What is this game? Struggling to make progress.

#1 Posted by Asmo917 (389 posts) -

I've watched the quick look a few times, and I've played though the first two sections shown in that video and to the scene in the stadium tower, but I cannot figure out if I'm progressing in spite of myself? I tried playing cautiously, using cover and bullettime and got worked. I tried using cover less and using bullet time and shootdodge even more, and got worked. I'm almost always out of ammo, but it seems like every dude takes 7 or 8 shots to go down. I even gave in and knocked it down to easy, but it doesn't feel like anything has changed. How is everyone else playing it? I want to see what Rockstar has done with the story and don't want to write it off yet, but I'm too old to get too frustrated by games for too long.

#2 Posted by Winternet (8002 posts) -

It's a third-person shooter.

#3 Posted by ShaggE (6295 posts) -

Sounds like you're not going for headshots. Headshots are absolutely vital in this game.

#4 Posted by Korosuzo (170 posts) -

@ShaggE said:

Sounds like you're not going for headshots. Headshots are absolutely vital in this game.

And headshots are even more vital in that stadium section (Chapter 3) b/c every enemy has body armor.

#5 Posted by AmatureIdiot (1062 posts) -

Don't worry about ammo too much, after dieing in a section a few times the game will refil your ammo.

#6 Posted by Milkman (16484 posts) -

I'm sure a lot of people here will act like they're the best at games and Max Payne 3 is really easy but in reality, it can be extremely difficult and frustrating at times. I would say it's worth powering through but there are going to be times when you want to throw your controller through the TV. 

#7 Posted by cstrang (2381 posts) -

I had trouble with this part too (playing on Hard first time through). I think I ended up using blindfire with automatic weapons a lot, then a lot of peppering with handguns. Honestly, I think dual weapons in this game is a waste.

#8 Edited by MEATBALL (3020 posts) -

It took me about halfway-to-two thirds of the way through the game before I really came to grips with its balance between cover, bullet-time and shoot-dodging. Make sure you go for headshots, and I've found it's best to keep moving for the most part - never stay in cover for very long, shootdodge is unlimited so make sure you take advantage of that. Look for opportunities where shoot-dodging may make it easier to get headshots. It's probably something you need to find a feel for more than anything, I guess. For those moments when you're out of ammo double-tapping A to roll can be a life-saver as you scurry about for more ammo or close in on an enemy for a disarm.

Stick with it, it's really quite rewarding once you get the hang of it. Have you been using soft-lock or free aim? I've actually found that soft-lock can be something of a hindrance, though it worked okay as a sort of training wheels at first.

#9 Edited by DharmaBum (1038 posts) -

When you're up against multiple dudes, try to shootdodge in a direction that gives you a good line of sight on everyone while you're in mid-air. The slowed down speed should be enough to line up a few headshots, which will in turn help you conserve ammo. I think at one point during the stadium level I just said fuck it and dodged from the top of the bleachers all the way down, which was plenty of airtime to kill everyone and pop a painkiller on impact.

If you're pinned down in cover, try dodging directly backwards so that when you land, the same piece of cover you just leapt from still cuts off their angle of fire. This is the type of game that teaches you to think about every move and treat each hit you take as a mistake made; something I truly love about it.

#10 Edited by BBQBram (2199 posts) -

@Lebensbaum said:

This is the type of game that teaches you to think about every move and treat each hit you take as a mistake made; something I truly love about it.

This exactly. You can't play it like Gears because you'll get flanked, you can't play it like the old Max Paynes because you'll get dead. Rockstar actually made a third-person shooter with a dynamic gameplay flow that isn't just a bullet point on a box. Seems like most of the complaints about this game being too hard stem from people running around frantically, dying all over the place; while the complaints of genericism and boredom seem to come from folks headshotting everyone from cover in Bullet Time.

Love this game.

#11 Posted by Doctorchimp (4067 posts) -

@Asmo917 said:

I've watched the quick look a few times, and I've played though the first two sections shown in that video and to the scene in the stadium tower, but I cannot figure out if I'm progressing in spite of myself? I tried playing cautiously, using cover and bullettime and got worked. I tried using cover less and using bullet time and shootdodge even more, and got worked. I'm almost always out of ammo, but it seems like every dude takes 7 or 8 shots to go down. I even gave in and knocked it down to easy, but it doesn't feel like anything has changed. How is everyone else playing it? I want to see what Rockstar has done with the story and don't want to write it off yet, but I'm too old to get too frustrated by games for too long.

