Max Payne 3 Review

Developer(s): Rockstar Studios

Publisher(s): Rockstar Games

Consoles: Playstation 3, Xbox 360, Windows

Player(s): Single-player, multiplayer

Release Date: May 15, 2012

Rating:M— Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Partial Nudity, Strong

Language, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Drugs and Alcohol.

Genre: Third-person shooter

-Phoenix Robbins

“This place was like Baghdad in g-strings.”

Having not played the first two, I figured I probably wouldn’t play this one but when I got a free copy, I figured I may as well give it a try.  Lucky for me, Rockstar is an amazing developer and they’ve created yet another amazing game in Max Payne 3.

This game follows a former New York City detective named Max Payne.  In MP3, Max is no longer a cop and due to the pain of the loss of his loved ones, he spends his days drowning his sorrows in booze and pain killers.  He takes a job in Sao Paulo, Brazil protecting the family of a wealthy real estate mogul named Rodrigo Branco.  Things quickly spiral out of control and Max is left alone in a strange city trying to find the truth.

There are 5 different levels of difficulty; Easy, Medium, Hard, Hardcore, and Old School.  Don’t be fooled, hard difficulty is actually really hard.  You also have to option to change the types of aiming.  I chose to play in free-aim mode rather than letting the computer target the enemies for me.  It was more difficult, of course, but much more rewarding.  **Those of you who are achievement hunters—in order to get a lot of the achievements, you have to be in free-aim mode.

There is absolutely no shortage of carnage in this game and not only do you have a close view, you are somewhat forced into it.  There is this thing called  the kill camera.  After you shoot your way through a room of enemies and get to the last one, the camera changes view and follows the path of the bullet so you can get a slowed-down, up close and personal view of your final kill.

There are also two signature moves, Bullet-Tim and Shoot Dodge.  It will be important to master these  to get through the game.  At first, the use of bullet-time and shoot dodge provides new, gory ways to kill your enemies but as you continue through the game, it starts to feel repetitive.  Along with the repetition, you realize that there is a bit of lack of freedom.  You need to kill enemies in the way that Rockstar intended. Along with the slight lack of freedom, this game is only about 10-12 hours long.  It’s not horrible, but you can finish it in a day or two.  

To combat the short length, Rockstar has provided you with a compelling story, great cut scenes that seamlessly bleed into gameplay, and Max’s jaded first person narrative which adds even more depth to the story.   On top of that there are several arcade modes and a multiplayer to keep you busy when you finish up the main story.

One mode of multiplayer that I personally enjoy is Payne-Killer.  Everyone starts out equally in a death-match style game but the first two to get kills become Max and his partner Passos.  The two of them are overpowered and are hard to kill but if you do, you get to become one of them.  Your goal is to be the person with the most points which is earned by becoming Max or Passos and getting a bunch of kills.  This mode along with a bunch of others makes for plenty of extra gameplay for Max Payne 3.  You’re not limited to the 10 hours in the story-mode.


  • Graphics and sound effects are excellent and Max’s narration keeps the game interesting.  
  • Bullet time view is a cool way to view those super-bloody kills up close.  
  • Multiplayer is a lot of fun and you can create your own “crews” with your friends.


  • The killing starts to get repetitive 
  • The game is a little short—it won’t take you more than a day or two.


Max Payne 3 - Official Trailer [HD]

After the release of Max Payne 3, has MP3 become your favorite Max Payne 3 game?