Payday 2 is out on a range of platforms this week and if you’re new to Overkill’s addictive co-op shooter, we’ve got a handy guide just for you to make your first days as a professional bank robber a bit easier with 5 super useful tips.

1). Teamwork is key!

The #1 rule for Payday (and most games for that matter) which you should keep in the back of your mind throughout your time playing it; teamwork, it’s the only way to succeed on the harder missions which have the major pay outs.

If you try to do everything on your own, you’ll face nothing but problems as you try to battle your way across the map. It’s best to set up in two pairs as that way, your buddy can cover your back and revive you if necessary (and of course, that goes both ways). If you both happen to carry a different piece of equipment such as ammo and medical bags, you’ll be able to hold of the brutally difficult waves of police.

2). Check your surroundings!

Before you kick off any mission (after loading in), be sure to explore every area of the map before putting your mask on. This’ll make the mission run a lot smoother as you’ll know exactly where all the areas of importance are such as where the largest safes are located and where the best place to stand-off against the waves of cops, locating all the cameras and shooting them once the mission kicks off is also a great help, making it more difficult for cops to locate and flank you.

As soon as you kick of a heist, start taking as many hostages as possible and it wouldn’t help to bring extra cable ties to bag a few more. The hostages are useful in a variety of ways the most notable being the ability to trade in the hostages for your crew members if they happened to get arrested.

3). The safe house

If you’re new to the wonderful world of Payday; take a wander over to your super-secret safe house and try out the range of different activities available as it’ll prepare you for what’s ahead.

After tipping the statue a few bucks to gain access, you’ll be able to test your fire arms, see any masks you’ll created, learn how to crack safes with drills and C4 as well as discovering how to break open the range of different doors you’ll run into on your journey.

4). Pick a class and stick to it!

When you load up Payday 2 for the first time you’ll notice there are four different classes to pick from; Mastermind which revolves around controlling tense situations, Enforcer is the brute of the group, Technician is a fan of explosions and finally the Ghost class will make being stealthy much easier.

Once you’ve picked the class you find to suit you best, stick with it as the final stages of the skill tree unlock extremely useful abilities. Eventually, you’ll be able to move into other classes but that won’t be for a while.

5). Load out!

Before you start any mission, read the mission description and what you’re meant to accomplish as different missions will be made significantly easier with certain items; some heists are made easier with suppressed weapons while others are extremely difficult without heavy ballistic vests. Cash is fairly limited at the start as the earlier missions have a fairly poor pay out so you’ll need to be smart with what you buy, so it’s best to stick with the original weapons until you figure out what fits your play style best.

If you’re playing with friends, it’s best to set up each of your classes differently, that way you’re ready for any situation that the heist may spring on you; carrying a range of different ammo and medical bags, C4 for quick safe-busting and trip mines to cover your flank will make any mission a breeze.