Reintroducing Maximum Payne

After a nine-year absence and a shift in developer, Max Payne 3 was always going to be a curious title. Its early reveal, presenting a bald, overweight Max Payne amidst the slums of Brazil, was steeped in trepidation for fans of the series. This was a character well known for his slick stylings, leather coat and bad tie combination; a perfect protagonist for the surreal film noir world he inhabited and the frozen backdrop of a crime riddled New York City. Max had his inner demons but they were buried beneath the surface of graphic novel panels and John Woo inspired action.

Old and bald but still guns blazing

In Max Payne 3 these issues bubble to the surface, no longer confined to introverted and metaphorical inner monologues and disturbing dream sequences laden with crying babies and trails of blood symbolic of his inner torment. This is an increasingly dishevelled Max Payne, with greasy hair, a scruffy beard and a constant drink almost embedded to one hand. His gloomy nights are spent drenched in sweat, throwing up into a sink before passing out in a drunken stupor; alcoholism taking its toll on an aging body and disturbed and broken mind. Rockstar Games and the Houser’s brand of storytelling and character development – not to mention tales of redemption - are certainly well equipped to handle this modern Max with the verve and vigour we’ve come to expect. But is it a shift suited to the character’s trappings and Remedy’s original vision?

This is a series known for its idiosyncrasies after all. Beyond the film noir and John Woo influences, Max Payne’s graphic novel panels are more than just a stylistic inclusion but a tone setter for some of the games more unique eccentricities. Like the graphic novels of print they delve into subjects film noir wouldn’t dare touch. WhileMax Payne doesn’t go as far as something like Sin City it does often veer into the unnatural with relative ease. The breaking of the forth wall is one such technique, while themes of Norse mythology, the Illuminati and the insanity of Mona Sax’s funhouse quickly follow suit to form some of Max Payne’s more self-aware and aberrant moments. It’s quirky and gives the series its own signature touch, effectively garnering a devoted fan base with its avant-garde nature as well as its distinctive gameplay mechanics.

Max Payne 3 is a far cry from Max's humble beginnings

With Rockstar taking the mantle, those ideologies have changed. Max Payne 3 loses its self-awareness and unconventional nature in favour of a gritty story grounded in realism; taking cues from films like Man On Fire and Michael Mann’s extensive filmography as Rockstar’s fascination with Hollywood so often does. The series’ film noir trappings still remain, but away from the snow swept streets of New York City they feel out of place amongst the humidity of Brazil. This is further compounded by a Max Payne who’s down on his luck, his often times humorous and metaphorical inner monologue replaced with writing that is more self-deprecating and verging on the depressing, delving into the psyche of a tormented individual full of remorse. It might not be classic Max but it suits the granular narrative he finds himself embroiled within.

Rockstar often touch on real-world issues in their games using their unique platform to provide some kind of social commentary on recent events. Max Payne 3’s look at the rich/poor divide between Sao Paulo’s glistening metropolis and its crumbling favelas provides the backdrop for a story heavy on slimy characters who double and triple cross each other at every juncture. The death toll rackets up into the bloody thousands, and as Max’s story progresses further and further his predicament worsens to a sickening degree. Violence and brutality is strewn throughout, and while it’s disturbing it loses some of its impact because this isn’t a personal story for Max. Unlike the first two games he is a passenger on this Brazilian rollercoaster, doing what he does because he feels it’s the right thing to do; fuelled by illusions of grandeur and a want to end it all, rather than vengeance for a dead family. You pity Max and his destitute state, but as the story progresses the expert character development at the heart of the experience puts you in love all over again.

Evolved, but still as iconic as ever

This isn’t a deeply personal story and it might lose Remedy’s singularity, but the plight and rebuilding of Max Payne is an inherently engaging character tale that’s hard not to revere. His appearance changes from chapter to chapter as his wearisome and haggard state worsens. When he shaves off his hair and begins his road to redemption there’s a moment of elation as he becomes the avenging hero. His appearance signals his passage from worthless drunkard to a focused man on a mission as well as any of the game’s accomplished dialogue. It’s cinematic and modernises Max within this Hollywood-influenced story the same way its inclusion of cover does within the third-person shooter landscape. This is Rockstar’s way of doing things, and while fans of Remedy may not appreciate all of their changes, it gives Max a new lease on life, proving that he is one of video game’s saving graces. He deals with personal issues, taking us on a fascinating character arc that ends with a satisfying conclusion and a phenomenal pay-off for Max’s depressing beginnings. He grows into something wonderful, and all the world burns around him.