Are you on one of those auto locks?

There's no reason to be using those and really no reason why they put those in the game to begin with. That shit is detrimental to the game and you. Use the right stick to put the dot on someone's head and pull the trigger while you're in slow-mo.

If you use those auto-aim modes you'll end up just locking up on any random chap and start shooting blindly at their torso. That's definitely not the way to play.

#12 Posted by Eaxis (898 posts) -

I have been using free aim all the time and I have been jumping around old school taking people out one bullet in the head at a time on normal. Pro tip is that their armor actually protects them. Use free aim, and turn up the aim speed. Awesome to take out 4-5 guys in one jump.

#13 Posted by alibson (165 posts) -

Mouse acceleration is killing me, literally. It's impossible to aim. I swing my mouse for a headshot and every time the crosshair ends up on a wall somewhere. Fucking bullshit.

#14 Posted by JamesKond (232 posts) -

This game felt very hard, but then I started using cover+bullettime+headshots with an handgun.

#15 Posted by Asmo917 (389 posts) -

Thanks for the advice, everyone. Read the responses last night and decided not to go back at it half-cut. Fired it up today, and finished Chapter 3 and 4 a lot easier than I did 2 and the first half of 3. You're dead on about headshots and liberal, strategic use of cover and bullet time.shootdodge. I haven't changed from soft-lock to free aim yet, but will keep that in mind if I hit another wall. And I was right, this really is a story I want to experience.

Thanks again, everyone.

#16 Posted by Schmollian (259 posts) -

I mostly spent my time popping a dude very quickly from behind cover to fill my bullet time meter, then I would break cover while activating bullet time and (without LT aiming!) would get as many head shots as I could before I would have to get back into cover. It seemed to work great most of the time. I would shoot dodge whenever I felt like being a bad ass.

I fell into that groove about half way through the game. And it wasn't always a fool proof plan. I still died a hell of a lot. Seemed like I would get through the harder parts when I knew where the baddies would be, so a little bit of trial and error was involved. Whenever I died I always knew it was my fault. I never felt cheated by the game.

Great game though! I am on my second playthrough now.

#17 Posted by Deranged (1837 posts) -

@Milkman said:

I'm sure a lot of people here will act like they're the best at games and Max Payne 3 is really easy but in reality, it can be extremely difficult and frustrating at times. I would say it's worth powering through but there are going to be times when you want to throw your controller through the TV.

It's kind of sad how this reflects gamers these days. Everyone is used to these "breeze through" shooters and start crying when a game throws a little difficulty at them.

#18 Posted by Maajin (1052 posts) -

@Korosuzo said:

@ShaggE said:

Sounds like you're not going for headshots. Headshots are absolutely vital in this game.

And headshots are even more vital in that stadium section (Chapter 3) b/c every enemy has body armor.

You mean headshots are lethal in this game, right guys? Right? Hah!

#19 Posted by Schmollian (259 posts) -

@mcderby4: So true. I remember Max Payne 2 being quite the bitch to get through sometimes. Gamers these days NEED a good challenge one in a while.

#20 Posted by kishinfoulux (2250 posts) -

@Eaxis said:

I have been using free aim all the time and I have been jumping around old school taking people out one bullet in the head at a time on normal. Pro tip is that their armor actually protects them. Use free aim, and turn up the aim speed. Awesome to take out 4-5 guys in one jump.

Where is that setting on the PC version, while using a gamepad? I feel like the cursor is a bit too slow for my liking, but didn't see a setting anywhere for it.

#21 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

This game definitely requires a lot play time to really understand and be comfortable with the shooting mechanics. My first time through I was using Hard Lock on Easy, and I thought it was alright, but a bit of a breeze, except in a few spots. I then turned to classic Payne with Free Aim and the Normal difficulty, and I felt like I was having way more fun with the game, as there was more nuisance in how I was aiming and shooting. Not only that, but I became comfortable with how the game plays, so I was able to run from cover, pick up a two-handed weapon, quickly switch to my left sidearm mid-roll, dive and take a guy or two out. It requires a lot of thinking to really feel the mechanics. They didn't feel right at all during my first playthrough, but I began to understand it better on the second one.

