The London Olympics are now over and while it will be another 4 years before the next games in Rio, that doesn’t mean you have to wait that long to head on down to beautiful Brazil. The games a foot won’t be the same as you won’t have Bolt running the 100 meters or the US swim team kicking butt and taking names…instead you will be playing the role of a drunk and near suicidal ex-cop. Don’t get me wrong there will definitely be lots of running and gunning as well as some major ass kicking but it will all be at the hands, or should I say trigger of Max Payne.

Max Payne 3 is Rockstar’s big release of 2012 and while it’s not an open world game like GTA V or Red Dead Redemption the game still has a ton to do. The game takes place in Brazil where its your job to watch over and protect a wealthy family. Of course things go awry and you will be taken all over Brazil, Panama, the Amazon River, and Hoboken, New Jersey. Unfortunately though for Max, you won’t be hitting up Carlos Bakery as you will be in a fight for your life.

The story flips back and forth between the past and present and really goes into developing the story behind Max and how he ended up in Brazil. While the gameplay is great, its the story, at least for me that had me playing it through to completion.

The gameplay is based around a 3rd person perspective and while melee is an option, its the great gun play and bullet time that will really tickle your fancy. Bullet time is back and its better than ever, as with a click of the button, Max Payne will slow down time giving you plenty of time to head-shot the thugs coming after you. Another great feature of the gameplay is the final kill shot cam.  Once you take out the final enemy in a room you will be notified through a kill cam in which you will watch the guy get blasted full of holes and fall helplessly to the ground. Its a gruesome but awesome at the same time and really I never got old of it during my 15+ hours with the game.

The visuals are great and are full of character and little details that you wouldn’t think matters much but really goes along way in immersing you into the story. Take for example the TV’s…whenever you see one walk up and try and turn it on. While some aren’t playable, the ones that are will really provide you with some great story enhancing news.

The raspy voice that you will come to know quite well is that of Max Payne and its through his voice and story progressing dialogues that helps develop him as a protagonist that you will want to see win in the end.

The game is full of hidden collectibles, and clues that will have you going back a second time for sure. One thing that did bother me though about them is that the clues are sometimes so obscure that finding them is more of bumping into everything in the area as opposed to using your great detective skills. Sometime this just pulls you out of the action and maybe could have been tweaked a bit.

I did not try the multi-player at all as it really didn’t interest me in the least but I am sure it does a fine job.

One thing to note is that this game is not a trophy hunter’s dream. I am talking about both trophies and achievements as this game will not give them up without some real blood sweat and tears by your part. All seriousness aside though Max Payne 3 was definitely a pleasant surprise and one of the games that I could see sitting through a couple times just to see if I can take on one of the the harder settings.

Max Payne 3 gets a 9 out of 10.

Disclaimer: This review is one I wrote many years ago for one of my old websites that no longer exists.