Even without its peculiarity Max Payne 3 succeeds at modernising a returning hero, bringing him into the 21st century with a superb character arc that stands defiant amongst so many generic one-note protagonists. He has deep issues and feels like a real person even as his boat hurtles through the air in slow motion, Max leaning over its side to rain down a hail of bullets on a fleeing gang. Its action is ridiculous, its story lacks real meaning aside from a thought-provoking message, but Max remains a constant source of enjoyment. We can only hope his journey hasn’t yet reached its explosive conclusion.

18 Comments
19 Comments
Posted by ElectricBoogaloo

After a nine-year absence and a shift in developer, Max Payne 3 was always going to be a curious title. Its early reveal, presenting a bald, overweight Max Payne amidst the slums of Brazil, was steeped in trepidation for fans of the series. This was a character well known for his slick stylings, leather coat and bad tie combination; a perfect protagonist for the surreal film noir world he inhabited and the frozen backdrop of a crime riddled New York City. Max had his inner demons but they were buried beneath the surface of graphic novel panels and John Woo inspired action.

Old and bald but still guns blazing

In Max Payne 3 these issues bubble to the surface, no longer confined to introverted and metaphorical inner monologues and disturbing dream sequences laden with crying babies and trails of blood symbolic of his inner torment. This is an increasingly dishevelled Max Payne, with greasy hair, a scruffy beard and a constant drink almost embedded to one hand. His gloomy nights are spent drenched in sweat, throwing up into a sink before passing out in a drunken stupor; alcoholism taking its toll on an aging body and disturbed and broken mind. Rockstar Games and the Houser’s brand of storytelling and character development – not to mention tales of redemption - are certainly well equipped to handle this modern Max with the verve and vigour we’ve come to expect. But is it a shift suited to the character’s trappings and Remedy’s original vision?

This is a series known for its idiosyncrasies after all. Beyond the film noir and John Woo influences, Max Payne’s graphic novel panels are more than just a stylistic inclusion but a tone setter for some of the games more unique eccentricities. Like the graphic novels of print they delve into subjects film noir wouldn’t dare touch. WhileMax Payne doesn’t go as far as something like Sin City it does often veer into the unnatural with relative ease. The breaking of the forth wall is one such technique, while themes of Norse mythology, the Illuminati and the insanity of Mona Sax’s funhouse quickly follow suit to form some of Max Payne’s more self-aware and aberrant moments. It’s quirky and gives the series its own signature touch, effectively garnering a devoted fan base with its avant-garde nature as well as its distinctive gameplay mechanics.

Max Payne 3 is a far cry from Max's humble beginnings

With Rockstar taking the mantle, those ideologies have changed. Max Payne 3 loses its self-awareness and unconventional nature in favour of a gritty story grounded in realism; taking cues from films like Man On Fire and Michael Mann’s extensive filmography as Rockstar’s fascination with Hollywood so often does. The series’ film noir trappings still remain, but away from the snow swept streets of New York City they feel out of place amongst the humidity of Brazil. This is further compounded by a Max Payne who’s down on his luck, his often times humorous and metaphorical inner monologue replaced with writing that is more self-deprecating and verging on the depressing, delving into the psyche of a tormented individual full of remorse. It might not be classic Max but it suits the granular narrative he finds himself embroiled within.

Rockstar often touch on real-world issues in their games using their unique platform to provide some kind of social commentary on recent events. Max Payne 3’s look at the rich/poor divide between Sao Paulo’s glistening metropolis and its crumbling favelas provides the backdrop for a story heavy on slimy characters who double and triple cross each other at every juncture. The death toll rackets up into the bloody thousands, and as Max’s story progresses further and further his predicament worsens to a sickening degree. Violence and brutality is strewn throughout, and while it’s disturbing it loses some of its impact because this isn’t a personal story for Max. Unlike the first two games he is a passenger on this Brazilian rollercoaster, doing what he does because he feels it’s the right thing to do; fuelled by illusions of grandeur and a want to end it all, rather than vengeance for a dead family. You pity Max and his destitute state, but as the story progresses the expert character development at the heart of the experience puts you in love all over again.

