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4.1 out of 5 stars
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4.1 out of 5 stars
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on 23 January 2013
To say Max Payne 3 is a bad game is a bit harsh. It's a good game with many flaws.

Cinematically and narrative wise it's excellent, the story of Max really pulls you in all it's gritty, sombre glory. Though it has to be said that it's not the first time we've seen the story of a depressive alcoholic ex-cop, who's family have been murdered and has nothing to live for. Perhaps not hugely original, but very we'll written when all said and done and you can't argue with that.

The story is well supported by a montage of wonderfully detailed scenarios, and sharp graphics. Essentially they are all just A to B glorified corridors, but they are well rendered and add to the gritty feel of the game.

Unfortunately, great stories and good graphics don't make a good game. The finishing touch is always the game-play. And.... You guessed it, that is the failing of this game.
Firstly Max handles like he is running through treacle, hit sprint and he moves no faster. There is a standard cover system, but it's got nothing on the likes of Splinter Cell Conviction, Gears, or even R6 Vegas 2.

Another oversight is the levels and cut scenes, you are pretty much railroaded through the levels with very little time to look around for ammo and health.
Many times after a gun fight it goes straight to a cut scene into the next area, so often you end up facing 6 armoured guys toting assault rifles with nothing but a pistol and 2 shots, oh yeah...with no health. This is incredibly frustrating, sometimes if you're really lucky after a cut scene transition, you will loose the guns you've picked up and be left with just a pistol and a couple of mags.

If that isn't irritating enough, as the game progresses the enemies become almost invincible, taking entire magazines of rifle ammunition to kill. So you spend most of your time struggling in shootdodge or bullet-time trying to score head shots (which don't always kill them...), but when Max lands he's not exactly quick on his feet to get up, and you get shot to hell on the floor too.

The game also suffers from a lack of variety when it comes to weapons. Ammunition, and health are always in very short supply. There's challenging, and then there's facing down 8 invincible enemies with only a rifle, twenty bullets and just enough health to remain standing. This is on medium difficulty by the way.

There is an aim assist, but that sometimes won't target the closest threat, or will aim low on an enemy behind cover. Sometimes it misses the guy standing six feet away altogether.

Basically put; many of the times you suffer an untimely death will be because of the controls and how the game handles. Or because a cut-scene dumps you in combat with no ammo or health - not because you suck.

So to sum up:
Pros: The story is really good, perhaps a little cliche in places, but you gotta love Max's gritty dry tones, and subtle humour. The levels are really detailed and the graphics are sharp. The game is involving and can be fun to play and to watch.
Cons: Controls are a little slow, level design lacks imagination in direction of play, never enough health or ammunition to keep the play smooth and flowing. Enemies become almost invincible later on.
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on 17 September 2014
I'm a bit late to this game, and I think like a number of others I was put off by the weird advertising decision to show Max Payne as a bald guy in a Hawaiian shirt, which led many to fear that Max Payne wouldn't be the same gritty action-fest they knew and loved…

…but man was I wrong to have my doubts! This sequel is expertly crafted with fantastic visuals, a dark and blood-soaked storyline, and fantastic gameplay that preserves many of the best bits from the previous games, while adding a solid cover shooting mechanic, and "last man standing" slow motion to kill an enemy before they deal the fatal blow to you. It feels refined and smooth, while keeping the gun-play very, very deadly.

Regarding difficulty, I've only played through on medium so far, and I found that pretty tough in places, particularly when there are frequent enemies ambushing you down seemingly deserted corridors, requiring fast reflexes to shoot dodge or find yourself gunned down with no cover to hide behind. It all serves to make the game very tense, requiring careful use of your slow motion bullet-time to leap to fresh cover and get those precious killing head-shots. There are also numerous set-pieces to keep things fresh, alongside "free aim" segments of slow motion challenging you to kill as many enemies as possible or else be stuck with hard odds after returning to normal. If I were to have any complaints about the game-play, its that the enemy seem to find it too easy to know where you are (so ducking around to another piece of cover doesn't take the heat off you for even a moment), and it can be difficult to know when you've killed an enemy, but otherwise the game-play is faultless, if very challenging at points.