#22 Posted by supermonkey122 (809 posts) -

I play medium difficulty with hard lock. Works well for me

#23 Posted by Deranged (1837 posts) -

@Schmollian said:

@mcderby4: So true. I remember Max Payne 2 being quite the bitch to get through sometimes. Gamers these days NEED a good challenge one in a while.

Games are far too easy these days. They sacrifice a good challenge for extra flair and graphics. I prefer the former.

#24 Edited by bybeach (4703 posts) -

A lot of good advice here. The combat is coming together for me. I'm using soft lock and am able to get head shots pretty well. What I find about the aiming is that, the same for free aim or soft, the reticule looks off from the muzzle. So I have been learning what looks to be a little bit of an offset and adjusting. I'm going to try free aim again, I see little difference. I do really like some of Max's moves, but that shoot dodge is a bit of a pain sometimes, I trigger it for some reason, as well as on purpose.. I have been practicing my own vault and roll (E and G) for evasion.

Brutal game, but I have taken to it, hook line and sinker. The effects annoy me at times, wish I could turn them off, that 3d w/out glasses bit and the block letters. I think they did the characters more than well enough with decent animation to rely on without all that. I get the point. Max should not drink so much. And lighten up..such an unhappy Max...

#25 Posted by StealthRaptor (526 posts) -

If you are having problems with enemies who are wearing body armor and helmets, rather than shooting the helmets off just aim for the genital triangle. They aren't protected there and you can drop them reasonably quickly.

-This tip has been brought to you by The Wire

#26 Posted by xaLieNxGrEyx (2605 posts) -

Health doesn't regen.

Panic.

#27 Posted by willyleeks (12 posts) -

It's definitely all about the free aim.

One piece of advice I'd give (and I think someone mentioned it further up this thread) is that bigger guns are not always better. I certainly had moments where a single handgun and a few well-placed headshots lead to a lot more progress than using an automatic rifle with a laser sight.

On that note, is it just me or does the laser sight make it really hard to aim? I found the recoil made it so tough to see where I was aiming with it - perhaps realistic but I was actively avoiding laser sight weapons by the last couple of chapters.

#28 Posted by Korolev (1694 posts) -

You have to get head-shots. There's just no other way in some cases to get past a section. That's what the bullet time is for. Stay in cover, activate bullet time, duck out, shoot an enemy in the head, immediately go back in cover, end bullet time, wait, then repeat until all are dead. The game also likes putting max in areas where if you stay you'll die. Sometimes it's wise to retreat a little, back away as far as possible from an enemy.

I managed to get through the stadium level on normal, dying about 4 times in total.

#29 Edited by ds8k (412 posts) -

Played Hard on PC and had zero issues with aiming or progression. Something like 95% of my kills are headshots.

Oh, I almost never used cover either. I played this game like a true Max Payne game.

#30 Posted by onarum (1994 posts) -

Yeah I'm playing it on hard and it's effing tough sometimes, specially with the HORRID checkpointing it haves... seriously there are brutal sections where you have guys firing at you from all effing sides that take forever to get right then 1 guy gets a lucky shot at you at the very end and you have to start from the beginning, I mean there are parts that you'll even go through a little in game cutscene, which should be a clear indication of a checkpoint, then you die and go back to the goddamn beginning.

Though I'm enjoying it anyway, the story is not as good as mp1 or 2 but enjoyable still.

#31 Posted by DrPockets000 (2859 posts) -

It's an extremely challenging game, but well worth completing. The stadium chapter is especially difficult. 

#32 Posted by Heltom92 (699 posts) -

I don't really understand why people are saying this game is so hard. I would not call myself a 'pro gamer' or whatever but I beat normal with little trouble (don't get me wrong there were some tough moments).

Perhaps the PC version is easier due to the mouse making it was easier to get headshots?

#33 Posted by Vitor (2809 posts) -

@willyleeks said:

It's definitely all about the free aim.

One piece of advice I'd give (and I think someone mentioned it further up this thread) is that bigger guns are not always better. I certainly had moments where a single handgun and a few well-placed headshots lead to a lot more progress than using an automatic rifle with a laser sight.