Evolved, but still as iconic as ever

This isn’t a deeply personal story and it might lose Remedy’s singularity, but the plight and rebuilding of Max Payne is an inherently engaging character tale that’s hard not to revere. His appearance changes from chapter to chapter as his wearisome and haggard state worsens. When he shaves off his hair and begins his road to redemption there’s a moment of elation as he becomes the avenging hero. His appearance signals his passage from worthless drunkard to a focused man on a mission as well as any of the game’s accomplished dialogue. It’s cinematic and modernises Max within this Hollywood-influenced story the same way its inclusion of cover does within the third-person shooter landscape. This is Rockstar’s way of doing things, and while fans of Remedy may not appreciate all of their changes, it gives Max a new lease on life, proving that he is one of video game’s saving graces. He deals with personal issues, taking us on a fascinating character arc that ends with a satisfying conclusion and a phenomenal pay-off for Max’s depressing beginnings. He grows into something wonderful, and all the world burns around him.

Even without its peculiarity Max Payne 3 succeeds at modernising a returning hero, bringing him into the 21st century with a superb character arc that stands defiant amongst so many generic one-note protagonists. He has deep issues and feels like a real person even as his boat hurtles through the air in slow motion, Max leaning over its side to rain down a hail of bullets on a fleeing gang. Its action is ridiculous, its story lacks real meaning aside from a thought-provoking message, but Max remains a constant source of enjoyment. We can only hope his journey hasn’t yet reached its explosive conclusion.

Posted by adam1808

I still maintain that MP3 isn't a Max Payne game, and I think I appreciate it more for that. For all the criticisms leveled against it, you can't deny MP3 was fresh and interesting which isn't something you expect from a threequel. That said, there is nothing particularly likable about Max's character beyond the fact he taketh no shit from anyone. It's a fun crime drama more than it is Remedy's Max Payne. Still great fun though.

Edited by DharmaBum

That was a very well-written blog post, duder. I think you nailed the distinction between Remedy's campy, comic book noir and Rockstar's flashier cinematic influences. Gameplay-wise MP3 remains faithful, but stylistically it takes the liberty to explore a different side of Max. I love both developers' creative visions for the character, each in their own way. More than anything I just found it refreshing to enjoy a different breed of third-person shooter than what we're used to nowadays.

Edited by squirrelnacho

Max Payne games were never entirely campy. It seems a lot of people just aren't that familiar with the originals. Sure, there were moments of self awareness. However, many people forget or are unaware that Max Payne 2 took the series to a far grittier tone while still keeping the awesome noir atmosphere.

Max Payne 3 is all about brash shock value and crude dialogue, without any subtlety. It's not really a Max Payne game beyond the voice actor and some basic gameplay mechanics. The tone and feel, one of the most important aspects of the series, is completely different and less original. Its basically forcing a movie's plot onto Max Payne that does not fit at all. The original two games were just superior in every way except graphics and streamlined gameplay mechanics.

Also, Max Payne 2 Max looks older than the character model in Max Payne 3. It doesn't make any sense that the character model in MP3 looks so muscular. It's like some people were concerned that people would not want to play a character unless his looks like complete badass or something.

Otherwise, a well written post.

Posted by AhmadMetallic

That was a truly great read. My MP3 blog is child play compared to your wording and approach. Kudos! 
 

This is Rockstar’s way of doing things, and while fans of Remedy may not appreciate all of their changes, it gives Max a new lease on life, proving that he is one of video game’s saving graces. He deals with personal issues, taking us on a fascinating character arc that ends with a satisfying conclusion and a phenomenal pay-off for Max’s depressing beginnings. He grows into something wonderful, and all the world burns around him.

Exactly.
Edited by Frag_Maniac

Funny how this Max keeps getting called fat. I'm far skinnier than him but have more flab hanging over my belt than he does. I'm 54 though, so I don't worry about it too much. He's mostly just more muscular than previous Max models. Why would he be more muscular? Clearly he had a lot of idle time after his quest for revenge in the previous two titles. That coupled with getting older could have easily made him take his anxiety out on some weights.

That said, I have played all 3 and I don't feel this one is as disconnected from the previous two as many see it to be. Sure he's gone a different direction, but given the conclusion of MP2, that was a given. It is said that revenge does not bring true closure. That's what we're seeing here, the revenge hasn't brought relief, the memories are still there. If anything he's more tormented that he doesn't feel redemption from it.

