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    dkirschner's Max Payne 3 (360)

    [December 14, 2013 02:57:31 PM]
    Girlfriend and I finished MP3 a couple nights ago. Fantastic game, we both really enjoyed it, especially the story. We played on easy to focus on the story. My friend and I have been having a conversation regarding Jesper Juul's Casual Revolution. He keeps trying to make the argument that games are becoming easier, more hand-holding, more casual. I disagree and think that instead of games trending toward becoming easier, they are trending to cater to a broader range of players and play styles, greatly expanding players' options. Max Payne 3, as one of a thousand examples, has at least 3 difficulty settings. Like I said, we played on easy in order to focus on the story without many difficult gun battles getting in the way. The game WAS easy, but that was because we chose to play it that way. We could have played it on hard, we could have gone for achievements, we could have set our own goals, any number of things that the devs allowed for to let us play the game at the difficulty of our choosing. This friend of mine I've only known for a couple months, and I think he is just a hardcore gamer who sees his territory of hard games being eroded by mobile games, sees his World of Warcraft and Lord of the Rings Online catering to new players, and he's feeling...hosile or something. I'm trying to get him to see a more balanced perspective. Anyway...

    I had played a few chapters of MP3 by myself a month or two ago, but stopped when my girlfriend said she wanted to play it too. So we started over together. We haven't played a game together in years due to me living halfway across the world, and I have to admit I thought she was...more skilled than she was! She didn't do so hot with the 360 controller aiming and whatnot. But I know we've played Halo before! Turns out she said she doesn't like Halo because of the controller and aiming is hard. I was hoping she could play and I could watch, since I'm always the one playing games, but after she tried for an hour, she made me control Max.

    I can't say a lot for the gunplay really. It's basically the same as the previous Max Payne games. There's bullet time and slow dive, you can have 4 weapons, can dual wield pistols and SMGs. There's a nice cover system that you use all the time. No grenades or anything besides guns. Still pick up pain pills. There's a nice new feature where if you are shot by a bullet that would otherwise kill you, if you have a painkiller, Max automatically enters slo-mo, and if you kill an enemy in slo-mo, he automatically takes a painkiller. So you don't die unless you are shot with no painkillers or unless you don't manage to kill anyone when Max enters slo-mo. There's also a gratuitous kill-cam. When you kill the last enemy in a section, you get to see a gory death. That's nice to let the player know when they've cleared an area.

    You can find golden gun parts scattered around the levels. I'm not really sure what they do besides make your gun golden. It is probably more powerful or has more ammo capacity. I unlocked one only. Then you can find clues around too and investigate them for Max's commentary. Some of the early levels are timed, which I thought was stupid since there were clues around. It made it so we couldn't explore and search for clues. Why are the clues there if you can't spend time to look for them? After the early levels though, there weren't any timed levels. Kind of strange.

    Ok, enough about gameplay. The story was fantastic. That's what we played the game for. Max is washed up popping pills and drinking himself to death. He gets a job from another cop from his past, and the story is about that job, that cop the family they work for, and as usual, Max battling his demons. Of course there's a massive conspiracy and backstabbing and people aren't the people they say they are. Some of the game's locales are pretty incredible. The majority of the game is set in Sao Paulo, Brazil. In particular I remember the night club, the favela (though that spans like 3 chapters and is the one part where the game dragged!) and the police station. The voice actor who plays Max Payne really does a top-notch job. All the characters were excellent and voiced very well. We were hoping that the ex-cop from North Dakota that Max kept running into was a criminal mastermind, but it remains inconclusive. He sure did show up in some suspicious spots.

    When Max is drunk or really injured or his head is spinning or whatever, there is this cool visual effect that is sort of neon, Drive / Hotline Miami screen tearing and fuzz. Whoever did the cinematic video parts of the game deserves an award. Seriously, that visual effect was SO perfect for conveying Max's physical and mental states. Also, the game's music, perfect.

    Pretty much everything about MP3 was spot on. We enjoyed every minute (save the overlong favela section). Highly recommended.
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    dkirschner's Max Payne 3 (360)

    Current Status: Finished playing

    GameLog started on: Sunday 17 November, 2013

    GameLog closed on: Thursday 12 December, 2013

    dkirschner's opinion and rating for this game

    Putting this on pause til Allison wants to play...amazing so far though. -------------- Yeah, fantastic game. Visual fuzzy effect was so cool.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

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