When you come home, your wife and kid are killed by some junkies so what do you do ? You start kicking ass, that’s what you do. At least, when your name is Max Payne…
You start off as Max Payne, a detective who’s wife and child have been killed by a couple of doped up junkies. Having lost faith in humanity, you join the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) to start a crusade against Valkyr, a new designer drug which turns normal human beings into walking time bombs that can go insane and start killing people any minute.
You go undercover into the world of drug dealers and hired killers to find the one responsible for making Valkyr with only 2 other people knowing of your existence.
When one of those 2 cops gets killed in a meeting with Max, the party starts and you find yourself chased by cops and mafia.
Max Payne is viewed from the 3rd person angle, and Remedy made sure there’s a reason for that.
The textures and movement of Max is extremely well-done and especially when you go into bull-time (some kind of matrix-like slowmotion where you see the bullets passing you by) the view is a real feast.
Remedy has also made sure that the camera’s that follow Max are well-placed so that it’s easy to control your character without feeling that he’s not doing what you want which is something many other 3rd person games have problems with.
The amount of weapons that you can choose along the game is more than sufficient for killing all your enemies and the good thing is that it are all real weapons.
No rocket launchers or shafts, you’re playing an undercover cop in our time, and weapons like a railgun are not an option.
Your enemies’ AI is not bad but there are still some flaws to be detected. If you look closely you’ll see that they keep following the same paths and almost never change their acting. Not that that is bad or anything, it’s just something that could have been improved.
Another small flaw is that although the graphics are really cool, you sometimes see that when you get really close to an enemy and turn around him, his upper body follows you while his legs keep standing in the same position.
Of course, these are just minor issues and really don’t decrease the fun of the game.
In between shooting villains, you get small scenes that tell the story in a kind of comic book way. The graphics here are kind of pictures that have been edited to look more like a comic.
Wether you like that or not is up to you. Personally I think that they could have really improved that part since if you see pictures of Max in these cut-scenes he looks like some freak that fell one time too many on his head and has permanent brain damage.
The Max you get to play in the rest of the game is a totally different guy.
Max is the opposite of Duke Nukem. While Duke is funny and just goes to kick ass and chew bubblegum while he’s all out of bubblegum, Max is the number one anti-hero. He’s a normal guy who’s family got killed by accident, making him extremely sarcastic and even a bit depressing. Max looks and talks like a guy who’s torn apart by grief and seems to be on the edge of having a nervous breakdown while he wants to take revenge on everyone who’s had anything to do with the killing of his wife and kid.
This is clearly shown in the levels where Max gets a needle filled with Valkyr in his arm and goes on a trip in his mind.
These levels are the last negative point I’m going to state about this game. Why for god’s sake did you put jumping puzzles in Max Payne Remedy ?!?!? Jumping puzzles are all but funny and enjoyable !
K, now that I’ve got that off my chest I can go to my conclusion.
Max Payne is a terrific game that is a must-have for anyone who still likes to play games in single player mode.
The graphics are awesome, the athmosphere is really well-done and the bullet-time where you can shoot enemies in slowmotion gives Max just that little edge that makes the game superb.
If you don’t already have it, then you should go out and buy Max Payne right now !