So what does he do, he drowns his sorrows until someone sent on a clever recruiting mission at the right time in the right place offers him a job to whisk him away to a brighter, sunnier place that is riddled with crime so he can start a new life and feel like he's making a real difference for once. It all fits, and they even convey in the dialog many times how it's just another delusional hell bent attempt at making a right out of a wrong.

The point being Max has always struggled with choices, redemption, and distinguishing right from wrong. If anything this installment is a collective instillation of that for all 3 titles in the series. The character development constantly reminds us that Max is still Max, despite the failed attempt to start a new life in a new setting. They even suggest that will be the outcome in the opening cutcsene. This is no Max Payne turned John McClane as some have teased. Yes there are some superficial similarities there, but the old Max is clearly still driving the train.

This installment is every bit a reminder as a reintroduction, of who Max really is.

Edited by DharmaBum

@squirrelnacho said:

Max Payne games were never entirely campy. It seems a lot of people just aren't that familiar with the originals. Sure, there were moments of self awareness. However, many people forget or are unaware that Max Payne 2 took the series to a far grittier tone while still keeping the awesome noir atmosphere.

No one said they were entirely campy. I described them that way only in comparison to Rockstar's much more serious approach. It's possible for someone familiar with the evolution of the originals to appreciate the changes further made in the third. If anything MP3's plot takes the series to an even darker, grittier tone than the jump from 1 to 2. Brazil is a far more original setting for noir atmosphere than another rehash of what Remedy had already sufficiently explored.

Posted by Brendan

Woudn't his full name be Maxwell? Or Maximus? Maximum seems a little hard to believe ;)

Posted by ElectricBoogaloo

@Brendan: But then it would lose the word play! :P

Posted by Brendan

@ElectricBoogaloo said:

@Brendan: But then it would lose the word play! :P

Maxwell Payne shifts his spectacles angrily at your cleverness!

Posted by Frag_Maniac

Obviously the Maximum bit was more a colorful writer's adjective than intended moniker. The guy's got writing skills, but I disagree with some of his points.

Funny how I've been now and then thinking to myself Maximum Payne, in the Crysis Maximum Game voice, while playing the game. Then I discovered Maximum Payne is the accomplishment for beating the game on Old School, perhaps a premonition. I'm on Old School now with only the last chapter left and things have been going better than I expected.

Edited by squirrelnacho

@Lebensbaum said:

No one said they were entirely campy. I described them that way only in comparison to Rockstar's much more serious approach. It's possible for someone familiar with the evolution of the originals to appreciate the changes further made in the third. If anything MP3's plot takes the series to an even darker, grittier tone than the jump from 1 to 2. Brazil is a far more original setting for noir atmosphere than another rehash of what Remedy had already sufficiently explored.

It's hard to call a game serious when Max is hanging one handed off a helicopter sniping incoming rocket's with an SMG, then goes and has a conversation like nothing happened, all within the first half hour of the game. There's not a single moment in the first two games that is as over the top as that. It also hard to call the plot original when it's basically just the plot from Man on Fire being forced onto it, along with some Kane and Lynch 2 visual effects (that were frankly done better in Kane and Lynch 2). What's really missing is great subtlety of the first two. This game really just follows the new developers typical aim of shock value and crude foul dialogue.

They took the story in a completely unnecessary direction following the end of Max Payne 2.

@adam1808 said:

I still maintain that MP3 isn't a Max Payne game, and I think I appreciate it more for that. For all the criticisms leveled against it, you can't deny MP3 was fresh and interesting which isn't something you expect from a threequel. That said, there is nothing particularly likable about Max's character beyond the fact he taketh no shit from anyone. It's a fun crime drama more than it is Remedy's Max Payne. Still great fun though.

Basically, this. As an action game, it's pretty decent. But it's not a Max Payne game beyond the inclusion of the voice actor and slow motion.

Posted by ElectricBoogaloo

@squirrelnacho said:

@Lebensbaum said:

@squirrelnacho said:

Max Payne games were never entirely campy. It seems a lot of people just aren't that familiar with the originals. Sure, there were moments of self awareness. However, many people forget or are unaware that Max Payne 2 took the series to a far grittier tone while still keeping the awesome noir atmosphere.

