master_prophet's Max Payne 3 (Xbox 360) review

A Welcome, Yet Mixed-Bag Of a Return.

Max Payne 3 swings in as another heavy hitting game from Rockstar studios, and it should surprise no one. After pumping out mature title after mature title for the past few years, creating Max Payne 3 seems like a match made in heaven here. For the most part Rockstar finds the proper balance of gritty story-telling that's suited Max through his previous two adventures, yet I can't help but point out a few faults that put me off on Max Payne 3.

Let's get this out of the way now, if you decide to load up Max Payne 3 on hard the first time through, you will be treated to the most punishingly hard experience I've had with a video game in quite some time. Now maybe being the gamer I am now a days, I should have started the game on a lower difficulty the first time through, but like any game, I decided to go balls deep the first time, and for that it was kind of a mistake. While playing the game like this isn't the way I remember the first two Max Payne adventures, it did remind me how far games have come in the past decade since the last Max Payne. I don't remember ever really taking cover in the previous games, but here it is essential. The campaign took me around ten hours total, and that's about the proper length for a game like this. The cinematic, the voice work, everything else here is top notch.

The second problem I have with Max Payne 3 is the check point system. While I think the game does a pretty decent job of providing you with checkpoints frequently, especially on higher difficulties, I did find myself get stuck into an endless loop of problems at least twice. The first time was entirely my fault, I didn't have the proper weapon with me for the task at hand, which forced me to restart a chapter. The second time however, I got looped into a checkpoint where I was spawning in the open in front of about twelve dudes with literally a second for me to get Max into cover. That was a pain in the ass.

My final problem with the game is multiplayer. I'm sorry Rockstar, but multiplayer is a joke in this game. While the bullet time mechanic works more then I suspected, I've just seen way too much bs during matches for me to recommend this part of the game. What has me more concerned is that Rockstar has already planned seven multiplayer map packs with this game as post launch dlc. Red Dead Redemption had a much better multiplayer component that didn't just rely on your average deathmatch and team deathmatch, or objective based games. But I guess in a world where only Halo or Call of Duty really offer balanced Multiplayer experiences, you can't expect much more. I just wish that Rockstar would have used all the extra resources on adding more to the singleplayer experience.

At the end of the day, Max Payne 3 was an enjoyable enough experience for me to recommend the game, but I can't stress enough that the multiplayer component isn't worth your time or effort. Especially doing a tally last night and seeing that only about 500 people are playing this game online, that's not too great only less then a month after launch.

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