Mixed or average reviews - based on 42 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 42
  2. Negative: 9 out of 42
Buy On
  1. The game world offers both fun for wannabe cops as well as fun for the chaos-men. Good community support and many ways to express yourself in the social districts boost the game.
  2. Warts and all, APB has enough going for it that gamers who are looking for this type of gameplay on a larger scale will have a lot to enjoy.
  3. 77
    APB was fun, but not for long enough to warrant me to buy more time, or to even use all of what came with the game. If, six months from now, a great deal of content has been added to the game, then APB may be a great buy. For now, it's stuck in limbo.
  4. APB has to learn how to play its obvious trump card, a brilliant customisation suite. With tools that give you power over every aspect of your persona – cars, clothes, tattoos, shape, logos, victory jingles and even the tunes pumped out of your stereo – the game really gets that people are the brands of the 21st century.
  5. Deep customization drives the core shooter gameplay, which is only held back by a fear of repetition and a few bugs.
  6. Success or failure, expect to see APB replicated, ripped off, and copied completely in the coming years. It's revolutionary in many ways, even if it isn't actually all that great.
  7. 70
    All Points Bulletin has some good things and some flaws. It is a truly good idea, and the way it has been made is satisfying, but there is still plenty of work ahead to improve it.
  8. APB is a collection of seemingly solid ideas that disappointingly, just doesn't gel.
  9. APB attempts to combine the feel of an MMO with the PvP of a first person shooter. By themselves, each concept works well. But here, each feels like it only received partial effort.
  10. APB is clever but inconsistent, though Realtime Worlds has proven to be a developer to watch. This game shows that they understood the lay of the land back in 2005, when APB was initially conceived.
  11. APB delivers periodic awesomeness, but fundamental imbalances and repetitive objectives make this persistent-world shooter a tough sell.
  12. When APB works, it's simply bliss. Sadly, more often than not, it doesn't.
  13. The expectations for APB were high, maybe too high, and the finished product doesn't live up to the hype. The result is a simplistic shooter with an awesome character editor that can be fun for a while, but lacks content and variety to justify a monthly subscription. Maybe Realtime Worlds can still do something about that but, for now, what's there is just not enough.
  14. APB should have been the same game, just better. The main gameplay mechanics are here as well as the third person action and the persistent world, but despite some fun moments, the lack of polishing compromises the whole experience.
  15. While being an okay game, All Points Bulletin doesn't deliver what it was supposed to: A GTA-like experience.
  16. APB's good points can't be ignored. It's got the best spread of customization features this side of City of Heroes, and the idea of a player-driven combat environment is certainly appealing. But the multitude of design and technical issues hamper the fundamental gameplay and make it hard to enjoy without some serious compromise.
  17. PC Zone UK
    Style over substance. [Oct 2010, p.74]
  18. PC Gamer
    Confused and weightless, APB doesn't satisfy on any front: the shooting, driving, story and objectives are all average at best. [Sept 2010, p.65]
  19. games(TM)
    When all its cylinders are firing, APB can be quite fun, but that enjoyment is blunted by the fact that its action mechanics and driving are both so clunky. [Issue#99, p.108]
  20. It's polished and accomplished, and certain aspects of it, such as the meta-game structure and the player customisation, are fantastic. Even so, there's no escaping the fact that the game is hugely disappointing. The flashes of brilliance only serve to throw the mediocrity of the game into even sharper relief.
  21. The descendant of Grand Theft Auto series is behind it, uses the Unreal Engine 3 technology, it has the best character creator ever made in a videogame, and it's gameplay style is based on the MMO and the third person shooter genres. Is it possible that a cocktail like that could disappoint us? As amazing as it may sound, yes it can.
  22. APB is an interesting idea executed poorly. An open world action MMO in the same vein as the Crackdown franchise sounds great, but Realtime Worlds fail to make some of the fundamental mechanics entertaining. Though your options for customizing your experience are impressive to say the least it's not enough to make the experience worth your time and money.