No one said they were entirely campy. I described them that way only in comparison to Rockstar's much more serious approach. It's possible for someone familiar with the evolution of the originals to appreciate the changes further made in the third. If anything MP3's plot takes the series to an even darker, grittier tone than the jump from 1 to 2. Brazil is a far more original setting for noir atmosphere than another rehash of what Remedy had already sufficiently explored.

You can't really consider a game serious when Max is hanging one handed off a helicopter sniping incoming rocket's with an SMG, then goes and has a conversation like nothing happened, all within the first half hour of the game. You also can't call the plot original when it's basically just the plot from Man on Fire being forced onto it, along with some Kane and Lynch 2 visual effects (that were frankly done better in Kane and Lynch 2). What's really missing is great subtlety of the first two. This game really just follows the new developers typical aim of shock value and crude foul dialogue.

It is darker, though, both in regards to the narrative and Max himself. There's just some disconnect there between the story and the gameplay since, as you say, its action is completely ridiculous. The first two games never veered into that territory but I suppose it's a sign of the times with most game nowadays ramping up the action set pieces to an absurd degree. Max Payne 3 is the same, with the helicopter bit and the boat chase, as well as plenty more moments throughout the game. I don't think it dampens the effect of the story, even if it does go for the shock value at times, but it is fairly dumb. Although, as I said in the blog, I never really cared for the story all that much, it's basically just Max and his arc that kept me interested and engaged.

Edited by DharmaBum

@squirrelnacho: Well I feel that MP3 achieves a more serious character study than the series had approached before, largely due to McCaffrey's performance and the subject matter this time around. I've never seen Man on Fire, but I know there's more to MP3's story arc beyond the initial bodyguard/kidnapping plot. Ultimately, it's about a man who's spent his life killing and has started to question whether his actions are right or wrong. I also don't see how taking visual inspiration from movies like Man on Fire or Elite Squad is any different than the original Max Payne being compared to The Matrix. It's all fair game to me as long as the final result is well executed. And K&L2 went for a choppy video recording effect, not the hazy memory perspective used to put you inside Max's head.

I don't think a video game of all things, especially when it's trying to pay homage to Hong Kong action cinema, should be restricted from putting the player into ridiculous scenarios that suspend realism. I'm playing a shooter designed around the ability to slow down time and perform impossible acrobatics; the whole point is to capture the same feeling of exhilaration as those action movies. If that comes at the expense of a coherent narrative, then I suppose I value gameplay more than story in my Max Payne.

Not digging the direction Rockstar took is understandable, but claiming it's not a Max Payne game is just absurd. The same key ingredients that distinguish Max Payne from other shooters are still present, albeit with modern design sensibilities and a different developer's interpretation (there are still plenty of parallels that keep it consistent). I share the same approval of its existence as Remedy does:

"If you repeat and rinse what you've done before, without adding anything new to the mixture, and there by default removing something from the mixture, then you're just gonna end up with something that's kinda like the original, but I think it's better to boldly have a direction where you want to go and to build it." - Matias Myllyrinne

Edited by squirrelnacho

If you haven't seen Man on Fire, then you really have no idea how jarringly close the premise of this game resembles it. Yes, Elite Squad also was a big influence. This is not a character study of Max Payne, it's forcing another character onto Max Payne. At the end of Max Payne 2, Max says he basically came to terms with the deaths, and there was no indication he was going to need to leave his job. The writing and dialogue feel bland and forced, with heavy handed attempts to remind people that this is still supposed to be part of the Max Payne story line. Also, Max Payne 1 was in development before the Matrix was released. However, Max Payne 3 began development after Man on Fire. Two, very different things.

Sure, Max Payne paid homage to Hong Kong films, but it did not attempt to ape any particular plot or characters from them. It also added its own unique style and charm through comic book sequences, dialogue, setting, and aesthetic. Also, as was explained before, Max Payne 1 and 2 contained no acrobatics close to the absurd moments in Max Payne 3. MP1 and 2 maintained that control, while still delivering an engaging story. They are not mutually exclusive.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTwgBrUK4ng#t=04m29s

I already posted that video in another thread. It's unlikely company would point out major points of creative differences with another companies products, unless it served business purposed. That doesn't mean they absolutely hate it, but it doesn't mean it's kept all the elements that made the originals so great. Also in that video are the quotes:

"The individual choices they've made are different than the individual choices we would have made"

"You will clearly see this is a Rockstar game"

Clearly, the product we've received has deviated from it's roots.

