That’s MISTER Payne to you
The Pitch: The hardest boiled man in video games returns for an adventure that takes him out of his element but still has him wading through the same old shit. Max is older, wiser and needs a drink worse than ever but if we need a man to protect our bimbo or back us up in a gunfight, Max is still our first choice.
What It Really Is: Max Payne 3 is easily the most ambitious entry into the series. It innovates on almost every level without ever relinquishing the signature gameplay and attitude that define Max as a character and a franchise. Set largely in Brazil but with a few interludes backdropped by the Manhattan skyline, Max’s story unfolds in flashbacks and flashforwards that mix comic book paneling with the best-looking graphics we’ve ever seen from Rockstar. Dub in Max’s chuckle-inducing monologue and a touch of the slightly-disturbing alcohol shakes and Max Payne 3 would be just as entertaining, but it’s the improvements to the gameplay that make it great. Bullettime and dual-wielding mean Max is deadlier than ever, each bullettime leap becomes a slo-mo minigame of “kill everyone before you hit the floor.” Character animations are smooth as silk thanks to hundreds of hours of mo-cap as Max twists and turns in the air and on the floor like a deadly b-boy. Max 3 also boasts the final Kill Cam which gives the player control of a cinematic slo-mo killshot for the last enemy in each area, adding the super slick style everyone expects of a company like Rockstar and a badass like Max.
Maxim.com Ready-Made Press Blurb: “Max Payne looks so good that we’d turn down a blindfold if he was executing us.” -Maxim.com
Fun Fact: Though initially reported to not be returning, James McCaffrey, the original voice of Max, isn’t just reprising his voice acting for Max 3 but actually embodied Max for all the motion capture in the game. “But we love Mark Wahlberg as Max Payne” said no one at all.
Extras: Beyond the new online multiplayer, Rockstar will be releasing seven DLC packs throughout the year. You can buy them individually or pre-purchase them at a discount with the Rockstar Pass.
Who’s It For: Alcoholic gunslingers looking for a role model will undoubtedly find one in Max. The rest of us will have to settle for the chaos and story that only Max Payne can deliver.