“It was Monday afternoon and I’d already been thrown out of a party, been to a strip club and got into a bar fight. This latest mid-life crisis was certainly ticking all the boxes.”
Max Payne is back and this is without a doubt his grittiest and most action-packed venture to date. For the first time, development is led by Rockstar Vancouver and not Remedy Entertainment. Rockstar has kept the game true to its roots for all the fans out there while incorporating their own unique style and spin on this violent series. The story for Max Payne 3 is executed quite brilliantly due to to The lead writer being Dan Houser, who was also the writer of Red Dead Redemption. The cinematic approach throughout the game along with the outstanding narrative really keeps the story alive and kicking from start to finish. The story is dark but so is the lead character and it enables gamers to really get a feel for who Max Payne is. According to Rockstar’s Sam Houser, it was their intention on starting a new chapter of Max Payne’s life with the game. “This is Max as we’ve never seen him before, a few years older, more world-weary and cynical than ever.”
It has been 9 long years since the last story ended and the pain and suffering Max has continued to endure is visible in his character from the start. Pills and liquor are still two of his best friends. While you’ll spend a short venture in NY the game is based in much more tropical environments such as Sao Pablo, which is a refreshing new look for the series. Max is working in the private security sector for a wealthy local family. He serves as executive protection for the wealthy Rodrigo Branco in the hopes of escaping the memories of his troubled past. When a street gang kidnaps Rodrigo’s wife, Max is pulled into a conspiracy of shadowy, warring factions threading every aspect of São Paulo society in a deadly web that threatens to engulf everyone and everything around him.
Graphics and Game Mechanics
Graphically the game looks fantastic. As mentioned earlier, the cinematic effects thrown in along side the narration are perfectly executed. It’s unlike any other game in the series yet still is true to the core mechanics and story that fans love. Rockstar thankfully brought back bullet-time in action sequences, which the franchise is notable for. In bullet-time it is possible to see every bullet make a hole in your foes. There is a “Last Man Standing” mechanic, which gives Max a reprieve from death for a small period if he has one painkiller on him. If the player is able to kill the enemy that delivered the wounding shot, he’ll recover enough energy to soldier on and finish what he started. Max is also able to stay grounded after a dive, which enables him to shoot 360 degrees around. Rockstar has blended physics and animation, so that when Max dives around, he does so appropriately according to his surroundings. Through advanced use of the Euphoria dynamic animation engine, shooting and killing enemies in Max Payne 3 looks noticeably more realistic then in previous games. Another new feature is cinematic action movements, interactive cut-scenes which transition seamlessly into continuing gameplay.
Multiplayer and Arcade modes
Online multiplayer features maps and modes that dynamically change within a match, as well as reward, ranking and clan systems. This make for some very exciting matches that will keep gamers coming back for more. Players can form private crews with friends, or join public crews. They can also be a member of up to five at the same time, and completing tasks as a crew will gain XP points for the player. Among the crew features promised are persistent Feuds, that see the player scrapping with opposing gangs who’ve killed someone on the team. Social Club integration connect play across multiple titles, starting with Max Payne 3 and Grand Theft Auto V. By playing both games multiplayer “crews” that the player set up in one will be carried over to the other.
The Arcade Modes bring intense bonus shootout challenges to the single-player game experience – featuring “Score Attack” and the return of the classic “New York Minute” mode from the first two Max Payne games in explosive form. In addition to the trill of besting your own top scores (and the scores of all your Friends and Crew members at the new Social Club), high scores also reward you exclusive multiplayer avatars and XP benefits.
So after you’ve earned a Platinum ranking for your historic Score Attack and New York Minute runs from level to level, you will not only earn a boat load of XP, but also unlock coveted character avatars for Multiplayer Deathmatch like Fabiana Branco, Passos and more.
- Score Attack - After you’ve completed any single-player level, you’ll be able to replay it in Score Attack mode, where you gun for the highest score possible – acquiring points for each shot that hits its mark and each adversary you vanquish.
- New York Minute - This fan-favorite bonus mode from Max Payne and Max Payne 2 returns as a frantic battle that puts one minute on the clock and awards you with additional time for each enemy that you kill.
I feel Sam Houser, founder of Rockstar Games, sums up this game best. “Max Payne 3 brings powerful storytelling back to the action-shooter genre. Rockstar Studios are delivering a game that’s both incredibly cinematic and very, very intense to play.” Max Payne 3 is a visceral violent cinematic experience and could be Rockstar’s finest work to date. Whether you are a hardcore fan of the series or a newcomer, don’t miss out on this action packed ride.
Review Rating: 9.5/10