E3 2010 games to watch: Max Payne 3 preview

It’s that time of year again. E3 is coming and the hype train is beginning to hiss. In preparation for this year’s maelstrom of new video game delights, which starts on June the 15th, we’re running a twice-weekly series of features highlighting the big hitters you’ll want to keep an eye on at the show.

Some you’ll know, some you won’t, but all will require your complete and undivided attention. So tune in to GamesRadar every Wednesday and Saturday, and have that attention primed and ready.

Today, we’re looking at the return of Rockstar's down-on-his luck hero Max Payne in Max Payne 3.

Why Max Payne 3 is one to watch

  • This is the first Max Payne game developed in its entirety by Rockstar. This makes me excited. Previous dev Remedy did a stunning job with the first two games, but Rockstar is known for making games that are shitting amazing and consistent GOTY favourites. The company's Vancouver studio is in charge of duties. Its last game was PS2 classic, Bully. So, yes, Max Payne 3 is in good hands.
  • It's been confirmed that Max Payne 3 is going to have *some* kind of online multiplayer. No one outside of Rockstar knows exactly what though. If I had to make a wild guess - and I might as well - I'd say it'll be co-op and Mona Sax will make a return. But that guess is so wild it should be locked up and fed pieces of raw antelope meat.
  • Sure, he had the face of a man suffering the burden of a perpetually itchy nipsy, but Max Payne is one of gaming's most memorable protagonists for more than just his excruciating expression. Already established as the antithesis of a ray of sunshine, 13 years has passed for Max since the events of Max Payne 2 and we'll be reintroduced to him at his absolute lowest. With the help of booze, painkillers and bad-tasting memories, Max is crawling through the ass crack of life. It should be a blast to see how such a mountain of gloomy pessimism and misery is embodied in the new beardier, balder Max Payne.

  • While Max's mood may be darker than a box of shadows in a windowless cupboard, the backdrop to Max Payne 3 will be contrastingly sunny. Leaving behind New York, Max has started a new 'life' in Sao Paulo, Brazil, where he provides security for a wealthy family. Think an abundance of favelas, poverty, gangs, crime, corruption, guns and murder. I'd shit my pants visiting it in real-life. But in a game? It sounds like home.
  • Like the previous games, Max Payne 3 will be absolutely laser-focused on silky gun play. And that means a return of Max Payne's pioneering Bullet Time. It's a feature that's seen more action than a whore's doormat, but Rockstar is promising that it'll be brought bang-up-to-date in a fashion that is spectacular and sexy. I'm picturing the kind of excellent post-shooting body contortionating witnessed in GTA IV. But slow.

Everything about Max Payne 3 looks different. The Brazilian shanty town setting is a million miles away from New York and Max himself looks a little more like generic shooter man than he used to, but hopefully his wit and personality will elevate him above the crowd. And his ability to shoot people more elegantly than anyone else.

May 26, 2010

I don't have the energy to really hate anything properly. Most things I think are OK or inoffensively average. I do love quite a lot of stuff as well, though.