On that note, is it just me or does the laser sight make it really hard to aim? I found the recoil made it so tough to see where I was aiming with it - perhaps realistic but I was actively avoiding laser sight weapons by the last couple of chapters.

Dude, the laser sights are useless. They move off target unlike the normal sights so you can't line up your next shot until they fall back down. Sure, it's 'realistic' with the kickback but it makes them useless. It's also complete BS that latter in the game the laser MP5 is the ONLY gun the enemies carry.

That's my one criticism of the game in terms of gameplay (minus the occasional unexpected breaks out of shootdodge).

#34 Posted by Seroth (709 posts) -

Here are my tips for Max Payne 3:

  • Shoot dodge all the time. You have infinite shoot dodge, which means infinite slow-mo.
  • Go for headshots. Couple this with shoot dodging and headshotting should be easier.
  • When you land from a shoot dodge, don't feel like you need to immediately get up. You can still shoot while laying down and pick off any dudes that you missed during the shoot dodge.
  • To make sure someone is dead, look for the small white "X" that replaces your crosshair. When the person you've shot is actually dead, your crossahair will briefly flash that X.

@Vitor said:

It's also complete BS that latter in the game the laser MP5 is the ONLY gun the enemies carry.

You can turn off the laser sight (and any other attachment) by pressing the back/select button.

#35 Posted by BestUsernameEver (4825 posts) -

@Korosuzo said:

@ShaggE said:

Sounds like you're not going for headshots. Headshots are absolutely vital in this game.

And headshots are even more vital in that stadium section (Chapter 3) b/c every enemy has body armor.

I got through that section just fine by aiming at the bodies, with the occasional headshot. Medium difficulty. So I wouldn't say it's vital at all.

#36 Posted by CL60 (16906 posts) -
@Vitor

@willyleeks said:

It's definitely all about the free aim.

One piece of advice I'd give (and I think someone mentioned it further up this thread) is that bigger guns are not always better. I certainly had moments where a single handgun and a few well-placed headshots lead to a lot more progress than using an automatic rifle with a laser sight.

On that note, is it just me or does the laser sight make it really hard to aim? I found the recoil made it so tough to see where I was aiming with it - perhaps realistic but I was actively avoiding laser sight weapons by the last couple of chapters.

Dude, the laser sights are useless. They move off target unlike the normal sights so you can't line up your next shot until they fall back down. Sure, it's 'realistic' with the kickback but it makes them useless. It's also complete BS that latter in the game the laser MP5 is the ONLY gun the enemies carry.

That's my one criticism of the game in terms of gameplay (minus the occasional unexpected breaks out of shootdodge).

You can turn off the laser sight.
#37 Posted by Vitor (2809 posts) -

@CL60 said:

@Vitor

@willyleeks said:

It's definitely all about the free aim.

One piece of advice I'd give (and I think someone mentioned it further up this thread) is that bigger guns are not always better. I certainly had moments where a single handgun and a few well-placed headshots lead to a lot more progress than using an automatic rifle with a laser sight.

On that note, is it just me or does the laser sight make it really hard to aim? I found the recoil made it so tough to see where I was aiming with it - perhaps realistic but I was actively avoiding laser sight weapons by the last couple of chapters.

Dude, the laser sights are useless. They move off target unlike the normal sights so you can't line up your next shot until they fall back down. Sure, it's 'realistic' with the kickback but it makes them useless. It's also complete BS that latter in the game the laser MP5 is the ONLY gun the enemies carry.

That's my one criticism of the game in terms of gameplay (minus the occasional unexpected breaks out of shootdodge).

You can turn off the laser sight.

Wait, WHAT?

Is it a menu option?

Man, this game does a poor job of conveying vital information. Never tells you that you can transition straight from the floor to nearby cover without standing up nor does it let you know that holding down a direction key for the duration of the shoot dodge lets you get up quicker and keep moving. Two things I only learnt myself a few levels in. I won't complain about a lack of constant tutorials (although the constant cinemas are being an issue on a second playthrough) but a little more transparency in mechanics would have been nice....

#38 Posted by Korosuzo (170 posts) -

@BestUsernameEver said:

@Korosuzo said:

@ShaggE said:

Sounds like you're not going for headshots. Headshots are absolutely vital in this game.

