Review by SJohnson
Max Payne is an action game that breaks new boundaries with its Bullet Time feature, which slows down everything except how fast you can aim. The result is an advantage against the enemy, but don't take it too much for granted, the enemy can get pretty tough.
The best part about Max Payne that sets it apart from the average action shooter is the plot, which is hollywood caliber material. The plot sets the hero, Max Payne, in a pretty bad situation. The cops are after him, the Mafia's after him, and he's really pissed. He's a ''fugitive undercover cop with nothing to lose.'' He's the perfect noir hero. The dark mood and setting really add to the game. The plot has its share of twists, and knowledge of Norse Mythology would help.
The controls are pretty easy to get used to, although the aiming is a bit faulty. Its not just the joystick movements that are faulty, the actually cursor that shows where the bullets are going to hit is usually only 30% correct. Maybe its more realistic, and it doesn't detract that much from gameplay.
The graphics are good, but not jawdropping. Then again, the most amazing part of the game (Bullet Time) has to do with the graphics. Bullets flying through the air, Max shooting his guns while grinning, it's the life. The attention to detail is amazing, with tiles on the wall falling off when you shoot them, and faucets running when you use them, usable slot machines, and even the soda machines that give you soda. Character design details are great too, with the faces looking very realistic.
Another plus is the sound, music, humor (watch the TV's), and load times. The camera angels, especially in the freaky parts, which are really freaky. Every now and then Max will have a dream (more of a nightmare really) about what happened to his wife and kid, but its gets more distorted each time. The humor is well used. Its mostly what the bad guys say, and at times what Max says.
I would give this game a 10, but theres room for improvement. Its a lot better on the X Box then on the PS2, but only the graphical detail is better.
This is the perfect game for those looking for a great action game with amazing effects. Almost every aspect of the game, music, sound, plot and mood, are a step up above from the average action game.
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 01/03/02, Updated 01/03/02
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