  23. Did they hope people wouldn't notice its shortcomings? Where they conducting some kind of experiment? Did they always plan to do this overhaul?
  24. It's a sleeping pill disguised as an online action game with mediocre graphics, bad controls, frustrations and most of all: boredom.
  25. Games Master UK
    Fun, but when you spend more time pimping than playing you know something's amiss. [Oct 2010, p.74]
  26. Confused and weightless, APB doesn't satisfy on any front: the shooting, driving, story and objectives are all sub-par.
  27. PC Format
    Half a game. [Sept 2010, p.96]
  28. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Great idea with creating MMO Grand Theft Auto somehow missed its target. Excellent character/car editor is accompanied by a dull and boring shooter. [Aug 2010]
  29. Part massively multiplayer online game. Part Grand Theft Auto clone. All failure.
  30. All Points Bulletin is a big disappointment: great ideas wiped out by poor gameplay mechanics and shallow content. Everything in this game cries out loud for a better implementation which will eventually arrive, according to the programmers, but which is at the moment unforgivable. On top of all this, the fun will be over after few hours since APB plays on only 2 maps and few repeatable quests.
  31. Sure there is some gem of PvP in there somewhere, but you have to work far too hard to get there.
  32. 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.
  33. All Points Bulletin feels like an average third person shooter with vehicles and online support. And you know what, there are several games like that out there. And they usually don't have a monthly fee.
  34. APB had a simple concept, one that anybody who used to be young and a dead shot with a squirt gun could have gotten behind, and Realtime Worlds managed to screw it up completely.
  35. 45
    While it's conceptually the game we were told it would be, every component is so underdeveloped, the game world so patently artificial. Only the customisation tools stand tall, but even they're of so little consequence that they're almost instantly forgotten.
  36. More troublesome is a lack of overarching story or sense of import and persistence to the game world.
  37. 40
    If APB was just another Grand Theft Auto clone, it wouldn't be worth a second look. But because it's an MMO, it still has that chance to improve and do better. The ad-hoc versus mission mechanic is ingenious, and that customization can be intoxicating, especially when you get a clear idea of exactly what you want your character and vehicle to look like.
  38. All Points Bulletin has an interesting premise and offers you the possibility to alter the game experience, but bad controls and the lack of mission variety make this MMO-shooter a waste of time.
  39. APB is a mess, plagued with broken core systems that don't work as the developer intended, leading to a game that is more of a chore you have to deal with than it is a game that is fun to play.
  40. Realtime Worlds is so much better than this, and it's horrible to see that years of effort have produced this substandard, outdated, thoroughly pointless game.
  41. APB is an MMO you can play for free for fifty hours, but I seriously doubt anyone will get that far. The game completely fails in almost every aspect which makes playing this game a living hell. Sadly enough I couldn't enjoy APB even for a moment.