Edited by DharmaBum

@squirrelnacho said:

It's unlikely company would point out major points of creative differences with another companies products, unless it served business purposed. That doesn't mean they absolutely hate it, but it doesn't mean it's kept all the elements that made the originals so great.

Except they did allude to the differences - "an attention to detail, a certain attitude from Rockstar Games" - of what to expect, but you seem to either ignore or disagree with everything else that was said: "those are perfectly natural and good for the franchise."

"The individual choices they've made probably are different than the individual choices we would have made, but the sum of the parts is very much to the same equation." (i.e. it's still a Max Payne game)

"You will clearly see that it's a Rockstar game - and that's a good thing."

"It feels like based on what the character is going through, the surroundings kinda fit that perfectly."

There's nothing but reassurance and approval in that video. But feel free to interpret Remedy as harboring a different attitude toward the game that conveniently aligns with your own. I suppose Rockstar must have paid off Sam Lake for his endorsement.

It's hard to call a game serious when Max is hanging one handed off a helicopter sniping incoming rocket's with an SMG, then goes and has a conversation like nothing happened

It's hard to take MP2 seriously when even in its best moments of romantic build-up, you're stuck escorting a guy in goofy Cpt. BaseBall Bat Boy costume.

At the end of Max Payne 2, Max says he basically came to terms with the deaths, and there was no indication he was going to need to leave his job.

He comes to terms with the guilt of being with another woman, but it doesn't mean he's over their deaths completely.

He's not going to just waltz back into the NYPD after killing Winterson and working alongside Mona, a known criminal assassin.

Also, Max Payne 1 was in development before the Matrix was released. However, Max Payne 3 began development after Man on Fire.

My point wasn't concerned with what came first, rather that the Max Payne series has always borrowed from cinema.

Max Payne 1 and 2 contained no acrobatics close to the absurd moments in Max Payne 3.

Jumping onto a moving train chasing Gognitti? Running on the side of a skyscraper at the end of MP1 while a helicopter is shooting at you? Diving out of a burning building and falling on a scaffolding several stories high in MP2?

Posted by squirrelnacho

They alluded to the differences, you didn't. Your post had originally completely ignored the fact that Remedy did point out that there would be any differences at all.

"Sum of the parts is the same". They are both 3rd person shooters.

Here let me add another quote from that video "The team that's making the game will naturally affect the tone of the game".

You also ignored the part where I said "That doesn't mean they hate the game, but it doesn't mean it's kept all the elements that make the originals so great". Approval does not mean it's the same. If you don't have enough confidence in your own opinions, that's fine. It's your decision to keep speaking in hyperbole.

Edited by DharmaBum

I still stand by my original assertion that MP3 is a Max Payne game, and it does matter that the original creator has signed off on it being a valid continuation of Max's journey into the night.

My very first reply to this blog in fact acknowledged the different choices between the developers - Rockstar opting for a more modern cinematic influence instead of falling back on outdated comic book melodrama, campiness and hammy delivery - to which you responded that people (myself and the blog author presumably?) must not be familiar with the originals.

Despite the lack of surrealism and other obvious differences, I thought there were enough of the same elements that made the originals great. But it's a divisive game that some like you feel is too much of a departure, while others like me appreciate for what it does to modernize how a Max Payne game plays, while still honoring the legacy of the originals. To each their own subjective definition of what a modern Max Payne game should be, but I've hijacked this blog enough already.

Edit: hyperbole removed

Edited by squirrelnacho

@Lebensbaum: The original developers said there are differences, so I can confidently say this is not the same as the award winning originals, a point you glossed over. The fact that there are indeed differences says a great deal, whether or not you want to agree with it. Once again, you are speaking in hyperbole and selectively quoting parts of posts. You've basically retreated into the positioning of arguing that this is some sort of binary situation of whether or not this is a Max Payne game, ignoring any other arguments. In other words, "There are points of differences between the games, the developers have said so" "Yes but it's still called a Max Payne game".

It's fine if you think this is a good game. I think it's a decent action game. The point of many of the original fans is that this is a deviation from what made the originals so great.

Yes, lets not clog up the thread anymore.