Max Payne: What I thought, and what I think

So I just finished Max Payne about a week ago and Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne about five minutes ago. Here are my thoughts about both of those games, and where the series as a whole is going.

Bullet Time!

  • Max Payne as a series is dripping wet with atmosphere, droplets of story running in rivulets from mouths of your enemies. The televisions spout nonsense that reflect the situation around you. And when everything goes black with gang wars and mob bosses at each others throats, he shows up.
The ferocious young mob king, Vinnie Gognitti, imprisoned by his own obsession.
  • The gunfire ripples around you in slow motion as you dodge incoming fire from all sides. You pop that one guy in the face only for another to show up. Diving at him will knock him down, but not for long. He gets back up, you fire again and again and again. They're still firing at you; one false move and you die. Don't worry it happens all the time, hit F9.

Yeah, that's pretty much the only two bullet points I could come up with. Anyway, I wanted to talk more about where Max Payne 3 will take the series.

Bullet Time Two!

  • I'm worried that Rockstar can't pull together the same atmosphere and character that the Remedy managed. Specifically, Max Payne as a character was never a blank slate character to explore other characters. Unfortunately, Rockstar seems to know no other way to write main protagonists then to simply make them do a bunch of dirty work for a bunch of dirty people. This coming from the guy who has only played Bully. As long as they get Max's character right and soak the environments in throwaway story bits that flesh it out, then nothing below matters.
  • A cover system for Max Payne?..... Did they even play the first two?
  • Only two weapons seems like a strange (but understandable) choice for a Max Payne game. You shoot so many bullets in the first two that having multiple weapons ensured you never ran out of ammo. Hopefully ammo will be plentiful.

Anyway that's what I got, I'm out.

2 Comments
3 Comments
Posted by c0l0nelp0c0rn1

So I just finished Max Payne about a week ago and Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne about five minutes ago. Here are my thoughts about both of those games, and where the series as a whole is going.

Bullet Time!

  • Max Payne as a series is dripping wet with atmosphere, droplets of story running in rivulets from mouths of your enemies. The televisions spout nonsense that reflect the situation around you. And when everything goes black with gang wars and mob bosses at each others throats, he shows up.
The ferocious young mob king, Vinnie Gognitti, imprisoned by his own obsession.
  • The gunfire ripples around you in slow motion as you dodge incoming fire from all sides. You pop that one guy in the face only for another to show up. Diving at him will knock him down, but not for long. He gets back up, you fire again and again and again. They're still firing at you; one false move and you die. Don't worry it happens all the time, hit F9.

Yeah, that's pretty much the only two bullet points I could come up with. Anyway, I wanted to talk more about where Max Payne 3 will take the series.

Bullet Time Two!

  • I'm worried that Rockstar can't pull together the same atmosphere and character that the Remedy managed. Specifically, Max Payne as a character was never a blank slate character to explore other characters. Unfortunately, Rockstar seems to know no other way to write main protagonists then to simply make them do a bunch of dirty work for a bunch of dirty people. This coming from the guy who has only played Bully. As long as they get Max's character right and soak the environments in throwaway story bits that flesh it out, then nothing below matters.
  • A cover system for Max Payne?..... Did they even play the first two?
  • Only two weapons seems like a strange (but understandable) choice for a Max Payne game. You shoot so many bullets in the first two that having multiple weapons ensured you never ran out of ammo. Hopefully ammo will be plentiful.

Anyway that's what I got, I'm out.

Posted by dankempster

I recently played the first Max Payne for the first time, and I really enjoyed it. When you boil it down to the mechanics, the game really isn't anything more interesting than a basic third-person shooter with the novelty of bullet time, but it was the brilliant storytelling and noir atmosphere that kept pulling me back into it. I'm really looking forward to checking out Max Payne 2 in the near future, if only to experience more of that atmosphere (although I am reliably informed that it expands upon the gameplay mechanics in meaningful ways, too).

Maybe it's because I'm a fan of Rockstar games in general, but I have every confidence that Max Payne 3 will remain faithful to the atmosphere and character that defines the first (and presumably second) game. They clearly have a lot of love for the franchise, otherwise I'm not sure they'd even attempt to create a sequel. It looks to me like every change they're making to the gameplay is being made with a view to keeping the game in line with modern conventions. Personally I don't have any problem with that, but then I don't play a lot of shooters. My only concern is your mentioning of the weapon limitations - it's reminded me that in Max Payne, I ran out of ammo for my assault rifle and SMGs many, many times. I hope like you say, they'll take steps to address that, because if the original is anything to go by, playing Max Payne with a baseball bat isn't fun. At all.

Anyway, great write up duder. I really enjoyed reading this.

Posted by mosdl

Cover isn't a bad idea for a MP game. Behind cover, go into slow mo and switch to another cover, all while taking shots.

As for Rockstar, Red Dead showed they can do good main characters.