The face and voice of Max Payne thank fans with a 20th anniversary video message

The original grimacing face and gravelly voice of Max Payne have reunited to celebrate the franchise's 20th anniversary, including a special appearance from a familiar vest and jacket combo.

Remedy Entertainment put out a special video message to mark the 20th anniversary of the game which set the studio on its path of cinematic, slightly off-kilter third-person action games. The video features James McCaffrey, the voice of Max Payne who has reprised his role in every title, and Remedy creative director Sam Lake, who lent his face to Max Payne for the original game's 3D model and played him in its photo-edited comic cutscenes.

Lake thanks the original development team behind Max Payne at Remedy ("not many of us here anymore," he admits), as well as its publishers at 3D Realms and Rockstar Games, and the actors who helped to bring the game to life. Both Lake and McCaffrey thank all the fans who have helped turn Max Payne into a lasting cultural sensation. Remember that Max Payne movie from 2008, the one with Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis? Wild.

Anyway, Lake concludes the video by donning the very same leather jacket he wore when he originally portrayed Lake - apparently it has been sitting in a box "in the basement of Remedy HQ" this whole time - and getting back into character with some A+ face-making.

I'm not gonna lie, I was holding my breath while I waited for Sam Lake to announce Remedy had bought the rights to Max Payne back from Rockstar and Max Payne 4 is on the way… but no dice. Instead, the video ends with a purple prose quote that could easily be a speech bubble emerging from Max's mouth: "Birthdays are like regrets, they just keep coming. Each one a new scar that slows you down and drags you closer to your grave."

Harsh, but I'd expect nothing less from Payne. And it's easier to swallow with so many other cool Remedy projects to look forward to, including a multiplayer spinoff for Control and reported plans for Alan Wake 2.

Remedy's also at work on a new free-to-play project called Vanguard.

Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.