And headshots are even more vital in that stadium section (Chapter 3) b/c every enemy has body armor.

I got through that section just fine by aiming at the bodies, with the occasional headshot. Medium difficulty. So I wouldn't say it's vital at all.

It's vital on Hard which is what I played on. Medium perhaps not.

#39 Posted by BestUsernameEver (4825 posts) -

@Korosuzo said:

@BestUsernameEver said:

@Korosuzo said:

@ShaggE said:

Sounds like you're not going for headshots. Headshots are absolutely vital in this game.

And headshots are even more vital in that stadium section (Chapter 3) b/c every enemy has body armor.

I got through that section just fine by aiming at the bodies, with the occasional headshot. Medium difficulty. So I wouldn't say it's vital at all.

It's vital on Hard which is what I played on. Medium perhaps not.

Lol, then of course it is, it's hard mode.

#40 Posted by Frag_Maniac (107 posts) -

As had been said in so many words, you won't have to worry about ammo as much if you aim for the head. The whole point of bullet time and shoot dodge is to give you the time to line up head shots while providing a cinematic flair.

#41 Posted by Humanity (8718 posts) -

@mcderby4 said:

@Milkman said:

I'm sure a lot of people here will act like they're the best at games and Max Payne 3 is really easy but in reality, it can be extremely difficult and frustrating at times. I would say it's worth powering through but there are going to be times when you want to throw your controller through the TV.

It's kind of sad how this reflects gamers these days. Everyone is used to these "breeze through" shooters and start crying when a game throws a little difficulty at them.

I think the way the difficulty works in this game is detrimental to it's enjoyment at times. I really think they should have done something with the health system as I detest non-regenerating health systems these days. Bioshock was terrible for me to play because of it and Max Payne can be downright brutal with how scarce painkillers are scattered throughout the levels. I can't recall the last game I was playing that had me sweating it checkpoint to checkpoint just so I don't have to re-do entire shootouts over and over again. I play on the 360 and the aiming is weird. If you turn on soft-lock then it works like Red Dead Redemption which is a lot more manageable. I especially dislike the fact that Max can only take a few shots to the body before dying yet your enemies just soak it right up.

#42 Posted by Frag_Maniac (107 posts) -

There's a common theme among those struggling with this game, the word controller. I hardly see the limitation of not being able to aim very quickly with a mini toggle as being the fault of Rockstar. As far as AI go, they tend to always have a crutch in most any challenging shooter because the player having a brain should have an advantage, esp in this one with slo mo. Max Payne has always been a challenging shooter that uses meds not regen. It would be an abomination to dumb it down with regen and easy kill gameplay.

Those complaining about these things should have done their research before buying rather than expecting to be able to play any shooter game well without even knowing about the history of the series. For that matter I don't really see the point of limiting oneself with a console when all the games are $60. You can get PC games a lot cheaper than that right after they launch. That adds up over time. Consoles aren't as cheap in the long run as many make them out to be.

#43 Posted by jillsandwich (762 posts) -

If you can make it past the Stadium exchange, you've basically made it over the hump of the game.

That level is the fucking worst.

#44 Posted by DJJoeJoe (1316 posts) -

@Frag_Maniac: I played the PC version on easy with a controller, soft lock and had a blast.

I noticed that in bullettime, and I think anytime, the instant you press the aim button (left trigger, or right mouse button) the guys will trigger their firing even if they can't see you. This is frustrating if you're playing on higher difficulties and makes simply popping out to shot close to impossible because the moment your face is around the corner and you're able to shoot there are bullets mid flight already coming at you in the face and neck (uh, uh, uh, uh, uh ). It's always a bummer when game mechanics reveal themselves in this sort of fashion, at least for me.

#45 Posted by Frag_Maniac (107 posts) -

@DJJoeJoe said:

@Frag_Maniac: I played the PC version on easy with a controller, soft lock and had a blast.

Well, barring someone that's no good at all with a pad (like me LOL), I doubt you'd see the benefit of a mouse until you step up the difficulty level. Easy plus soft lock probably is way less challenging than higher difficulty levels without it. With keyboad and mouse you don't even have the option of soft or hard lock. The only options they give those with mouse is target tracking and slowing, but IMO it's more of a hindrance than help because it makes your aim too sluggish.

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.