|This article is about the new heister and former replacement of Hoxton. For the returning character, see Hoxton.|
|Role||Ghost & Rogue|
|Affiliation(s)||The Payday Gang|
|Also known as||Hoxton (temporarily)|
|Appearance(s)|| PAYDAY: The Web Series|
|Portrayed by||Derek Ray|
|Voiced by||Derek Ray|
FBI Files: We believe that this gangmember(sic) was using the alias of “Hoxton” until the break-out of James Hoxworth. Since then, according to security footage, he has adopted the alias “Houston”. He was present at the break-out of “Hoxton” and that, and subsequently acquired security footage, seems to hint at a level of animosity between the two men.
Observations of “Houston” indicate that he may favor fulfilling the Ghost role. This could indicate training in infiltration and espionage, and may provide further leads to his identity.
- "C-c-can you speak a little louder? Sounded like you were... buying me dinner."
- —Houston answering a pager.
Houston (originally called Hoxton) is a playable character in PAYDAY 2. He is a 31-year-old American, and up until the release of Hoxton Breakout, Houston had taken on the mantle of Hoxton, assuming his alias and mask. After the release of the Hoxton Breakout heist, the name reverted back to the original Hoxton, while the mask remained in Houston's hands.
Houston could never hold a job even if his life would depend on it. His life style turned him to a life of cons and burglary. His debts grew, as did his collection of enemies from years of being a swindler. He needed to gather larger and larger sums of money to keep the loan sharks at bay. He committed his first major felony at the age of 24 and the stakes have only increased since.
Before the breakout of the former crew member, Houston bore the alias of Hoxton. The name "Houston" was "invented" by the fugitive on the spot to "get his name back" and to solve the "fucking problem" on their hands.
Behind The ScenesEdit
Originally, Houston was created as a complete replacement for Hoxton, as Pete Gold wasn't able to reprise his role at the time of PAYDAY 2's production due to scheduling conflicts. Derek Ray was cast as Hoxton in the PAYDAY Web Series before portraying the character in-game as well.
Due to the overwhelming demands from the PAYDAY Community to bring the old heister back, Overkill Software has published the backstory of Hoxton's arrest that leads up to the release of the Hoxton Breakout heist and re-introduction of the former Hoxton. Pete Gold has also returned to provide the voice of his original character and the new name, Houston, was given to the new character as to avoid confusions.
- Based on his character descriptions and quotes, Houston seems to have some level of dislike towards large crowds of civilians (dominating) or having to talk with people he's unfamiliar with (pagers), and is easy to frustrate when things don't go according to plan or if he's caught outside of his element (broken drill, special units appearing, etc...). On top of that, his character is noted to be highly obsessed with efficiency, following strict personal routines and good maintenance, most of which are indicative traits of a mildly autistic individual.
- According to Bain, Houston takes heisting very seriously; he prefers to drink root beer to keep his focus sharp and can say when three minutes has passed on the second without looking at his watch.
- Houston is somewhat of a control freak, cleaning his guns constantly to reduce the risk of them jamming, not wanting to leave anything to chance.
- Although Houston takes very good care of his guns, he appears to be forgetful when it comes to packing ammo, as he always either runs critically low on ammo, or out completely in every live-action short that features him in combat.
- Houston is in charge of maintaining the crew's escape van following the introduction of the new Safe House, hinting at some experiences as a mechanic or at least a reasonable amount of knowledge on automobiles. True to this, he voices a great amount of pride in his handiwork when spoken to in the garage, even going so far as to claim that no one could have put the escape van together better than he can.
- Houston is annoyed at Rust for stealing his tools from time to time to work on the older heister's motorbike ("Hey that grumpy old biker fuck took my wrench. He'd better stop taking my stuff or we'll have a problem.")
- Before the release of Hoxton Breakout, Houston's alias and mask were both that of Hoxton. Houston retains Hoxton's original mask as his own, though the alias was returned to the original Hoxton.
