Podcast vs Player News

Max Payne 3 (Ps3) Review


Max Payne (as you may guess from his name) has suffered a lot, and it's been nine years since the last game in the series. Max has remained deeply traumatised by the death of his wife and child, and for a man who's addicted to painkillers, drinking his weight in alcohol; trauma is not a good mix, for he chooses to relive the past, with only his ghosts and demons as companions.



Thankfully, gameplay wise, Max Payne 3 is a new jungle compared to its two successors. The dirty rundown tenements and murky bloodstained sidewalks of New York have been replaced by upbeat glamorous nightclubs and the cold empty snow is now replaced by baking the heat of São Paulo. Max is working private security for wealthy businessman Rodrigo Branco, and as you can imagine, things don't go so smoothly. Rodrigo’s trophy wife, Fabiana, gets kidnapped on Max’s watch, which starts a chain of events that draws Max into a much larger, more sinister story.


Cinematic effects such as scan lines, chromatic aberration and shifting film stock claw at you through the screen, and whilst some may deem this as "too much, or too noisy", I quite liked the effects, as it garnered your attention in a kind of new-wave graphic novel, feeding Max's characterisation, emphasising his jaded disconnection from the world around him. And it works.

James McCaffrey, who voices Max, does a stella job, making Max the gnarled and bitter man he should be. Whilst playing as Max, who delivers calloused cynicism through out, you're never sure if he's genuinely trying to save his employers wife, or simply trying to generate his own destruction.

Max Payne wouldn't be the same without Bullet Time, and it's here in spades. Whilst many games now offer bullet time (slow-mo), none do it as well as Max Payne. Diving, shooting all with up-most control, and now including a new "last man standing" gimmick, which gives Max one last chance when he's pretty much dead, to take out an attacker, giving him a little health back. It works well, and gives you a little breathing room to plan your next attack.


The game’s fully-destructible environments really intensify firefights – seeing the air around you slowly woven with spiralling bullets, fractured glass, and plumes of shredded paper is genuinely thrilling, and once you realise you can use this to your advantage, you can strategically plan an assault. For example, hiding in a garage, there's a car up on a ramp, enemies underneath, whilst further across there's a flammable barrel behind some enemies, all whilst more flank you from the other side. A possible solution? Bullet-time > shoot the lever on the ramp to crush the enemies under the car > turn, shoot barrel, blowing enemies up > dive and shoot to take out the remaining attackers. Max doesn't magically regain health, so those of you who want to hide behind a concrete pillar waiting for your health to come back, you're in for a shock. Your health will stay low - and the pillar will collapse. It's a great feeling, knowing that every bullet counts, enemies will flank you out, and you're never safe; it makes you desperate.
Although you’ll kill hundreds of people in Max Payne 3, the game’s kill camera tracks the final bullet from Max’s gun to its intended target; and whilst it's one of the game’s many visual flourishes, it shows that life for Max is still an ugly business.

Max Payne 3 is violent. Very violent, with ragged bullet wounds, charred flesh and dismembered limbs, it's very visceral in its manifestations. But where Max Panyne 3 differs from other violent games, is that it shows the dirty underbelly of disparity between rich and poor, and how every person can turn to desperation, no matter where they are.


For some, comparisons to Uncharted are a no brainer. A third-person action/adventure title with a thrilling story and gorgeous visuals sounds spot on, and the games action set-pieces do nothing but add more similarity to Nathan Drake's adventures. But unfortunately, whilst Max Paynes sequences are terrific, they're not as good as Uncharted's. In Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, Sully and Drake must escape from a French château before it burns to the ground, and it's exciting and adrenaline-inducing all whilst looking sublime. But where it falls is that it doesn't offer up anything to the narrative, it kind of just happens then it's over. Whereas in Max Payne 3, a building is set on fire and Max must escape before he is incinerated, and whilst it isn't as "exciting" as Uncharted 3's sequence, it is of far greater significance, and is an integral part of the story. That, and it really looks fantastic.

Multiplayer wise, it's well, surprising. It's brilliant, giving players a sense of freedom absent from the single-player campaign. With a range of modes, bursts (perks), as well as the exceptional Gang Wars, a mode that weaves a narrative into the gameplay; it's something fresh and exciting, and feels different to what would normally be a player-determined experience. Max Payne's multiplayer will keep people happy for a long time after they've finished the single-player campaign.

Overall

Max Payne 3 is simple yet satisfying, bringing a strong story, superb voice acting and gorgeous visuals. Although a Rockstar game, you aren't at liberty to explore like in GTA or Red Dead Redemption, this may seem constricted, but it doesn't ruin the game at all. Max Payne 3 deserves your time, and you'll be rewarded in abundance.



Published by: Rockstar Games
Developed by: Rockstar Studios
Genre: Shooter, Action, Adventure
US: May 15, 2012
UK: May 18, 2012
Rating: Mature
Also Available On: Xbox 360PC

No comments:

Post a Comment

PodcastvsPlayer.com website designed by Callum Povey in assotiation with Templateism.com Copyright © 2014

Powered by Blogger.
Published By Gooyaabi Templates