Review by Zindry09

Reviewed: 10/17/03

Action games don't get much better than this.

I got this game the first second it came out. I also didn't read many previews or look at too many screen shots so i would'nt ruin it for myself. I loved the first game very much so I had a good feeling the sequel would rock, and it does.

(Graphics: 10/10)
Max payne 2 has simply an amazing graphic engine. It runs very smoothly on high settings and I'm using a P4 1.4, 384mb ram, radeon 8500 128mb ddr videocard. The game looks awesome and only experience a slight, slight slowdown in some locals. The character models are great and detailed, but doesn't have a wide range of emotions like Half-life 2. One thing Max payne 2 has thought, and makes the game a whole lot of fun, is the physics Engine. In the first level, once you realize that basically everything you touch can be knocked over and pushed around, you go crazy. And during shootouts with explosions, crap is flying everywhere, bad guys are flying in the air, stumbling over things, all in slow-motion, it's a sight to behold.
Everything else about the graphics is top-notch. While not a generation jump like Doom3, its still top of the line and if you have a good enough comp, you will tell.

(Story: (9/10)
The story to max payne is great, but you have to understand that this is film noir, so its over dramatic, dark humor, melodrama, and different style of writing. I love this style. It's a rare treat to have such a fresh approach such as this. Theres more of a love tone this time (well the box does say ''A film noir love story'') and its better than any other game to have a love tone. Rpg's usually have some sort of a relationship with the main character, but it was too sappy and predictable. Maxpayne 2 does it right, and makes it feel new and different, without making it seem to predictable and girly.
Overall the story is great with some good writing, intresting characters, and you really never know what to expect, which prevents the action from becoming stale.

(Sound: 10/10)
Maxpayne has some of the best sound effects. While during gameplay, there are raindrops falling, ambient sounds,tv's, and other sounds. But its when the guns start shooting is when the sounds are awesome. Everything is frantic and there are gun blazing everywhere, bullets hitting walls and other things, but once you go into bullet-time, everything is muffled, and it makes everything sound amazing. Gernade blasts are low rumbles, guns are muffled, and everything sounds right. Be sure to turn your sound way up for it, and turn that bass up!
The music in the game is good, just not enough of it. You can't falt them cause the silence of no music actually works in most cases so I won't dock points for that. I love the main theme though, as i did in the first game.

(Gameplay: 10/10)
Bad points first. The game is short. So while it may be the most amazing 6-8 hours of gameplay you will have, it still ended to soon. That's maybe because I was having such a blast blowing away bad guys. A few things make the gameplay great.
1)Physics engine (see graphics for the physics engine).
It makes blowing crap up so much more fun. Plus with the rag-doll effects, which makes bad guys flail around in the air and die in many many many different ways, every shootout is fun.
2)Bullet time. If you ever played the first game, or enter the matrix, or dead to rights (so i'm told, i never played it myself), then you know how bullet time works in a game. Everything slows down giving you a edge in aiming quicky, and being able to dodge bullets. This time though if you kill a string of bad guys in bullet time, you become a bit faster and able to dodge bullets easier. You can basically run around a guy who is still flying in the air after getting a shotgun blast to the face. It may make the game easier (it does), but its needed in some firefights. There's also a cool little reloading move where the camera swings around you when you reload in a ''Cool'' way. It's a gimmick, but its works.
3)Guns. Lots of them. Dual Desert eagles is all I need to kill people (in the game of course). There are a few new guns, but theres always enough ammo for you to do your thing in a major shootout.
Overall the gameplay is great. It's in a third person perspective, the controls are good and can be re-configured. The enemy AI is still dumb, but its like that in movies also, the point is just to kill them all and let god sort them out in a cool way.
I also need to mention the other gameplay modes. (unlocked after beating game)
Hard-Boiled: Makes game harder
Dead man walking: You will die, but how long can you survive the onslaught of bad guys!?
New york minute: There's a time limit in each level. Can you beat it in that time?
Dead on arrival: As hard as hard-boiled, but now only a limited number of saves.

Maxpayne 2 is a great, fun game. I'm waiting for mods and still playing dead man walking. It's great great fun just to have a major shootout in slow-motion, dodging bullets, blastin people away, and seeing chairs, boxes, etc. fly around in the air. This is a amazing action game that should not be missed.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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