- As such, Houston retains the internal name "american" Hoxton had during development of PAYDAY: The Heist.
- Because the return of the former Hoxton was not yet planned during the Web Series's (and by extension, PAYDAY 2's) production, Houston was temporarily given the mantle before eventually gaining his own alias.
- The nickname "Houston" can be heard used by the other crew members even before Hoxton fashioned it for his replacement (he may never even mention it at all during the first day, due to random dialogue). Chains can be heard calling out for Houston before the heist starts even if neither of them are present in the current crew.
- In the Breakout trailer Houston is referred to as such by Wolf, before the new name was canonically given.
- Houston's name is a reference to Houston, Texas; it is a parallel to Dallas's name. The city of Houston is considered a "sibling" city to Dallas, Texas, which fits the relationship of the eponymous characters quite well.
- The name also doubled as a sly jab from Hoxton, referencing the colliqualism "Houston, we have a problem," referencing their shared animosity.
- Houston seems to have a certain level of attachment to his mask when he was filling in for Hoxton. When the freshly-broken out Hoxton voiced the need for a mask, the group all turned towards Houston, who showed sadness at the prospect of giving it up.
- Houston is the younger brother of Dallas.
- His last name is presumably Steele, after the name Nathan Steele used by his brother. It cannot be confirmed, however, as Nathan Steele is possibly just an alias used by Dallas in public.
- Houston is the driver of the armored truck in the Breakout trailer. This role is replaced by Twitch in the real heist.
- Houston is seen wielding an FN SCAR-L in the same trailer, though given the weaponry seen in the live-action videos of PAYDAY 2 differs wildly from the in-game roster, this is not unusual. That being said, he is the only one (sans Hoxton) not to wield an in-game weapon, as Dallas carries a Bernetti 9, a Crosskill and an Uzi (actually a Mini-Uzi, neither of the in-game variants) while briefly using two rifles similar to the CAR-4 during the car chase, Chains packs a KSP and Wolf uses what seems to be a modified GSPS 12G.
- In the first webisode, it is shown that Houston has an Apple iPhone that he uses to run a countdown until the law enforcers' arrival/assault phase.
- Despite having the role of Ghost, Houston will often exclaim "Shit!" and "Look!" very loudly when marking guards and cameras during stealth, as opposed to quietly pointing one out like the rest of the crew.
- Houston is seen cocking a silenced Bernetti 9 in his Skills menu portrait.
- If Houston attempts to revive a player as an AI-controlled character, he will sometimes comment: "I think I saw you in the Walking Dead", referencing the popular comic & television series.
- Hoxton is apparently on bad terms with his former replacement, as he, when calling out to Houston, will refer to him using various insults such as calling him "Dickhead," "Kiss my Ass," and "Shit for brains" among other names. This is probably personal disdain for "replacing" him in the first place. However, Hoxton does state that "[Houston]'s not completely useless."
- Houston appears to not be as vocal in his dislike of Hoxton, though he does callously refer to him as a "Fucking twat." Under his breath, after they escape from the carpark.
- Conversely, as of Update 97, Houston now has lines that insult Hoxton directly, such as "Teabag" and the other expletives that Hoxton uses, like "Dickhead".
- In the Safe House, playing as Hoxton and interacting with Houston will make the latter respond with scathing insults, such as Houston making jabs at Hoxton possibly getting arrested again "like an amateur".
- Houston is the only character with two Crime.Net Database descriptions.
- He uses sometimes the same lines as Dallas when completing a Heist.
- One of Houston's civilian intimidation lines ("Don't act dumb!") has grown to be a popular joke among PAYDAY 2's playerbase, so much so that it even has an official game soundtrack in which it serves as the primary remix material. The song consists of Houston saying "Don't act dumb!" (or through his distinctive accent, "Don ac dum!") over and over again in various remixed beats. Chains, Clover, and Hoxton also have a few lines in the song.