The lights are on
Earning cash has always been an important part of Army of Two games, as it’s your means of acquiring new weapons and modifying your current ones. Suppressors, stocks, and attachments were available in spades to make that assault rifle or grenade launcher even more deadly. While you’ll still be able to tweak your loadout in Army of Two: The Devil’s Cartel, the team at Visceral Montreal has made some smart changes to how you’ll be earning your cash.
In the previous two games, players could lone wolf a level and rack up more cash rewards than their partner. You’re still rewarded for kills in The Devil’s Cartel, but both players will benefit if they work together. If you use team tactics such as flanking, both players will receive a cash bonus as well as more Overkill points (which eventually activates a timed sequence in which you’re nearly unstoppable).
Working together benefits the team, but there will still be opportunities for individual greed. “There might be moments where players are splitting up to do something, and when they make the choice to do it, one gets a certain amount of cash and the other gets a different amount of cash,” says executive producer Julian Beak. “You can almost imagine the organization writing up the work order for how much work you did, and they’re like ‘That’s way harder!’ and they pay you more money.”
Players could also earn cash in the past by finding it in hidden places, but Beak isn’t sure if he wants it to be a focus point in The Devil’s Cartel. “[Picking up cash] isn’t out of the realm of possibility, but it’ll become something for fun. You won’t feel like you’re at a huge disadvantage if you don’t do it.”
When it comes time to spend your money, the process will look familiar to fans of the series. You have access to three different weapon slots (primary, secondary, and special), and you’re free to deck them out with as many attachments and cosmetic additions as you’d like. Visceral Montreal is shooting for a mature tone for this game, but they’re not quite ready to get rid of the flashy weapon designs. “We won’t choke out the flashiness,” says Beak. “I think that if the main campaign is really an experience that makes you think ‘Oh man, this feels great,’ and you’re playing afterwards with a buddy who wants to get all blinged up, it’s like ‘Hey, look at this!’ You can do whatever you want to your mask. You’ll be doing some things that are just fun for you. They’re maybe not as serious as the tone of the game, and we want to keep that as an option for the players in all types of customization.”
You can still tweak your guns to your heart’s content, but the team wants to make sure you’re not interrupting firefights to do it. Instead of being able to customize at any time, you’re now forced to exit out to the main menu if you want to switch to another loadout. The game saves your most recent checkpoint if this is the case, so you shouldn’t lose much progress.
The Devil’s Cartel isn’t wildly overhauling the customization system, but they still want to foster a connection between the player and their favorite guns. “As you progress through the game, your weapons become quite dear to you because you’ve sunk a lot of money into them,” says Beak. “You’re also more powerful, so you’ll be really happy when you’re pulling out your tweaked-out sniper rifle or assault rifle.”