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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: Rockstar Games
Developed By: Rockstar Studios
Genre: Third-Person Shooter
Players: 1-32 (2-32 online)
Rated: M for Mature (Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Partial Nudity, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Drugs and Alcohol)
Release Date: May 15, 2012
Screenshots: Link
Amazon: Buy Now!
Written By: Marcus Prunty

July 19, 2012 - Broken, destroyed, lacking any purpose in life other than to pop his next handful of pills and swig his next alcoholic drink, Max Payne returns to the video game scene after a 9-year absence. Still suffering greatly from the loss of his wife and child, and wondering aimlessly through life. That is until he runs into Raul Passos who talks him into being a personal bodyguard for a wealthy family; the Brancos, which gives him a temporary purpose in life. We have not seen pain like what Max Payne experiences since Kratos and the God of War franchise began, but unlike Kratos; Max does not go on a killing spree to get vengeance on the world. He just wants to drown his sorrows and wait for the end of life to come for him. However like Kratos, he is our hero broken and destroyed. Rockstar gives us a hero that we can relate to because we can feel his pain from his loss.

Max Payne 3 takes place in pleasure-seeking warm and sunny Sao Paulo, Brazil, which is far removed from the dreary slums of New York, as he works private security for the Brancos. The head of the family is Rodrigo and as his main boss, he entrusts the safety of his family to Max and Passos. During one of their lavish parties, armed men show up and kidnap Rodrigoís wife Fabiana, which sets in motion the wild ride that is Max Payne 3.

As you are on this ride, you will notice that Rockstar went with a non-linear timeline for the game where you jump back and forth to get the full picture of how and why everything leads into the story. Everyone in the story is suspicious and you tend to question if they are a part of it or not. The game uses many cutscenes which most people arenít too fond, however makes me reminiscent of Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of Patriots, but I believe that Rockstar does a great job mixing in long and short cutscenes to advance the story. I found that the cutscenes drew you in closer to Max and you can feel the pain and desperation that he experiences and it makes the game more gripping. The seamless integration of most of the cutscenes leaves you in awe of the game as a whole. Most of the times you cannot tell if you are in a cut scene until you try to control max and realize he does not move the way you want.

The core gameplay for the game revolves around Max being a gun-toting badass. There are many different weapons that you can wield in the game, but you can only carry two side arms and one two handed weapon at once. Bullet Time and Shoot Dodge make their return to MP3 and are easy for new players to learn and master. The environments in the game are destructible so in the middle of firefights you will see bullets whizzing by you as well as glass and other debris that is being shredded by the bullets. When using each of Maxís moves, you get a distinct advantage over the enemies and allow you to get out of some hairy situations. Also part of the core gameplay is the fact that there is no health regeneration in the story mode. When you are shot, your health goes down and does not come back up unless you pop some painkillers. So you are forced to play like youíre going to die and that is mainly because you will if you do not keep moving and shooting your way out of situations. Staying still in cover will only get you killed eventually either when the cover breaks down from bullets or when the enemies rush you.

This game is violent and visceral; there bullet wounds, burned flesh, limbs blown off by weapons fire. The game also includes a kill camera, which lets you see and feel this violence in slow motion as it follows the last bullet out of your gun towards your target and you see it shred their body killing them. Another action that happens in the game and makes you jump the first time you do it. When a person is rushing you in the middle of a gunfight, you can melee attack him with your weapon and after you hit them boom you shoot them in the face. The first time I did this I was like wow you get a visceral gut reaction when you experience it and you want to just keep doing it.

This game also departs from Rockstarís normal open world environment kind of games most notably Grand Theft Auto franchise. When you are exploring Sao Paulo looking for Fabiana you can imagine all that could have been done if they would have allowed you free roam of the Favelas. However, to keep you on track and keep the intensity and anticipation up they provide you with the path to take. You are never in doubt of who needs to be shot at or which way to go as Rockstar guides you very well and annoyingly at times. When Max keeps repeating himself while you are searching the area that you need to go and catch up to whomever you are chasing at the time. The single-player story will last you around 12 hours it took me around 15 hours. It took me longer because there are pieces of gold guns lying around in the story mode if you collect the 3 pieces then you get access to that gun gold plated in the multiplayer modes. Therefore, I spent a lot of extra time looking for those pieces when parts of the mission died down.

There are also a variety of Arcade modes that include score challenges and speed runs that will give you something to do after youíre done with the main story. Thereís a time crisis mode also called New York Minute in which youíre given 5 minutes to play through sections of the story you gain more time as you kill more enemies. While this is fun, most people will not be willing to replay most of the game in this mode.

When you begin playing the game you will notice that Rockstar employs a unique set of visual effects that gives it a grainy colorful look and feel it reminded me a lot of Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days and there handheld camera viewpoint they used in the game. Only, Rockstar pulled it off better. It will take a little while to get use to it but once you do, you realized your viewing the situations through Maxís hazy outlook on life and the world around him, which is the result of all the pills and booze he has been wolfing down for years. The return of James McCaffrey as the voice of Max Payne makes the game amazing as you can hear the bitterness and the pain and anguish that Max is experiencing. The voice acting is top notch and adds to the unique visual style that Rockstar employs.

Where the game really shines and impresses is with the multiplayer mode. There are so many different aspects of the multiplayer that there is something for everyone. Gang Wars is an interesting concept where they provide a story line as your play four rounds each of which has a different objective that change depending on what happens in the round. Some of the objectives are defusing bombs, assassinating leaders of opposing gangs and claiming territory. In addition, the fifth and last round of Gang Wars is an all out death match in which you can use Bursts, which are benefits that give advantage to the person and team using it. For instance thereís a burst called ID cards which lets the opposing team think youíre a member of their team which allows you to mix in with them and kill them. There is trigger-happy which has perks of armor piercing bullets, bigger gun, and grenade launcher temporarily when leveled up. I am not sure if Gang Wars does what Rockstar wanted it to do but it is a fun mode to play for something different.

The other modes are deathmatch, team deathmatch, large deathmatch and large team deathmatch and Payne Killer. In deathmatch and large deathmatch itís every man for themselves. As you, roam all over the map in a free for all shooting matches for xp to level up weapons and your character. In large deathmatch and large team deathmatch, you play on teams depending on how many players you have it can be eight on 8 or as low as two on two. The only difference between large and regular is the size of the map. In Large team or regular deathmatch the map is huge and really should not only be played if you have a full eight on eight matches because the less people you have the least likely you will be able to find someone to kill quickly. Payne killer is one of the signature modes and allows the players to be either Max Payne or Passos. When this mode begins, everyone is standing around; first two people to get kills become Max Payne and or Passos. Max dual wields pistols and has bullet time and shoot dodge at his advantage whereas Passos has a really big machine gun that holds around 200 rounds and has major range. Once people become Max and Passos the rest of the players attempt to hunt them down and kill them to take over as Max or Passos the person with the most kills as Max or Passos wins. If you only have three players, there will only be Max or Passos you will not get both. All the different multiplayer modes give you infinite amount of fun and I am still playing them all still.

Max Payne is the good person. He may be broken and bitter and praying for a way out of his miserable life, but he still does what needs to be done to save the innocent and protect the helpless. The loss of his family devastated him beyond belief but when there is a job to be done; as unpleasant and suicidal as it may be, he will get the job done. If you have never played Max Payne or, let alone this game, the experience alone is one for the generation. It is an all around amazing game and everyone should definitely rent or own and play this title. Rockstar once again has impressed the gaming world again. If you do not believe me, go see for yourself.


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