In terms of replay value there are various "grinds" such as number of head shots, kills with particular weapons etc., plus a number of achievements (many in the free aim segments, which I seem to have failed to get any of!). There is also a series of "New York Minute" arcade challenges, pushing you to complete them as fast as possible, so there's some good content even outside of the main game. There are also two additional difficulty levels beyond Hard, though I'm not sure if I'd even want to attempt those without first grabbing more of the golden gun weapon upgrades scattered throughout the campaign. There's also multiplay, though I've yet to try this.

The campaign's story is as action-packed as you'd expect, though not quite as gripping a conspiracy as the first two (I had the villain clocked from the first level's cutscene). Not that that slows anything down as excellent, if a little cutscene heavy, direction, superb character graphics and animation and a few scattered extras to find in the levels tell the story well, and keep our favourite tortured cop as dark and disturbed as ever as he fights substance abuse as much as he fights waves of enemies. While I was initially disappointed by the change of scenery from the grim, snow-covered New York I loved, Sao Paulo manages to be every bit as dark in spite of its sunshine, as Max rampages through some of the worst areas in the city, but for good measure we do get a couple of flash-backs set in white-washed city fans are familiar with.

All in all this is a great game, and a very worthy addition to the series. I might even argue that it's better than the second game, and I very much want to see a fourth title in this great series.
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on 3 June 2012
I was looking forward to Max Payne 3 for a long time before I bought the game. I have a deep rooted love for the first two installments and had every faith Rockstar would eventually deliver another tounge-in-cheek, neo-noir, stylish-death shoot-fest that I would love just as much.

And they did it.

I read a lot of negative reviews before I finally decided to just give the developers the benefit of the doubt. The majority seem to complain about the very things that make the series great. I'm so grateful Rockstar didn't just cop out by making a Call of Duty clone that would have pulled in the mainstream gamers - they stayed true to what the series has always been about: self-conscious noir storylines with gameplay that promises endless satisfaction through shooting people in the face whilst in awe of the way your balletic violence is conveyed.

I haven't even tried the multiplayer yet so will update review in due course.
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on 16 November 2015
A very pretty game, and a showcase of how far graphical innovation has come on the humble 360. It does feel like style over substance, though: the story is nowhere near as engaging as was in the older games (though I suppose I'm viewing this through different eyes, too).
Worth a play, but get it second-hand (as I did). I'd have been disappointed to have paid full price for this title!
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on 20 January 2013
I have been playing games for 25 years and loved the max payne 1 and 2 and max payne 3 delivers the best game I have ever played. You get 2 discs which contains days of play, stunning graphics, fantastic storyline the list is endless. GET THIS GAME
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on 12 November 2014
Bought this in 2014 (so a few years after launch!) because it was cheap. There are some very good parts, but also some mediocre parts (lots of cut scenes, bullet time has been tweaked - and not necessarily for the better).
Think if I'd bought it at full price I would have been miffed, but for less than a tenner it was enough to keep me distracted for a while.
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on 4 June 2012
An unreal experience. The closest thing Ive ever played to a cinematic experience, on any console in my 25 years of gaming! This is outstanding. A believable, well written story that weaves beautifully into astounding gameplay.

Yes, there's limited weapons, the levels are extremely linear and max hasnt got many moves.. But the realism this game gives is second to none! Will only be fully appreciated by the mature gamer IMO. People that value & enjoy a storyline, realise the effort put into how a character reacts to damage, attention to detail in levels etc. A superb release yet again from Rockstar!

To be fair, I don't see a great replayability factor though. A must buy tho, as its a modern masterpiece!
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on 15 May 2015
Quality game. Very well produced. takes skill and practice, and if you have plenty of time, will probably be
able to get more out of it. Realistic and well told story, brings you into the plot well.
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on 19 April 2014
It's Max Payne as established by the previous two titles, but this time there is a little more range and Colour. There is the dark, rainy American city environment as synonymous with the previous two titles, but it also goes to new and exotic places, putting the awesome dynamics of bullet time and the weapon system into a refreshing environment. (Spoiler) On disk 2 Max shaves his head but keeps a Bad Ass beard, Sweet.
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on 2 January 2015
Incredibly linear game. There's more cut-scenes than game play here. For a Rockstar game, it's a bit of a disappointment. Max Payne is a dull and depressing character. This game lost my interest. I wouldn't recommend this.
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