keep moving. In a game that is largely about shooting other players this becomes one of the most blatant issues, effectively crippling the PVP experience unless you were lucky enough to find a place to perch on a roof.
This is a case of an MMO that will inevitably evolve within nine months time, but not before it spoils its first impression like an unwieldy teenager trying to impress a Compton street gang. The issues are issues that can be solved through patches, meaning APB is gawky but will grow. But despite RTW's attempt to keep reviewers honest with their week-long embargo, they'll have a hell of a time convincing players to stay on board long enough to experience the game as intended.
VideoGamer.com Score5 Score out of 10
- Brilliant design tools
- Great concept
- Poor driving and shooting mechanics
- Tedious Missions