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Am I The Only One Looking Forward To Max Payne 3?

May 22, 2012

Ben Rogers writes for Huttstuff again! Should you be looking forward to playing Max Payne 3?

On the 18th of May, Max Payne will once again be with us in a new console title and his next-gen debut no less, although it appears that fans of the first two Max Payne outings are already giving it negative feedback before the damn thing has even been released. Okay, lets get one thing straight. I didn’t play Max Payne 1 or Max Payne 2 so perhaps I am missing something, but I would be more convinced of the hardcore fans’ reservations if they weren’t so illogical. I have seen my friends play Max Payne 1 and 2 recently, and if anything it just solidified my belief that Rockstar will produce another triple A outing for Max.

One of many misgiving the fans have which I can’t understand is that ‘it looks crap’, or ‘it doesn’t look like the other two’. Right, lets break this down. It looks crap? What the hell! It looks amazing, the design and look of the game is vibrant and glossy, with the fine brushings of noir sensibilities. Now before you lay on the comments, its not noir! Classic noir, as most people understand, is not the noir that the first Max Payne even portrayed. They were dark and moody, but that’s not noir. Noir is hard to define beyond its visual tone. Max Payne has embodied neo-noir, which is aware of modern themes and includes motifs such as social ramifications of a protagonist’s actions and identity crises: both of which figure heavily in Max.

‘It doesn’t look like the other two’. First of all, of course it won’t. Rockstar has created a top-line finely crafted graphical marvel for a new generation of consoles. The look will of course evolve, but it still holds the Max look. Just because Max Payne is now rocking it up in a mono-chromatic New York, doesn’t mean its going to look like Max has fallen into the fun spongy colours pallet more closely associated with LittleBIG Planet. No, look closely with an objective eye and you can see the faded tones and the low-key light effects. There may be more shades of colour, but they will be still be dark and moody just like the Max you all know and love.

To reduce the next Rockstar game to a failure before it comes out is forgetting one thing. This is a Rockstar production. They released the first Max Payne onto consoles which sky-rocketed the series in the first place, and they also developed the console versions of Max Payne 2. They have been with the series from day one and understand what makes Max essentially Max. Rockstar will understand Max as well as any fan and what made the noir inspired stories work and how to make shooting and bullet-time fluid and fun.

If you need more convincing, head on over to Max Payne 3’s official website and watch the development videos. You tell me you don’t feel they are taking Max Payne as seriously as you, but I’m sure if you just see the care and attention they are putting into a franchise they clearly love as well, you’ll be hotly anticipating the 18th of May when Max comes blasting his way back into our lives.

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