Friday, May 18, 2012

S&S Review: Max Payne 3


Title: Max Payne 3
Format: PS3, Xbox 360
Release Date: May 15, 2012
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Developer: Rockstar Studios
Price: $59.99
ESRB Rating: M


Rockstar Studios is renowned for their huge game releases that continue to raise the bar higher than any other on the market.  With games including Red Dead Redemption, Grand Theft Auto, and subsequently the Max Payne series.  The third game of the Max Payne franchise looks to become their best yet.





Presentation and Story:
I love the Max Payne story, while I never played the first two titles, the game's gritty and dark narrative completely entranced me from the beginning.  Max leaves his already troubled New York life for a even darker trip to Sao Paulo.  He continues his life of binge drinking and excessive pill popping and takes up a private security gig offered by your typical wealthy businessman Rodrigo Branco.  As you might have guessed, things don't go as planned, Rodrigo's hot wife gets kidnapped during Max's watch.  It unravels into a great adventure, that couples excellent storytelling with stellar voice work.  Fans of the series will come to appreciate the returning work from James McCaffrey, the original Max.  The game is gorgeous, although it doesn't break all kinds of barriers, the sheer amount of detail that went into the Sao Paulo locales is mind-boggling.  The great musical score evokes a lot of emotion, it compliments the overall dark vibe the game gives off.  The cool cinematic effects also make the narrative more engaging, making it the best Rockstar has offered us so far.
Core Gameplay and Multiplayer:
At its core, Max Payne 3 is a third person shooter.  The staple of the series has always been the bullet time feature.  Some may say that the originals were the first to implement this cool trick, and it appears to be more refined than other games as well.  There are a lot of weapons to choose from in the game, the ability to dual wield is always welcomed in my book.  Max's signature moves, Shoot Dodge and Bullet Time are easily learned if you've never played the first games.  Firefights can be hectic at times, making it necessary to execute these moves.  Sometimes this can be a problem, as Max will sometimes make awkward movements when coming out of Bullet Time, exposing him to agressive A.I. and gunfire.  Its nice that they added the gruesome killcam, its very satisfying capping off a long firefight with a slow mo shot to the groin.  The multiplayer is surprisingly fun, seeing how skeptical I was going in.  Gang Wars is the mode you'll be spending the most time in, it combines a little narrative mixed into unforgiving gunfights.  Its objective based with defusing bombs and assassinating an enemy leader, your typical mechanics.  You'll gain more loadouts as you play more, it can be a grind with the slow progression.  Bullet Time actually works, it can't being overused, making balancing issues nonexistent.
Final Thoughts:
Max Payne 3 is another fine game coming from the awesome folks at Rockstar, they continue to push the envelope when it comes to gameplay and storytelling.  The gritty storytelling and polished gameplay make this a worthy contender for game of the year.




Final Rating: 9.25/10

4 comments:

  1. Anonymous5/18/2012

    you know the multiplayer is actually fun

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous5/18/2012

    I'm still going to wait on this game.

    ReplyDelete

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