  42. 25
    Despite the years of work Realtime Worlds poured into their latest creation, APB still comes off as being woefully underdeveloped, and ultimately unfinished.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 294 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Aug 23, 2010
    APB is one of those great examples of a good game gone horribly wrong by misguided developers. I've been waiting for this game for years, butAPB is one of those great examples of a good game gone horribly wrong by misguided developers. I've been waiting for this game for years, but I always seemed to miss out on the beta periods. I was hoping it'd be intense, exciting, balls-to-the-wall gameplay gold; needless to say, I was grossly disappointed. First of all, the initial character creation is daunting, and I had no clue what to make of it. It's seriously flawed, and I had no way of changing anything but my facial features, as I simply couldn't navigate the interface. Similarly, starting out seems rushed and uncontrolled. The training program includes solely a single mission (I wasn't matched to any opposition, so it seemed terribly easy, whether or not this is intended is questionable). Then, you choose which world you want to be in. I was thrown into the first one myself. I'm not sure why you can't switch worlds, as now I can't play with anyone who happens to be in the second world. In any case, then I was dropped into the gameplay area with my fancy recruit clothing. I quickly pledged my allegiance to some NPC (why this is important, I'll probably never discover) and bought some clothes so I didn't look fresh off the boat, but I couldn't, for the life of me, figure out how to put them on! I checked the website's FAQ, which resulted in being cut off by some cryptic database error. I asked everyone I could, but nobody would tell me how. I eventually figured out that there were these weird terminals where you could BUY clothes, but considering I had so little money and everything was prohibitively overpriced, I was stuck with the clothes I got off the NPC. I then, after about half an hour of searching around, found a hidden store area with only 1 other person in it where you could change your clothes and character. If you don't want to waste over half an hour figuring out things that should come naturally to any experienced gamer, look elsewhere. The other big issue is the matchmaking. I haven't played APB for a few weeks, and just today they released a patch claiming to help fix it, but the general consensus remains to be "it sucks." You are RARELY matched with anyone remotely your skill. I'm not sure how they managed to screw this up. but you always end up being grossly overpowered by one person (or, worse, teamed up on by 5 or more). If you're not part of a clan, don't bet on scoring good group members with the in-game grouping system. Most of the time my group members were off driving into each other and stealing cars for no reason. Also, the tasking is not optimized at all. On many occasions you end up accepting a task where you're on the opposite edge of the city, and by the time you reach the objective, the opponent has already completed it and moved onto the next one, resulting in a never-ending goose chase that ultimately results in a failure. As for the shooting aspect, it's just a generally bad idea. It's difficult to aim and the starter gun is absolutely horrible. In the end, size really DOES matter when it comes to gunfights. If you use the basic gun, you are guaranteed to lose, no matter what. The driving, while I found it tolerable, is pretty quirky and difficult to learn. Don't expect Need-For-Speed-style driving physics. Just put it this way: it's like GTA, but worse. The graphics are nothing to write home about; I didn't see anything special myself. I've got a comparatively great computer, but the graphics seem simplistic. GTA4's graphics are definitely better and more refined. I was horrified to see the lightbar in action... come on RTW, that's kid stuff, just switching between red and blue. More effort is definitely required there. In any case, I'm generally disappointed with APB as a whole, and while I would still like to see some kind of clone based off of this general idea, I'm hoping I'd be impressed enough to actually pay for it instead of this underdone junk. I honestly think Second Life has more to offer than this, and it's much, much less expensive (read: free). Full Review »
  2. ChrisB
    Jul 1, 2010
    Maybe it was lad, maybe it was launch week load... maybe I just suddenly suck... but all I did was die, helpless to even hit my enemies. The Maybe it was lad, maybe it was launch week load... maybe I just suddenly suck... but all I did was die, helpless to even hit my enemies. The graphics were surprisingly sub-par given how nice it looked in screen shots, but I didn't see many options to turn up... I really want to like this game. The ideas are fantastic, action based, no levels, 1/3 of the gameplay area devoted to social interaction... but so far it just falls flat. I'll try again in a month and see if it was just the pains of launch. Full Review »
  3. Apr 9, 2011
    The Customization in APB is some of the deepest I've seen rivaling games like Oblivion. The Driving with sirens and random mayhem also makeThe Customization in APB is some of the deepest I've seen rivaling games like Oblivion. The Driving with sirens and random mayhem also make for great fun. 2/3 of the game are spot on and keep me playing time and time again. The downside? Cheaters and more so the Combat system. The weapons in APB are horrible and make me believe that regardless of their hand in GTA, RTW had no business making anytype of shooter. The pistols function as .50 cal sniper rifles with awkward firing rates, the assault rifles are horribly inaccurate also with awkward rates of fire, and so on. Basically ranges, rates of fire, and accuracy degradation are all f*cked up. Also there is no system of FPSesque aiming that you would see in most 3rd person shooters. No sniper scopes, red dots, acogs etc, just the same crappy zoom for everything.

    The Game has great potential but the weapons mechanics need an overhaul and the hackers need to be dealt with.
    Full Review »